10 Dorm Room Cleaning Tips for College Students

The beginning of independence

The journey to college or university is a rigorous one that is filled with anticipation, including the independence that comes along with it. Moving into your new dorm can be extremely exciting, brimming with feelings of decorating your space and making it your lair.

For some this experience also brings lifelong friendships and comradery if you’re moving in with a roommate. However, this period can also be a huge learning curve for those young adults that haven’t experienced independent living.

When you live on your own, one of the most critical of responsibilities is taking care of your home or living space. This can be especially true when it comes to your dorm room.

Many students scrounge for answers on how to clean the dorm room or look for dorm room cleaning tips. While some students end up flustered and seeking a home cleaning service, we’re here to remind you that it is completely possible to do the cleaning on your own.

We understand that you may not always have all the answers and solutions to simple day to day responsibilities like student dorm cleaning. It is important during this important period of your life when you should be dedicated to your studies and living your life to the fullest, that cleaning can be a breeze.

A student’s dorm is the sanctuary needed to improve their knowledge and excel in their studies. Most of the time spent in their dorm is for growth, a particular obstacle that could stand in their way is a dirty study space. This can hinder even the most focused of students, which is why it is important to tackle this obstacle before it is far out of reach.

Here are the top 10 dorm room cleaning tips for college students:

1. Making a strategic cleaning schedule

What is the best time to clean?

As a college or university student, your academic schedule can be incredibly difficult to squeeze in any leeway for other activities whether they be social or for maintenance purposes. Time management is a part of the cleaning process. This rings especially true if you have a roommate and need to compromise with the time needed to clean your dorm.


Those who need to wash their bed sheets or other clothing items and don’t have a washing machine in their vicinity will also find it painful to have to do these particular responsibilities at night due to the wait time.

It is recommended for a college student to get seven or eight hours of sleep for maximum productivity and awareness. Cleaning time during the night can leave a student exhausted and out of energy that their sleep will be affected.

We suggest finding a time within your study schedule that won’t put pressure on your other daily responsibilities like studying or doing homework. Also compromising with your roommate or others in your immediate surroundings so that they are not disturbed by any cleaning noises.

2. Make a Checklist

What needs to be cleaned and washed in the dorm room?

When you start to clean your room, it can be daunting to figure out what needs to be cleaned or what needs to be organized while you’re already doing these tasks. We suggest making a dorm room cleaning checklist to focus on the most important tasks and then work your way into the minimal spaces that need cleansing.


It is important to recognize that you not only need to clean the surfaces but also de-clutter your room if it is packed with items. Usually, dorm rooms can be small size and require a more minimalistic touch to not look unsightly. However, some students let their books and school material overtake the room, making little to no space for anything else.

It is critical to also remove any unnecessary objects and materials for more comfort or easier access to furniture. That is why making a checklist will help separate what is needed and what needs to be thrown away.

What materials are needed to clean your dorm room?

It is impossible to clean your dorm room without the right tools. If you are new to the cleaning process, it is important to note that some products will help ease your way through new territory. Some of these products are cost-effective and will also serve a purpose in the future if you buy in bulk. The products needed are:

  • Antibacterial wipes
  • Dish soap
  • Vacuum
  • Broom and dustpan
  • Mop and bucket
  • Paper towels
  • Air freshener
  • Filing materials

These materials will serve to not only clean your dorm room but can also be helpful for the rest of your life whether you move into an apartment or home. Investing in these products now will save you a lifetime of cleaning blues.

3. Keeping your bed tidy

Why is it important to keep the bed area nice and tidy?

For many dorm rooms, the bed is usually the focal point of the room. Whenever you have a guest or visitor, the number one thing they will notice is how you keep your bed area. If your bedsheets are constantly tussled and not neatly folded it can lead anyone to believe that you have a disorderly lifestyle.

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To keep your room clean, it is important to wash your bedsheets and keep your bed made whenever you wake up in the morning. Washing your bedsheets is important as it will also prevent pests like bed bugs away from your bedroom. Making your bed will allow a more presentable look into your dorm room and immediately make for a more impressionable space.

4. File and organize your student materials

How can you keep your dorm room more organized?

We can’t stress enough the importance of organization when it comes to student life. Being a college student means having loads and loads of books or paperwork in your dorm area. It can be hard to manage if all of these materials are all over the place. It can also lead to more stress if it’s hard to find a certain book or paper when the time comes to deliver it.


Investing in a filing system or filing cabinet can benefit you and your time in the university. If you can’t invest in a filing cabinet, it is important to organize your materials for a tidier atmosphere within your dorm room. The organization is a big part of being a student, it can propel you towards success and also help you allocate items in your dorm without any stress.

