Cost of Care: How Much Should I Charge for Housekeeping Services?

Tips on determining reasonable houskeeping fees.

woman cleaning counter

The cost of housekeeping services can be based on a variety of factors and varies from one area to another.

It is usually necessary to have an in-home consultation with your prospective employer, so you can get a better understanding of the home, the cleaning requirements, and exactly what you're expected to do, in order to determine the correct price.

Assess the Job

Here are some factors you should look and and consider when deciding how much to charge for housekeeping.

  • Size of the home (number of bedrooms/bathrooms)
  • Frequency of cleaning (weekly, bimonthly)
  • Number of people and pets in the household
  • Level of clutter (can you access the areas to be cleaned?)
  • Number of different surfaces to be cleaned
  • Special requirements, such as cleaning windows
  • Your level of experience
  • Number of people cleaning (an individual or team from an agency)
  • Whether you will be paid by the job or by the hour

Look at Estimates

You don't want to low ball your fees and lose money, but you also don't want to charge fees that are too high and drive off potential customers. Look at other housekeepers and housecleaning services in your area on Care.com. What do they charge? Ask people you know who have hired a cleaning service about how much they paid. Here are some rough estimates to help you settle on a number.

  • In larger metropolitan areas, for a medium-sized apartment or house, an individual housekeeper can charge about $100 per cleaning.
  • In larger metropolitan areas, for a medium-sized apartment or house, a large national cleaning chain companies might charge about $175 per cleaning.
  • In less populated cities or towns, for an average-sized house (2500 square feet), in individual housekeeper might charge approximately $75 per cleaning.

Once you settle on a possible range, be prepared to negotiate with prospective employers in order to arrive at a fair price that reflects your skills and experience and what the job entails.

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Comments (166)
Maghi N.
HI I cleaned 4bedroom 1 living area,4 bathroom,all windowsi cleaned all wooden works I cleaned,i did the vaccum,kitchen,dining room. mop idid but I don't how many hours it will take?please provide how many hours it will take for as a professional.that will help verymuch.
Posted: April 06, 2014 at 6:45 PM
Photo of Merhawit H.
Merhawit H.
I need your help my employer pays me 15 per houre when I start working with them and the house has 3 bathroom 2 bedrooms but we moved out and they got 6 bathroom 4 bedrooms with lots of large rooms and they did not change my payments is this fair please I need your comment know
Posted: April 01, 2014 at 8:22 AM
Photo of Robin S.
Robin S.
How do I determin the price for office cleaning, usually a company or chain does offices so I don't know how to find out what the going rates are
Posted: March 28, 2014 at 4:08 PM
Patty G
Im thinking about cleaning a few houses on the side for some extra cash, no serious business or anything. A few neighborhood people want their houses cleaned but I have no idea what to charge. I want to be competitive with the cleaning businesses but I do not know where to start?? Any advise?
Posted: March 25, 2014 at 4:28 PM
DMichelle
My living room has really gotten out of hand, and my dad works all the time and thinking about cleaning it just stresses him out. I could clean it, but honestly it just stresses me out even more I'm dealing with insomnia and being sick all the time. its just a small living room of the trailer, it's about 11.5 by 10.5 or 11 feet.
I'm not sure what I could charge, or what the rate right me. Since, its relatively small but very very dirty. I'm kind of scared to try to find somebody to clean it because I don't want them to judge me.. is that weird ? And how much might it cost ?
Posted: March 13, 2014 at 12:19 PM
Ashley
I work for a cleaning company and they always charge $280-$400 to do a first time cleaning and after that they charge anywhere from $75 -$200 depending on the size and condition of the house!
Posted: March 01, 2014 at 11:18 AM
Ashlee
I'm gonna be cleaning a brand new 4 bedroom 2 bath nobody lives there but it needs to be cleaned to to bottom when its totally done being built how much should I charge?
Posted: February 17, 2014 at 8:35 PM
Ada Z.
i charge 15 per hour but it is depend how many bathroom and how many bedroom are into the house. If is a big home we charge depend how big it is.
Posted: January 15, 2014 at 2:35 PM
Robyn F.
I charge $15 per hr. I live in south Eastern MA. I tell my clients that a first clean will take approximately and name the number of hrs. I also hand them a paper of exactly what I do in each room. Ex. Family room- Dust all furniture, lamps, pictures, artwork and blinds. Polish all wooden furniture, and vacuum. I list extra services separately. Ex. Window washing, blind washing, base board washing. These would be the things that would take more time, therefore more hrs.
Posted: January 08, 2014 at 11:57 AM
Photo of Brittany A.
Brittany A.
I need some advice! I have an interview and dont know what to charge!
Its going to be one day per week, deep cleaning and laundry (cleaning and ironing, ect.)
Any ideas?
Per hour or per day?
Posted: October 07, 2013 at 7:35 PM
Litzy
I would like to clean after small dinner parties. How much should I charge? Should this include the oven and fridge too?
Posted: September 29, 2013 at 7:01 PM
Brenda
I have been working as a housekeeper for a long time. My mom had to work and she had to take me with her. I wanted to clean so I could help her and we have learned a lot about this job. We still go clean weekly and we would never charge by the hour! We had a house were we got paid $80 every Tuesdays and Fridays. It really depends on the house and the things it has! it could be a small house with many tiny decorations or it could be a big house with almost nothing. If you do a good job, you may get a higher pay.
Posted: September 14, 2013 at 11:23 AM
dwyatt
I have lived in a house where I do all the cooking and cleaning yard care front and back. Walk bathe and pick up dog feces . Do his laundry iron his pants get his coffee rready so he only has to push a button when he gets up. Now he wants me to pay him 500 a month for rent and says I owe him 2000 for the past 4 months for rent and all the stuff I've done around the house was to pay for the interest on what I owe him. I'm I wrong but I don't think this is right at all and he is taking advantage. Plus I buy all the food with my food stamps
Posted: August 31, 2013 at 12:45 PM
Imane B.
Hello I work full time in a 6 bedroom house I clean 3 bedroom every day, and 3 bedroom once a week, a large kitchen, 2 fridge, i do the vacuim every day and clean the floor, I also cleans 4 toilet and shower every day too. I make Landery each day for 4 people. I clean the pool twice a week and the garage once a week, the windows, the furniture .on Friday evening a large dinner dishes . I prepare to eat almost every day. I started at 7:30 and I can rest a 2 hours and I resumed working from 3:30 to 9 pm or 10 pm . knowing there is a dificult boy of 13 years makes me the most dificult job, and even an old dog pee on the floor and four cats pee and do kaka in all the house and on fournitur every day and I must clean all . if you please tell me how I should be paying per week knowing that I live with them in the same house. thank you for your attention.
Posted: August 29, 2013 at 10:20 AM
lwrevhn
I had a friend hire me to (secretly) clean her home, mostly to wash,dry and put away A TON of laundry! The most I have ever seen. And she had no organization at all. The laundry along took almost two days (I had the time in between when her husband was at work to get the chores done and had to leave before he got home so he would not know) and tried to reorganize and clean, ven bathrooms, vacuuming, dishes. She paid $80 ...... YET even though I felt screwed on the deal,she was a friend. She approach was "disappointed" that I did not do more!

