6 Dirty, Dusty Places You Only Discover When You Move (But Could Be Cleaning More Often)
Give dust bunnies the boot.
There's nothing like moving to make you realize you've been living in filth. Even if you think you have a relatively tidy home, and follow a weekly cleaning routine, and have a cabinet full of cleaning supplies, the process of moving all of your furniture and boxing up everything you own will help you realize just how many dust bunnies you've been living with all these years. When I packed up all of my belongings a few weeks ago to move to a new apartment, I was surprised at what I found. Although my apartment looked relatively clean on the outside, once the furniture was out of the way, I discovered dust and grime hiding all over the place. To keep even the tricky areas of your house clean—you know, before you move out—consider these oft-overlooked spots.
Especially when they're hidden behind furniture or located high up near the ceiling, air vents can be easy to overlook. But once you spot how dusty they've gotten after months (or, eep, years!) of neglect, you'll want to add them to your regular cleaning routine. The concern here is that when neglected, dirty air vents circulate dust around your home, which you and your family will then breathe in. To clear the air, vacuum the vents using a crevice attachment or use a microfiber duster.
Not Just Under, but Also Behind, Your Bed
We all know that the area under the bed is a breeding ground for dust bunnies—which is why I diligently vacuumed the rug below my bed in the weeks leading up to my move. But on move-out day, I couldn't believe how much dust had collected behind my bed, in the space between the headboard and the wall. To prevent breathing in extra dust while catching your eight hours, run a duster with a telescopic handle not just below your bed, but also behind. Particularly if you have a headboard, you'll likely be surprised how much dust you collect.
Under the Couch Cushions
When you're doing a really thorough clean, you may think to dust beneath your sofa—but what about under the cushions? Especially if you snack while binge-watching Netflix, the crevices between your couch cushions are likely collecting pretzel crumbs and chip dust. Rather than waiting until move-out day (or worse, waiting for the bugs to find the crumbs), periodically remove all of the cushions from your couch and vacuum the area below. To pick up dust and crumbs quickly, grab a lint roller.
Curtains (and the Curtain Rod)
When you go to take down your window treatments when you move, you'll instantly realize just how dingy and dusty they have become without you noticing. And while most of us don't have the time or energy to commit to a monthly curtain-washing routine, set a reminder to clean them every six months or so. While you're at it, dust the top of the curtain rod.
If you change the liner every time you take out the trash, it can be easy to ignore the crumbs and bits of food that have fallen to the bottom of the can. That is, until it's time to move and you finally have to face giving the grimy trash cans a deep-clean. Cut to the chase and start by vacuuming out crumbs and bits of food. Wash it with a cleaner designed for pet messes, then rinse with a hose. Try these hacks to keep your trash can smelling fresh.
Light Bulbs and Light Fixtures
It's only when you're packing up your house or apartment that you realize just how dusty your light bulbs, lampshades, and light fixtures really are. To cut down on the dust and also make each room shine a little brighter, dust the light bulbs, glass fixtures, and lamp shades (a lint roller works well for this) at least twice a year.