When it comes to maintenance and cleaning responsibilities, landlords and tenants can disagree quite frequently. It’s important to ensure that everyone is on the same page and knows their responsibilities when it comes to maintaining and cleaning the rental property.

So what are landlord vs tenant cleaning responsibilities?

Below, we’ve outlined some common examples of what falls under landlord cleaning responsibilities and tenant cleaning responsibilities.

Of course, there will always be variations based on what the rental agreement says. And, of course, you should always account for any and all legal guidelines for what each party should be responsible for.

What Are a Landlord’s Cleaning Responsibilities?

A landlord’s responsibilities are numerous—but these can vary between what falls under landlord maintenance responsibilities, and what falls under a landlord’s cleaning responsibility for the rental property.

As noted above, the exact requirements for maintenance & cleaning will be denoted in the lease and dictated by and local and state landlord-tenant laws.

However, a general rule of thumb is that it’s the landlord’s duty to keep the property in living condition and “good foundational order”. This includes maintaining the roof, power system, and safety features. Safety features can even include the upkeep of the smoke alarms, both installing them and making sure that they are functional.

Additionally, windows and doors must all be reliable and have locks, and water has to be running hot and cold through the faucets in the house. If there is an issue, the landlord will need to call a plumbing service or get the repairs carried out. 

What Are a Tenant’s Cleaning Responsibilities?

Typically, a tenant’s cleaning responsibilities are to keep the property in a clean and habitable state while living there. 

This can range from your usual cleaning list (sweeping, mopping, dusting, organizing, tidying, etc) to simple, everyday tasks of maintaining the unit.

For example, things like changing filters and lightbulbs when required. Some landlords might even have rental inspection checklists that they give to tenants as an overview of what to look out for or maintain.

The tenant also has the responsibility to stay in communication with the landlord and let them know about any issues. For instance, if there were a leak that required a plumber to be called. If tenants leave maintenance issues go on for too long, this can result in even larger issues for the unit, the tenant, and the landlord.

Landlord vs Tenant Cleaning Responsibilities

Typically, landlords are not responsible for cleaning duties in the interior of the rental, even though they might be for the exterior of the rental.

Landlord vs tenant cleaning responsibilities usually aren’t as strict and maintenance regulations—-nobody is going to get you into trouble if it is a few days since the vacuuming got completed.

However, some major failures to keep the rental clean can encourage rust, mold, and even pest control issues that can be costly for both parties in the long run. clean can encourage rust and other property issues, which could even eat into a security deposit you may have paid.

It’s important to check out any state and local regulations about what’s required of each party. Additionally, your lease might outline what’s considered proper maintenance of the unit.

Cleaning Duties for Moving Out

At the end of any tenancy, it’s time for a deep clean (usually). Contracts ordinarily state that the tenant has to leave the property how they found it in terms of cleanliness, so if you aren’t going to reach that state then it can be time to get cleaning!

You can also use move-in & move-out checklists to ensure you’re documenting what needs to be cleaned at the beginning and end of each tenancy.

For landlord vs tenant cleaning responsibilities, both parties should be clear about what is expected when they enter into the agreement, and this is why leases and lease addendums are so important.

Guest Post: Author’s Bio

Claire Zimmerman is a content marketing specialist working with Allstate Service Group. Having almost 9 years of experience in home improvement, Claire is keen on sharing her knowledge on home design and renovation with others, especially HVAC, air filtration, and water damage issues. Claire’s articles are informative and entertaining, written both for homeowners and experienced contractors.