How Much to Charge For House Cleaning Services
Are you struggling with the thought of, “how will I go about calculating how much I should be charging for my cleaning services?”
It can be a very tricky thing, especially if you’ve never really done it before. Although, by the end of this post I can almost assure you that you’ll have everything you need to give accurate quotes to your customers, charge effectively for the highest profits, and do it all without too much hard work.
And another thing to remember; although it seems tricky and intimidating now (trust me, we’ve all been there) with enough practice and time, you will be giving out accurate quotes in no time.
This article is going to cover and explain how to charge for house cleaning services and accurately give quotes to your residential clients.
Discovering an hourly rate
To do this right, all we need to do is figure out an hourly rate. From there, you will be able to fairly accurately give a quote to your clients based on how much time you believe it will take you to complete the job.
To give you a very rough idea of what the ‘typical’ rate for a house cleaner in the United States is, it is between $20-$45 currently. Of course this will vary depending on where you are located, and the income of the area you plan to offer your services in.
To find out the going rate in your area (where you plan to offer your services), you will need to call up a few (the more the merrier) cleaning service companies and ask what they typically charge per hour in the area.
I’ve broken down this process for you, so just follow these simple steps and you will get this done with a breeze:
1. Gather a list of competitors
To gather a list of competitors in your area, you could do a simple Google search for something like ‘house cleaning in location.’ Obviously location is going to be the town or city you plan to offer services in, but you get the point.
2. Collect contact information
You can either call (recommended) or email them with your inquires. Personally I recommend you call in simply because it is faster, and will give you more time to focus on other parts of your cleaning business.
To keep good track of the contact information, be sure to write down the company name and phone number / email in a spreadsheet for future references.
3. Call and record information
When calling, you should probably ask things similar to this:
“What do you typically charge per hour?”
“How much will it cost to clean home (example size)?”
“How long will it take to clean a home (example size)?”
These questions should get you the information you are looking for. But in case they won’t give you an hourly rate (some places just won’t), then tell them an ‘example’ sized home and what services you are looking for (e.g general cleaning) and see what price they give you. Then ask how long it will take approximately. With these numbers you can divide the total estimate price by the number of hours (e.g $200 / 5 = $40 / HR).
Another very important thing to do is to record all of your findings while you hear them. It is almost guaranteed you will be given different hourly rates for every company you call, so recording everything while you hear it will ensure you don’t forget.
Now lets say we contacted five different companies, and got 5 different hourly rates. We need to average out the hourly wage to get a meaningful number to work with. To do this, follow this example (but plug in your own numbers of course!):
Lets say we got these hourly rates (total of 5 different rates): $35, $50, $40, $20, $30.
Add them all up equals: $175
Divide by the total number of hourly rates you got: 5
$175 / 5 = $35 / an hour on average.
With this information, we now know that the average hourly wage charged for house cleaning services in our area is $35. This is highly valuable information for us, and it will be the basis of what you will be charging for your services. But the next part is going to be crucial to be giving full on estimates, instead of just an hourly rate!
Discovering your time to clean
Figuring out how long it is going to take you to clean a home can be the trickiest part of this entire process. But look at the bright side, we are half way done with finding out what you should be charging for your services!
Discovering how long it will take you to clean various sized homes with extreme accuracy will take time and experience of cleaning homes of all different sizes. But to get a general idea, I suggest you time yourself cleaning your own home, as well as a few others (like friends and family). Figure out the square footage of the home, how long it took you, from there you will be able to figure out how long it should take (on average).
Obviously different cleaning tasks (general, spring, etc) will take different amounts of time, but you can do the same test over again with the different cleaning tasks you plan to offer.
For example sake, let’s use the following data (probably will be different for you!):
Cleaning my home took me 3 hours to clean; it is 2000 sq ft in size.
My best friends home took me 2.75 hours; it is 1500 sq ft in size.
My parents home took me 3.25 hours it is 2500 sq ft in size.
From this data, we have multiple conclusions.
First, we found that the average sized home in the area is around 2000 sq ft in size. Secondly, we now know that to clean the average sized home in the area (2000 sq ft) it is going to take about 3 hours to do. Thirdly, every 500 sq ft added onto or subtracted from the average sized home takes about 15 minutes extra (or less) time to complete.
From all this data, we have found the average sized home in our area, discovered how long it takes to clean the average sized home, and how long (approximately) it is going to take to clean smaller or larger homes.
Obviously over time you will find more accurate numbers after you clean more homes, but at the start this is the best you can do. So after you start getting clients, be sure to record your times and sizes of the homes for awhile at least until you get more accurate numbers.
From here, we practically know what our typical quote is going to be. An average home is going to be estimated to be around $105 per visit (for a general cleaning). Of course this will vary depending on what you decide to charge per hour (could be less, more, or the same of the average). Also depends on the average sized home, and what types of services you are doing.
Be sure you cover your expenses, and then a profit every time before you give out a quote to a client. The last thing you want to do is give an underestimate to a client, and be stuck taking a loss for your time and services.
As a general guideline for everyone (useful tip right here), you can add or subtract 15 minutes per 500 sq ft size of a home.
Hopefully you have a greater understanding of how exactly to go about finding an accurate way to give estimates and quotes to your clients. It can be scary, we know that. But give it a go, and as long as your quote is covering your expenses and has a decent profit at the end, then you are doing something right!
Have any other questions? Comment down below or write to us! We’d love to help.