Crazy. Its best to not work with family and friends.
Posted: August 21, 2013 at 5:00 PM
Mary
I don't know how much to charge for a house that I cleaned. A friend of mine had a baby and wasn't home for a few days and left their three dogs in the house and you could guess how bad the house was when they got home. poo, pee, and trash everywhere.
Posted: August 14, 2013 at 5:36 PM
lynn
How much should I pay for cleaning fans and windows
Posted: July 08, 2013 at 8:52 PM
annamarie
I am used to doing houses average rates 75.00 minimum go about 120.00 per house. ive been.asked to clean a health club about 8,000 square ft 2 bathrooms, concrete floors have to be blown with.a.blower to get between equipment and mop about 3 times a week about 9 hours work what.shall I charge? commer..cial is different not sure
Posted: June 21, 2013 at 9:14 PM
kamita
In NJ for small offices without deep cleaning $400 per month, of course if the building are too big, the price should be discussed first. Deep cleaning once a month so $100 must be add it. Cleaning is the most extenuate job, is very hard work. If only cleaning a kitchen it takes time, just think about restrooms, bedrooms, etc.
Posted: June 07, 2013 at 8:36 AM
Photo of Marilee G.
Marilee G.
I basically charge $20.00 per hour, to clean on a regular basis. Sometimes, to keep a regular client, I will go a little low so as to keep them. I also make sure to do a really good job and sometimes stay a little longer for the flat rate (after charging by the hour on a deep-clean)...In other words, I go a little higher on the deep-clean, then go to a flat rate to keep job. This seems to work for me.
Posted: May 31, 2013 at 8:26 AM
Photo of Tiffany T.
Tiffany T.
This was great information, thank you all for the advice and many tips ;-)
Posted: May 04, 2013 at 6:45 PM
Tori
I have offered to help clean a house. For a fee of course. But not sure how much to charge. Haven't been to the house yet. But she needs 3 full baths and a half bath cleaned, sweep, dust, mop, and vacuum. Then there's the distance. It'll take me at least 35-45 minutes to get to her house. A ball park range on a fee would be helpful. Please help.
Posted: April 20, 2013 at 4:38 PM
Cathy
I forgot to mention that typically I supply all the products for cleaning. I don't mind, but also don't mind if you have something good you prefer to use. Sometimes, among the stress of being ill, it's helpful to have someone bring their own supplies, as long as they are good. I think if there was a way we could look up people to see they are who they are, we would be more apt to answer ads in the paper. Sad, as it seems that is where most good people are.
Posted: March 30, 2013 at 10:14 PM
Cathy
This is all very interesting. I wish I could hire some of you, as you sound very professional. It gets tiring to pay good money and get little in return. As homeowners, we get ripped off too. I wish the good ones would give me a price, as it would make it easier. Since our home isn't hard to do, (and many say "it's not really dirty"), I pay $15 first 2 hours, and $10 after. But still don't get good service most of the time. If I pay for 3 hours, it is upsetting to see them leave after 2 hours, and there is still simple things they could do. We have downsized to a 2/2 condo, and are tidy people. We just want a clean house by an honest person. For those of you who are honest and forthright, your colleages have made it hard for you by not doing a decent job. I would much rather hire a person than go with a company, as I can give her all the money, instead of a company keeping some. We give bonuses, and "gifts", and sometimes it would be nice to have a little extra given back. We aren't rich, but sometimes we have more than others. We are aware, and try to keep in mind each person's situation and what they might need. (allergies can cause headaches, so a little nap by the maid might be needed, along with lunch, if she can fix a quick one if I'm unable.) I hate to be treated "above" someone, because I'm not. And I hate to be taken advantage of because I have more, because that might not always necessarily be true. There are many doctor visits, stress, etc... and while I feel it's only right to consider this with someone helping me, it would be nice to have consideration, also. I like knowing what someone is willing to do, what is included in the fee, and when more is expected. If I can't afford everything, then I'll tailor their fees to my needs and not expect more. Honesty and communication are very important. If 2 hours is all that's needed, then that's fine. If a place is needed to veg out and eat lunch, I happily offer my patio to R & R. Just don't charge me and pretend to work. I also don't mind personal phone calls that take up a minute to handle and hang up. Everyone has children, problems, and we should expect to give good treatment to those who are doing a good job for us. I've never answered anyone from the paper, I'm afraid they aren't honest. How can we be sure? Very informative, and you wonderful ladies deal with more than we can imagine!
Posted: March 30, 2013 at 10:10 PM
jenn
I'm Jennifer, i started my cleaning service gave out lots of business and postcards out with a discount for the first cleaning. I charge $35 to $45 dollars the hr depends how big the apt. Is... i seem not to be getting calls a lot im very sadden by this i've done everything possible and i dont want to give up. Can you please give me any suggestions?? I know when cleaning services charge by square feet.
Posted: February 22, 2013 at 5:16 PM
hanamisan
Hello!just wanna ask some question my employer provide all cleaning supplies.they have 5dogs,7cats,3bedrooms,2bathrooms,kitchen,livingroom,dining room,i do the laundry,folding clothes,changing bed sheet everytime i clean and wash them sometimes i do some extra cleaning like fridge,oven, windows,deep carpet cleaning and baby sets there dogs with no extra charge.i clean once a week. the house is more than and she only giving me $50-60 per cleaning,i just wanna know if im being under paid?
Posted: February 20, 2013 at 5:27 PM
Lynda B.
My friend and I just started a cleaning service and one of our clients was paying us 13.50 hr for 2 to 3 days a week. on top of that we pick up her 2 children from school and watch them for about 30 to 45 minutes and they also have a office that we go clean. Help! How would you charge?
Posted: December 17, 2012 at 1:04 PM
Wendy
I live in Hawaii & gas along with everthing else ain't cheap! I would probably charge approx $75 for the first 1000sf & $50 for each 1000sf thereafter, it also depend on the severity of cleaning that needs to be done, in that case my price would go up!!
Posted: December 14, 2012 at 2:25 PM
Member Care C.
Hi Valerie,
I'd love to help you out. Getting noticed on the site can sometimes be hard with so many people applying for the same positions. Take a look at this article to see if there is anything you can do to make your profile more accessible to Seekers on the site. Thanks!
http://www.care.com/housekeeping-7-tips-for-finding-a-housekeeping-job-on-carecom-p1017-q21105030.html
Posted: December 06, 2012 at 5:09 PM
Photo of Valerie K.
Valerie K.
I would like to have tips to being noticed by families for house cleaning,how do i respond to postings so they will choose me.
Posted: December 05, 2012 at 1:47 PM
miss.dee
I have cleaned for years and taught by an older woman, Strip, move, clean put it all back...ect.. she passed away.. what should I charge for my new customers,, In Ohio..Thanks
Posted: December 02, 2012 at 2:37 PM
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Marlow H.
The information was very helpful, thank you so much.
Posted: November 18, 2012 at 6:40 PM
Photo of Nancy H.
Nancy H.
Great thread. Helpful tips here. I've also addressed some of the issues here (what to expect and look for in a housekeeping service, rates, etc.) in an article posted on my blog.

I've started a cleaning service last spring to supplement the income of my other line of business. I haven't had any steady or regular cleaning clients yet. I got here on Care.com in hopes of getting more clients (as it has significantly more housekeeping and petsitting gigs than other care providing sites) and to save on advertising cost and time, but I haven't gotten any bites just yet. I've noticed that many care provider seekers on this site pay as low as $10/hour (or even $5/hour at the lowest!!!) per hour for cleaning and the average is $15/hour and they want you to bring your own stuff. UGH. I REFUSE to do any job for under $20/hour! (As we already know full well, cleaning IS A LOT of WORK requiring skills and MANY people have no idea. Believe it or not, there are many out there who don't even know how to clean, even basic cleaning stuff!) So I wonder how to approach clients/care provider seekers when they're doing the lowballing thing. Has anyone here dealt successfully with that situation?

I currently charge $20/hour. (I'm in the Inland Empire region of SoCal, BTW.) I provide my own cleaning products (I only use quality non-toxic/eco-friendly ones) and I have clients provide their own cleaning equipments, mainly to cut down on costs, transport time, and lessen the "ick" factor on the clients' part as they're more used to the cleaning equipments they've been using in their own home (as opposed to using equipments that have been used in other places to clean their home).

I'm also wondering if I should stick with $20/hour, adding extra $10/hour for deep cleaning and cleaning extra things like windows, knick-knacks, and appliances. I wonder if I should opt for a flat-rate type of thing instead ($75 for a minimum of 3 hours, as someone has mentioned here), not charging by the hour and charging by room size or cleaning time intervals - irregular/one-off/random, monthly, biweekly, and weekly, as another poster has mentioned. I've been doing something similar to that in my other line of business (which has too many service providers charging hourly, and that's why they usually get the short end of the stick). I charge flat rates by frequency of the sessions per month (weekly, biweekly, etc., by increments of 30, 45, and 60 minutes), not by the hour.

Thoughts, anyone?
Posted: November 06, 2012 at 4:05 AM
Photo of Wendy V.
Wendy V.
These are all great tips.
Posted: November 05, 2012 at 12:02 PM
Kel
If someone is looking for laundry and light house cleaning every week on a 16oo sq. ft. home...What would be a resonable charge for this? I was thinking $8 a load and $30 for the light cleaning once a week. She is also thinking of having me deep clean the home once a month...so I was thinking $75. Do what do you think about my pricing?
Posted: November 04, 2012 at 9:59 PM
Gin
Hey I am thinking of starting up a cleaning buisness, I live in a really small town and am unsure of what to charge, b/c the area is fairly poor. I was thinking 15$ per room, and going from there would that be reasonable? Then charging more for things like cleaning the fridge or oven. I would be using my own cleaning supplies.
Posted: October 23, 2012 at 7:18 PM
ANNA
I was wondering though, how much should you charge someone who does provide all the cleaning supplies you need? its a 4 BR, 3 BATHROOM,office, kitchen, living room, and dining room. Im a beginner.
Posted: October 15, 2012 at 5:45 PM
Taucia J.
Here is how I charge to clean a home: $20 per hour and it is by the hour

FOR EXAMPLE: The first time basic clean LARGE HOME (this was a real house):
10 hour job = $200
Deep Cleaning is usually DOUBLE the time

1 kitchen
4 bedrooms
4 bathrooms
1 dining room
1 office
1 games room
1 entry way (yes this counts as a room)
1 laundry room
1 front room

From then on that is what I charge to clean that home. Even if it takes me less time (as you keep cleaning a home it gets easier because you get into a routine), I still charge the same. That said on occasion it will take you longer to do the same job. That's okay to me, because most of the time it took less time and I feel it is fair.

RANDOM, MONTHLY, BI-WEEKLY & WEEKLY RATES

RANDOM
Typically a random cleaning is a home that I have cleaned before but they have not set a scheduled cleaning. You never really know what you are going to get. You can do charge one of two ways. Charge strictly by the hour or decide upon a flat fee. For example, $100 to clean for 3-4 hours. The rate is more because it's random and they are usually in a pinch and really some cleaning. Always do your best, they are paying you well.

MONTHLY
If a person signs up for a monthly cleaning the fee is as stated above, $200.
By the hour the first time and then the rate stays the same.

