Hiring the services of a home cleaning agency is fast becoming a trend among busy homeowners and professionals with hectic work schedules. As a matter of fact, home cleaning ranks high on the list of the most popular and fast-growing industries in the on-demand services sector. If anything, this indicates that home cleaning services are proving to be beneficial and are making people’s lives more convenient.
Simply type in the phrase “home cleaning services” on Google and you’ll find pages of links to cleaning agencies like https://www.stellarhome.com and tons of articles discussing the benefits of getting a home cleaner to do the cleaning job on your behalf. Some of the obvious benefits are a thoroughly-cleaned home and huge savings on your time for a relatively small outlay of money.
Undoubtedly, these cleaning agencies are doing us a great service and are making the lives of busy people more comfortable by giving them more time to pursue leisure time activities. If you’ve not used a cleaning agency before, here are a few tips to help make the engagement more productive.
Agency or Direct Hire?
Cleaning agencies generally don’t employ the home cleaners themselves. They act as middle-men between you and the persons doing the cleaning. So why have a middle-man when you could be employing cleaners directly?
The answer is very simple. The agencies have already checked out the people who will clean your home and have used them on other jobs. If they have received complaints about the quality of those cleaners’ work, they will not continue to represent them. So dealing with an agency means you will have cleaners with experience, and not someone who you may be taking chances with.
House Size Matters
When seeking a quote for cleaning services, make sure you are upfront about how many rooms you want to be cleaned and the size of those rooms. This makes a big difference in the quote because obviously, a four-bedroom house costs a lot more to clean than a one bedroom apartment.
All good agencies will have a checklist to prepare to enable the quote to be accurately calculated. In that checklist you will have to specify things like whether you want windows cleaned, outdoor areas included and any special services like curtain cleaning or pest control
To Stay or Not to Stay
There is no hard and fast rule as to whether the homeowner should stay around while the house is being cleaned or just leave and let the professionals do their thing. Agencies all say that it is entirely up to the client whether to stay or not. And agencies usually provide insurance cover to protect the integrity of their cleaners and to ensure that nothing is stolen.
However, when a new agency is engaged, it definitely would work in your favor to walk the cleaners through the house when it is their first time cleaning your home, or if there is a change of personnel halfway through a contract.
Pick up the Pieces
Professional home cleaners don’t mind picking up a few scattered socks, toys, and other items, but if there are too many things to pick up, it may delay the start of their work and result in additional costs. Pick up loose items before the cleaners arrive. That way the cleaning crew can proceed to do their main tasks without delay.
That doesn’t mean, however, that homeowners should do any of the house cleaning chores themselves. When homeowners take it upon themselves to do that, professional home cleaners have a hard time figuring out which part of the house is really clean or not. Homeowners should just stick to picking up items of clutter.
Written To-do List
Verbal instructions for the cleaning crew are fine. It helps them create a better plan of action on how to go about cleaning your home. But if you want to really make sure that no part of the house is overlooked, then an orderly written list of tasks should be prepared. Ideally, the list should start with those areas that you want the cleaners to prioritize and really focus their energies on, so that if ever that work takes longer than usual, the less important tasks can be held over until the next time.
Some homeowners prefer a particular brand of cleaning products to be used in cleaning their homes. If this is the case, your preferred cleaning brand should be made known to the cleaning agency to avoid misunderstandings later. If the agency doesn’t carry your brand and you happen to have the cleaning product on hand, inform them that you will provide the cleaning products yourself.
If there are tasks that you need to get done which happen to be not part of what has been previously agreed upon, such as cleaning the car or rubbish removal, you will need to pay the cleaning crew some extra cash. However, many home cleaning companies do not allow their crew to carry out additional tasks other than what has been originally requested because that may delay the crew getting to their next appointment.
Rules on Tipping
There are home cleaning agencies that already have included a gratuity in the total cost of the cleaning service and others that don’t expect you to pay a gratuity on top of the cleaning fee. In both cases, clients no longer have to worry about giving a tip. However, some cleaning agencies do not factor a gratuity into the service cost. If you feel that the cleaners have done an exceptional job and an additional tip is justified, then an amount of 10% to 15% of the total service cost should suffice.
Say Thank You
If you are satisfied with the service, then aside from considering a tip, show the cleaning crew some appreciation by saying thank you, or leaving them a note if you are not there. Besides getting paid for their services, cleaners also deserve a compliment from clients if they’ve done a good job. Home cleaners perform better and walk the extra mile the next time you hire them when they’ve received a deserved pat on the back.
Author: Carolette Alcoran