10 ways on hiring a professional cleaner
Even if you’re a stay-at-home mom, you may still find no time to clean your home thoroughly, especially if you are working from home and nursing babies. You may sweep once in a while, wash the dishes every meal, wipe the counters clean, but you know it’s never enough if you know dirt and grime are living in your bathrooms, basement, garage, and even in your cushions. A professional cleaning service is something you need to help you clean stuff up in your home.
Nowadays, cleaning services are not a luxury anymore, but a need. Here are some tips for hiring a professional cleaning service for your home.
1. Research cleaning services near you.
Ask your neighbors, relatives, or friends around you for recommendations or referrals. The best way to start looking for a professional cleaning service is to try those that are tested by people you know, especially if they are highly satisfied with service.
2. Decide what type of cleaner to hire.
As you are searching for a professional cleaning service, determine what type of cleaner you would feel safe and comfortable with. If you are hiring an independent cleaner, you will act as his or her employer, and you will be responsible for any background checks. Background checks are essential to ensure the safety of your home and your belongings. Meanwhile, if you are hiring from a large company, they would always provide you that their staff has undergone essential background checks. Ask if they would send the same person consistently, or are they going to rotate the different team. Also, ask how many people they would be sent to your home, especially if you would ask for a service that would take a lot of time to do.
Know what works best for you. If you prefer only one person to clean your house every time, that person would be familiar with where and what to clean in your house. You would also not worry about having many different people knowing what’s inside your home if in case you’re uncomfortable with that. However, you have to deal with their fatigue and expect that they may have to come back another day to finish all their cleaning tasks, especially if you’re hiring one person for spring cleaning. Meanwhile, if you are okay with having a different crew or a group of teams every week, you would always have to deal with people familiarizing themselves with your house. The good thing is, you can be sure that they would clean every spot you needed to be cleaned, because someone familiar with your home may tend to purposely miss some places, thinking they have already cleaned them thoroughly the last time.
3. Consider their service offerings.
Tell them beforehand if you would only need essential cleaning services, or if you also need your windows cleaned and if your tile grout all over the house scrubbed. Usually, essential cleaning services include: sweeping and vacuuming throughout the house, mopping, thorough cleaning of kitchen and bathrooms, dusting and wiping all surfaces, removing cobwebs, and making beds. Other services other than these can be considered extra, so know what additional services they can provide. If you need a ladder to make them reach top shelves, you have to tell them, especially if you don’t have a ladder.
Also, if you’re a first-time client of a company, they would most probably require you to commit to a deep cleaning service. If you need your bathroom, especially your bathtub, squeaky clean, and disinfected, you may have to negotiate.
4. Consider house cleaning tools, equipment, and supplies.
You must know beforehand if you should be providing the cleaning products or not. Professional cleaners employed by some companies bring their tools, equipment, and supplies, while others only bring tools and equipment. Tell them if you have preferences and sensitivities in products like if you don’t want anything sprayed on your furnishings, or if you don’t like certain chemicals use on your wooden floor.
5. Consider their experience in the cleaning business.
New companies may offer an excellent job, but the longer the company has been in the business, the better the choice they will be. This means they are stable, well-trusted, and are doing a great job in satisfying clients. When dealing with the individual cleaners, the better choice would be those that have been doing cleaning services for years, since they have already encountered a lot of dirty and messy situations and have learned how to handle them properly.
6. Clarify rates and define the scope.
Ask for price quotes from cleaning services you invited over and get an on-site estimate. They should tell you how long it will take for them to clean your house and give you a flat rate for each visit. Cleaning services may charge per hour, by project, or by several cleaners they send. Don’t always choose the cheapest, since these often add extra charges after the job is done.
Make sure there are no hidden fees by asking them first to define the scope of work and types of cleaning jobs that would include at the specified rate. You can avoid surprises with your bill after, for example, you have asked your hired cleaners to clean out your refrigerator and your dog’s crate, since you know they are just extra services. Make everything clear about what services they would only provide and record the details in writing to avoid future disagreements.
7. Make sure that your hired cleaners are insured and licensed.
Make sure that the cleaners you are going to hire are licensed professionals so that you would be secure. If you are hiring an independent professional cleaner, you must take care of all insurance options. But if you are hiring from a company, they must carry liability insurance and bond, as well as a policy for unwanted situations, such as when something gets damaged, broken or missing in your home, or when a cleaner gets hurt while doing service in your home. Excellent cleaning services also offer guarantees for complete or partial re-do for free, in case you are not satisfied with their service.
8. Decide if you will give the cleaner access to your home and how.
Some people prefer to be at home whenever a professional is cleaning to keep an eye on how they want the job done, or simply because they feel more secure when they are around while a stranger is inside their home. Others would instead leave it to them as they go to work or somewhere else. If you are this type of person, decide how they can get inside your home whenever you are not there. Are you going to leave a key under the mat and ask them to leave it inside after they are done the cleaning? Are you going to give them the code or access to your smart lock system? Talk about it with the individual or company you are going to hire and make sure both you and the cleaner will be comfortable with the option you choose.
9. Inform them of any considerations if you have pets.
Any types of cleaning jobs involving pets, such as changing litter boxes or cleaning an aquarium, may not be offered or may come with an additional fee. Ask the cleaning service company if they are willing to handle cleaning pet’s spaces. Also, you may need to put your dog or cat in a crate and ask the cleaner to leave it on a safe spot, both for the animal and the cleaner. Just tell them to move your pet back in before they leave. If you are taking care of a pet rat, the cleaner must know; otherwise, they might try to trap, hurt, or kill them, thinking they were pests.
10. Put away clutter before your cleaning service arrives.
You may think you could just let your kid’s toys on the floor because anyway, the cleaner would get to pick them up. However, this takes time, and a long time spent cleaning than planned initially may cause additional charges. Some cleaners would not do it. Let them focus on the more essential jobs. Also, you should keep your jewelry and cash away from their sight. There would be a licensing and bond agreement, but it’s better to be safe by helping them avoid temptation than to regret it later.