BI-WEEKLY
If they sign up for a BI-WEEKLY cleaning I give a 10% discount off of what the original cleaning was. For instance if the original cleaning was 10 hours at $20 per hour = $200 then take off $20 and their rate per cleaning would be $180.

WEEKLY
Weekly cleanings are given a 20% discount, their rate per cleaning would be $160. The more often you clean the home the easier it becomes.

I hope this was helpful.
Posted: October 06, 2012 at 5:07 AM
Taucia J.
I have been a cleaning business. I live in a very rural community. The general labor rate for most jobs is about $10-$12 per hour. When I started cleaning houses I charged $15 per hour and I thought that was fair. I rapidly learned that our TEMP agency has a "House Cleaning" division and they are charging $15 per hour. It was then that I decided I deserve to be paid more per hour than someone who is randomly being called from a TEMP agency. I am running a business, I am personally caring about my clients home and all the burden is on me. I now charge at least $20 per hour. I do take into consideration how many people live in the home (1-10 kids), pets, windows, etc.

Some of my clients were not happy to have their rate increased but they also know the value of the service I provide. Sure, they could have hired a new cleaner but they would also have to train them again and hope they get the same great service.

If I can charge $20 per hour in a rural city, so can you. To get started in a more affluent neighborhood, make a flyer and put it on their door. You'd be surprised how many people are looking for a good cleaning person. Make sure the first time you meet a client you look PROFESSIONAL. Look your best, don't show up in your cleaning clothes. Remember, this will probably be one of the only times they will see you at your most beautiful, because the rest of the time they will see you cleaning their toilet.
Posted: October 06, 2012 at 4:33 AM
Photo of Alicia B.
Alicia B.
Kathia, I would charge by the hour of $35 that is very reasonable for cleaning and organizing.
Posted: October 03, 2012 at 8:59 PM
Photo of Alicia B.
Alicia B.
Hi, I have been doing housekeeping for over 20 years now and when I started out I was getting 15 an hour, through the years I have given myself raises because I have incorparated organizing, food prep, laundry, ironing, errands and etc. I know charge 35$ an hour. My husband and I also have a cleaning business and we charge by square footage and if they need the frig and oven done, than that's an extra 25$. We usually charge for an apartment under 1000 square foot around $85. Housekeeping services for 1 or a few morns a week I stick to my hourly rate of 35 especially if its more than 15 miles away. Hope this helps
Posted: October 03, 2012 at 8:56 PM
Amanda J.
What would be considered regular cleaning,periodical cleaning and deep cleaning?
Posted: September 27, 2012 at 9:16 PM
Photo of Mytai H.
Mytai H.
In Douglasville, GA please let me know how much I should charge for just doing LAUNDRY... and nothing else... wash it dry it fold it? 40 min from ATL, GA...
Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:27 AM
Photo of Pam A.
Pam A.
@italiansurfergirl: I would do a walk through of the 2 apts. Then charge an intial deep clean of $250 per apt. to get them to a level of clean that YOU want them to be. Do not quote a maintenance price until you have finished the Initial. This way, you know how involved the cleaning will be every week, biweekly. If they want to negotiate you can knock off $15 but no lower or you will lose. Remember, cleaning is a tough and dirty job and you are charging for the work AND your time. If it were that easy everyone would be cleaning their own houses! Good Luck and be patient, business will come!
Posted: September 15, 2012 at 5:06 AM
Photo of Kathia F.
Kathia F.
I just have a question; is $160.00 per job-split in 2 days, fair or a 4 bed, 2.5 baths ( one of them with a hot tub and shower) kitchen, living room and dining room? The house is big and not only I have to clean but organize as well. Its very time consuming and no way possible to do all in 1 day. I would like your input, because I don't know if I'm being under paid.

Thank you.
Posted: September 14, 2012 at 6:59 PM
italiansurfergirl
How much should I charge for cleaning 2 studio's. It will be cleaning the bathroom's and floors, kitchen floors, stove's and refrigerators. Supposively they are both very dirty. Would charging $25.00 an hour plus cleaning supplies be too much? I'm in San Diego.
Posted: September 11, 2012 at 12:18 AM
Photo of Kristy H.
Kristy H.
Very helpful, thank you!!!
Posted: September 01, 2012 at 11:01 AM
Honeida
Hello i have a ladie that only wants to pay me 85 eeekly she has 3 dogs 3 adults 1 child.. 4 bedrooms 3 bbathrooms and she wants me to change the sheets clean the fridge the windows the patio and front porch and fols clothes and clean the stove and microwave her house is so messy do you think shes paying me enough i live in OK
Posted: August 27, 2012 at 4:05 PM
Photo of Kathia F.
Kathia F.
Helpful tips. I'm always a mess when it comes to rates. I just want to be fair to both parties. Thank you!
Posted: August 02, 2012 at 12:30 AM
Photo of Suzanne R.
Suzanne R.
I live in New Jersey and The cost for a small apartment 2bd is 100.00 a cleaning and 3bd 2bath home is roughly 125-150 a home. for larger home's the cost is 175.00. It is best to charge a flat rate rather than by the hour.Try to state this on Your profile.Be professional and proud of your work. you are not only representing yourself but, also care.com which is where you will get your future jobs and surveys on the quality of your work.
Posted: July 08, 2012 at 10:52 AM
Reese
hello ladies! These comments have been helpful. I just started my own cleaning business after working for this lady for about two months and I must say I enjoy it. Lately i just been putting out flyers and been doing this for about 2weeks now and only got 1 phone call. I must of put out like 800 flyers. How do I better market my business??? I also want todo move in/move outs and apartments so how do I go by doing that as well???

Also, i did a walk thru today with my FIRST client and when I told her i will charge her 140.00 to clean her house (which included 3 full baths, master bedroom, a huge foyer, 2 powder rooms, 4 bedrooms, kitchen, 1/2 kitchen, breakfast area, dining room, living room and sunroom) she looked @ me like i was crazy and said she will have to get back with me and havent called yet. Was that too much??? I felt like that was a good price. Honestly i should of been charging her more.
Posted: July 06, 2012 at 1:54 AM
Photo of Lisa M.
Lisa M.
this has all been very helpful! what websites if any can i get some contract forms, checklist forms etc? the sites i have found want to charge a fee. is there a free website i can go to? thanks
Posted: July 05, 2012 at 12:27 AM
Photo of Pam A.
Pam A.
House cleaning is a very hard and dirty job. You need to be paid what you are worth. People who want their house cleaned will pay. Don't let them ride you, especially the wealthy people who can afford it but cry that they can't while driving their designer cars and living in mansions. 4000sq ft. home charge no less than $350 per cleaning. If they balk, walk away. There will be someone willing to pay. Don't slave yourself out.
Posted: June 29, 2012 at 11:24 PM
Chris
I charge a flat rate per house. When someone is interested and approaches me about cleaning, I schedule a "walk through" first. This is just so I can see the home and take notes on what is needed in the home. I leave the house with my notes and get back with the customer within 24hrs for pricing. All of my homes are charged $100 and above. This covers a multitude of things such as cleaners, gas, and any extras that they may request monthly. I have small homes and bigger homes. I average anywhere from $27/hr to $36/hr depending on the house and the needs. I leave my customers with a checklist of all that was done in the house that day and sign it on my way out the door. This way, I am held accountable AND they can see that the job is complete and they are getting their $ worth.
Posted: June 29, 2012 at 1:01 AM
Photo of Yajaira R.
Yajaira R.
thank you
muy buena repuesta.
Posted: June 28, 2012 at 9:21 PM
Maid My Day
thanks for all the info!
Posted: June 28, 2012 at 4:24 PM
Photo of Alma D.
Alma D.
thank you everybody for the info its very helpful i clean empty houses for ,open house,after construction jobs,and for inspections.
Posted: June 28, 2012 at 3:53 AM
Shel R.
Wow angeles that's pretty obvious to go ahead and you have a swiffer you can do it all at 1 time also ice cubes and a cleaning agent turn on the garbage disposal at clean disinfect and wow sharpen the blades as wel you can purchase the product called method stainless steel cleaner..

Cleaning a carpet steam clean house towel underneath that spot in on the iron over the spot is steamed out
Posted: June 27, 2012 at 8:49 PM
Angela R.
Some wonderful advice and helpful hints..

16 years in business and I am guilty of the mistake of phone pricing.. NEVER EVER do this.

When you go to bid a house, ALWAYS (I mean ALWAYS) ALWAYS charge a first time cleaning fee of about $30-50 more if it is obvious the person has not had their home (professionally) cleaned in a while. Reason being is that sometimes people will (USE) you for a one time cleaning but they will tell you they want a weekly clean to get you in.

I flat rate charge. My average pay is between $25 and believe it or not, $60 per hour. I give a price and of course the first time I clean I am averaging less per hour, however after a routine is in place, a house that took me 5 hours the first time will take me 3 hours after about 4 cleanings. I charge the same.

