Moving In: 6 Tips for Doing The Big Clean

By:
in Asthma, Healthy Home, Indoor Allergies
Published: April 22, 2021
If someone in your family has allergies to pet dander, mold, dust mites and other allergens, it’s essential to do a big clean, ideally before you move in.
Photo: Getty

If someone in your family has allergies to pet dander, mold, dust mites and other allergens, it’s essential to do a big clean, ideally before you move in.

Here’s a handy checklist of 6 things that you can do to help allergy-proof your new home.

1. Vacuum 

Using a machine with a HEPA filter, vacuum the home from top to bottom – including the basement and attic if they are accessible. Even areas you don’t use regularly are part of a home’s air system. 

2. Wipe the walls 

Give the walls a good scrub with a damp, soapy sponge to remove pet dander, mold spores and other potential triggers. Dry the area thoroughly to avoid mold and dust mite growth. Do the same with all cabinets and drawers.

3. Ditch the carpet 

Carpeting is a favorite hideout for allergens. If you can, replace it with hardwood, tile or cork. If you can’t, steam-clean with an unscented solution, then vacuum regularly. 

4. Remove old upholstered furniture  

If previous residents leave furniture, get rid of anything that’s upholstered, as there’s a good chance it’s harboring mold and dust mites. 

5. Change furnace filter  

If the home has a forced-air heating or cooling system, change the filter. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions, preferably using a filter with a MERV rating of between 11 and 13.

6. Clean the ducts 

Air ducts can house pet dander, dust mites, mold and other problematic particles. Get them cleaned before moving in.

7. Fix leaks 

Look for signs of moisture around windows and doors, in basements and attics, and around sinks and bathtubs, and repair or seal them right away. 

8. Call an exterminator 

If you notice droppings or other signs of a pest infestation, call an exterminator. It’s easiest to address the problem before you move in.

Related Reading:
Making a Move: A Guide For House-Hunting With Allergies or Asthma
15 Easy Jobs for Better Breathing with Asthma and Allergies
Allergic Living’s Go-To Goods for Renovating with Environmental Allergies