Airbnb House Cleaning Checklist- PDF Template & Host Tips

Working with a new cleaner can be difficult, as I have discovered. So a checklist can be very useful in getting a cleaner up to speed with your expectations.  I thought I’d share my Airbnb house cleaning checklist that I put together for all of my rentals.  I hope you can get some use out of this!  


Airbnb House Cleaning Checklist- Living Room:

  • Reposition Furniture
  • Clean All Living Room Furniture
  • Vacuum/ Mop all Flooring
  • Reset TV Remote to Correct Channel. Reset Any Smart TV Applications
  • Reposition Airbnb House Manual

Bathroom Cleaning Checklist:

  • Clean All Flooring
  • Clean Sink, Shower, Toilet
  • Refill Soap or Soap Dispensers
  • Clean Toothbrush Holder
  • Provide Clean Shower Mat
  • Resupply Toilet Paper.  Fold Edge of Toilet Paper Into Triangle
  • Provide Fresh Towels
  • Provide Fresh Black Makeup Wash Cloth

Kitchen Cleaning Checklist:

  • Clean Sink and Counters
  • Clean All Flooring
  • Clean & Re-Stock Coffee Maker
  • Empty Ice Tray in Freezer
  • Scrub Any Dirty Dishes Before Placing into Dishwasher
  • Start and Then Empty Dishwasher
  • Clean Outside and Inside of Microwave, Refrigerator, and Oven
  • Clean Out Unused Food Items from Refrigerator
  • Re-Stock Napkins and Paper Towels
  • Provide Fresh Dish Towels and Wash Cloths
  • Take Out Trash and Provide New Trash Bags

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Bedroom Cleaning Checklist:

  • Remove Dirty Sheets/ Blankets and
  • Inspect Sheets, Blankets, and Mattress Protector for Any Stains- Treat
  • Wash Dirty Sheets/ Blankets
  • Wipe Down Headboard (if Applicable)
  • Provide Fresh Sheets and Pillow Covers
  • Provide “Hotel Corners” When Making Bed
  • Inspect Fresh Bedding for Hairs or Particles
  • Check Dresser and Under Bed for Any Clothing Left Behind
  • Vacuum or Mop Entire Room
  • Turn Off Alarm Clock if Set

Rental Recon Sheet Tip: Fold your set of sheets, and place them inside one of the set’s pillow covers. Then stack the “pillow cover sets” on top of eachother based on what bed they apply to. That way you won’t have to sift through sheets trying to determine where it goes.

Utility Room Cleaning Checklist:

  • Empty lint from the dryer
  • Check for clothing in the washer/ dryer
  • Check for clothing in the hamper

Outside Cleaning Checklist:

  • Sweep Any Porches
  • Clean and Reposition Any Patio Furniture
  • Re-Stock Firewood, Paper, Matches (if Applicable)

Final Walkthrough:

  • Inspect for Any Hairs in Bathroom
  • Open All Blinds and Reposition Curtains
  • Clean Any Scuffs on Floors
  • Provide Keys in Correct Place/ Reset Any Codes
  • Notify Owner of Any Excessive Messes or Damage
  • Turn On Exterior Lighting (if Applicable)
  • Lock Exterior Doors Before Leaving

I have my Airbnb house cleaning checklist laminated with checkboxes and is kept up where my supplies are located.  Of course, this checklist is specific to my home, and will probably need to be refined to fit your home. 

I highly recommend walking through your Airbnb after the cleaners are finished. I realize this may not be an option for some hosts, but it works well for me. I still catch minor issues that need to be addressed before the next guest shows up. Everything from random hairs to lint on pillows still make an appearance from time to time.

These items may seem trivial to some, but a random hair can really turn off guests and may lead to a bad review.

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Airbnb Cleaning Tips:

Stains on Linens

For those guests that leave unsightly blood or other stains on your sheet or pillowcase, there is hope! Get out your hydrogen peroxide. It will make those stains disappear rather quickly. You can also try Oxy Clean. The odor blaster is my personal favorite for getting rid of lingering smells on linens.

Towels/ Sheets

In order to remove those pesky stains, white towels and sheets are highly recommended. Your best friends are bleach and hot water. In addition, use a commercial strength detergent. Check out this article on motel quality detergents.

This product on Amazon is another great commercial detergent option. The smell is not too strong, comes in powder form, and has a large 5-gallon pail. Make sure to read all of the reviews/ recommendations to make sure it works with your specific washing machine. It may not work for high-efficiency machines.

If you prefer to use ordinary household detergent, also use hot water and a tablespoon of Oxy Clean to attack stains.

Please also be aware that some commercial-grade products or bleach may not be appropriate for septic systems.

Baking Soda Deodorizer

I sprinkle a good solid amount of baking soda on my carpets periodically. This keeps the carpet smelling fresh and odor-free. Just sprinkle on your carpet, and let is sit overnight when you don’t have a guest staying. Vacuum up the following morning. That all it takes.

Bad Odors that Linger

For guests that break your Airbnb house rules and smoke in the house, or cook something that lingers for days, I bring out my ozone machine. This machine works great for eliminating those baked in smells that just won’t come out any other way. Make sure to follow the instructions, as you shouldn’t be present when they are in operation.

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Related Questions:

How Much Do Cleaners Charge?

In my experience, cleaners typically charge between $25-$50/ hour.  Some cleaners provide a flat cleaning fee per visit, based on square footage and whether deep cleans are necessary or just a little tidying up. My cleaner charges $30 per hour, and it typically takes her an hour. 

She will have time to have the dishes washed and put away, and throws all towels and sheets in the washing machine.  It is up to me to put the wet clothes in the dryer and then fold and put away the linens. But it saves me a little cash, so that works for my situation.  

What is the Airbnb Cleaning Fee?

No, the hosts set their own cleaning fee.  If you host in the US, Airbnb does ask if you support their Living Wage Pledge, which states that you pay your cleaners a minimum of $25/hour.  You don’t have to check this box on the listing, but since most cleaners ask $25/hour minimum, you might as well check the box to show your support for that cause.

Since the cleaning fee is determined by the host, you can inflate the cleaning fee to cover items such as soap, coffee, and other operational items necessary for your short-term rental.

But be aware that when a guest sees your nightly price, that rate includes the cleaning fee (averaged over the number of nights they are staying).  So the higher your cleaning fee, the less competitive you will appear.

Where Do You Find A Reputable Cleaner for Your Airbnb?

It turns out that most of the cleaning companies in my area would not even call me back once I told them I needed a cleaner for my Airbnb.  Why you may ask?  They don’t want to work on weekends.  I wouldn’t want to clean on the weekend either, but something had to give.  So I turned to Facebook. 

Surprisingly, the second cleaner I contacted worked on weekends.  And I have been using her ever since.  I have heard good things from other Airbnb hosts about Thumbtack and TaskRabbit, but I haven’t personally used them. 

How To Properly Screen A Cleaner For Your Airbnb

Here is how I screened my cleaner.  First off, I asked for references.  If they don’t have any, I’d move on to the next option.  Secondly, I asked if she does background checks on each of her employees. 

Third, I checked to see if they would provide me with a copy of their business liability insurance, which they happily provided.  If you ask these questions when selecting your new cleaner, you will have added peace of mind.

Airbnb Cleaning Checklist PDF

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