Owning a vacation rental property on Oahu or Maui comes with its own set of challenges, one of the biggest being maintaining the cleanliness of your property!

It’s no secret that guests expect immaculate conditions when they arrive for their stay. The cleanliness of your vacation property is their first impression, and it sets the tone for their overall experience. It doesn’t just impact guest satisfaction, but it also plays a crucial role in your ratings and, ultimately, your rental’s success.

This comprehensive guide will provide you with the vacation rental cleaning process, tips, tricks, and best practices to ensure that your vacation rental is spotless and ready for every guest.

Cleaning Tips For Owners

What is Vacation Rental Cleaning?

When tourists are in Hawaii, they don’t want to stay in an unorganized and shabby place. Would they? No, right? Staying in a clean room is as important as exploring new spots in a new place. After all, guests will be tired after wandering the entire day and want to relax in a clean environment at the end of the day.

Vacation rentals are one of the most common options people go for when they are visiting Hawaii. Therefore, keeping it clean is a crucial aspect of adding up to their trip experience. Now, you must understand that cleaning a home and a vacation rental property are two different things.

While home is a space where you live, you clean the space your way according to your requirements, and you can’t really do the same thing with a vacation rental property.

With a rental property, you’re preparing the space for the next guest, who prefers not to be reminded that others have previously occupied the same space. Therefore, the space must be cleaned to minimize the time between check-out and check-in.

You should do a thorough inspection of the rental and note down tasks that require attention during a certain time period. These may be weekly cleaning, restocking guest amenities, ensuring the place stay organized at all times, and so on.

You should remember to change bed linens, stock paper towels, remove trash and clean trash cans, clean the ceiling fans, replace towels, wipe the refrigerator and other appliances, etc. You should also look into the difficult nooks and corners of the rental that your cleaning team could’ve overlooked to ensure complete cleanliness.

All in all, cleaning a rental is not just a monthly task; instead, it requires regular attention and routine cleaning. If you’re still confused, don’t worry—we have created a cleaning checklist that’ll surely make things much easier for you.

Vacation Rental Cleaning Supplies

Cleaning Supplies You’ll Need

Choosing the right cleaning products and tools makes the job easier and ensures the environment and the guests stay safe.

Opt for eco-friendly, non-toxic cleaning solutions whenever possible—just ensure they disinfect. Microfiber cloths, a high-quality vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter, and a steam mop are essential tools for achieving a deep clean without harsh chemicals.

Other supplies to have on hand include all-purpose cleaner, glass cleaner, toilet brush, scrub brushes, and sponges.

List of Essential Cleaning Materials for Vacation Rental Cleaning

  • All-purpose disinfecting cleaner: For general surface cleaning and disinfection
  • Glass cleaner: To ensure windows and mirrors are streak-free
  • Scrub brushes and sponges: For tackling tougher stains and build-up
  • Disinfectant wipes: Quick solution for cleaning and disinfecting various surfaces
  • Duster with extendable handle: To reach high ceilings and light fixtures
  • Toilet bowl cleaner and brush: To maintain pristine bathroom conditions
  • Microfiber cloth: For dusting and polishing surfaces without scratching
  • Vacuum cleaner with HEPA filter: To effectively remove dust, allergens, and small debris
  • Steam mop: For deep cleaning floors without the use of harsh chemicals
  • Gloves and protective gear: To protect your hands and health while cleaning
  • Disposable gloves: Wear disposable gloves while cleaning and throw them off after the cleaning procedures
  • Trash bags: To efficiently manage waste and maintain cleanliness

Vacation Rental Cleaning Checklist

The Essential Vacation Rental Cleaning Checklist

Creating a spotless environment and keeping your vacation rental clean for your next guests is essential, and it starts with developing a comprehensive cleaning checklist!

This indispensable tool will guide you through thoroughly cleaning each area of your vacation rental, ensuring no corner is overlooked.

While some may argue a checklist isn’t necessary, it can indeed eliminate the guesswork of cleaning, making sure you get everything done you need to every single time.

We advise adopting a top-to-bottom cleaning strategy — starting from the ceiling and working your way down to the floor. This technique ensures that any dust or debris that falls during cleaning can be captured in the next step, reducing the need for as many touch-ups.

