Add Value to Your Building With Annual Cleaning
Whether you own a home or a commercial building, an annual deep clean of your interiors and exterior can add a surprising amount of value to your property.
In this article, we’ll examine how annual cleaning helps to keep your property from being damaged. We’ll also look at a variety of cleaning methods for building exteriors and how they can add value and kerb appeal to a commercial property or residence, as well as providing some tips and pointers for annual spring cleaning inside the home.
- How Can Annual Cleaning Keep My Property From Being Damaged?
- External Building Cleaning
- What is Power Washing?
- How Does Annual Power Washing Add Value to My Property?
- Other Types of Cleaning Methods for Exteriors
- How Can Window Cleaning Services Add Value to My Property?
- Interior Building Cleaning
- How to Do an Annual Deep Clean of Your Home
- Deep Clean Before Selling Your Property
- Annual Cleaning for Communal Areas of a Shared Building
- Other Benefits of Annual Cleaning
How Can Annual Cleaning Keep My Property From Being Damaged?
A thorough clean inside and outside once a year doesn’t just keep your property looking fresh, it’s also an essential way to avoid damage and structural issues. Here are some things to look out for when doing an annual deep clean.
- Dust and Clutter. A surprising amount of fires in the UK start because of excess clutter and dust particle build-up, so it’s important to do a deep clean and tidy at least once a year to prevent this. Pay particular attention to things like stacks of old paperwork or newspapers that may be lying around.
- Clogged Air Filters. At best, a clogged air filter for a heating or air conditioning system runs at reduced efficiency, causing a spike in your energy bills. At worst, it can make an AC unit or heating system overheat and cause a fire.
- Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors. A spring clean is an ideal opportunity to check the batteries in smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms in your home or commercial property.
- Blocked Gutters. In both commercial and residential buildings, blocked gutters can cause damp walls, flooding, and severe structural damage. It’s particularly important to pay attention to gutter cleaning in winter after the majority of the trees have shed their leaves.
- Spotting Potential Structural Problems. Conducting a deep clean of any building is the best way to spot any potential structural issues and damages before they escalate further and cause major problems down the line.
Structural problems often missed due to a lack of exterior and interior cleaning are:
- Subsidence. Subsidence, also known as settlement, is one of the most common structural problems in the UK. It occurs when the ground under a building starts to sink, causing the foundations to become shifted and misaligned.
- Wall Tie Failures. Wall ties connect the exterior and interior walls of both commercial and residential buildings. If these fail, the walls will bow and bulge, and if left long enough, they can even fall apart.
- Damp. Damp is another common structural problem found in a lot of UK homes and commercial buildings. It’s usually possible to detect damp visually, by looking out for wet patches or areas of mould on both the exterior and interior walls.
- Dry Rot and Wet Rot. A damp problem can lead to secondary problems like dry rot and wet rot. These occur when fungus spores spread rapidly though timber and other building materials.
- Woodworm. Woodworm is a common problem in the UK and can weaken timber used in roofs, beams, and floors. Look out for small holes in the wood as well as piles of fine sawdust; these are both tell tale signs of a woodworm infestation.
- Invasive Weeds. Certain types of weeds grow extremely quickly and can cause serious structural damage to property. One of the most notorious invasive weeds found in the UK is Japanese Knotweed, which is extremely difficult to get rid of once it starts to spread.
If your property is cluttered or overgrown, it can be easy to miss the signs of common structural problems, which is one of the reasons why annual deep cleaning is so important.
Signs of Structural Damage
When you or your cleaning firm conducts an annual clean, look out for these tell tale signs of structural issues.
- Bulging or leaning walls
- Sticking doors and windows
- Uneven, soft or spongy floors
- Bowing on the roof or around the guttering
External Building Cleaning
Not only does annual external cleaning help to maintain the structure of your property and spot potential problems, but it’s also an easy way to add kerb appeal and can directly increase the value of your home or commercial property.
