Residence Life and Housing

So You Wanna Get Your Deposit Back?

You're busted - your apartment is a smelly, cluttered, dirty, disorganized mess. Laundry is piled up to the ceiling, you ask yourself was my shower white when I moved in? You have some how collected magazines from before you were born; you find stray socks under your sofa and ask yourself Is this mine? Your carpet has turned a mysterious shade of gray and the bottom of your oven could be mapped as an archeological dig.

It's the end of the year and you have papers to write, finals to study for, pack up your apartment to move home and friends you want to spend time with, how are you going to do all that and still leave your apartment clean and damage fee free?

Ok, here is the plan;

1.Pick a day don't forget to consult your roommates if you are lucky enough to be able to split up the chores.

2.Get prepared: supplies you will need:

  • Vacuum (there is one in the office to check out)

  • Broom, Mop and Bucket (yep we have that also in the office)

  • Liquid Disinfectant (like Pine Sol or Mr. Clean)

  • Glass Cleaner (Windex or Glass Plus will work)

  • Scouring Powder (Comet or SoftScrub or Scrubbing Bubbles)

  • Scrubbies (Scotchbrite or 3M)

  • Bleach (Clorox)

  • Oven Cleaner (Mr. Muscle)

  • Sponges and Rags (not your roommates favorite sweater!)

  • Paper Towels

  • Rubber Gloves (especially if this is the first time you have cleaned your toilet)

  • Trash Bags

3.The day arrives, put on some old clothes and put on your favorite CD and take a deep breath and jump in!

4.Start in your bedroom (see room by room Expectations below) and work your way out, next the shower, toilet and vanity area. Ok you are tired and your back hurts: don't give up you have your living room and kitchen to go yet. YOU CAN DO THIS!

5.Take out all the accumulated trash and take a shower in your sparkling yes, white shower! Sit down and take stock of your labors!

Helpful Cleaning Hints:

  • Formica Counter Tops: Soap and water should be good enough to clean most of it, if you have stains use a little baking soda and water, make a paste and apply to the stain; an old tooth brush will work great for this. If the stain persists use a little diluted bleach but be careful, don't let it set for more that 90 seconds rinse with water.

  • Kitchen Floors: Sweep up all debris, use hot water with your disinfectant (Mr. Clean), dip your mop and go in straight lines, if you are using a rag mop go in a figure eight. For tough stains or scuffs use a plastic scrubbie (please DO NOT use a metal scouring pad).

  • Refrigerator: Remove everything, the means all food stuffs, shelves and drawers. Use hot soapy water and wipe down everything and replace! Use glass cleaner on the outside who says its just for glass!

  • Stove Top: Turn off the power at the breaker box! Remove the drip pans and let soak in your sink with some hot water and soap. Wipe down the underside of the range top. Replace the drip pans, make sure they are dry!

  • Oven:If you have bought oven cleaner READ the directions. Some work best when the oven is warm, some are for cold cleaning. When you spray it with the cleaner make sure you have enough time to finish the job. Most cleaners will have you spray down the oven and have you wait anywhere from 10 minutes to a half hour. Oven cleaner can be very strong and may irritate your skin so wear gloves. After it has sat for the right amount of time make sure you wipe it down with a sponge and keep rinsing your sponge in clean water. Replace the racks and sigh its over!

  • Microwave:Take out the rack and turn table, wipe down with a soft rag with soap and water, you can buy microwave cleaners but dish soap will work just as well and it's cheaper! Replace the rack and turn table.

  • Toilet: Ok this is the most disgusting thing you will need to clean. Put on your rubber gloves, get a rag, bowl brush and some cleaner (yep bleach will work here as well just be careful of spilling on the floor; it will eat away the color in the tiles and take care with the fumes). START to SCRUB!

  • Shower Stall: Spray down with Scrubbing Bubbles or the best way to rid your shower of soap slime is to use a mixture of household bleach ¾ cup and a gallon of water. This mixture will both sanitize and rid your shower of unsightly mold. When using bleach or any other chemical in a small enclose space turn on the vent and keep the door open to keep fresh air moving and take frequent breaks!

Expectations for Cleaning and Damage FREE Apartments or How to Have the Perfect Check Out:

Make an appointment with your RA (make it at least 24 hours in advance), remember they have all the same things to do as you're cleaning, finals, spending time with friends, so don't expect to be able to find them always at your convenience! If you miss your appointment with your RA you will be charged $50.

The following is what is expected when your RA arrives to check you out:


    1. Your furniture should be in the position that you found it when you arrived, bed against the wall as you enter, bookcase and dresser under bed, desk and chair against the window wall. Remember when you are packing to leave the university phone!
    2. Furniture should be dust free and all shelves and drawers empty yep that means no single socks left or crumbs or small bits of paper.
    3. Floor should be vacuumed.
    4. Walls should be free of all posters, tape, tape residue, nail, tacks, etc.
    5. Closet empty.
    6. Dust off your blinds and take a quick swipe on your windows with the Windex!

Toilet Room

  1. Toilet should be clean and sparkly.
  2. The floor should be mopped.
  3. Shelved dusted.

Shower Room

    1. Shower stall should be white and free of soap, scouring grit and what not!
    2. The floor should be mopped.
    3. The shower curtain should be hung and free of mold.

Vanity Area

  1. Sink should be scoured out and chrome should be shiny.
  2. All drawers, medicine cabinet and under the sink should be free of all trash and wiped out.
  3. Mirror should be cleaned and free of tooth paste spittle.
  4. The floor should be mopped.


  1. Microwave should be cleaned and the shelve and turn table in place.
  2. Range and oven should be food or rather burnt food free.
  3. Refrigerator and freezer (make sure the ice maker collection tray is still there) should be empty and wiped out, don't forget to check out under the drawers as well!
  4. Dishwasher should be emptied and have the silverware caddy.
  5. All cabinets and drawers should be cleaned and emptied.
  6. Counter tops should be wiped down.

Living Room

  1. Carpet vacuumed.
  2. Blinds dusted and use that same Windex bottle on your windows!
  3. Furniture should be clean (vacuum the sofa and chair, dust the wood pieces).

Return your apartment and PO box key to your RA.

Mail can be forwarded to another address for the next thirty days. Keep in mind that only First class will be forwarded, any magazines anything with Presort will be thrown out! So make sure you do a change of address with the actual publishers!Click Hereto access the form.

Point out any major damage or cleaning that didn't get cleaned. REMEMBER the RAs do not assess cleaning and damage charges, the Office of Residence Life and Housing will do a final inspection of your apartment!Just because your RA says you are all set to leave doesn't mean you won't have a charge!

Sign your Check Out Form

Have a safe trip home, a great summer and best of luck for next year!

The Menu of Charges

You now know what we expect when you leave your apartment, should you decide to not clean here are some charges to expect as well as some basic damage charges:


Bedroom Starts at $40
Bathroom Area Starts at $50
Living Room Starts at $50


Starts at $75 each appliance will add more to the charge


Wall Damage Starts at $40 per wall for patch and paint
Furniture Damage Starts at $25

Missing or Damaged Beyond Repair Furniture Charges:

Desk $425
Desk Chair $225
Dresser $450
Bookcase $350
Bed $350
Mattress $200
Dining Table Round $350
Dining Table Square $300
Dining Chair $195 per chair
Sofa $650
Chair $450
Modular tables $175
Missing Appliance Parts Starts at $10 for stove knob
Carpet Abuse Starts at $50 for cleaning
Carpet Replacement Starts at $500 for the bedroom

Missing or Damaged Blinds

Starts at $25 for Repair, $50 for replacement