How to Clean a Gite or Holiday Cottage Checklist
Clean your holiday cottage or gite
I've had a holiday cottage (or gite in french) for about 6 years now and although I'm no expert, I do get good feedback from my guests. I must admit that I prepared this 'how to clean your gite' checklist for my husband as he will have to tackle that all-important gite changeover for the first time all by himself next Saturday - but I thought it might prove useful for other would-be gite or holiday rental owners.
So this is what is involved in owning, cleaning, preparing and presenting a gite.
Tools of the trade - Gite-cleaning kit
I need quite a bit of kit to clean the gite, some of it is in the gite already but others I have to take from our main house. If I forget to take all my tools, equipment and materials, I have to go traipsing back to get them.
Equipment to take from the house:
- Vaccuum cleaner
- Cif cleaner (cif does a good enough job without leaving a deposit)
- Brush to clean basins and plugs
- All-purpose or floor cleaner
- Feather duster
- New bin liner
- Small plastic bag for odds and ends of rubbish
- Fresh loo rolls
- Washing powder
- Welcome gifts (honey, eggs, fruit etc)
In the gite I keep:
- Cleaning sponges
- Cream cleaner
- Toilet cleaner
- Mop and bucket
Babies, bedding and towels
- Check to see how many baby beds and highchairs you need
- Pillow cases, sheets, duvet covers and towels
Remove rubbish and mess
Check all bins and remove all rubbish. Our guests nearly always leave the place spic and span but check all the same. Dying flowers are one thing and sometimes guests forget to take out the coffee grounds from the coffee machine.
Check the gite for dirty sheets, towels, tea towels etc and put on a wash. They will be ready to hang out long before you finish the work. Hang outside to dry.
Dust and remove cobwebs
People REALLY don't like spiders and spiders are all around us in Limousin - but, I hasten to add, they are not of the very scary type. Our spiders are tiny-bodied, thin legged, whispish creatures and they are devestatingly industrious.
First task, de-cobweb and dust starting with between the beams. Work from top to bottom and if you have more than one floor start at the top of the house. (Dust will fall down!)
Using your feather duster dust and de-cobweb between beams, inside and outside windows and doors, curtain rails, shutters, behind bedheads and bedside tables, over and under tables and chairs. Check all corners from ceiling to floor. Dust all lamps (inside and out) and skirting boards. Dust every surface and legdge. Dust on top of wardropes and cabinets, behind and on top of the TV ans inside all cupboards.
Clean inside the gite
Clean the kitchen
Clean with Cif kitchen and bathroom cleaner or a cream cleaner for more stubborn dirt.
- Clean pedal bin and put a fresh bin liner in
- Kitchen, including sink, draining board, work surface (including bread board and UNDER bread board), oven and hob, dishwasher, washing machine, microwave.
- Wipe down all tiles
- Check machines are clean, the dishwasher arms are not blocked, clean the dishwasher filter and check washing machine filter from time to time.
- Empty toaster and clean toaster 'drawer'
- Switch fridge freezer off and clean fridge outside with Cif and inside with warm water. You can add bicarbonate of soda if you like.
- Wipe the dining table lamp
- Clean extractor fan and make sure it is grease-free
- Put toilet cleaner into all toilets
- Clean washbasins, all mugs and toothbrush holders, check bathroom bins and cupboards, clean showers including soap dishes, taps and shower heads. Don't forget to clean the plugs
- Clean toilets, including toilet bases
- Clean mirrors
- Put a toilet roll into each toilet
Showers, basins and tiles
I say tidy beds because we don't make the beds in the gite, unlike our Bed and Breakfast.
We provide pillows and duvets and guests can rent sheets and towels. (We provide kitchen towels and tea towels free of charge).
Tidy the duvets and pillows and put bed covers over them. Lay out sheets if they have been ordered in a tidy pile.
Flowers and welcome gifts
Put the flowers and welcome gifts on the table together with information sheets and WiFi code.
Check the windows and if necessary clean with window cleaner.
Sweep, vaccuum and mop
Sweet or vaccuum the floors taking care to clean under beds and cupboards, in corners, behind toilets, under the table and sofa. If necessary mop with hot water and floor cleaner.
Open windows and doors to dry the floor.
Outside the gite or holiday cottage
- Cut grass
- Weed and tidy garden and patio
- Cut back grape vine and climbers and/or tie up
- Rake leaves from lawn and patio
- Sweep parking area
- Wipe garden furniture
- Empty rubbish bin and eco-bin, clean and dry
- Clean the BBQ
All this to be done by 4pm
Clean and tidy outside the gite
Check all light bulbs inside and out. Check gas bottle and make sure everything is neat and tidy.
Don't forget to get the washing in.
When the guests arrive
Welcome guests and show them into the gite and explain how things work as you go:
- Show them their parking space
- Invite them to pick fruit (plumbs, cherries, grapes, peaches)
- Tell them about the donkeys
- Tell them about the eco-bin and rubbish bin (put out Thursday evening)
- TV in English and French, video and CD
- Point out tourist information and machine guides, urgent numbers etc
- Suggest they open all drawers and cupboards to see what is provided and what they have to get
- Warn about shower head - point into shower and not into bedroom
- Play area - children must be supervised and only one child at a time on trampoline
- Read the electricity meter and make a note in the book. Tell them electricity is about 10 euros a week per family but not to use the heaters as they are expensive. (Wood for wood burning stove is free).
- Take the caution and note in the book
- Ask if they have any questions
- Tell them to come to us if they have problems or queries or would like to see our tourist information
- Wish them a happy holiday
Gite, vacation rental or holiday cottages
Are you thinking about buying a gite?
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© 2014 Barbara Walton