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Holiday let changeover and cleaning checklist - double bedroom with ensuite.

First impressions count, so making sure your property is immaculately presented and welcoming for guests is vital. This guide contains a summary of helpful hints on holiday let changeovers and a cleaning checklist that we provide our owners. These ensure a Helpful Holidays property is always presented at its best.

Here are just a few things that are important not to miss during your holiday let changeover.

Use the quick links below to find out more about a particular topic or continue reading for a detailed breakdown of how to prepare your holiday home for guests.

Holiday let changeover and cleaning checklist

bedroom with bed, curtains and seaview - all prepped after holiday let changeover.

A well-presented and clean holiday let is key to making a guests feel welcome and happy with their booking. It’s a crucial part of customer care and it should never be overlooked.

There is often a limited time in which to do a thorough clean and get the property ready for the next guests. A changeover checklist will ensure that none of those important little touches are neglected.

Initial property check

A quick initial ‘once over’ will eliminate a last-minute rush if things aren’t as they should be. Often, guests will comment on any issues or breakages in a visitors’ book, so that’s a great place to start!

Here are some things that we’d suggest checking during your holiday let changeover.

  • Open all windows and doors, make sure keys are present. Check the door locks, handles, bolts all work, and don’t stick.
  • Switch on all the lights and replace any blown bulbs.
  • Turn on all electrical equipment (washing machine, WiFi, tv etc.) and check that all devices are working.
  • Switch on the heating and hot water to ensure they’re working.
  • Inspect flooring, carpets, rugs and soft furnishings – if there are any stains, address them immediately.

Front door and entrance hallway cleaning checklist

Guests will instantly form an impression of your home based on how the entrance and front door are presented. So, make sure they are clean and tidy.

  • Check for and remove any cobwebs.
  • Mop and sweep as appropriate. Shake out door mat.
  • Make sure windows, skirting boards and doors are cleaned.
  • Check that light fittings are dusted and switches clean.
  • Check that the outside lighting is working – and leave on for evening arrivals.

Kitchen cleaning checklist

the woods salcombe kitchen, complete with appliances and island with bar stools.

The kitchen is often the busiest room in a holiday let, so cleanliness is more important than anywhere else in your property.

  • Ensure all counters, work surfaces, sink, cupboards, chairs and skirting boards are wiped down and clean.
  • Wipe down any appliances on work surfaces like kettle, toaster, coffee machines.
  • Make sure that appliances like microwave, dishwasher, oven, hob, fridge, and freezer are cleaned inside and out, and are in working order.
  • Empty, disinfect and replace bins.
  • Check cutlery, pots, pans, crockery, glassware and utensils are clean, and nothing is missing.
  • Top up any cleaning supplies or kitchen housekeeping supplies.
  • Vacuum and mop the floor.

Living room cleaning checklist

A living room is one of the main areas in any home. A place to relax or spend time with friends and family after a long day exploring the local area. So, your property’s living room needs to be a top priority during your holiday let changeover.

  • Ensure the WiFi connection, TV/DVD player are all in working order. Check that the remote controls have working batteries.
  • Check for and remove any cobwebs.
  • Dust and wipe over all surfaces – furniture, lamps, picture frames, shelves, skirting boards, bookcases etc.
  • Check blinds or curtains – make sure they open and close.
  • Clean out the fire/log burner if required. Replenish starter logs, kindling and make sure guests have lighter/matches.
  • Vacuum floors and rugs, including under and behind the furniture.

Dining room cleaning checklist

The dining area is where guests enjoy meals and spend quality time together. So, it’s important to make sure it’s clean and tidy.

  • Table and chairs are wiped down, free of any marks and crumbs.
  • Ensure placemats are clean.
  • Check that light fittings are dusted and switches clean.
  • Vacuum and mop as appropriate – be sure to check under the table and chairs for crumbs.

Bathroom cleaning checklist

Luxury bathroom with bath tub, mr & mrs sinks and shower - bathroom cleaning checklist.

Bathrooms are usually where guests will prepare for the day or get ready for bed, so it’s advisable to pay special attention to ensure its spotless.

  • Check for leaks or potential plumbing issues.
  • Check silicone/grout for discolouration or stains.
  • Make sure the extractor fan is working.
  • Empty, disinfect and replace bins.
  • Wipe down units and surfaces and areas around sink, bath and ensure they’re streak free.
  • Clean shower, bath and sink.
  • Clean mirrors and shine taps.
  • Flush, clean and disinfect toilet. Check that the seat isn’t loose.
  • Check shower traps and ensure plughole debris is removed – use drain cleaner if necessary.
  • Restock bathroom supplies (loo roll, hand soap, toiletries).
  • Put out a clean supply of towels and bathmats.
  • Vacuum and mop the floor.