5. Clean all the surfaces

What surfaces need to be cleaned?

The natural outcome when you postpone cleaning your dorm room for some months or weeks is the overwhelming dust that can pile up on the surface. Dust can lead to allergic reactions or persistent coughing if not tackled. It can be easy to forget about maintaining your dorm room as being a student can come with time constraints or an overwhelming amount of productivity for the university.


It is no wonder that dust happens occasionally in your dorm room, which is why it is important to wipe down every surface. This includes countertops (if you have a kitchen), furniture, walls, refrigerator, etc. Cleaning these surfaces can help keep your room clean and dust-free.

How to wipe down kitchen surfaces and keep the kitchen clean

It is also important to remember to clean the kitchen tops If your dorm has one as the kitchen area can accumulate a lot of bacteria or food crumbs. Having a refrigerator in your dorm can be great for storing away leftover food, however, it can also be problematic if you are not constantly removing the expired food or wiping down the inside as it can accumulate mold easily.

This could further lead to toxic air pathogens that could affect your lungs or cause cold symptoms. It is important to stay on top of these areas to avoid any illness or possible pests invading your dorm room.

6. Taking care of the Dishes

Why is it important to wash the dishes in your dorm room?

We’ve all been there, you get to your dorm room after a long day of studying only to then have a warm meal to yourself and quickly start to doze off. After eating the meal, washing the dirty dishes sounds like a chore that you don’t have time for when you’re extremely tired.


However, did you know that if you keep the dishes in the sink it can lead to unpleasant odors and creepy critters working their way into the kitchen? While washing the dishes can exert physical activity, it is critical to maintaining your dorm room clean.

Leaving the dishes in the sink can also make washing them the next day difficult, as the food or sauce will stick to the plate afterward. If you are pressed for time, we highly suggest leaving the dirty dishes in warm water so they could soak and make It easier for cleaning.

For those who don’t have a sink in their dorm rooms, we suggest buying a plastic tub or washing the dishes in the bathroom sink. However, if you use the latter it is important to double-check that no bits of food go down the sink as it can clog the drainage.

7. Keep your bathroom sanitized

Why is cleaning your dorm room bathroom important?

The bathroom is easily the most bacteria-infested room within a household or living space. This can be especially true if you have a shared bathroom in your dorm room. Keeping your dorm room free of bacteria can be optimal when you have minimal space as it can reduce the chances of illness or infections spreading.


The bathroom is a largely moist area and can build mold in corners that could later lead to toxicity in the air you breathe. To avoid these issues and mold build-up, it is recommended to clean the bathroom frequently. Diving the work between you and your roommate can help with productivity if your schedule ever becomes unmanageable.

This way the bathroom will remain clean as often as possible and minimize the threat of illness or allergic reactions. The toilet and sink are two areas that need to be deep cleaned and sanitized as often as possible as they are huge bacteria hot spots.

8. Remove all trash in your bedroom

Why is it important to throw away garbage in your room?

While being independent comes with a guaranteed privilege to freely do anything you would like without any repercussions, it can also lead to continuous bad habits. Some students are likely to forget their plastic cups from their favorite fast-food restaurant near their bedside and then question why there is a pest invasion in their dorm room.


The answer is relative, you keep your trash in the bin without throwing it into the collective garbage disposal, eventually, you will run into this issue. However, removing all trash from your dorm room can keep away any infestation.

Trash can also lead to foul odors that will surely disturb you as you try to study for the big exam you have the next day. We suggest spraying an air freshener after cleaning out the garbage so that the odor can quickly disappear.

Why continue to live with this burden when you can tackle the problem quickly? Keeping the trash in your dorm room is a dangerous game, but luckily it can be diffused once you clean it out.

9. Clutter be gone!

Why is removing clutter important?

When you have a small dorm room, it is easy for furniture and other products to overwhelm the room if you don’t have enough space. Having a cluttered dorm room can easily affect your overall mood and mental health.

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While most students accept the messy lifestyle that living independently can bring, it can lead to repercussions that can also affect your studies. When you have a clean desk and workspace, everything will feel more cohesive as well as minimalistic.

Bringing in minimalism to your dorm room will help keep the space tidy and increase concentration.

10. Frequent Vacuuming and mopping the floor

Hygienic practices that will benefit you

The last step in keeping your dorm clean is also the most important, as cleaning your dorm room starts with keeping it sanitized. Vacuuming your dorm room will help clear away any accumulated dust or debris that can accumulate over a lengthy time.

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We suggest vacuuming your dorm room once or twice a week to build up a cleaning habit as well as to keep the space looking polished. After vacuuming, it is important to mop if the room has tiles or wooden floors. This will ensure that your room will continue to be spotless and it will help build good habits for your future home.