Best Practices for Cleanout Foreclosures

Cleanouts for Foreclosed Properties Don’t Have to Be DIY Jobs

August 10, 2022 6 Read

When a house is foreclosed on, the bank or lender that owns the property is responsible for its cleanliness and upkeep. This includes a cleanout of any debris left behind by the former occupants. But cleanouts for foreclosures don’t have to be DIY jobs - in fact, they shouldn’t be.

In this article, we’ll go over some of the best practices for cleanout foreclosures so that you can ensure the job is done right.

1. Hire a professional cleanout company.

This may seem like an obvious step, but it’s often overlooked. Many people think that they can save money by doing the cleanout themselves, but this is usually not the case. Not only will you have to rent or purchase the necessary equipment, but you’ll also have to take the time to learn how to use it properly.

A professional cleanout company will have the experience and expertise to get the job done quickly and efficiently. They will also have the proper insurance in place in case of any accidents. Professional foreclosure cleanout service companies typically charge by the square footage of the property, so be sure to get a few estimates before hiring one.

2. Schedule the cleanout during daylight hours.

If at all possible, you should schedule the cleanout to take place during daylight hours. This will allow the cleanout company to see what they’re doing and avoid any potential hazards. Real estate agents will also be able to drop by and check on the cleanout progress.

With that said, some cleanout companies do work after dark. If you’re going to go with one of these companies, make sure they’re licensed and insured. Also, be sure to ask about their cleanout experience and get references.

3. Make sure the property is secure.

Before the cleanout company arrives, you’ll need to make sure that the property is secure. This means ensuring that all doors and windows are locked and that there is no way for anyone to enter the property without your permission.

Foreclosure cleaners often find that the previous occupants have left the property in a state of disarray, which can present security risks. By making sure the property is secure, you can help to ensure that the cleanout process goes smoothly and that the property is not damaged or vandalized.

Also, foreclosed homes are often targets for thieves and vandals. By making sure the property is secure, you can help to deter would-be criminals from targeting your property.

4. Give the cleanout company a list of what needs to be removed.

To avoid any surprises, you should give the cleanout company a list of what needs to be removed from the property. This should include any furniture, appliances, and personal belongings that were left behind by the previous occupants.

A foreclosed property is often in poor condition, and the foreclosure cleanouts process can be expensive. To save money, you may want to consider doing some of the work yourself. However, it is important to keep safety in mind, as many foreclosed homes contain hazardous materials. If you are not comfortable with entering the property, it is best to leave the cleanout to the professionals.

5. Be available to answer any questions.

During the cleanout process, the cleanout company may have questions about the property or the items that need to be removed. You should make yourself available to answer any questions that they may have.

If the real estate-owned cleanout company has questions about the property, they will need to contact the bank or lender. The cleanout company may also need to contact the municipality if there are any code enforcement issues.

The foreclosure cleaning process can be complicated. By following these best practices, you can help ensure that the cleanout process goes smoothly.

6. Review the cleanout contract.

Before you sign a cleanout contract, be sure to review it carefully. Make sure that you understand what services are included and what the costs will be.

If you have any questions, be sure to ask the cleanout company before you sign the contract. Foreclosure cleanout services can be expensive, so you want to make sure that you are getting what you expect. All the junk that must be cleaned out of foreclosure can quickly add up, so the cleanout company will likely charge by the hour or by the pound.

In some cases, you may be able to negotiate a flat fee for the cleanout services. This is often the case when the cleanout is being performed on behalf of a bank or other lender.

7. Be prepared for the foreclosed property cleanout.

When the cleanout day arrives, be sure to have all of your belongings out of the home. The cleanout company will likely not be able to clean around your things, so it’s important to have everything removed before they arrive.

If you have any large pieces of furniture or appliances, be sure to arrange for them to be removed before the cleanout. The cleanout company will likely not be able to remove these items for you.

Usually, property owners are given a specific amount of time to remove their belongings from the home. Once that time has passed, the cleanout company will arrive to clean out the property. Estate cleanout can be a difficult and emotional process, so it’s important to be prepared for it.

6. Follow up after the cleanout is complete.

Once the cleanout is complete, you should follow up with the cleanout company to make sure that they have done a thorough job. If you have any questions or concerns, you should contact them immediately. Additionally, it is important to take photos of the cleanout and send them to the cleanout company so that they can confirm that the property has been left in good condition.

Many foreclosed properties are left in poor condition and it is important to clean them out as soon as possible. These properties can attract criminals and can become a health hazard. If you are responsible for a foreclosed property, it is your responsibility to ensure that it is clean and safe. While it may be tempting to simply leave the property as is, it is important to follow best practices for cleanout foreclosures so that you can protect your investment and avoid any legal liabilities.

6. Inspect the property after the cleanout is complete.

Once the cleanout company has finished its work, you should inspect the property to make sure that everything was removed as agreed upon. If any items were missed, you can contact the cleanout company and arrange for them to be removed.

Foreclosure cleanup is a big job, but ensuring the property is clean and presentable before putting it back on the market is essential. There is some real estate agent with the knowledge and experience to help you through the process. With the right team in place, you can clean out a foreclosure quickly and efficiently and get the property ready for its new owners.


It is important to remember a few key things when cleanout foreclosures: be safe, be respectful of the property and the homeowners, and take your time. With these things in mind, you will be well on your way to having a successful cleanout!