Some hints for you all -- Alcohol for glass is awesome! Comet (spray) soap scum remover is the best! To clean a microwave, put a bowl of water in there for 2 minutes and let it sit while you clean other parts of kitchen - all crud will wipe right out of there. If you vacuum ALL floors they will look much better when you mop. I have a (toilet brush) that I use specifically for disposals. If you push it in and SLOWLY pull it up, it will pull the black rubber piece inside out ... give it a few twist and let the water rinse the nasty away.. I cannot stand a nasty disposal. I use alot of clorox cleanup. Baby oil or WD40 works beautifully on stainless steel. Always shine the sinks if they are SS. Always sweep the front patio and steps.

Hope this helps!
Posted: June 21, 2012 at 12:07 PM
Luna
Hey, everyone! I ended up updating my pricing somewhat after running into a few doosie homes. Nothing too badly where I got the shaft, but I am definitely getting some valuable learning experiences starting out. I have only been at this on my own for less than 2 months and find that I really like doing move-ins/outs and real estate centered jobs (more $$$ and somewhat less of a headache...for me, anyway). Am working with a real estate investment company who rehabs, sells and manages properties and another real estate broker who wants to give me as a 'present' to clients she sells homes to.

I totally get what Denise F. is saying about charging higher rates. But I think you also have to account for the region as well. Areas like NJ, NYC, Boston and L.A. are just higher dollar areas. I can't see anyone in my area in MI paying those rates. At least not the clients I am targeting right now since it's just me working the business right now.

I have set up a (free for now on webs.com) website, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts to network, promote and market (not much into Facebook right now despite the market share/exposure). Recently attended an interesting webinar via a LinkedIn contact on niche marketing areas and one through our local county small business organization on SBA-backed microloans ($5,000 to $50,000) which was pretty incredible in that they don't necessarily look at your credit to get that kind of loan approved (those of you in MI look up the CEED organization out of Ann Arbor). It was exciting to know you don't necessarily need to take out hundreds of thousands to grow your business with upgraded equipment, operating expenses or employees. You really need to have a solid business plan, but they also have the resources to direct you to, to make that happen.
Posted: June 20, 2012 at 6:57 PM
Luna
@Sara T. - I would feel screwed over paying for 3 quoted hours of work that it took someone 2 hours to do.
Posted: June 19, 2012 at 5:04 PM
Photo of Jeanne P.
Jeanne P.
I have been cleaning for years (my own business for 3). I recently had to hire someone so I changed my pricing. I was charging $30/hr (suburbia upstate NY),now due to paying someone a good $20/hr salary, I charge by the square footage and distance. If you want to make good money (and you should) this is hard work, go after the client that will pay your rate - do not let home owners dictate your rate - remember this is your business!
My advise to newbies is to be sure to assess the home in detail before quoting a price - DO NOT quote a price over the phone - sell yourself, your loyalty, honesty, etc before setting price. You can also set a rate on a temporary basis until the client sees your work and you can assess the home and time it takes - then charge accordingly charging sales tax if applicable.
I recently incorporated an ALA CARTE list such as windows(inside only, polishing silver, laundry, organizing pantries, etc... put a separate price on each.
Choose your clients carefully and good luck!
Posted: June 13, 2012 at 7:43 AM
Photo of Mercedes H.
Mercedes H.
so i may be cleaning a two bed apartment three times a week typical cleaning and more than likely extra like windows will be incorporated,im new to this what should i charge?
Posted: June 06, 2012 at 8:49 PM
Photo of Denise F.
Denise F.
Enjoyed reading theses posts. I charged $20 an hr in 1998. Everything else has gone up in price, why not cleaning services? And yes! I totally disagree with the rates posted. There are services out here in NJ that charge $250 for 4 hours JUST for the LIGHT cleaning!I charge by the hour because the clients house will NEVER be the same! One day it could be a "usual" cleaning & the next a nightmare! So why would I work longer & harder for the same price? Some clients have no problem ith my rate. Others look @ me like I have 3 heads. It depends on the individual. I did take on jobs over the years @ a lower rate just to get the job. I highly discourage it! This isn't a barter for goods @ a market place! When someone has a leak & calls a plumber, do you think they barter w them? I don't think so! We are professionals too! If you require a service, but can't afford it, then I guess you'll have to do without it. Don't sell yourself short! This is a hard line of work that is rough on the body, and not many people can do it.
Posted: June 04, 2012 at 9:27 AM
Photo of Suzanne R.
Suzanne R.
This information is helpful. Thank YOU
Posted: May 23, 2012 at 6:33 PM
Photo of Sara T.
Sara T.
Just curious but has anyone ever run into issues about telling a client that you charge an hourly rate (example $15 for 3 hours of cleaning) and if you finish early and leave they get upset? If I can cram everything on my pre-approved list into 2 hours worth why not? Just wondering.
Posted: May 19, 2012 at 2:35 PM
Luna
I also wanted to add that charging by the room works best for me since I like to do a detailed job and working under hourly constraints makes for a half-butted job. There's NO WAY I would go under $15 an hour if I worked faster. $20 an hour minimum (especially if you're traveling over 15 miles and providing the supplies) seems most ideal for someone working independently.

Quite frankly, I don't want to deal with customers that haggle, try to get over (like that insane OCD guy a previous poster was dealing with) or constantly complain (especially when you know you are doing good work). I think it's perfectly fine to nicely not accept a job or nicely 'fire' a customer before things get worse. There are plenty of other good fish in the sea and those type of fish bring word-of-mouth referrals.

I was thinking of setting up a before and after pics on a website for marketing purposes as well as a Twitter and Facebook account once I get more established.
Posted: May 09, 2012 at 3:16 PM
Photo of Lisa A.
Lisa A.
Very helpful! Just determind I am undercharging!
Posted: May 08, 2012 at 7:37 PM
Luna
I've done mainly commercial cleaning (which I do good work at) and just started to get into houses. Took a recent job that the lady I was working for said her last cleaning lasy took 5 hours to clean her house at $15 hour, cash. Being that I'm just getting my foot in the door, it seemed okay by me. Thought I'd share what I came across to make other first timers aware.

House was 2 levels, somewhat under 2000 sq. ft. 2BR, office, bath, kitch., LR upstairs 3 large glass door/patio walls. Downstairs was 2 bedrooms and a bath with a standing travertine tile shower. Not a HUGE house, but always keep in mind when someone says they haven't had someone come in in awhile, always charge extra for that 1st time cleaning as I came to find out. Came across a slanted skylight w/ cobwebs that I couldn't get to with my long hi/lo brush on one end even with a stepping stool. There was also a sunken jet whirlpool tub with 6 jets that had mold and mildew caked in there. Everytime I would move the jet more crud was exposed. It was a small bathroom and I was literally in there an HOUR. If I ever encounter something like that again, I will upcharge like a stove or fridge. Changing out linens is also time consuming, I came to find out. I will only include making the bed now, but changing linens extra on future jobs for sure. I also ran into a bathroom sink I thought was dirty and wasted much time and multiple cleaners trying to clean the area near the drain and come to find out it was stained with hairdye. More advice for those looking to get in the biz: be aware of the surface you're cleaning...do not use ammonia/Windex on granite and tread lightly with stainless steel surfaces. One house I cleaned, the housekeeper before me damaged one client's fridge w/ scratch marks.

@Rachel D. Thanks for the floor cleaning tip! Sounds like an economical way to go! Do you handwash or use a microfiber mop? That leads me to ask what is the best way/cleaner to get off BUILT UP soap scum on tub walls and glass that is most time efficient? Also, any ideas on efficiently tackling built up grease on a flat stovetop (the knobs were crazy too). What works THE BEST for polishing mirrors with NO streaks. I have tried microfiber cloths, coffee filters, good paper towels, glass spray cleaner w/ ammonia and vinegar. I really like the window washing fluid and that gets things about 85-90% to where I want the mirror to look like, but I am looking for close to perfection. In commercial cleaning the standards are not quite as high as when you clean homes. I know I've done a WAY better job than some of my comm. cleaning coworkers who have been in the business for YEARS, which gave me the confidence to break into houses. I will only do small to medium sized homes at this point (under 1800 sq. ft. preferably, but no more than 2000 sq. ft.)

I've been researching pricing and I bring most of the cleaning supplies unless a client has a special request to use something specific (tool or cleaner) in which case they supply. I think I have settled on $20 per room for 1st time/deep cleanings (what I should have charged that woman) and $25 a room for homes with a crazy dirt mess for and/or that has many people in the home and shedding animals until I build more clientele. I only work for cash right now, but plan on becoming legit with more experience. If they want bi-weekly service, I will take it down to 60% of what the deep cleaning was (w/ out any upcharge extras like fridges, stoves, etc.) and round to the closest $5. This is just to keep it simple for me for now. I also don't go further than 10-15 miles from my homebase. I live in a condensed middle to upper suburban area, so that's a plus for me. The only other type of work I will take on are move-in/move-out situations as well. I live in the Metro Detroit area.

