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How to Clean Your Dorm Before Moving Out

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When the semester comes to an end at university, you'll prepare to move out of the dorm you just moved into months earlier. A part of this process is cleaning the dorm thoroughly. Not only will this help you organize your packing, but if you don't clean your dorm, you could face a fine from the school. You better get cleaning.


Cleaning your dorm room and packing for your move should be tied together. You can't effectively do one task without doing the other. To coordinate this, plan to devote some time to the process.
  • Pay attention to the date that you're required to move out and the inspection date. They are not always the same day.
  • Give yourself a few days before inspection to start your cleaning and packing.
  • Pack the majority of your things before you start washing surfaces in your dorm.
  • Understand the school's policy for a clean room. Can you still have some items in your room when inspection comes, or is it supposed to be empty? Where do you put the bedding and the garbage when you leave?
  • If you need to move a mini-fridge with a freezer component, allot extra time for it to defrost or you risk melting water dripping when it is unplugged during the move.


Depending on the type of dorm and your items, the cleaning process will vary. There still are some general principles that you can follow when cleaning each area of your dorm room.


  • Try to time your food consumption so that your dorm kitchen area is almost food-free when it comes time to move. Clean out your kitchen by eating what you can and throwing out the rest.
  • Defrost your mini-fridge/freezer by unplugging it and using a pan or sink to catch the water. This may take a day. Make sure that the interior is cleaned out of all food before you do this or else it will spoil.
  • Search all drawers and cupboards for food or items, using a flashlight, if necessary. You don't want to leave anything behind.
  • Wipe down all counters and clean stains with a kitchen cleaner. Make sure you read labels when using any cleaning chemicals to ensure that you don't damage the surfaces you are cleaning.
  • Check the medicine cabinet and under the sink for all of your things.
  • Hold off on packing the bathroom cleaning supplies as long as you can. You will likely use the bathroom until it is time to leave.
  • Clean the toilet, floor, and sink the best you can using appropriate cleaners.
  • Leave the often confined space occassionally if you are using harsh chemicals that are dangerous to inhale.
  • Since you use it daily, you'll have to wait until the day of the inspection to clean your bed.
  • Remove and launder all bedding.
  • Check under the bed for any hidden objects.
  • Empty and wipe down night tables.
  • Unplug any appliance before cleaning.
  • Clean from the top to bottom to avoid knocking dirt and dust onto cleaned areas.
  • Don't forget to dust and wash the included room furniture.
  • Sell your textbooks to make more room to pack and clean.
  • Sweep and vacuum once all the dirt and dust is on the floor
  • Wash any stains off the walls or floors. Again, be wary of what chemicals harm certain surfaces.
  • Put the university furniture back in its original arrangement. The school's inspector may fine you for rearranged furniture.
With some planning and persistence, you can clean your dorm well enough to avoid a fine. It's a bonus that a good cleaning will help make packing and moving out more organized.

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on November 25, 2014 - Moving Expert
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