Oven Cleaning as Part of End of Tenancy Cleaning
It’s common for rental agreements to require end of tenancy cleaning to ensure the house has been left in almost the same conditions it was at the start of tenancy. According to the Deposit Protection Scheme, lack of thorough cleaning results in deposit disputes 56 per cent of the time. The scheme also requests that tenants understand simple fundamental principles regarding cleaning standards and landlord cleaning money claims. Essentially, you should always remember:
- End of tenancy cleaning should always be done to leave the property virtually the same way you found it.
- Property and amenities normal tear and wear cannot be termed as uncleanness since even aged and worn out items can still be tidied up.
- If you don’t clean yourself the landlord will seek help, which can be expensive. If you can clean or have the property cleaned the less disputes you’ll have.
Oven cleaning has been cited by the Tenancy Dispute Scheme as one of the areas requiring special attention during end of tenancy cleaning, including flooring, bath/shower, windows and freezer or fridge. Like a few other areas in a property, cleaning an oven isn’t the most liked work, particularly by a tenant who’s probably thinking more about her new home than the dreadful cleaning tasks in their old home.
Oven cleaning on your own
End of tenancy cleaning, if well done, should leave the oven as clean as you found it and avoid unnecessary disputes with the landlord. Doing the tidying up yourself is a quick way of getting the job done if you’ve time. Professional cleaners do this all the time and always do a thorough job. To clean well and efficiently, you will need:
- Good quality rubber gloves
- Quality oven cleaning agent
- Sufficient sponges
- Plastic bags (re-sealable are the best)
End of tenancy DIY oven cleaning directions
Once you’ve collected all the required materials ensure all the oven shelves have been removed and placed inside the different plastic bags.
Step 1: Take the oven cleaning product and pour it into the bag and leave it sealed to soak the shelves. Note that if the oven has a number of shelves buying a couple of oven cleaning products is advisable.
Step 2: On the oven floor do pour some of the cleaning product, including onto the oven door and use a sponge to spread the detergent and the fluid wherever you can see filth.
Step 3: Once the oven cleaning product has been spread leave it for a day or 4-5 hours if in a hurry before cleaning it.
Step 4: A clean sponge is sufficient for the cleaning fluid removal, including soapy water (preferably warm) to ensure the oven door and the internal surface are free of grease, murk and dirt (also most recommended way of cleaning the oven’s glass door without damaging the glass).
Step 5: Unseal the plastic bags and use soapy, warm water and a sponge to wipe the oven shelves.
Step 6: To leave the oven sparkling clean, wipe the internal section, including the oven door, using a clean sponge or cloth to remove any remaining dreg.
Step 7: Once everything is sparkling clean and the oven looks tidy and fresh, return the shelves in their proper place.
Natural end of tenancy oven cleaning method
If you’ve been around enough, you probably have heard about the countless natural cleaning agents. One of the best is baking soda and finishing off the job with white vinegar.
Baking soda is actually recommended for smoky ovens, usually the result of collected food particles over time leaving behind unhygienic and hazardous remains. Smoky ovens do alter the taste of food if not removed.
A better way to keep your oven always fresh and clean is sprinkling some baking soda within the oven and leaving it all night. In the process, the burnt food remains will be softened and can be eliminated easily using a spatula or piece of cloth.
Firstly, you need to collect the following:
- Spray bottle, water and cloth
- Baking soda
- White vinegar
- Quality rubber gloves
- Metal wire brush or scrubbing pad
Step 1: Begin by removing all the oven shelves.
Step 2: Mix water and baking soda sufficiently to create an excellently done paste.
Step 3: While wearing the rubber gloves take the baking soda paste and spread it across the oven and leave it for 12 hours or more. All grime and dirt will be softened for easier removal and cleaning.
Step 4: As the paste does its job go ahead and use soapy water (preferably warm) and the metal wire brush or scrubbing pad to remove dirt and charred matter from the shelves.
Step 5: Once 12 hours or so are over and the shelves are clean use a damp sponge or cloth to wipe the entire internal part of the oven clean, removing the dried paste of baking soda.
Step 6: With the white vinegar inside the spray bottle spray it inside the oven while ignoring the fizzing sound made by baking soda-vinegar contact.
Step 7: Use the damp cloth again to ensure the oven is wiped clean, as you get rid of all traces of grease, dirt, grime or residues of bubbling baking soda.
Return everything in its place inside the oven to complete the end of tenancy oven cleaning.
Don’t forget the baking trays!
Do ensure the baking trays are cleaned as well. You can use hot water and typical dishwashing solution to soak them. Once they’ve soaked overnight or just a couple of hours clean them easily and effectively until you’re satisfied.
CRITIAL: Read the tenancy agreement before attempting any cleaning
One thing you shouldn’t attempt is DIY oven cleaning before you’ve read the tenancy agreement. Some agreements will just require that the oven and other amenities be reasonably clean before you hand over the keys. Others will clearly indicate that professional cleaning is required. Many tenants don’t just want any type of cleaning since what’s clean for one might be rubbish to another. A professional cleaning job leaves all parties to the agreement satisfied, particularly a rogue landlord who could use it as a ruse to take away most of your deposit.
Is professional cleaning required in your case?
Start with the tenancy agreement. Refer to the cleaning requirements section and see whether the term “professional” is clearly indicated. If it’s there then no matter how many times you clean the oven or other areas the landlord or agent will still require evidence; that a professional was involved in cleaning all the different amenities, in this case a receipt from the end of tenancy cleaning service.
If the agreement is silent and you aren’t sure, get in touch with the agent or landlord and ask about it. Preferably, email or call them weeks before the termination of the tenancy to prepare accordingly.
At times, you mightn’t be sure and the landlord or agent might also be unreachable. Go ahead and clean your oven and any other area as expected to ensure the property reverts to the owner in a good state. Otherwise the landlord or agent will indeed deduct a huge percentage from your tenancy deposit.
What if deductions are still made even after oven cleaning?
Note that no tenant should accept their deposit to be deducted. Since all tenant deposits must be recorded with the Deposit Protection Scheme, deductions do require some approval. According to the Scheme, as far as you can submit evidence in form of invoices, inventories, photographs among others, deductions can be challenged, though the evidence must be provided within a given time frame. Read more on tenant deposit return to know your rights.
It means that, as you clean the oven, bath, flooring or other area you must gather and keep as much evidence as you can. It’s the reason a professional, trusted and reputable oven cleaning service is recommended to provide the sufficient paper trail you need as evidence.
In conclusion, the best way of ensuring your oven is easy to clean and won’t cost you time and money at the end of the tenancy is keeping it clean as much as you can. Avoid unfair treatment from rogue landlords or agents by ensuring the property is left in a condition close to the initial state it was during the primary inventory check at the beginning of the tenancy period, including completing all repairs if need be.