Bedroom cleaning checklist

At the end of the day, guests will be looking forward to snuggling up in beautifully made beds and pristine linen.

  • Strip used linen and replace with fresh laundered and ironed linen.
  • Check for wear and tear, or stains on linen, mattress covers, throws and pillows.
  • Check under the bed and any furniture for personal belongings left by guests.
  • Dust furniture, clean mirrors and windows.
  • Vacuum the floor and under the beds.
  • Check for and remove any cobwebs.

Preparing your holiday home outside

The outside of your property is the first thing that guests are going see and it is important to set a good impression before guests even step inside.

  • Cut the grass, ensure flower beds are neat and gardening equipment is shut away securely.
  • Check for broken fences, or any debris that might injure a guest.
  • Ensure outside lighting (particularly if there are steps) is working. Ideally, we recommend having an automatic light.
  • Make sure outdoor furniture is clean and usable.
  • If a barbecue is provided, check that it is safe to use and properly cleaned.
  • Play equipment is rigorously maintained and checked in between lets.
  • Hot tubs and swimming pools are clean and fit for use.

Holiday let health and safety checks

It is important to ensure that the property not only looks perfect but is also safe for guests. Check for any potential hazards, signs of wear and tear or damage to electrical appliances etc. Any damage or faults to appliances or electric sockets should be immediately reported and managed.

Visit our blog on Health and safety regulations for holiday lets where we provide guidance notes which clarify HSE regulations and legislations required for a holiday cottage.

Welcome pack and guest information folder

living area with sofas, open fire and fresh bouquet of flowers.

Help in exceeding your guests’ expectations by providing them with a simple yet comprehensive information folder for your holiday home. Make them feel comfortable from the moment they arrive; with everything they need to know to make their stay as relaxing as possible.

It helps ensure your guests have all they need to know about your property, and what is available in the area. Having detailed information at your guest’s disposal will ensure they enjoy their stay to the fullest.

Read our step-by-step guide on how to create a guest information folder for your holiday home.

Last checks

Last checks

It’s always worth giving that final once over check before you leave, just in case you may have missed something.

  • Check that the guest information folder is visible and doesn’t need replacing/updating.
  • Empty the vacuum and remove any waste produced from cleaning.
  • Before leaving the property, check external doors and windows are locked and secure.
  • Ensure the key is in key safe or another agreed place.
  • Report any maintenance or other issues.
  • Depending on the season, check that the lighting and heating are on to welcome incoming guests.

Spring clean checklist

decked terrace with patio furniture overlooking the sea in Salcombe.

Every year, a thorough spring clean should be undertaken. Here are just a few of the things you should do to get your holiday let in tip-top shape for a busy season.

  • Tidy, sweep and prune the garden after the harsh winter. Clean gutters and any outdoor furniture.
  • Freshen up paintwork, dust skirting boards, remove cobwebs.
  • Clean carpets and soft furnishings.
  • Inspect and replace anything that is looking worn.
  • Sweep the chimney.
  • Check your holiday let inventory and update any damaged or missing items.
  • Update and renew insurance policies, gas safety certificates and fire risk assessments.
  • Update your guest information guide.
  • Check all electrical items are in order. Replace batteries in smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.

Bespoke holiday let management with Helpful Holidays

A view of the woods, a holiday cottage in Salcombe.

We understand that comfort, cleanliness and functionality are important to guests. That’s why we work closely with you to maintain or improve the quality of your holiday home. We understand that making a good first impression is priceless.

Over the years we’ve established a loyal network of suppliers across the South West, allowing us to assist you with sourcing a cleaner or housekeeper, organising changeovers and maintaining properties to a high standard.

Below are just some of the services we offer holiday home owners, however we would be happy to tailor a package to suit your needs:

  • Assign a dedicated cleaner or caretaker.
  • Support caretakers with organising.
  • Maintenance support.
  • Interior design, furnishing and inventory advice.
  • Laundry and linen arrangements.
  • Support with legislation, annual assessments and safety certificates.

Letting your holiday home should be enjoyable and we are here to help make it so.

Whether you are considering letting your holiday home or you already have a holiday letting business, the following owner guides may be useful to you:

Interested in letting your holiday property? We can send you a copy of our Owners Guide, plus a copy of our Helpful Hints guide. Our Helpful hints guide includes how to set up a successful holiday let as well as a full changeover and cleaning checklist.