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Forum > Miscellaneous > Need some advice on what to charge for cleaning job(s) ( Moderated by Deepika, EleanorSews, CynthiaSue)

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Need some advice on what to charge for cleaning job(s)
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croglodyte
croglodyte
Beginner
OH USA
Member since 3/2/07
Posts: 355
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Date: 3/29/11 12:49 PM

Hello - I thought I'd check with the fine minds out in PR-land on this topic. I really need your help!!

Here's the story: I got my hair cut today and of course was chatting with the hair dresser. I really like her; she's a nice person as well as a good stylist and she is the salon owner. She knows I'm not working right now; I'm a speech therapist and may be going back in the fall, I have a few possibilities that I'm checking out. However for now, my main concern is finding something that works with my son's school schedule and I'm not sure that I want to be on anybody's official payroll. I have been thinking about making a flier and sending it around our neighborhood to see if anyone needs help with cleaning, running errands, meal prep, organization, etc. for an hourly rate - I'm thinking in the $10 to $15 range per hour. And earlier in the conversation I mentioned that I cleaned my friend's sister's beauty shop while I was in college.

So she said A) she has a friend that is looking for somebody to clean her house; that she was using somebody, but let them go because she didn't trust them and B) that she is looking for somebody to come in and clean the shop during the week, like on a Wednesday night. She already has somebody coming in on the weekends. The business has picked up and there is more hair flying around. She told me to make up my flier and bring it in along with a resume, think of a rate, etc.

So these might be great opportunities, but I don't know what to charge!! I talked to my aunt who uses a service and pays the company $90 for a guaranteed 3 hours , 1 time per month. She said the hourly rates are lower the more often you have the person come to the house (because supposedly it would be cleaner, I guess??)

My hairdresser said the weeknight cleaning of the salon would be probably about 3 hours a week. The figure of $40 popped into my head, and maybe a free cut here and there ($50 a pop)? Or should I charge less since she has a weekend cleaner? Or more because of the messy hair?

What else do I need to consider??? Also, we are in NE Ohio, our area has a span of income levels, but mainly middle to upper middle class to some ritzy, high dollar areas.

I'd appreciate your input and thank you in advance!!!
Sincerely,
Croglodyte

clt3
clt3
Intermediate
OH USA
Member since 2/6/06
Posts: 980
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Date: 3/29/11 1:02 PM

I also live in NE Ohio and I think you are underpricing yourself. I also think that the fact that she has someone who cleans on the weekend should have no bearing on what you should charge. I would find out how much she pays the weekend person. I know how much I pay my cleaning person and it's way more than 10-15 per hour. Problem is, I have to fire her because I had money missing from my wallet.

------
Singer 66-16. Singer 600e, Kenmore 158.1913 , Viking 1100, Brother 4000D, Brother Quattro, Bernina 930, White 634DE,
Babylock Evolve, 2 Featherweights ,Pfaff Creative Performance,Janome Coverpro 1000CPX






quiltingwolf
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quiltingwolf  Friend of PR
Intermediate
MD
Member since 12/15/02
Posts: 6613
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In reply to croglodyte


Date: 3/29/11 1:16 PM

If your going to do a cleaning business you should get yourself bonded and insured. You may think you are cleaning for friends of friends etc. but let something go wrong or something come up missing. I would check out how much the cleaning companies charge, Merry Maids etc.

------
quiltingwolf.blogspot.com

Re Becca
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Re Becca  Friend of PR
Intermediate
TX USA
Member since 9/12/05
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In reply to croglodyte


Date: 3/29/11 2:01 PM

I'm kinda behind on that right now, so I'll give ya $100. Any day this year is good for me.

But seriously, when I had a cleaning lady I paid $70 twice a month, and the less frequent the cleaning the higher the costs.

------
http://beccabeckstuff.blogspot.com/

Damn the muslin, full speed ahead!

Michelle T

Michelle T
Intermediate
BC CANADA
Member since 8/24/02
Posts: 4441
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Date: 3/29/11 3:37 PM

8 years ago I cleaned a physio clinic twice a week. I charged $15.00 per hour. Midweek I did laundry as well as the general cleaning. I think I put in about 4 hours a week total.