According to a new survey conducted by Dulux Weathershield, 93% of UK homebuyers said they are more likely to arrange a viewing on a home that has a well-maintained exterior. The survey also revealed that almost a third of potential buyers would pay 25% more for a property that has a well-kept garden, freshly painted walls, and clean windows and brickwork.
There are plenty of ways to increase your property’s curb appeal and add to its value through cleaning, but one of the most commonly used methods is power washing. You can buy or rent your own power washer, or hire a professional cleaning company to power wash your exteriors for you.
What is Power Washing?
Power washing uses a pressurised stream of water mixed with a cleaning solution to wash away things like grease, grime, and dirt from your building’s exteriors. It’s a quicker, easier, and more effective way to remove stubborn stains and ingrained materials than using a traditional bucket and sponge.
Power washing can be used on all kinds of tough surfaces, such as brickwork, driveways, paths, patios, and decking, and is even strong enough to remove things like chewing gum from pavements.
How Does Annual Power Washing Add Value to My Property?
Forget adding an extension or investing a small fortune in landscaping; giving your building’s exterior a thorough power wash is an easy way to increase your property’s curb appeal and market value in less than a day.
It helps to keep your property looking new.
Most estate agents will tell you that adding a new driveway to your property adds serious value. But a simple annual power wash treatment to your existing driveway can help make it look brand spanking new, without shelling out huge sums of money.
It makes your property ‘move-in ready’.
If your house is on the market, then making sure the exterior is sparkling clean gives buyers one less thing to worry about. If you are looking to sell your home or commercial building for a high price as quickly as possible, it’s important to make sure that buyers see it as ‘move-in ready’
It can highlight the unique architecture of a building.
When a building’s exterior is dirty and overgrown, interesting and unique architectural features can get lost and fade into the background. By power washing your building and its surroundings, you might uncover certain features that make your property stand out from the rest.
It makes that all-important good first impression.
When potential buyers come to view your property, you’ll want to make sure that their first impression is a good one. Power washing the exterior is an easy and affordable way to get more viewings and create a more positive impression for potential buyers.
Other Types of Cleaning Methods for Exteriors
Soft washing is a low-pressure cleaning method that is gentler than traditional power washing methods. The technology uses low pressure pumps to clean and rinse away dirt and grime and is often used on surfaces that traditional power washing is too forceful for.
Power washing can damage weak and delicate surfaces, such as paintwork and crumbling render. Before going ahead with any power washing, it’s best to consult an expert to see whether soft washing might be more suitable.
Soft Washing is particularly effective for treating the root cause of unwanted biological growth, such as fungus, moss, algae, and lichen. Since it uses higher temperatures than traditional power washing, it’s able to kill the spores responsible without damaging surfaces and the surrounding environment.
DOFF Steam Cleaning
DOFF steam cleaners are a superheated water system cleaner, designed to remove tough and stubborn stains like graffiti.
It works by heating water as high as 150°C to soften and break down stain particles that can’t be removed through regular soft wash or power wash techniques. It’s an extremely effective exterior washing technique, but since it doesn’t use a high amount of pressure, it’s still gentle enough to be used on more delicate surfaces without risking any potential damage.
Annual gutter cleaning for residential and commercial properties is essential. Not only will it immediately add value to your property by increasing kerb appeal, but it will also prevent serious structural problems that can occur if you have blocked gutters and downspouts.
Another way to add value to your property and minimize the frequency of exterior cleans is to apply a durable wall finish. These weatherproof external wall coverings protect your property’s exterior from the harmful effects of things like mould, cracks, and pebble dashing.
A good weatherproofing wall finish will come with a 20-year warranty and can add as much as £9,000 to the selling price of your home or commercial building.
How Can Window Cleaning Services Add Value to My Property?
Window cleaning is another great way to add value to a property without spending a fortune. If you’ve decided to put your home or commercial property on the market, this simple improvement can really make a difference to the final sale price.
Many estate agents claim that adding or replacing windows is a great way to add value to your property since glass brings in sought after natural sunlight and keep interior spaces light and airy. But why spend money on expensive replacements when a simple, regular clean to your existing windows can make a huge difference on its own? Clean, sparkling, and well cared for windows shine as if they’re brand new and will leave a much better impression on potential buyers.
