The endless repetition of household chores can make one feel like a true adult, or drive you mad. Unloading the dishwasher, vacuuming up pet hair (and your hair), constantly wiping up spills and drips, and cleaning the bathroom is a bummer after a day at work. Or if you enjoy not having fun on your days off—cleaning your house over the weekend. Once children move into your home, your house cleaning endurance and standards are tested in a way that you didn’t even know you had to prepare for. At some point, it is time to call in the professionals. Here are a few things to think about before hiring a house cleaner.
Many factors go into the cost to have a team or a solo-cleaner come and clean your home. The biggest factor is the size of your home, number of adults, kids, pets, bedrooms, bathrooms, and current level of cleanliness. A basic cleaning for a 2,000 sq ft home in Seattle takes an average of 3-4 hours, at $25-$50 per cleaner. Cleaning services are usually scheduled on a weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, or one-time cleaning basis. Regularly scheduled cleanings are usually priced lower than one-time cleanings.
Basic house cleaning includes: dusting, vacuuming, sweeping, mopping floors, cleaning the bathrooms (e.g. mirrors, toilets, showers, baths), cleaning the kitchen (e.g. clean outside of appliances, clean inside/outside of microwave, counters, and sinks), general tidying up of rooms, and empty trash cans and recycling. Price: $100-300 for a 2,000 sq ft home.
Deep cleaning includes: Changing bedding/making up beds, scrubbing doors/windows/baseboards/decorative moldings, cabinet fronts, inside of the refrigerator, inside the oven and stove top, blinds and window coverings. Price: $250-400 for a 2,000 sqft home. Expect to pay more for move in/out cleaning, after-event clean up, exterior windows, upholstery or carpet cleaning, dryer vents, and laundry.
Individual house cleaners are often less expensive than most cleaning companies. You’ll benefit from building a relationship with the same person and you can customize your home’s cleaning. Larger cleaning companies run multiple cleaning crews, so you may not have the same people cleaning your house each time. Additionally, larger companies use standardized pricing, contracts, and check lists, so expect to pay more for anything not on that list. Larger companies usually offer customers the ability to book/rescheduled their home cleaning through a website or app. With individual house cleaners, you’ll likely text or email them directly to schedule.
Depending on the cleaning company you select and the types of cleaning products you prefer, you have several options. Some companies provide eco-friendly products and their own vacuums and mops, where others ask that you provide your own cleaning products and tools. Ask ahead of your first cleaning what to expect the team to bring with them, and if you’re providing the supplies, what to have on hand.
If you’re booking your service for the first time, it is best to be there in person to let them in and show them around. However if you will be out and about during your home’s cleaning you’ll need to provide an access code or front door key to your house cleaner with instructions for turning off your home security system. Your front door key can either be a copy that you give to your house cleaner to keep at their office or a secure lock box outside of your home. If you live in a dense city or in a neighborhood without easy access to long term parking in front of your home or driveway, be prepared to provide a parking spot or parking permit on your cleaning day.
Make sure they have access to your home and they know how to turn off your home security system. Crate your pets or put them away in another room of the house or garage until the house cleaners have finished their work. Put away any important documents, mail, valuables, and anything else you would like to keep private. Pick up toys and clutter so the cleaners can spend less time sorting Legos and more time cleaning your home. If you have any areas of your home that need special attention (looking at you kid’s bathroom), let your house cleaner know before they arrive so they allocate the proper amount of time for your cleaning.