Any thoughts on the above from anyone is welcome and appreciated. I would love to hear more on tips and tricks of the trade here that keeps profit high and time and expenses low. Also the best tools people like working with. I had the pleasure of using a Miele Antares canister vac at one house. Does anyone use a backpack vac for homes? Also, I think it's pretty disgusting to use toilet brushes on different homes, does anyone do this? I just use what's in the house in that case.
Posted: May 07, 2012 at 4:02 PM
Photo of Diane K.
Diane K.
Whenever I start a new cleaning job I always ask if they provide the cleaning supplies because a lot of times the newer big homes are particular on the products used on counter tops and floors. They don't want you to use any other products and if you are not familiar with the products make sure and read the labels. From my experience they definitely look that you don't leave a film on their floors. In this case I always tell them I don't provide the cleaning supplies.
Posted: May 06, 2012 at 7:55 PM
Saka
Thanks for the information I am starting up my cleaning service--this was very helpful.
Posted: May 05, 2012 at 3:57 PM
Mirsada P.
Hi all. What should I charge to clean per window?? I need to know how this works. Thx in advance.
Posted: May 01, 2012 at 9:16 PM
Photo of Norma L.
Norma L.
Thanks Diane
Posted: May 01, 2012 at 12:34 PM
Nelly R.
Oops sorry i meant Diane G on the avobe post :S
Posted: April 26, 2012 at 9:38 PM
Nelly R.
Hi Norma G , can you pls tell me were do i get the cleaning calculador, i think that's a grrreat !! idea.
Posted: April 26, 2012 at 9:36 PM
Photo of Diane G.
Diane G.
Hi Norma,

There are several factors to consider....

(1 )how far of distance is it from you, (2)how many bedrooms, baths and square footage is it, (3) is it a deep clean or standard clean, (4) are you using their products/equipment or yours, (5) Do you need to purchase eco-friendly cleaners or standard cleaning supplies.

I usually charge a little more on the first cleaning since it entails a deeper clean which takes a little longer due to no one being out prior to put the home in shape, but after the first clean the home should be in a good state and that is when I base my weekly, bi-weekly rate unless there is a special request that will take me longer.

I also have a cleaning calculator that I use which tells me what others in my area are charging and it helps a lot! I will also offer a $10 off the first cleaning and discounts for active military/seniors.

I hope this helps =)
Posted: April 25, 2012 at 11:39 AM
Photo of Norma L.
Norma L.
Hi. I need to know how much a person charges for a big aparments 3 hrs 2 times a week but I need to take my own cleaning supplies and tools .thanks? ???? I'll appreciate the help
Posted: April 24, 2012 at 11:53 AM
Photo of Winde W.
Winde W.
Tocy a big thing you can do when cleaning help with there kitchen cabents, old food or cleaning supl is in with the food
Posted: April 22, 2012 at 11:53 PM
Photo of Winde W.
Winde W.
ok get a note book devide. In front of the book put you info. time and days. your pay amount. hours that includs. the notebook should have 2-3 devides 1 what did the dAy 2ext. job to be done. its helps to if you need to be there 4 hours you will be fine.
Problem with dryer get a mini vac hose it is made for appl and behind dryre take hose off and vac out.
www.WhoknewTips.com fyi
Shark handheld steam cleaner fyi
Posted: April 22, 2012 at 11:38 PM
Photo of Winde W.
Winde W.
Dont forget if your looking for jobs. Goto you locel realter.
Posted: April 22, 2012 at 3:10 PM
Photo of Annette N.
Annette N.
hi housekeepers of America! I recently had a home I had cleaned on a regular basis. I interveiwed with husband and wife and it was great. The idea was to clean the home and then 2 loads of laundry( because it was all over the floor where I needed to clean anyway)when I arrived , the laundry was about 2 loads that needed to be folded and put away and 3 loads to do. I cleaned the house as the laundry was going, but 6 loads took alot of time extra.they had a strict budjet. I had accomplished them all and a month or so later they said they couldn't afford me anymore.they didnt even give 24 hours notice.man did I feel taken advantage of.I since have charged $8 a load thats putting them in/out dryer time folded and put away. is that too little to ask? wisdom for the day>>be specific , do ONLY what you agreed on, and make some type of contract.other wise people will take advantage of you.happy cleaning!
Posted: April 10, 2012 at 1:30 PM
Photo of Carol R.
Carol R.
Rachel D,Marian K and Brittney D ...I am experiencing the same lack of response from people, I think they are just rude and thoughtless, especially the ones who email you first and then don't respond when you suggest meeting up to discuss their needs etc.Its so simple just to email back and say I have hired somebody or whatever.
Posted: April 10, 2012 at 7:01 AM
Kuldeep S.
yeah of course !!!!

Good Work babes
Posted: April 04, 2012 at 5:27 AM
Photo of Alyssa H.
Alyssa H.
i have a house cleaning job soon and dont know what to charge. it is a 2 bedroom 1 bath kitchen+laundry. how much should i charge. it is a medium sized house, in tulare ca
Posted: April 03, 2012 at 1:07 AM
Photo of Janet M.
Janet M.
Thank you ladies for the comments.This really help me a lot.
Posted: April 03, 2012 at 12:04 AM
Photo of Mary K.
Mary K.
I have been cleaning houses and offices for 8 yrs. I will not go any less than $20.00 and hour or $80.00 per visit for once a week. Bi-weekly is more. To the people who are looking at cleaning large homes, 8,000 sq ft. I charged $400.00 to do a house that size. I live in the Tampa area.
Posted: March 24, 2012 at 5:02 PM
Heather R.
I try to charge by job but if you HAVE to do hourly, I would charge 30 -70 depending on the size, etc
Posted: March 23, 2012 at 5:36 PM
Debi
How do you charge for office cleanings?
Posted: March 11, 2012 at 12:08 AM
Photo of Sharon S.
Sharon S.
Here is a good way to get an idea of what others are charging in your area. It also comes with the estimate work sheet built into the site which accounts for the number of rooms, square footage, depth of cleaning, etc.

I don't use the exact prices on the site but only as a comparison so I will know if I am pricing as I should. I haven't had any complaints from my customers yet. www.bidmycleaning.com

I don't own nor am I gaining anything from sharing the link. I'd just like to note that I do feel like the prices in the original article here are a bit low. Most cleaning ladies I know, have a minimum they charge because in most homes there is a standard amount of things you'd do plus gas expense. Good luck ladies!
Posted: March 09, 2012 at 11:47 AM
Photo of Kevonda C.
Kevonda C.
THANK YOU THIS IS HELPFULL I DIDNT KNO BUT NOWI DO.
Posted: March 03, 2012 at 11:13 AM
Margarita O.
Hi I want to start my own buss. and the advice here is great i used to work for someone and they charge by room and never included dishes,laundry or fridge mostly light work and they charged 25.00 by room is this realistic? well they paid so i guess it is. I remember one of the houses i used to do the bathroom, living r, kitchen and laundry and a small hall and the lady paid him 75.00 per visit and we used to go 3 times a week. He paid me by hr of course and we used their products and vaccum and mop. Also in a fraternity with the same way but the rooms were bigger so he added more and the same way cleaned the entertainment/waiting room/dining room halls and a large bathroom for 150.00 per visit 3 times a week. just saying now i'm looking to go into myself because i know i'm good at but how to find good clients? where to post it and do i need any kind of insurance?
Posted: February 28, 2012 at 9:37 AM
Rachel D.
Marian K & Brittney D, I don't think this is a scam. I myself have wondered because I hardly get anything either like if I'm a ghost BUT i have gotten 2 hits already. Sometimes you have to go in and change your wording of what you wrote down. Just be honest though and be yourself. i started answering some of their requests they have posted and that's how I got responses. The first hit I got just said thank you for me applying that she was looking for someone at a certain time of day and the 2nd hit I have gotten is pending. She actually wants to meet me somewhere for an interview but I still don't have the job quite yet but wish me luck and good luck to you! Keep on trying and B good...Bye :D
Posted: February 27, 2012 at 9:35 PM
Rachel D.
Hello everyone...one quick way to clean those floors weather it be tile, hardwood or laminent floors, etc...clean with dish soap but put just a tad of soap in the bucket with hot water. That will clean the floors wonderfully. I get compliments each and everytime I clean my floors that way. This eliminates any kind of chemical damaging the floors but also you don't have to rinse and you only have to do it once. Good luck!
Posted: February 27, 2012 at 6:21 PM
Tory C.
I work for a really great retired couple. She's disabled and unable to do a lot of the cleaning around the house which is why they have a housekeeper. They pay me $15/hr for general cleaning around the house (dusting, vacuuming, cleaning floors, kitchen and 2 bathrooms) which takes about 3 hours and I go over once a week and it really doesn't get too dirty between cleanings. Occasionally they hire me to do additional cleaning around the house or even help with some yard work. I don't charge any extra aside from my hourly rate (honestly I like doing the yard work occasionally and I like them so much that I like to be able to help them out with extra things when I can). I was a little worried when I started about if I was charging enough or if they'd try to screw me with extra work but the rate is average for my area and I know they appreciate my hard work. They also do nice things like give me apples from their trees, give me first look at things they will otherwise donate to a thrift store and gave me a Christmas bonus.
Posted: February 22, 2012 at 3:58 AM
Temika J.
Thanks for the price advise Care, it was really helpful and the posts from everyone with advise.
Posted: February 21, 2012 at 12:08 AM
Marian K.
I am wondering the same thing Brittney B is this a scam? I have applied for all jobs in my area and not one response!
Posted: February 17, 2012 at 12:04 PM
Photo of Vicki T.
Vicki T.
Karen N, your a trooper! I like gals who help others succeed. Wisdom is the principle thing, in her left hand riches and honor. Psalms 4:7 and Psalms 112:1-3
Posted: February 12, 2012 at 8:06 PM
Photo of Carol R.
Carol R.
Some really good advice Karen, thank you !
Posted: February 08, 2012 at 7:09 AM
Karen N.
I came to this site to get an idea of what it would cost to have my house cleaned professionally, but I also have some suggestions for you, as I've been running my own business for a long time. If I had this kind of a business I would make up an "Estimate Sheet" on the computer with a logo at the top and my contact info. Make a few boxes on the page, and in one box put "Regular Cleaning" and list what you will do under that category - dust, mop, vacuum, baths, kitchen, etc., then show an hourly rate for those items only. Under "Periodic Cleaning" list items like clean oven, fridge, windows, clean under/behind furniture, clean dog kennel/wash out litter boxes, and so forth, and put a higher hourly rate, or perhaps a per item rate for those options. A third category might be "Deep Cleaning", where you would list Initial Cleaning Visit, Spring Cleaning, Fall Cleaning, pre- and post-party cleaning, special client requests, anything else you can think of, and put your highest hourly rate on these items. You will need to be able to estimate how many hours it will take you to do these items AFTER you tour the house and see what is really involved. Having this kind of checklist to give your prospective client shows that you are a professional, that you have established rates, and that you are not going to take $10 per hour. You should put a few lines at the bottom where you can total the items, then write in any special requests the client makes. Remember that your fee should not be based only on how much you give yourself as a salary, but that amount PLUS cost of doing business (supplies, equipment, gas, insurance, etc.) PLUS your margin for items like taxes (do not forget taxes - they will eat up a big chunk of your income!), medical insurance, retirement account, etc. The more professionally you present yourself - with an estimate sheet, business cards, a "uniform" of some sort, a simple contract form - the less likely that someone is going to try to take advantage of you. If someone tries to get you to take $10 an hour, they are not going to be a good client and will end up being a waste of your time. You could be spending that time finding a client who will pay you $30 per hour, so the $10 per hour person actually costs you money.

