Having a housekeeper or cleaning professional clean your living space can be a great way to get your home or apartment spic-and-span for inspection(s), a party or other celebration, or a real estate showing. But what if you need a professional on a weekly basis? Many people utilize the services of housekeepers on a monthly or weekly basis to keep their homes clean if they are too busy to do it themselves, but it can be difficult to know how much to pay an outside professional for housecleaning.
While housekeeping agencies tend to charge a flat fee when they send a team to a house, you might have a smaller home or apartment that doesn’t require more than one person. As such, a fair weekly rate for a housekeeper will depend on a number of factors. What follows is a list of questions to explore before you discuss a rate with a cleaning professional:
How large is your space?
If you live in an apartment or a studio, you will most likely not have as much space as a large house; and your housekeeper will be able to carry out cleaning duties at a different pace depending on the size of your abode. If your housekeeper charges by the hour, this becomes an important thing to consider.
Where is your home located?
Depending on the cost of living in your geographical area, what seems like a “fair” wage in your town may not be for another area of the country. If you have neighbors or friends who employ housekeepers, it might be a good idea to ask them about the rate that they pay for housekeeping services. Searching a website such as Craigslist or Care.com to get an idea of the going rate in your city or town might also help.
Are there any special tasks that the housekeeper will have to perform, in addition to general cleaning?
If the duties that you have assigned your housekeeper include pet care, food preparation, cleaning windows, and the like, you will probably be paying considerably more since these things do not fall under the general rubric of “house cleaning.” A “deep clean” session will probably also cost more as it will take longer than a regular cleaning session.
How many times per week will you need housekeeping services?
Some housekeepers charge by the hour; some charge by the job. If you need a housekeeper to clean more than once per week, expect to pay more.
Who pays for the cleaning supplies?
This question seems to be one of considerable debate, but there are several reasons to explore it in-depth. Cleaning supplies can be expensive, and although some housekeepers do not mind paying for their own supplies, there are exceptions. If you or someone in your home has sensitivities to certain products, or if you prefer that certain brands of cleaning products be used in your home, you should pay for those supplies. Either way, this is an issue to address before you hire someone, after initially interviewing them.
When hiring a cleaning professional to come into your home, there are many things to consider carefully before making a final decision. A cleaning professional’s work experience, references, possible scheduling conflicts, and how you and the prospective housekeeper interact are also important in the process of finding a housekeeper who best fits your needs. Fair compensation is one of the most important pieces of this puzzle, and it is especially important if you want to build a trusting yet professional relationship with a housekeeper.
Anna Hill writes for Networx.com.