Now keep in mind that was 8 years ago and I did not have to mop floors. I hate mopping and would charge double for that.

------
Proud parent of a Dwight International School Honour Roll Student

ValerieJ
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ValerieJ  Friend of PR
Advanced Beginner
PA USA
Member since 6/14/06
Posts: 541
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Date: 3/29/11 3:41 PM

I have Merry Maids clean our second home in NEPA, once every 4 weeks. The house is about 1600 sq ft, and since we're only there on weekends, have no kids or pets, it's mostly dust and dead insects. They bring all their own cleaning supplies and tools. They're bonded and insured. They charge $195.

I don't know how many hours they spend, but usually it's three people, so I can't imagine it's more than 1/2 day. Still, for three people that's probably 12 hours of work.

I agree with Sewwolf - you really need to consider being bonded and insured. You need to consider things like who is responsible for providing supplies. Also, I would give some thought to whether a contract of some kind is necessary - something that spells out the services you are providing, the hourly rate (or flat fee) and payment terms. What are you going to do if the hairdresser promises you a free cut, then fails to deliver? Or if she expects you to do something you don't think you should have to do (polish chrome on the chairs?)?

bestgrammy
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bestgrammy
OR USA
Member since 8/29/06
Posts: 3556
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In reply to croglodyte


Date: 3/29/11 7:48 PM

If you are putting out flyers or other forms of advertising your local community may require that you get a business license. In my town it costs $45 per year to be licensed while the town 12 miles away did not require a license, but the next town 16 miles away did...so I had to get a license for my town and one for the other town. Check with the city halls in your area.

You may also want to keep good records of payments including any cash for tax purposes. I've worked in private homes doing elder care and never...I mean never...not paid taxes on what I made...even if the people I worked for wanted to "pay under the table".

I've seen others get in trouble over things like that and I've never wanted that kind of problem...it's not worth even considering it...not to say that you have...just an FYI...if you advertise even with flyers or cards and/or become well known as doing that work...some official will eventually check into what you are doing.

SouthernStitch
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SouthernStitch  Friend of PR
Intermediate
LA
Member since 8/24/02
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Date: 3/29/11 9:44 PM

I live in Louisiana where everything is cheaper, and I pay my next door neighbor $45 a week to clean my house. Her Mom helps her, and they typically are only here about 30-45 minutes. They absolutely rush through, and so they forget to do things. The only reason I am willing to pay her so much for that little work is that I can trust her not to steal anything. I leave notes for them to do the things they left undone the last time.
It's only DH and I now, and my house is under 1800 sq ft. She doesn't have to touch one bathroom, the sewing room or DDs old bedroom. So all in all my house should take no longer than 2 hours for two people, but not 30 minutes.

------
Bernina 780, and 530
Juki TL2010
Babylock Evolution
Singer 403a

When life gives you green velvet curtains, make a green velvet dress.

JDpenelope
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JDpenelope  Friend of PR
Intermediate
Member since 9/9/03
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Date: 3/29/11 10:48 PM

I pay a very trustworthy cleaning lady $25 per hour plus $10 for gas money. (We moved out of her neighborhood.) You might be surprised at the amount of taxes you'll have to pay. In addition to income taxes, you'll be paying 15% for self-employment tax. It adds up fast. And someone else mentioned the business license fee. Plus if you bring your own supplies, including a vacuum cleaner (which can break down), that will reduce your bottom line. It is hard work and like others have said, "Don't sell yourself short!"

------
aka Joanne. (Penelope was our cat. RIP.)
"What mother nature gives, father time takes away."
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OBX
OBX
Advanced Beginner
NC USA
Member since 4/23/10
Posts: 183
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Date: 3/30/11 8:24 AM

Since you are an SLP, have you thought about looking into some contract work? There are many companies that offer you flexible schedules and you wouldn't have to worry about setting up a new business. There are opportunities in home health, long-term care facilities and various preschool programs. The pay is usually quite good. I've worked evenings and weekends to fit my schedule.

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