To aid in the creation of your checklist, here are suggestions on essential items to include:

General Cleaning & Common Areas

  • Dust all surfaces, including furniture, window sills, and decor
  • Vacuum carpets and mop floors
  • Clean windows and mirrors to a streak-free shine
  • Make sure to clean the front door and dust it regularly
  • Disinfect high-touch areas like doorknobs, light switches, and remote controls
  • Maintain cleanliness of outdoor furniture by regularly cleaning them
  • If there’s a swimming pool, clean the water daily


  • Clean and sanitize countertops, appliances, and sinks
  • Check that all dishes are clean and neatly organized
  • Empty and clean the refrigerator and freezer
  • Wipe down the inside of the microwave and oven
  • Mop the floor and take out the trash

Living Areas

  • Dust all furniture, electronics, and decorative items
  • Disinfect all remotes and sanitize them
  • Clean windows and glass doors for a sparkling view
  • Vacuum sofas and chairs, and wash any removable covers


  • Dust all surfaces, including nightstands, dressers, and window sills
  • Wash all linens, blankets, and duvet covers between guests
  • Vacuum the floors, including under the bed and other furniture
  • Dry mop the wood floors and polish them
  • Ensure closets are tidy and vacuumed


  • Disinfect all surfaces, paying extra attention to the toilet, sink, and shower
  • Clean mirrors to a streak-free shine
  • Replace all towels with freshly laundered ones
  • Restock toiletries, including soap, shampoo, laundry detergent, and toilet paper

Vacation Rental Cleaning Schedule

Create a Deep Cleaning Schedule

Consistency is absolutely vital in keeping your vacation rental spotlessly clean! To achieve this, it’s integral to establish a thorough cleaning routine and double check each corner that guarantees your property is always in perfect condition for new guests.

This routine should not only cover turnover cleaning tasks but also include scheduling deep cleaning sessions periodically throughout the year. Deep cleans are one of our top vacation rental cleaning tips and fundamental for reaching those often overlooked areas!

By dedicating attention to both regular upkeep and more intensive cleaning efforts, you can ensure that your vacation rental remains a welcoming and pristine choice for travelers.

Hire Local Vacation Rental Housekeeping Team

Outsourcing Cleaning Services

There may come a pivotal moment in managing your vacation rental business when you find that outsourcing your cleaning needs becomes the most advantageous choice.

This could be prompted by a variety of reasons, such as a significant uptick in bookings that leaves you with less time to dedicate to the cleaning required or perhaps a desire to allocate your time towards other aspects of the business or personal pursuits.

In such instances, opting to hire a professional Airbnb cleaner can be a game-changer! Not only does it guarantee that your property will be maintained and cleaned to the highest standards, but it also places your property in the expert hands of those specializing in the field. This move enhances the guest experience and contributes substantially to the reputation and success of your rental business.

Speaking of that, what if you didn’t have to do any of the tedious tasks of managing your property? If you’re tired of handling everything for your vacation rental, consider partnering with a local vacation manager like Midway Vacations! We’re a full-service vacation rental management company specializing in Oahu and Maui short-term rentals.


Why is it so important to keep my vacation rental clean?

Cleanliness is important, as a clean property directly impacts guest satisfaction and reviews. A clean rental can lead to glowing reviews, repeat bookings, and higher occupancy rates. Guests expect an appropriate standard of cleanliness. When you meet these expectations, guests leave happily, which can also set your property apart from the competition.

How often should I deep clean my vacation rental?

While we suggest regular cleaning of your vacation home, deep cleaning can be done at least once every three to six months. This includes tasks such as cleaning carpets, washing windows, scrubbing grout, and sanitizing all surfaces. Regular deep cleaning makes sure that hidden dirt and grime are addressed, maintaining a fresh and hygienic environment when the guests arrive.

Should I hire a professional cleaning service or do it myself?

We always recommend hiring a professional cleaning service, especially if you have multiple properties or a busy schedule. Professional vacation rental turnover cleaning services have the expertise, equipment, and efficiency to ensure a thorough cleaning. However, if you prefer to do your own cleaning, make sure you dedicate enough cleaning time and follow a comprehensive checklist to maintain high standards.


We understand that cleaning a rental can be a bit time consuming, especially during peak seasons. However, maintaining a clean and inviting vacation space is essential for ensuring guest satisfaction and the success of your business!

After the deadly pandemic broke out, it has become important more than ever to maintain a hygienic and clean environment in these public spaces.

By following the vacation rental cleaning tips outlined in this guide, you can create a welcoming environment that guests will love and want to return to.

Remember, the effort you put into keeping your rental clean is your key to unlocking 5-star reviews and repeat guests. Great vacation rental means happy guests!

If you have questions or would like a free rental evaluation to see your property’s income potential, we’re here to help! Contact us today to learn how we can help manage your vacation rental, giving you more time to enjoy the tropical paradise that surrounds you.