Regular window cleaning can also increase your home or commercial property’s value by showing buyers that the building has been well maintained. Properly cared for and treated windows mean one less thing to worry about for new owners when it comes to home improvements and renovations.
And finally, just like your property’s exterior can make or break that all-important first impression, so can the state of your windows. Scratched, splattered, and marked glass and frames can seriously bring down the kerb appeal of a house or commercial property. Luckily, fixing the issue is quick, easy, and inexpensive.
Other Services Provided by Window Cleaners
As well as regular window cleaning, many firms offer additional services that can help to add value to your property. Here are some common examples that could make a big difference to your premises.
Gutters and Fascias
Many window cleaning companies will also clean and repair your gutters and fascia boards. This not only adds to the kerb appeal of your property and creates a good first impression for potential buyers, but it also ensures that your property is protected from structural damage associated with blocked gutters and downspouts.
Solar panels are becoming increasingly more popular, and nowadays many homes and commercial properties are harnessing the power of the sun to be more environmentally friendly and save on their energy bills. But forgetting to clean your solar panels can dramatically reduce their efficiency. Even small patches of dirt, bird excrement or mud can lower the solar panel’s electricity production, so keeping them sparkling is important if you want to maintain a return on your investment.
Conservatory Roof Cleaning
Most conservatory roofs are made from glass or polycarbonate, which are both designed to let in as much light as possible. A grubby conservatory roof is unsightly and can make the area look dull and dark. Having a full conservatory roof clean, as well as the vertical windows and the PVC surrounds, can make a huge difference and allow a surprising amount of extra light into space.
Interior Building Cleaning
Whether it’s the inside of your home or commercial space, frequent surface cleaning is essential to make the space liveable or suitable for business. But despite regular cleaning, it’s still important to do an annual deep clean to get to those hard to reach or forgotten areas.
A thorough spring clean once a year gives your space a little extra love, care, and attention, and will go a long way in preserving your property, and ultimately adding value.
We’ve put together a handy guide to help you with your spring clean. Since most commercial properties rely on a professional cleaning company, we’ve tailored this guide to homeowners.
How to Do an Annual Deep Clean of Your Home
- Clear Up. Before you begin your deep clean, start by clearing away any clutter that might be lying around your house. By picking up items left on floors, countertops, tables, beds, and furniture, you’ll have easy access to the places you need.
- Make a Game Plan. Think about which rooms you’d like to tackle first, and arrange them in order of priority. Don’t underestimate the amount of time you’ll need for each room. To do a thorough deep clean of your whole house, you’ll need more than just a single day. Break down the work into manageable blocks, and try to enlist family members to help out.
- Gather Your Cleaning Supplies. Here’s a handy list of essential supplies you’ll need for your deep clean.
- Mop and Bucket
- Dustpan and Brush
- Dusting cloths
- Long-handled duster for hard to reach areas
- Scouring pad
- Microfibre cloths
- Baking Soda
- Dish Soap
- Multipurpose cleaning spray or cream
- Glass cleaner
- White vinegar
- Wood polish
Once you’ve gathered your supplies it’s time to get started. Read on to follow our room-by-room guide to make sure your home gets a thorough deep clean.
Showers, Sinks, Toilets, and Bathtubs. Spray these down with a cleaning solution first and leave it to soak in for half an hour. This helps to break up the dirt and makes scrubbing a lot easier.
Under the Sink, Cupboards, and Drawers. Throw out any old items that you no longer need, and wipe down the rest with a microfiber cloth and disinfecting spray. When the draws and cupboards are empty, spray down and wipe the surfaces and sides, and finish with a dry cloth to remove excess moisture before putting the items back inside.
Grout. You can make an eco-friendly grout cleaner with a simple mix of vinegar, baking soda, and water. Spray down the grout with the mixture and let it soak in for a few minutes, then use a bristled brush (an old toothbrush works well) to scrub.
