September 27, 2022

Description of Job
• Clean, vacuum, and neaten homes or apartments.
• Carry out other services as requested by the client.
• Perform turnover cleaning of rental properties.
The Need
Most of us, unless we live in a hotel (or in a dorm room and don’t care), are
responsible for cleaning our house or apartment. At one time, the idea of hiring
household staff was something reserved for the wealthiest among us; today, it
may be much less of a luxury and much more of a necessity.
In a two-job family, who has the time to clean the house? For a stay-at-home
mother or father with young kids, who has time for anything but the most basic
cleanup tasks?
Scheduled or on-demand housecleaning services are very popular in residential areas where one or more family members have jobs outside the home. Additional opportunities exist in tourist areas, where houses and apartments must be
cleaned after each rental.
Not all houses are the same; not everyone’s idea of minimal orderliness is identical; and few people have exactly the same definition of cleanliness.
The biggest challenge is to have a written agreement that specifies exactly
what services you will perform, as well as your expectations from the client.
Standard services include vacuuming all carpeted areas, washing kitchen and
bathroom floors, dusting, cleaning of kitchen cooking surfaces, sanitizing of
bathrooms, and general neatening.
The sort of work that is ordinarily beyond basic services includes jobs such
as polishing silver, washing window exteriors, and cleanup after parties.
In most cases, you will be working within an occupied home or apartment
and trusted not to steal or damage valuable items. You may be given a set of keys
or the code for a burglar alarm and must safeguard them. You will need legal protection against liability and may want to seek bonding. You may be asked to
provide references.
You may have to work while your client is in the home or apartment; think
carefully before accepting a job where you do not feel personally safe.
If you build your company to include additional employees, you should seek
references from them and check for criminal records; any problems they cause
will become your problems. Your attorney or insurance agent may recommend
that you have your employees bonded as a reassurance to your clients.
Know the Territory
Some people have the “clean gene” and some seem constitutionally unable to
keep their homes in shape. You know which type you are; be sure you are willing
to become a cleaning genie for a stranger.
There are many web sites and books that give special tips and tricks for

How to Get Started
Advertise in the local newspaper and in shopping guides. Put a business card at
the supermarket, and, if you have access to the bulletin boards at any companies,
leave your card there as well.
In tourist areas leave your business card and references with real estate or
rental agencies.
Up-front Expenses
You’ll need to purchase an arsenal of cleaners, sanitizers, deodorizers, polishes,
and other products. Then there are mops, dusters, and the biggest investment: an
industrial-strength vacuum cleaner.
You’ll also need a traveling case for your products and equipment and a vehicle to transport the whole kit and caboodle.
As a commercial cleaning contractor, you should be able to purchase supplies at a discount or from a wholesaler. Warehouse stores also offer good deals
on extra-large containers.
Other costs include advertising and promotion.

How Much to Charge
Housecleaners generally charge by the hour, with the rate including the cost of
the supplies you use and a portion of the cost of the vacuum cleaner and other
capital expenditures.

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