Can I charge by the hour for house cleaning? Today we have everything you need to know about pricing cleaning jobs on tap.
“How much should I charge for house cleaning?” Every new house cleaner and maid service asks this question. Find out how to set prices that work and skyrocket yourself to a successful cleaning business.
Listen: Can I Charge by the Hour for House Cleaning?
Watch: Can I Charge by the Hour for House Cleaning?
Hey there, I’m Angela Brown, and this is Ask a House Cleaner. This is a show where you get to ask a house cleaning question, and I get to help you find an answer. You can find this and 400 other answered questions in this series on our YouTube channel.
Can I Charge By the Hour for House Cleaning?
Can I charge by the hour for house cleaning? We have a house cleaner who called in and asked this question. “My name is Rio, and I bought your book “How to Start Your Own House Cleaning Company” and I have a question on the section, What Should You Charge?
I’m starting my business, but I want to expand in the next few years. So, my question is, is it okay to start by charging by the hour and then change policies when I get bigger and hire people on?”
Start Out Charging by the Hour
Starting out, yes, its recommended that you start out charging $25 an hour and charging by the hour, not the job. The reason being is as you get started, there are a bunch of unknowns. So, you don’t know yet what your systems are or what chemicals you’re going to use, or what the cost of your cleaning supplies.
Cleaning supplies as in Swiffer Dusters, latex gloves, scrub brushes, sponges, claws, and all that stuff. There’s a bunch of expenses that go along with the cleaning business that you don’t know yet.
And so, it would be hard to amortize them over the cost of the year, if you don’t have any time in the business yet. So, you have to figure out what all those costs are.
Charge $25 an Hour in America
So, starting out in the house cleaning business in America, charge $25 per hour. This is for a business with no ratings and reviews, getting started, don’t have the credentials, or a have the systems in place.
The going rate is $25 to $45 in America for average maintenance clean. Deep cleanings cost more. Also, move in, move out cleans cost more and specialty cleaning, which are like cleaning out refrigerators and ovens and all that stuff.
But right now, you don’t know how long it takes you to clean a house. And you don’t know how your process of cleaning is or what your training is or any of those things.
You’ll Get Paid if it Takes Longer to Complete
So, you’re going to start out at $25 an hour. If it takes you longer to do a job than you expect, at least you get paid for that time. That’s where this comes in. We have a house cleaner that was part of our program this last week.
And she started out, she charged $80 for the job because that sounded like a lot of money and she was pretty sure she could do the house in a certain amount of time. She couldn’t do it. The deep clean for the house took her 15 hours and it was still the same $80. So, by the time you figured in the cost of just the labor alone, that’s not the cost of supplies, not the cost of travel, none of those things. On the labor alone, she earned about $5 an hour.
Now, if she would have earned $25 an hour and she would have bid by the hour and not the job, she would have made $375 for the same job. So, she made $80 instead of $375.
There’s a Huge Difference Between Charging by the Hour and by the Job
So, there’s a huge difference between charging by the job and charging by the hour. Because right now, going in with no experience, you’re kind of winging it because there’s no formula and there’s no system. Now, as you get involved in the business, there are a bunch of other things that you will be aware of.
And once you’ve cleaned a few houses, you’re going to go, “Oh wow. I know how to clean that, but it takes a certain amount of time. Oh, I see that that needs to be cleaned, it hasn’t been cleaned for a while.” You need special chemicals in order to clean that.
So, you start factoring other expenses and other costs where you can build your pricing and then you move away from your introductory pricing and then you move into bidding by the job. It will never be profitable to bid a job by the hour.
You Charge by the Hour to Get off the Ground
But as you’re starting out in the business, it’s almost an evil necessity just to get you off the ground and get you started. That gets money coming in on a regular basis. It gets regular homes that are underneath your belt.
So, you can start practicing and getting experience as a house cleaner. So, it opens a lot of doors for you. There are also a couple of other things it does like deep cleaning.
Because when you attract a certain type of clientele, it will teach you a certain level of skills that you need to navigate the rest of your business.Resources
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Stop Being Disrespectful by Low-balling Your Fees: A Guide to Pricing Your Service-based Business Within Industry Standards – https://Amzn.To/30v1fvo
Be the Go-to: How to Own Your Competitive Market, Charge More, and Have Customers Love You for It – https://Amzn.To/3dpciaz
Handbook on the Psychology of Pricing: 100+ Effects on Persuasion and Influence Every Entrepreneur, Marketer and Pricing Manager Needs to Know – https://Amzn.To/37mnsq2
What They Don’t Teach You in Business School: Real-world Sales and Service Skills You Need to Win and Wow Clients! – https://Amzn.To/2xni3d6
Pricing for Profit: How to Command Higher Prices for Your Products and Services – https://Amzn.To/2uxsakp
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