I have an elderly neighbor with a semi-retarded 53 year old daughter that I help out quite a bit. The mother has asked me to help her clean her house. She doesn't get around very well at 84 and the daughter has scoliosis and after working at a workshop she can't do much. I am looking for suggestions as to what to charge them to come in and clean. They have money but I want to be fair. I have done cleaning in the past but that was military housing as people moved out. Any ideas?
Karen from Port Clinton, OH
I pay my housecleaner $45, which translates to $15/hour for three hours. My house is a small ranch-style house and easy to clean.
By Victoria from NJ
When I had household help last year, I paid $10 per hour for four hours a week, which included general dusting (including cobweb removal, dusting blinds, etc.), thoroughly cleaning both bathrooms, mopping the kitchen floor, and vacuuming carpets as well as "swiffering" hardwood floors. I did not ask her to do laundry, changing beds, dishes, etc. She brought her own tools but used my cleaning supplies. I live in the rural Midwest.
When I have cleaned houses for elderly people who live on a small fixed income, and they can't do things for themselves such as maybe remaking their beds, things like that and I know it is a hardship for them to pay me I've just charged them $6.00 an hour. When I work for people I know can pay me fine I charge them $7.50 an hour with a 4 hour minimum. So if the job only take me 3 hours I still make $30.00.
Rates can vary in different areas. I suggest you call a local housecleaning service and use what they charge as a general guideline. It makes a difference, also, when you consider the tasks you will be expected to do. Dusting is easier than scrubbing, etc.
My husband has just hired someone and is paying her $120 per floor! And the cleaner has her 2 year old with her. I think he's way off base. He got the price from someone else who pays $120 for the whole house, a house similar to ours, but less rooms. We live in Southern PA (a non-up-market town), our house is 2 storyy, 4 bedroom, 3 full bath, 2 powder rooms, typical 1st floor open plan w/laundry room. So don't anyone quote this price because i don't think it's normal ... but by all means, feedback is welcome from those who know the biz!
In Northern NH, people are getting between $12 and 20.00 per hour for basic cleaning.
Firstly, it really depends on the market within your state, the duties requested and the labor involved. Always perform a free estimate and allow them to walk you through their home so you are both on the same page as far as what is required.
Allow the size of the home (sq. footage), size of rooms and materials cleaning (flooring, counter-tops, etc.) to determine what will be involved with each individual task. (i.e. ceramic, hardwood, corian, etc.)
Next, determine whether they will be supplying the products or you will. As this will also determine cost.
There are many factors to be considered. You also need to make certain that you include the cost of your gas, travel, insurance, pets, etc. Also, you have to set boundaries as well. Will you be doing light residential cleaning, in-depth cleaning, laundry, etc. b/c this will increase the rate you charge and should be listed as "extra's) I do not clean human or pet waste. I do not do exterior windows, etc. just to give you a basis of consideration. I have found this as the 'norm' in this particular area.
Lastly, as a general rule for Central PA, I charge NOT by hour as you will definitely lose monies, but by job. For a ranch style home it will generally take you 1.5-2.5 hrs. and no less than $75 is fair. A home that is 2-story (3-4 bdrms, 2+ baths, etc.) will generally take 2.5-4 hrs. and no less than $95 should be charged.
I hope this helps as a general rule of thumb, but keep in mind, as noted earlier, you really have to take into consideration all avenues and aspects associated with each individual job b/c each one is uniquely different.
And, for the PA commenter, whose husband pays over $100 per floor, it really should be $100 for total job! (03/20/2007)
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