A cleaning contract is a great way to create boundaries and solidify a deal. But do your house cleaning clients need to sign a contract or agreement?
We Ask a House Cleaner tips on rules and regulations to put into contract form and how to enforce the policies.
“I want to grow my cleaning company but I don’t have any speed cleaning agreement, no legal stuff, or records on file.”
Today’s sponsors are My Cleaning Connection – a hub for cleaning and legal stuff. HouseCleaning360 a referral hub connecting homeowners with housekeepers. And Savvy Cleaner Training for house cleaners and maids, taught by Angela Brown, The House Cleaning Guru.
Listen: Cleaning Contract – Do You Need Clients to Sign One?
Watch: Cleaning Contract – Do You Need Clients to Sign One?
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.
Question: Cleaning Contract – Do You Need Clients to Sign One?
Should a customer sign a cleaning contract? It’s a great question.
Hi Angie, I am a new sub on YouTube and I am super excited that I found you. My fiancé and I recently started a cleaning company and you are super helpful. I can’t wait to get your book. My question is, should we be having customers sign a contract for our services immediately? Or should it be if they are returning customers? I can’t wait to check out your answer. Thanks so much.
Answer: Cleaning Contract – Do You Need Clients to Sign One?
Yes, yes, yes. You should have customers sign a cleaning contract, and here’s the reason why. When you get married, you are signing a contract. There are nuptials, agreements, there’s a marriage license. What you’re saying is, “I understand the rules of this arrangement. And I agree with them, and I will follow through with them until death do us part.” They are verbal and written vows.
You Sign a Contract With The Person You Trust Most
That is a person you love most in your life. This is a person you have worked your entire life building up to this moment. And now you’re here and guess what, there’s a contract that you sign.
So, you’re not marrying a house cleaning client. This gig isn’t a fraction of the importance of the other. So let’s get this straight – you’re going to sign a contract with the person you trust the most, but not with a person you hardly know?
Make it easy. Just put it all in writing. Then there are no surprises.
Even if you’re a home service provider, you are solidifying a relationship with you.
And so, you got to make sure that they understand what the terms of the arrangement are.
Contract – Agreement, Call it What You Like
So, you don’t have to call it a cleaning contract. You can call it a letter of agreement. With my clients, it’s always been an agreement. “Hey, if you’ll just authorize this agreement, we’ll go ahead and get started.”
And then you list your rules and regulations in the agreement.
Your contract is what happens when somebody’s sick. “If I’m sick, here’s what happens. If you’re sick, here’s what happens. If you don’t pay me on time, here’s what happens. They are your rules and your regulations. Oh, by the way, I take three vacations a year, these are the days I’m going to be gone. Just want to let you know upfront.” That’s all in the letter of agreement. If you go on vacation, here’s what happens.
And so, it’s all specified in this quick little thing that you just breeze through it, and then you leave it with the customer when they sign it. They sign it, they have a copy, you have a copy.
Keep a Copy of Your Contract On File
It goes inside their customer file, and now there are no wonderings when they’re supposed to pay you. Or, when you allow them to leave you to-do lists. Or, when they get to cancel your service.
You spell all that out in your letter of agreement. So, should you have a cleaning contract? I’d say yes, because it’s going to make your job a whole lot easier down the road when there may be confusions.
Now, it’s true in the house cleaning business that you’re going to have a lot of accounts as your business expands. And as you start hiring employees, you will build a cleaning empire.
Save Yourself a Hassle Later On – Sign a Contract Now
If you don’t have a customer contract on file, you’re just asking for a boatload of headaches. Because you will be dealing forever with customer issues that you should resolve on your initial walkthrough.
I don’t say this to be mean, I say this from a place of love, but it’s like when you get married. Right up front in that honeymoon phase of your business, the customer loves you. They can’t say enough nice things about you – that’s when you want to sign those contracts.
You do not want to sign those contracts in small claims court when you’re trying to figure out how come you never got paid. And the customer says, “I didn’t know I was supposed to pay.”
Or, “I didn’t know how much I to pay.” Or, “I didn’t know that that wasn’t included.”
Sign The Contract When Everybody is Happy
So, you don’t want to wait until that honeymoon phase is over. When you go in and the customer is like, “Oh yes, this sounds like an excellent deal. I would love to hire you.”
“Great, let’s sign this letter of agreement so that we’re both playing off the same page and there are no surprises later on.”
I always tell people, I don’t like surprises and people are like, “I know, me either.”
Great, we’re going to get along just fine. So, should you have a cleaning contract? Yes, I highly recommend it – it’s a good business decision for the long haul.
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Resources For This Episode
Legal Guide for Starting & Running a Small Business – https://amzn.to/2GgjWwL
Women’s Small Business Start-Up Kit, The: A Step-by-Step Legal Guide – https://amzn.to/2GwiNAv
Small Business Start-Up Kit, The: A Step-by-Step Legal – https://amzn.to/2GC6X7D
Legal Forms for Starting & Running a Small Business – https://amzn.to/2pP3et0
Don’t Panic: A Legal Guide (in plain English) for Small Businesses & Creative Professionals – https://amzn.to/2GC7ExL
Tax Savvy for Small Business: A Complete Tax Strategy Guide – https://amzn.to/2GjyoUE
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