Hits and misses of DIY projects, both big and small.

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Movin’ on out

7/16/2008 3:57:16 PM

Tags: apartment, repairs

If you’re moving out of an apartment or rented house, you’ll probably want to do some minor repairs and touchups before you check out. You do want that security deposit back, don’t you? Here are a few tips.

For a few small nail holes, you can often get by just filling them with white toothpaste (if you have white walls). But a better way to disguise nail holes in walls is to fill them with spackle using a small putty knife. The spackle will change the color of the wall slightly, even if you scrape it off thoroughly. If you don’t know that the walls will be painted, wipe the excess spackle film from the wall with a damp cloth to make your work less obvious.

The Mr. Clean Magic Eraser is named appropriately. You’ll be amazed at how easily it removes marks from walls and other surfaces. You might want to test the eraser in a spot that’s not obvious.

You can use dish soap and water to remove many carpet stains. Dampen the area with a mild soapy solution, using an old toothbrush to work out the stain. Wipe up the soap with a damp cloth, and wait for the spot to dry before vacuuming.

If you have additional advice for renters, please share it in the comments section.

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Post a comment below.


9/13/2013 1:52:21 PM
For LOTS of stains - Oil Eaters (and only Oil Eaters) will do the job. If you are going to get your hands wet with the stuff though, use gloves. Excellent. I have taken out OLD permanent ink stains, oil, transmission fluid, cleaned the stove hood, etc. It is a miracle product. Bleach for the grout on tiled sinks (not for colored grout). Pour it on and let it soak for a couple of minutes . . . watch the grime come up to the surface, lightly brush away any stubborn stain with a toothbrush.

Matt Hirschfeld
8/28/2008 4:04:17 PM
I've moved six times in three years, so I have the tricks of the moving trade down pat. And this reminded me another article about this woman who helps move historic houses to different locations and perserve their history.

Kim Wallace
7/25/2008 10:49:17 AM
thanks for the tips, troy! i have to move out next week, and i am not looking forward to filling those holes. i didn't know toothpaste would be a good substitute...except i use the gel kind, argh.

7/17/2008 2:17:17 PM
Our landlord made an appointment to have our wood floors professionally waxed and said she would deduct the bill from our security deposit return check. According to the lease, we have the option to use any company as long as the job gets done. We found a less expensive company and saved money! So, re-read the terms of your lease before you pack up.

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