For particularly stubborn grout stains, make a paste with baking soda and vinegar and apply a thick layer to the grout, then spray with water. Bubbles will start to form, which will help to dissolve and lift away the ingrained dirt. Once clean, rinse the whole area thoroughly with warm water.
Glass Shower Doors. After you’ve tackled the grout, tiles, shower, and bath, it’s time to make sure your shower doors are sparkling. You can use the baking soda, vinegar and water mix for particularly stubborn soap scum stains, or simply spray with a multipurpose cleaner and use a gentle scouring pad to wash away the dirt. Finish with glass cleaning spray and a dry, soft cloth for a streak-free shine.
Light Fixtures, Mirrors, Windows, and Frames. Pay particular attention to the corners around the edges of windows and hard to reach areas of light fittings. Use a multipurpose spray and a soft cloth or scouring pad and. like your shower door, finish with a soft cloth and glass cleaner for a sparkling shine.
Bath Mats and Cloth Curtains. Make sure to check the label before putting them in the washing machine. Plastic shower curtains can be washed on the cold setting of your machine and hung out to dry naturally.
Disinfect Door Handles. Door handles are some of the dirtiest items in the home. Use a disinfecting towelette or a multipurpose spray to thoroughly clean all handles, including the bathroom door, the lock, the shower door, and the cupboard and drawer handles.
Cupboards. Take everything off the shelves and give each cupboard a thorough clean using a multipurpose cleaning spray and a clean cloth. This is a great time to look through the contents of your cupboards and throw out anything that’s past its sell-by date. Remember to dry the surfaces before placing items back inside the cupboard, to avoid leaving sticky marks behind
Cupboard Doors. Use a wet cloth with cleaning spray or vinegar to thoroughly wash and wipe down the insides and outsides of your cupboard doors, paying particular attention to the handles.
Fridge and Freezer. The day before your deep clean, turn off the empty freezer, place an old towel on the floor to catch the moisture and let it defrost overnight. Take all the items out of your fridge and throw away any out of date food.
When cleaning both the fridge and the freezer start from the top and work your way down. Take out the removable drawers and clean them with warm soapy water, and make sure they’re completely dry before you put them back. Then give the outside of these appliances a throughout wipe down, paying particular attention to the door handles.
Top Tip: use the nozzle on your vacuum cleaner to suck out dirt and dust from the fridge coil and vents.
Stove Tops and Extractor Fans. These areas are particularly prone to collecting grease and dust, so it’s important to use hot soapy water to cut through the grime. For particularly tough grease, use mineral oil on a sponge or cloth to help break down the residue.
Oven. Most oven cleaners use harsh chemicals that can be harmful to humans, pets, and the environment. You can make a much gentler solution by mixing 5 tablespoons of baking soda with 4 tablespoons of vinegar and adding a few squirts of washing up liquid. Apply the mixture to every surface of the oven, including the glass door, and let it sit for 10 minutes before gently scrubbing and wiping away.
Microwave. The same eco-friendly solution you used for the oven can also remove stubborn dirt from the microwave. For an extra deep clean, once you’ve coated the walls and door, turn the empty microwave on to a high setting for 5 minutes before wiping down.
Sink and Drains. Use bleach for both the sides of the sink and the drains to kill any germs which may be lurking there. This is one of the most bacteria prone areas of your home so it’s important to make sure it’s thoroughly disinfected.
Clean Behind Appliances. Pull out any removable units, like the fridge, freezer, and microwave so you can hoover and wipe behind them. These are the areas that never see the light of day and can collect all kinds of filth, dirt, and grease over a year. This is your opportunity to give them a thorough clean.
Countertops. This is the last job you should do when cleaning the kitchen. Remove all items from your countertops and wipe down with a disinfecting spray and a clean cloth. At the same time, clean the walls, tiles and backsplash areas too.
The Living Room
To get started, remove the sofa cushions and vacuum down the sides and underneath. If the cushions have removable covers, take these off and pop them in the washing machine.