There are many websites and books about how to start and run a small business, including how to market yourself and get new (or better!) clients. Go to your library and look some of these books up, it will be a big help to you.

Give your prospective clients a written estimate, and once they sign off on it give them a simple contract for the work. There are many sample contracts on the net, that will help you protect yourself should any problems arise.

Good luck, everyone - Karen N.
Posted: February 07, 2012 at 1:00 PM
Photo of Carol R.
Carol R.
The person who has 7 kids and is looking for a housekeeper for a 7 bedroom,6 bathroom house and is offering the princely sum of $12 an hour is going to have a tough time finding anybody willing to take that on for $12 an hour....
Posted: February 07, 2012 at 12:15 PM
Photo of Brittany D.
Brittany D.
i have applied for several jobs and no one is writting me back is this a scam
Posted: February 06, 2012 at 2:42 PM
Photo of Valerie B.
Valerie B.
I am a nanny for 2 children and the daily housekeeper in Haverford. Because the housekeeping is such large portion of what i do, I have no idea what I should be charging per hour. Can anyone help?
Posted: February 03, 2012 at 5:05 PM
Photo of Carol R.
Carol R.
I've been reading all these posts and once again am amazed at what people expect you do do for very little pay! Also ,is it crazy for me to expect a response from a job I've applied for if my application has been unsuccessful? Just a simple,"sorry, you aren't suitable" would suffice .Its bad manners not to but rude people are clueless I guess
Posted: February 01, 2012 at 7:22 AM
Photo of Chelsi G.
Chelsi G.
I want to start cleaning house's but dont know how to get back in it:/I use to clean house's 5 years ago for a lady.but tring to get back in it is hard.
Posted: January 21, 2012 at 1:21 PM
Photo of Teresa P.
Teresa P.
I have found that there are some really awesome people out there who are willing to pay what I know I'm worth and are super thankful. There are also those who want something for nothing and are just plain rude. I choose to work for the first type. They actually make me enjoy doing this for a living. When I first started doing this I took any job for any amount. Eventually, I had enough good customers to start letting go of the bad ones. Now I have a full schedule of awesome people!
Posted: January 20, 2012 at 8:58 PM
Photo of Teresa P.
Teresa P.
I used to charge per hour, but now I charge per square foot. 3 cents for weekly cleanings, 3.5 cents for every other week cleanings, 4 cents for monthly cleanings and 6 cents for first time and one time cleanings.This usually ends up to be at least $20 per hour. The only time I charge hourly is for miscellaneous jobs that I have no idea how long it will take.
Posted: January 20, 2012 at 8:52 PM
Photo of Cali T.
Cali T.
When feeling guilty about charging more than $10-12 an hour for housecleaning services, it helps to put things in perspective... Cashiers working at a clothing or grocery store make about $9-10 an hour, and I remember it not being very physically draining at all, except for the long hours standing. When you are cleaning a house, you are in constant movement, usually pretty physically strenuous work. Also, if someone can afford to PAY someone to come clean their house, an extra $3-5 an hour probably isn't going to hurt them.
Posted: January 15, 2012 at 5:40 PM
Photo of Sheila S.
Sheila S.
Does anyone have a contract with their client? I'm thinking it's a good idea to have one because I have been in situations where we have agreed on services and price however, after a few months it seems I end up doing more then originally agreed. I'd like to have a contract to refer to (or remind them) of our original agreement in case I have to ask for more money. If anyone already has one containing some of the info in the comments above (cleaning fridge, stove, ironing, etc) please let me know. Thanks!
Posted: January 13, 2012 at 9:57 PM
Photo of Jennifer G.
Jennifer G.
Ladies,

House cleaning and organizing is a ton of hard work. Don't sell yourself short. I charge $25 an hour with a minimum of 3 hours. I let the client tell me what they want done. They can choose 3 hours of work or I will clean until the house is fully cleaned. People who need help will pay the money! Each additional service like cleaning out a fridge or doing laundry or organizing closets are also $25 bucks a piece at least. Some people want to pay less money but it's okay to say no and stick to your professionlism. You gotta think about if your bringing supplies with you and vaccuums plus mop and travel time should be included in your price. This is your business. :)
Posted: December 27, 2011 at 11:13 AM
Photo of Elizabeth S.
Elizabeth S.
Very helpful, thanks
Posted: December 17, 2011 at 9:26 AM
Faustine S.
Great commments for someone that is new at this bussiness
Posted: December 12, 2011 at 7:22 PM
Photo of Mildred N.
Mildred N.
I can appreciate this type of dialogue.I have been doing
This for over 20 years.we all need this kind of advice
especiallyWhen we first get startded.knowledge is
power,more money in your pocket,Less ware on the
body and stress on the mind.This is a buisnessFor us
and a serVice for others.I am proud to serve for the
Right price thanks Ann N.
Posted: December 11, 2011 at 1:22 PM
Photo of Annmarie S.
Annmarie S.
Thank you care.com for posting articles and resources such as this; I factored in location(city or rural area),size of home, and the specific needs of clients!
Posted: December 08, 2011 at 8:18 PM
Photo of Maela L.
Maela L.
hello everyone, my question is to do this cleaning job do we need to have a licence if we have a client would pay us 100 every other week to clean their house are they supposed to claim us for their taxes, how is it going to affect us, how much taxes we end up paying when we file our tax and doing this cleaning job on our own is this legal?
Posted: December 03, 2011 at 8:19 PM
Brenda S.
I think If aperson wants a one time deep cleaning they should tell the person whom they hire "use" before they agree on a price. Also be exact about expectations.

The people hiring for a one time cleaning need to pay what it is worth.I have cleaned for a few families that are intent on hiring someone else but do not want them to see how much needs done in reality.

The new hire's get more per diem then I do also.

I now charge more per cleaning then I had before I was 10 an hr.
Now am 15 an hr.
I am worth it. :)

Brenda
Posted: December 03, 2011 at 8:47 AM
Tammy H.
Tammy helm for michigan.


