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How to Prepare Your Apartment for Moving Out & Inspection

Moving out of an apartment can be a busy, stressful time. You’re simultaneously moving your belongings from one place to another while still trying to balance all your normal responsibilities. It’s important during all this busyness, however, that you don’t overlook the process of preparing your apartment for its final inspection.

For one, leaving your apartment in decent shape helps those who are tasked with getting it ready for the next tenant. In addition, if you do the job well, you can look forward to receiving some or all your security deposit back. This can serve as a nice little chunk of change that will assist with moving expenses. To get the largest refund you can, then, here are a few tips from apartment movers for properly preparing your apartment.

Fill the Holes

If the complex you’re leaving allowed holes in the walls, it’s important to fill and sand these holes before moving out. Don’t skimp and use “poor man’s spackle” (a.k.a. toothpaste), either. Use actual joint compound applied with a putty knife, then use a fine grit sandpaper to smooth it down. This will save the property manager a lot of effort, and this goodwill will certainly send more of your deposit back to you.

Clean Appliances

Have you ever tried to clean an oven, microwave, or refrigerator? It’s time-consuming, back-breaking work. When you’re moving out, cleaning appliances can be one of the most tempting items to ignore, since you know just how difficult it will be. As difficult as it is for you, then, you can be sure it will be just as difficult for the property manager, meaning that any sincere efforts to complete this step will be met with a larger deposit refund.


If you’re handy with a brush and a roller, you could enjoy a much larger refund if you repaint your apartment when you move out. Of course, some complexes won’t let you do this, and it’s so rare for a tenant to offer to do this that you’ll likely have to ask, either way. If you’re willing to ask and then complete the job, though, it will show an incredible amount of good faith on your part, suggesting that you really want to leave your apartment in top condition. Since the property manager can skip the expense of a painter, it will free-up money that can go back in your pocket. Do note, however, that it’s vital to protect all non-paintable surfaces while painting to prevent messy spills that result in a much larger cost.

Focus on the Details

When a property manager inspects an apartment after a tenant moves out, they’re not just looking for large projects that will need to be completed. They’re also looking at all the small details that will need to be taken care of before they can offer the apartment for rent again. If you can take care of some or all of these small details, then, you’ll be well on your way to a nice refund.

Focus on things like dust on the baseboards and ceiling fans, cobwebs in the corners, crumbs between the stove and cabinets, and sticky spills under the refrigerator. Assume that every surface in the apartment will need to be cleaned in one way or another, so you’ll be sure not to miss something obvious.

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