Move Out Checklist

There is much to think about when moving out of a rental house.  The following is a checklist of some of the things you need to do and be aware of when moving out.

  • Clean the house, including carpets, walls, bathrooms and all storage spaces.
    • Oven Spills
      Apply baking soda and water to baked-on spills and rub.  For more caked-in spills, place a small dish of ammonia on the upper rack of the oven and a pan of water on the bottom.  Leave the oven warm over night (no fan).  Air the oven in the morning and wipe away the grease with an all purpose cleaner and warm water.  To avoid spills altogether, use tinfoil & baking sheets under casseroles & pies.
    • Toilet Bowls & Washing Machines
      Drop in two Alka-Seltzer tablets, wait 20 minutes, brush, and flush.  The citric acid and effervescent action clean vitreous china.  Pour a gallon of distilled vinegar into your washer.  Use warm water and let your machine run through a wash and rinse cycle.  The vinegar will cut through built up soap residue in hoses, etc. leaving your washer sparkling clean.
  • Take care of any repairs that need to be made before moving out.
  • Tell you landlord exactly when you plan to be out.  Give him or her a forwarding address.
  • Do an exit walk-through with your landlord to inspect the condition of the house.
  • Ask your landlord exactly when you can expect to get your deposit back or a detailed account of why your deposit was not returned. Your landlord has 14 days from the time you move out to get back to you about the deposit.  If you disagree with the amount of the deposit that is returned, take action immediately.  Remember to give your Landlord a forwarding address.
  • Have you canceled all of your utility accounts? 
    When you move out of the unit, you need to transfer the utility bills (electricity, water, natural gas) back into your landlord’s name.  You must continue to pay these utilities until the date your tenancy ends.  Also, don’t forget to cancel utilities like telephone, cable tv, internet provider, garbage service and newspaper delivery.
  • Have you forwarded all of your mail? 
    Stop by your local post office and fill out a forward mail postcard.  Also, contact all of your utility providers, credit card accounts, loan providers, etc. directly to change your address.  You will be at fault if payments are not made on time even if your bill gets lost in the mail.
  • Have you tossed out all unwanted items? 
    There are many ways to get rid of things that you don’t want or need anymore.

Take items that are still usable to Operation SAVE
Call 253.879.2751 or send an email to for more information.

Take items that are not still usable to the City of Tacoma Landfill
Located at 3510 S Mullen St., the landfill is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.  Bring a valid driver’s license or piece of mail with your current Tacoma address (not your school address) in order to get city of Tacoma “residential” rates.  Residents pay $10 for 400 pounds of garbage and non-residents pay $10 for about 150 pounds of garbage.  Rates are $6.25 per 100 pounds after the initial $10 fee.  The Tacoma Landfill also accepts hazardous waste items, such as oil-based paints, batteries, and computer parts.  Please call 253.591.5418 for specific disposal fees for hazardous items.  For large items that you cannot haul to the landfill yourself, like couches, bikes, mattresses, vacuum cleaners, patio furniture, barbeques, and push lawn mowers, use Call-2-Haul and schedule curbside pickup.  Disposal rates still apply but pickup is free twice a year for Tacoma residents.  Call 253.502.2100 for more info.