I feel like this i have been clearning for years and I think that you should charge what you feel. because you know how you clean and if they like your cleaning they will pay or they will try someone else and find out that , that person will not do what you are doing and they will call you back and give you what your worth. so dont under bid your self because your time is worth it.
Posted: December 02, 2011 at 10:54 AM
Photo of Janet Y.
Janet Y.
My phone isn't ringing off the hook, lot of competition thanks Janet Yoder
Posted: November 17, 2011 at 5:42 PM
Photo of Ashley F.
Ashley F.
I am trying to start my own cleaning service... I am having a hard time finding any houses... any advice?
Posted: November 11, 2011 at 4:39 PM
Photo of Valerie C.
Valerie C.
I charge a first time cleaning fee of $10. to $20., Any cleaning of the oven is $15. extra,Fridge is $10.00. Never quote a price over the phone, I normal say any where between $55, to $150. will not know without looking, Depending on size of house and what is needing to be done.
Posted: November 11, 2011 at 2:13 PM
Bridgitt M.
This was very good conversation. It has given me lots to think about. Thanks everyone.
Posted: October 31, 2011 at 12:07 PM
Photo of Julie B.
Julie B.
Josephine, An OCD person is never going to be satisfied. It is a chemical in balance in the brain. Define your boundaries of what you will and won' t do and then move on. There are plenty of houses to clean.
Posted: October 30, 2011 at 5:29 AM
Jasmina S.
awesome
Posted: October 27, 2011 at 10:21 PM
Photo of Lynette V.
Lynette V.
Thanks for the tip. It was helpful. I'm not familiar with the pay in the area and I was going to settle for less doing something else. I just took this job working 8 hrs 3x a week pay @80.00per day. Didn't look at it from the perspective of the size of the house but, how much earning per day basis. It is start while I study. It may not seem much. I didnt negotiate. I'm ok and I'm glad got a job. This is going to be long term. May need few tips later about an increase right!
Posted: October 26, 2011 at 6:53 AM
Photo of Margaret A.
Margaret A.
Nanette D. and Sheri W.couldn't agree more with both of your opinions, i will say its always good to see what you are going charge for before service is been provided. For me base on diferent opinion and my own ideas, i wouldn't charge by the hour, i will charge per room, because some room are cluthered than other, and i wouldn't charge the same fee when i go , i will always want to see what i need to get done before charging, some days might be more or less, but i will never have a fix price, because maybe you are used to seeing one room always clutered and dirty, and now going back again , it changes from one room been clutered and dirty to three rooms more clutered and more dirtier, tell me are are still going to still charge the same rate? i guess not, my advice to all you hard working folks like me out there, to be sincere is to be fullfilled. Always ask for the area you need to clean and ask to see it.

Always make sure they have the list of what they expect you to clean and care for, if not you can always ask and jot it down. They will be more happy with you when you are been honest and considerably. Considerably in the sense that the day of less work you charge considerably, but the day of more work you charge more reasonably. i believed you get my gist.

My advice is that, never have a fix rate, and never charge per hour, and never charge same fee everytime, becaue dirt and clutered never remain the same each time you visit. its more work. So use your time and energy wisely.

I hope you all find this helpful, and did i tell you guys i am not a housekeeper, but i am considering doing that, and this is my idea of how i will charge.
Posted: October 24, 2011 at 10:30 AM
Photo of Josephine S.
Josephine S.
I began working for a single man who is renting a fully furnished home. In my interview it seemed we would have a good working relationship and agreed on my style of cleaning and so on. He requested I work 6hrs 2 days a week each (12 total), and in that time period I was to do grocery shopping with a specific list, dry cleaning run and clean a 2br 2ba condo. All seemed reasonable for $100 a day. Well he is off the charts OCD!!! The home is littered everywhere with paper towels folded into tiny squares that he uses to touch light switches, door knobs, cups and more. He has a very specific way he wants his groceries put away..basically everything out of package. For example banana peeled and put in a Tupperware, fruit peeled and diced, bread out of the bag and into a zipblock, rice that comes in a box with a spice packet taken out and poured into a zipblock and so on. Everything is detailed work to the 10th degree! I did a super deep cleaning that took 6hrs straight and was still not done and he told me he was unsatisfied and pointed out to yearsssss worth of grime literally impossible to get out. I spent the next day deep cleaning again and I took me 4hrs just in the kitchen and I went through 4 mr clean magic erasers just on the cabinets! He expects me to clean the whole house like this weekly! Should I talk to him and tell him that if he requires deep cleaning every time I go because of his OCD then I am going to have to charge more? My fingers are literally raw!!! Oh and he also wants me to cook 3 meals in about 30 minutes HA!!!! I have been super patient and lckiku very detailed in my communications with him letting him know exactly what I did and how long it took and why. Any advice??? - Josephine
Posted: October 23, 2011 at 2:11 AM
Katey W.
I live in Ohio. Would you charge the same thing if you lived here. I am only making 12 an hour!! Its alot of work. But it pays the bills.
Posted: October 05, 2011 at 2:03 PM
Photo of Sheri W.
Sheri W.
I agree never charge by the hour. I've been doing this work for 30+ years and have been taken to cleaners by some of the people I worked for. Others I worked for became my friends and appreciate the work and how hard it is. Its very hard on the body. Always make appt. to see the house , if they have had a cleaner or service before try to find out what they paid. Thats not to say to except what they paid before. Large homes or really hard and usually take about 8 hours charge no less than 200.00. Your worth this money if you know what your doing and you have the experience.
Posted: September 23, 2011 at 10:50 AM
Nancy L.
DON'T SELL YOURSELVES SHORT. CLEANING IS HARD AND SOMETIMES VERY DIRTY. I THINK IT'S BETTER TO CHARGE BY THE JOB. FIND OUT WHAT THEY EXPECT AND WRITE IT DOWN. THEN GIVE A PRICE. BE RELIABLE AND TRUSTWORTHY. THATS WORTH A MILLION!
Posted: September 20, 2011 at 8:13 AM
Dawn D.
Hi all :-) I live in a small town in central Louisiana. I was asked to clean a house of 3 bdrms, 3.5 baths, living rm,kitchen, dining and foyer with seating/tables. They want to pay $50 bi-wkly. Do any of you have advice as to what I should do for this price besides the general cleaning of the bathooms?
Posted: September 16, 2011 at 3:22 PM
Photo of Deborah H.
Deborah H.
I charge by the size of the house.windows are extra .lowest I go 100
Posted: September 07, 2011 at 2:49 AM
Photo of Jaclyn V.
Jaclyn V.
I hope someone with housekeeping experience can help me on this. I made the mistake of quoting someone a price before I actually saw their house. When I got there to clean it took me 6 hours and I feel like I lost money by the end. Im only asked to dust in the whole house, clean tile floors (sweep and mop) in the kitchen, 2 bathrooms, and the entryway, and clean 2 bathrooms. The house is probably a little over 2000 sq ft. The problem was, for me, the house was very very dirty. The house has 3 children 3 dogs and 2 adults living there. Im just curious what I should charge for this home.? I hope someone can help me.
Posted: August 30, 2011 at 5:42 PM
Photo of Jessica S.
Jessica S.
Margaret P, that woman IS crazy to want to pay you so little. You probably won't get the $30 an hour but it wouldn't hurt to go around $20 an hour. If you are doing inside the fridge, oven, etc, then charge more. I know how you feel with cleaning the hard wood floors, I had a home to clean when I lived in Ga, and it took FOREVER to clean those floors. I had a flat rate of $75 but it probably should've been at least $100 to clean her house. I hope that helped!
Posted: August 29, 2011 at 8:39 PM
Photo of Margaret P.
Margaret P.
Alright ladies, I have a question. Currently I have a potential client that wants someone to be her "anchor" she wants he house deep cleaned periodically and cleaned regularly 3 times a week. The house is huge. I saw at least 4 bedrooms and 3 baths. A lot of wood floor as well as carpet. I cleaned the wood floor on the main floor and it took me more than an hour. Along with everything being cleaned, dishes have to be done (she's very picky, must hand wash plastic ware) laundry done and put away and anything else she may think of. The crazy woman wants to charge me 10 an hr for all this. probably 3 days a week 4-6 hrs each day. I was thinking about 30 an hour or 150 each visit. Mainly because she wants so much from me and because her house is HUGE. Dog hair is everywhere and she has 3 kids. What do I do? please help! :)
Posted: August 28, 2011 at 1:32 PM
Photo of Adrienne H.
Adrienne H.
excellent resource information.whether i have to supply cleaningsupplies or not i do not under sell my services.
Posted: August 26, 2011 at 9:11 AM
Photo of Nanette D.
Nanette D.
Cleaning a home or apartment is a very hard job and doing this job several times a day or even in a weeks time is definately hard on the body. Depending on the size of the home, how many bathrooms, bedrooms, they can have more than one kitchen too, you have to figure how long it will take to clean these rooms, especially a bathroom and kitchen. So if it is like one I read, (8000 sq ft) wow, that could take more than one 8 hr day, say two days and I would charge $200 even $300 if you are doing this by yourself, of course it will take longer by yourself and if you have another person you split the $ and the work. I wouldn't charge by the hour, charge by the job. I did this kind of work for many years and did make mistakes in charging. You don't get any insurance on these type of positions, so take that into consideration too and charge accordinly and put some $ away for that. For a med home 1 to 2 baths, 3 bedrms, livg rm, laundry rm, play rm, $100; extra on other things like stove/refrig/laundry. Bigger home bigger $$$$.
Posted: August 22, 2011 at 2:52 AM
Ann H.
Hi Everyone, I too have been in the cleaning business for a while - almost 10 years and live in the suburbs of Boston. My rate is $25/hr per person (sometimes I have and assistant) for the first time I clean. I never give a quote over the phone as you what you see and what is described to you can be two entirely different conditions. After the first visit, I set a flat rate with a minimum charge of $75. Over the years, I have mutually parted with a few clients - basically, they needed someone at half my rate. I've made my mistakes but have developed a very loyal clientele and have become friends with many of them.
I do not offer bed changing or laundry services.
I also provide the following services:
- donations - no fee to drop off to shelters; this benefits both of us as it removes clutter from the home
- pet care - I have a pet care business as well so I take care of their cats/dogs while they are away. This has a separate fee schedule.
I agree with Connie A. Housekeeping is hard work and you should always be appreciated. Don't short sell yourself. My best to you all!
Posted: July 30, 2011 at 1:10 PM
Connie A.
Ladies I live in Maryland and have been in the cleaning business
for a while - years.... I charge 20.00 per hour additional fees for refrigerator
20.00, stove 20.00 (depending on how bad it is!) Around average of $10.00 per room. I really go in and give an estimate for the job. But take in consideration of how messy the house is kept and if there is alot of animal hair! Id atleast add on another $10.00 for the extra work... Windows are extra! I charge $5to $10 per window depending on size.
Doing laundry and making beds is up to you but that should be extra!
I have been tricked into excepting way less than what Ive done.
Dont do that to yourself! Housekeeping is a very hard job! God Bless!
Posted: July 21, 2011 at 1:46 AM
Elaine G.
I appreciate your service. It's better than Angie list
Posted: July 16, 2011 at 9:17 PM
Photo of Becky L.
Becky L.
Is there anyone out there that knows info on starting a housekeeping LLC in Tampa, would like to talk to you
Posted: July 11, 2011 at 6:12 AM
Kathy D.
I think that what you were cleaning sounds more like "construction cleaning". It is impossible to clean up dry wall dust with one sweep of a mop, it will spread and has to be mopped several times. I think that $15 an hour was not too much to ask for. Personally, I would of charged $20 an hour and I would not of provided cleaning supplies. Hope that helps you out.
Posted: July 05, 2011 at 10:17 PM
Photo of Becky L.
Becky L.
Do you have your regular clients sign a contract stating payment agreement info and premision to be on their property especially if they are not there during their cleaning time.
Posted: July 05, 2011 at 9:13 AM
Photo of Becky L.
Becky L.
I am in the Tampa Fl area, I dont want to over charge but I dont want to under charge either. Some people think Im crazy when I tell them 15. per hour. Am I right to charge that. Most people around here want to pay only10. per hour. I got "burned" giving some one a flat rate, it averaged out to very little. Help.... I need some advice.
Posted: July 04, 2011 at 2:46 PM
Photo of Shari A.
Shari A.
I was cleaning a 7 Bathroom,home, 3 have tubs ,they just remolded, tore up carpets, and sanded floors, For the first few times I suggested I bring helper cause it is so big and needs so much done, The were paying us 15.00 hr each for 6 hours. then she wanted it done with one person in 6 hrs and it is impossible, the down stairs takes 4 hours with 2 people. was I wrong for charging 15 each
Posted: June 12, 2011 at 2:39 PM
Linda Lawton
I have been asked to clean a house that is approximately 8000 + sq ft in size. The house has 3 levels and 5 full baths with a full kitchen and a 1/2 downstairs. Very little carpet, mostly hardwood. It is a vacation home and is used very little. I have however already cleaned the windows and most of the deep cleaning on a previous occasion. What should I charge for this. It includes laundry, cleaning the refrig and stove and ovens. Any input is appreciated...
Posted: June 06, 2011 at 5:03 PM
Photo of Sheilah C.
Sheilah C.
Heather A,