Carpets and Rugs. There are several ways to clean carpets and rugs. Getting a professional carpet cleaner or hiring the machine to use yourself is the most thorough and effective method, but if you want to save time and money, use carpet shampoo to spot clean any stains or marks.
Top Tip: The steam setting on your iron can make a fantastic miniature steam cleaner for the odd mark or stain.
Woodwork. Remove books from the bookcase, and remove all items from your wooden shelves and units. Use furniture polish and a dusting cloth to remove dust and bring out a natural shine. It’s also a good time to touch up any scratches with mineral oil and a wood spot treatment.
Skirting Boards, Window Frames, Light Fittings, and Coving. You’ll either need ladders or an extendable duster and vacuum cleaner for the hard to reach places. Remove curtains and place them in the laundry if the fabric is machine washable. Use a glass cleaner and a soft dry cloth to clean the interior of your windows.
TV and Gadgets. The TV remote, as well as buttons on the DVD player, Xbox or other games consoles are some of the most bacteria-ridden places in your house. Use a disinfecting spray to thoroughly clean all these items, being careful not to get them wet as this may damage the electrical components. Pull out the TV and clean the back and front, as well as the space where it usually sits.
Pull out all furniture and make sure to thoroughly clean behind everything. These are often the dustiest areas of the room and will need the most attention.
Bedding and Curtains. Remove all the bedding and curtains and put them in the washing machine. Some items like bedspreads might be too big for the machine so you may need to take these to the laundrette for an annual professional wash.
Flip the Mattress. This extends the life of your mattress and keeps it feeling comfortable and supportive. Spray it all over with a fabric freshening spray, and let it dry completely before putting clean bedding back on.
Dust All Surfaces. Pay particular attention to hard to reach and forgotten areas like light shades, doorframes, and the top of wardrobes. Pull out any furniture you can including the bed, and vacuum and clean in those hard to reach areas. If the furniture is too heavy to move, use the extendable nozzle on the vacuum cleaner to hoover up as much dirt as possible.
Top Tip: Glide a lint roller over fabric lampshades to easily remove stubborn dust and dirt particles.
Wardrobes and Drawers. This is a great time to have a clear-out and separate any clothes you no longer need to give away to charity. Once you’ve decided what to keep and what to give away, remove everything from the wardrobe and drawers and give the interiors thorough dust and wipe down with an all-purpose cleaning spray and cloth. You can use the nozzle attachment on your vacuum cleaner to get rid of the bulk of the dust and tackle those hard to reach areas.
By following these steps during your annual deep clean, you’ll make sure your home is fresh, clean, and well maintained for the year to come. You’ll also be able to spot any potential problems in the interior of your house so that you can nip them in the bud before they get out of hand and cause damage that can devalue your property.
Hire a Professional Cleaner
If all of this sounds like too much work, there’s always the option to enlist the help of professional cleaning service to do the job for you. They are skilled and experienced in these types of deep cleans, so you can rest assured that the job will be done properly.
Deep Clean Before Selling Your Property
If your property is on the market, you’ll want to pay extra attention to cleaning before you invite potential buyers in for a viewing.
An unclean house or commercial property is a red flag for most buyers, who will assume that repairs or structural issues are lurking underneath all the mess and dirt. By neglecting a thorough deep clean of a property, you can inadvertently knock thousands of pounds of its value. By keeping your home or commercial property clean and tidy, you send the message that the property is well cared for and maintained, so you’re much more likely to receive a favourable offer.
By doing your own cleaning, you also have the perfect opportunity to declutter. A house or commercial property full of junk is a huge distraction for potential buyers, who will find it difficult to see past the mess and envision how the space could be used for their needs.
Of course, a full deep clean can be an overwhelming task, especially if you work full time or you have a particularly large property to contend with. Most cleaning companies offer both individual cleaners and cleaning crews, depending on the nature of the job.
This applies to companies who clean interiors, as well as contractors who can clean the all-important exteriors of your property.
Annual Cleaning for Communal Areas of a Shared Building
If you have an apartment or commercial office space for sale in a shared building, it’s also important to pay close attention to the communal areas of the property and how they are cleaned and maintained.
