One of the most challenging decisions to arrive at if you’re just starting your house cleaning business is how much to charge for your cleaning services.
Should you charge less than your competitors, copy other big names, or be realistic and charge for the actual cleaning job you do? What if you overcharge and scare away potential clients?
How do you know you’re not undervaluing your housekeeping services? Should you charge less to attract more clients?
So many questions!
Fortunately, there are simple answers to all barrages of questions, as you’ll soon find out.
How to Charge for House Cleaning Services in Four Simple Steps
You don’t want to lose money or clean houses for free – that will defeat the goal of setting up a business, to begin with. Your best bet is to find a balance between charging too high and working for free.
Here’s how to do that.
Step 1: Estimate the Average Time Spent on Cleaning
First of all, establish the average time it takes for you to clean different types of rooms. Use your house or ask friends and family if you can offer free house cleaning to determine the average time it takes you to clean each room.
Remember to set your timer as you work on each room, including living areas, bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen, stairs, lobby, and other spaces.
You may need to practice this more than once to get a consistent time average. Once you establish that time, you can choose a pricing model.
Step 2: Choose a Pricing Model
Your pricing model is essentially the method you adopt to charge for house cleaning services. They include:
Hourly Rate: This model charges per hour. If you’re just starting your cleaning business, this is the ideal model for you. However, do no focus on time only. Instead, give your attention to doing an excellent job. When your clients are satisfied, your good reputation will precede you. That’s how to retain clients.
Flat Rate: This involves charging clients per room at a flat rate. Remember to factor in areas that could take you longer to clean. This model is a bit more advance and might be a bit tricky if you are unfamiliar with the house.
Many clients prefer this cleaning rate model because it gives them a clear picture of how much they need to pay upfront for the exact job they want to be completed.
However, if you choose to adopt this model, make sure you ask the right questions (for example, the state of the property) before fixing a rate.
Square Footage: This option allows you to charge based on a square foot rate. Generally, this model charges lower per square foot for larger buildings. The best way to use this model is to factor in possible longer cleaning times that can arise due to hard-to-clean areas or surfaces. That way, the cleaning cost is already included, even if it takes you longer to clean a room.
Step 3: Set Your Price for Profit
It’s now time to put a monetary value on your house cleaning services.
This is where many cleaning companies make the biggest mistake by looking at what others charge and then copying that or charging less.
Don’t make that mistake.
Agreed, you should know what the market average is, but only as a guide. You need to price your cleaning services in a way that ensures profit, no matter what.
To do that successfully, you need to figure out the cost of your cleaning supplies, the cost of transportation, how much you pay your employees (even if you don’t have any), and any other overhead costs.
Here’s why you need to factor in employees whether or not you have them. First off, you are an employee. And secondly, you don’t have to start changing your rates when your cleaning company expands.
Next, find a strike a balance between your market (how much clients are willing to pay) and your value (the quality of service you offer).
For example, if you sell high-quality elite services to low-income homes, you’ll hardly have any clients left. Therefore, tailor your cleaning business services and set your profit according to how much your clients are willing to pay.
Step 4: Test Your Price (and adjust it if necessary)
Lastly, before you implement your new price, it is an excellent idea to test it first.
Here’s how to do that.
Test the price increase on about 3% to 5% of your worst-performing clients. Don’t worry about losing them. You probably don’t make any profit on them anyway, so the worse that can happen is that you will lose a few non-profitable customers.
Whatever happens, you would have gathered valuable insights and learned how to deal with possible objections before implementing your new fees on your profitable clients.
Imagine for a minute that you want to hire a regular cleaning agency. Before you even request a quote, you’ll want to know whether they know what they are doing and if they have some form of qualification and endorsement.
Here’s the thing: regardless of how well you price your house cleaning service, if you’re not certified, potential clients would think you are not qualified to enter their home! And come to think of it, they’re not totally wrong.
While it is important to learn how to charge for house cleaning, your first order of business is getting certified.
Our certification process is not complicated at all. All you need to do is attend and pass our online courses designed to meet the WHO, CDC, FDA, and OSHA guidelines.
A certificate will be issued at the end of your course to show prospective clients that you have a full understanding of PPE and have undergone proper disinfection training. And to give you an edge over your competition, you get to proudly display your one-of-a-kind badge and even post it on your website.
Learning how to charge for house cleaning is not difficult. All you need to do is to follow these four steps.
Keep in mind that time is money. Determine how long it takes to clean a space and use that as the basis for charging for your home cleaning services.
Implement these suggestions, and your profits will have only but one direction to go – sky high!