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  • James

Hourly or One-Price

Updated: Jan 22, 2022

What we've learned in our adventure through the business world of a cleaning company is that everyone's definition and expectations of cleaning is different. There are generally written definitions that can be found on "deep clean" "regular clean" or "light clean". But there is a catch.

The catch is that people's expectations generally run towards the "deep clean". What I've found is that the terms are normally used in order to manage costs. So I want my house cleaned but I really don't want to pay 'too' much for it. I describe my expectation as a regular clean for some rooms, a deep clean of the bathrooms, and light clean of an office for example. But in my mind I am expecting there to be the same clean in all rooms. In a professional cleaner's mind there is a well written set of standards applied for each of these cleaning expectations. The cleaner describes them to me, and I listen. Subconsciously I really don't hear it.

Now after the job is complete I see stains on the baseboard of the light cleaned office, and yet the bathroom is sparkly clean which then makes me disappointed. So I mentally think the cleaners didn't do a good job, never mind what I asked for in the first place.

Most of the time the disappointed client won't say anything. But when they do there is no easy way to advise them that the level of clean was met.

The worse situation is the grocery store list of cleaning options and prices. Oh now that is asking for trouble. Imagine having a price to deep clean a bedroom for $50 (example), and a regular clean for $35. The overall cost is quoted as $250 based on the agreed expectation of a deep clean each time. The client will of course pick the regular clean most of the time, or maybe even direct no cleaning of that bedroom. The overall cost then slowly gets whittled down to $125 with the same expectations of a completely clean facility.

How to avoid this situation is simple. Clean one way. Unfortunately doing a one clean method doesn't fit into most cleaning company business models. Maximizing profits is based upon bidding a job based on time. So they will offer a car wash selection of cleaning options.

There will be those situations where is a client questions the 'level' of clean no matter how well the communication was on expectations for the end result. It never seems to match what the client mentally expects and the cleaner completed.

How to avoid this possible uncomfortable situation. It's not easy when trying to maximize revenues. But it will provide for peace of mind for both client and cleaner: One cleaning method. Clean the same way each and every time. Short term rentals, residential, offices, etc are all cleaned the same way. Of course there is a limit to this such as dirty ovens, deep stained carpets, windows to name a few. It's all based upon your definition of clean.

At our company our business model is based upon One Clean method, along with an expectation of developing a long term relationship. In a long term relationship we will assume ownership of how the facility looks. It has our name on it. This means we will go the extra mile to clean the oven if it is dirty, or try to clean a stained carpet, at no additional cost.

WHAT NO ADDITIONAL COST? Yes. And yes we are able to maintain a business that provides for costs over expenses. It's all built into the One Price. Most of the time the oven doesn't need to be cleaned, only wiped down. This was costed into the One Price. Then when the oven gets super dirty from that one messy meal its priced into the overall unit cost. Client is happy, and we are happy to do it. Yes, the unit cost will be higher priced than an hourly rate, or that dreadful grocery store list. But for both the client and us it ensures a clean property no matter the 'situation'. In a long term relationship it works perfectly.

The most important thing to establish is how your business will operate. Will it be hourly (many pitfalls there as well), or One Price. Then stick with that model no matter what. Be flexible but do so consciously.

One Price for One Clean

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