Areas like porches, hallways, and foyers are especially important because this is where your potential buyer gets their first impression of the property they’re about to view. Regular cleaning of communal areas, for example, every week or every fortnight, is essential, but it’s just as important to include these areas in an annual clean.
It’s not just potential buyers who will notice your efforts; these communal areas are the first point of contact for every visitor or potential customer who enters the building, so it’s important to make sure they make a good impression.
Communal Area Cleaning Checklist
- Clean and wipe down the front door, inside and out, including the handles.
- Remove any marks from the walls.
- Dust and wipe down all skirting boards, door frames, and bannisters.
- Spot clean all doors and woodwork with a soapy cloth.
- Clean all windows and mirrors with glass cleaner and a soft dry cloth. Also, be sure to dust and spot clean the window frames and wipe down window ledges.
- Clean mirrors, ornaments, pictures, and any other freestanding items.
- Clean radiators with an all-purpose cleaning spray and cloth. Use the hoover nozzle attachment to remove hard to reach dust from behind the radiator.
- Use a long-handled duster to remove dust and cobwebs from high up, hard to reach areas, like lampshades, light fittings, and coving.
- Change any lightbulbs that are broken and check smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.
- Make sure all litter and junk mail are thrown away.
- Clean the carpets either through a professional carpet cleaning company or a carpet cleaning machine.
- Consider using a plug-in air freshener to keep the area smelling fresh and inviting.
Other Benefits of Annual Cleaning
Conducting an annual deep clean of your building, whether it’s a commercial property or a private residential home, has many benefits aside from just adding value to your property.
A Safer, Healthier, and Happier Work Environment
For commercial buildings, a clean working environment is essential. Most businesses already employ cleaners on a daily or at least weekly basis, but many neglect an annual deep clean. Deep cleans reach the spots that are usually forgotten, and ensure that dust and dirt don’t build up in hidden areas. Aside from adding value, there are so many advantages to annual deep cleaning in a commercial building.
- Increased Employee Productivity. Staff are happier when their workplace is fresh and clean and the air is free from dust and dirt particles.
- Reduce the Spread of Pathogens and Disease. This is good news for everyone, and of course, results in fewer sick days being taken.
- Reduce Allergy Symptoms. Many people suffer from allergies and asthma which can be triggered by things like dust particles. Annual deep cleaning ensures these aren’t building up in hard to reach areas.
- A Positive and Professional Appearance. A dirty building exterior or stained and stinking carpets can give off a terrible first impression. By ensuring the environment is sparkling clean both inside and out, your business becomes automatically more valuable.
- Deep Cleaning Saves You Money in the Long Run. Dirt ingrained on surfaces can result in irreparable damage, and heavily stained carpets can go past the point of repair if they are not regularly cleaned. By conducting a thorough spring clean once a year, you ensure that your property is taken care of as well as increasing the longevity of your fixtures and furnishings.
A Safer, Healthier and Happier Home
Home is where we spend most of our time, so an annual deep clean is essential to make sure everyone in your household has a comfortable living environment. Aside from just adding value to a property, there are plenty of other benefits to spring cleaning.
- Reduced Spread of Pathogens and Disease. Just like in the workplace, a thorough annual spring clean inside your home helps to prevent the spread of viruses and disease, as well as helping to alleviate allergy symptoms and dust particle related asthma.
- Maintaining Fixtures and Furnishings. Things like curtains, carpets, sofas, and other soft furnishings can double their lifespan with an annual deep clean.
- Stress Relief. A clean and tidy environment does wonder for relieving stress and increasing happiness for everyone in the home. A spring clean can also be extremely cathartic, especially if you’re the one doing the cleaning. Many people treat their annual spring clean as a fresh start, both literally and figuratively.
So, there you have it. Cleaning your property’s interiors and exteriors regularly, and ensuring you carry out a thorough annual deep clean, has huge benefits whether you’re considering selling or not. It’s one of the easiest, cheapest, and quickest ways to increase the market value of a property, without the need for renovations or redecoration.