I commend you on working for your friend, I never have and never will work domestically for a friend. First, money tends to hurt friendships, Second, domestic work is always frowned upon and a friends behavior may change due to you taking a servitile role. Lastly money changes relationships.

Sheilah
Posted: June 06, 2011 at 4:33 PM
Photo of Sheilah C.
Sheilah C.
To Joanne A,

I did live in and live out jobs, as for the live in do not consider it as they are providing you a luxurious living quarters. That set up is for their convinence not yours, you will be on call 24/7.They won't say it but it's to be expected You should be paid by the hour according to the requirments. You are housekeeping and cleaning not to mention preparing food. The rate was $22-$30 hourly, I kept a 25k and a 15k square foot home in city of New York and Georgia. I worked 50 hours in each home. Take into consideration the location and the going rate for that location, what they do for a living and how they set up the interview. If it is conducted on a highly professional manner and the people that are offering you the job have made a name for themselves, then you are dealing with people that want the best and are willing the pay for it. Then you have the the other families that aren't as affluent but want quality on a bargain. My best advice is do your homework.. Always look up your future employee, then you'll know exactly what they may offer you.

Best wishes!!
Posted: June 06, 2011 at 4:28 PM
Photo of Angela G.
Angela G.
Demi, I agree with you. The quote referred to in the article, in my opinion, is way too low. However, this all depends on the quality of your service, attention to detail, consistently providing the same clean home each time. If you go in and swoop through the house hitting the open pots with a vacuum and duster, you probably should charge $15.00 per hour. However, honestly, I will not accept a job for anything less than $20 per hour as I guarantee my customer's complete satisfaction. Also, charging by the hour seems like it would depend on the circumstances!

Maybe I'm overpricing, but I usually spend a minimum of four hours at a home at least 2,000 sq. ft.

Don't be afraid to ask for what you know you deserve! As they say, 'You get what you pay for!"

Good luck!!!
Posted: June 05, 2011 at 10:26 PM
Frances B.
Joan B.
To Krystie P. whom posted her comment on May 14,2011
Your said to stop charging by the hour and to charge by the day. What do you suggest to charge for cleaning a house that takes 4 hours to clean? My cousin charged $25 per house and split the money with her friend that cleaned houses with her.Though that was over ten years ago. At the min.wage rate in IL it will come to $8.33 per hour just for one person to clean. And for two people it will come to $3.13 per hour per house. Please post your reply for everyone to read.
Posted: June 02, 2011 at 3:13 PM
Heather A.
I am getting ready to do a housekeeping job for a friend of mine. She says she needs weekly cleaning, dusting,bathrooms, vacuuming, general cleaning and then monthly deep cleaning. What do i charge?
Posted: June 01, 2011 at 10:33 PM
Photo of Melissa C.
Melissa C.
Melissa Chambless

This was helpful in the ? I had about what to charge... I never want to over charge but do not want to short my self , I have the exp and the ability to get the job and provide a great cleaning exp.

Thanks again for the help
Posted: May 25, 2011 at 11:59 PM
Photo of Krystle P.
Krystle P.
Everyone should charge by day and not by hr. I am not a cleaner but that kind of job is too much work to charge by hr. So stop letting them hire you for cheap. We are in usa.
Posted: May 14, 2011 at 8:08 PM
lily
what if besides cleaning you have to take care of 2 kids for at least 3 hrs?
Posted: May 08, 2011 at 3:51 AM
lily
I think that the best thing to do is to charge 15.00$/hr. And charge 20.00$ for each additional deep cleaning like the oven20, the fridge20, windows20 and bath tub20. they need to pay you for gas and cleaning suplies.
Posted: May 08, 2011 at 3:32 AM
Photo of Joanne A.
Joanne A.
Please help me!

I have two interviews! One is for housekeeping, a very large 8,000 sq ft home, they need someone for 3 days a week, 8 hours a day, laundry,cleaning and organizing. What do I charge??? Hour or Day?? The second is a live in post. Housekeeper and cook! They will provide a home for me on property, plus weekly pay. What should I negociate for pay???

thanks
Joanne
Posted: April 27, 2011 at 3:41 PM
Photo of Debra F.
Debra F.
Thanks alot,this info was very helpful, i really appreciate it. thanks
Posted: April 27, 2011 at 2:16 PM
Photo of Adrienne A.
Adrienne A.
Atleast 15-20 dollars an hour you should get, cleaning can be very stressful on the body and is not easy if you are working hard and long hours. Not everyone can do this job!
Posted: April 20, 2011 at 10:19 PM
Photo of Angelita G.
Angelita G.
You're getting too little Jackie!
Posted: April 19, 2011 at 12:23 AM
Photo of Jessica M.
Jessica M.
I wouldn't do it for less then $75 a day.
Posted: April 09, 2011 at 3:11 PM
Photo of Jackie G.
Jackie G.
How does everyone feel about an hourly wage if you clean the home 3 times a week? 5 hours a day?

My employer is paying me $12.50 an hour.

I get paid bi weekly.

Just want some input from other housekeepers.

Thank you,

Jackie
Posted: April 06, 2011 at 10:56 AM
demi
that stills seems to cheap...ive seen housekeepers receive $200-$400 per cleaning?
Posted: April 04, 2011 at 5:41 PM
Photo of Amy M.
Amy M.
I found this information to be very helpful! I was leaving out a few items to take into consideration so I am glad I checked here. Thanks!!!
Posted: April 02, 2011 at 11:49 AM
Pam S.
I was really glad I check this information, now I know I am charging right on the money! Thanks Care.com
Posted: March 28, 2011 at 3:44 PM
Carrieann W.
The number of bathrooms and the types of tubs (Sunk in) extra shower stalls and sinks should be considered when pricing. Also if there is mineral build up that takes alot to keep away from the toliets and tub areas.
Posted: March 28, 2011 at 8:44 AM
Photo of Patricia H.
Patricia H.
Thanks alot!!! This helped me to alleviate some anxieties that I had about pricing since my employer's have moved to a home that's 3 times as large as their previous one.
Posted: March 21, 2011 at 6:53 PM
Photo of Magaly V.
Magaly V.
very helpful information!!
Posted: March 11, 2011 at 5:10 PM
Demeitri C.
This info was very helpful in determining my price...
Posted: March 08, 2011 at 6:05 PM
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