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5 Essential Interview Questions for a Cleaning Service

As the owner of a cleaning and organization company, I do all consultations myself. I set the standard for what expectations our new customers should have for us, which are what most people might consider pretty high ones. So, here are 5, very important interview questions you should ALWAYS ask a cleaning service prior to them starting services in your home.

1. Would you pass a criminal background check?
Unfortunately, many people become self-employed because they're unemployable by another business. This isn't always the case, but if you catch even the slightest squirm or hesitation, consider conducting one. They may not be, but it's not worth the headache if they have a fishy background.

2. Ask them questions about what they do and don't do.
Usually, if you get a laundry list of all the things they don't do, then not only are they going to not do that, but they may very well be making excuses to themselves while they're cleaning for you about not doing things you DO expect of them. If they do mostly anything and charge accordingly, you have a keeper.

3. When you clean, in which direction do you work, top to bottom or bottom to top?
It seems like a silly question, but if they do not answer top to bottom, then they probably don't have enough experience to figure out your Dyson. 

4. Ask them how they would go about cleaning a particular surface, i.e. stainless steel, hardwood floors, etc.
Only specialized polish for stainless, and generally only a special product system like Bona, Norwex, or vinegar and water for hardwood. If they're stuttering, again, may be too inexperienced.

5. Pricing..........how much do you charge an hour?
There are several parameters by which to gauge whether you're getting run over, paying well, or aren't paying enough.

For a quality cleaner, you should generally not pay any less than $20 an hour. If they do a good job for you and only charge you $15-$20 an hour, you should be tipping them. They may be trying to be ultra-competitive by charging so low, or they may not have the confidence to ask you for more. It's fine to want to get a steal on your cleaning, but if you don't at least tip at this rate, they may very well get a better offer elsewhere and leave you in the dust once they do sturdy their business legs.

$21-30-You can get high quality cleaning at this rate. This will buy you floors being washed by hand, refrigerator wiped out, deep bathroom cleaning, and the dusting and vacuuming fixin's. Sometimes, you can even get bedding washed, dried, and put back on at this rate.

$31-35-This is either borderline getting run over, or you have a super high quality cleaner that really gets every speck of dirt and grime out of your house. You should be getting light switches and doorknobs sanitized, ceiling fans dusted, bedding completed for sure, indoor windows cleaned, and all the usual run of the mill cleaning.

$36+-Unless you are getting intensive spring cleaning done, i.e., kitchen cabinets, oven, toyroom.....are having a one or two-time cleaning appointment to fix your absolutely destroyed home, or they're including inner and outer windows, carpet shampooing, or cleaning an area that was previously remodeled, you are being run over. You should never, under any circumstances, regularly pay these kinds of prices for house cleaning. If you are, you can find someone that stays in the safe pricing zone and does a fantastic job for you!! Best of luck!!!

---J.LoRae---



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