What is the cost of a home cleaning?

sink full of dishes at home in need of a home cleanerThere are a variety of factors that go into the average cost of a home clean. We’ve cleaned homes across southeastern Wisconsin; every homeowner has a different cleaning list for their home cleaner. To complete that list, the extent of the deep clean varies as well; obviously, it takes longer to clean a large kitchen over a smaller, more compact room.

The best way to answer the question is work through a multi-step process. The first step is to decide what cleaning tasks need to be done in the home. A home cleaner can do any of the following tasks: laundry, floor cleaning, bathroom and kitchen deep cleans, carpet cleanings, seasonal cleaning (i.e. spring cleaning, washing windows), or a full-home deep clean. Make a list of cleaning tasks, document the estimated square footage of the room or home, and the frequency of the home cleaning (i.e. weekly, monthly, annually, etc.) This information is going to be needed when contacting a local home cleaning service.

The next step in determining the cost of home cleaning is to determine whether to hire an individual home cleaner or home cleaning service. There are pros and cons to each home cleaning option.

  • An individual home cleaner tends to cost less, but doesn’t always have the flexibility to meet the needs of a thriving home. A home cleaning service should be able to meet the set schedule, as well as any “emergency” cleanings that need to be completed (i.e. before a party or the holidays, after a mess, etc.)
  • When an individual home cleaner has an emergency, there are no back-ups. A home cleaning service has a team of flexible and experienced home cleaners available at request, and to cover scheduled cleanings when a cleaner is sick or another issue arises.
  • Not all individual cleaners carry insurance that can be invaluable to a homeowner in case of an issue while cleaning; home cleaning services typically do (this should be one of many questions asked when hiring a home cleaner).

The last step is contacting home cleaners and asking them a series of questions. These questions can be asked in-person or via message. Make sure you are clear on all prices; some home cleaners charge hourly while others charge per square foot. To ensure a satisfactory performance and experience, make your expectations clear and keep an open line of communication with the home cleaner or cleaning service.

Facility Managers: 6 Fall Building Deep Cleaning ‘Musts’

commercial building that needs summer building maintenanceFor facility managers, fall is more than a time of changing leaf colors and dropping temperatures. The fall season is the ideal time to check items off the fall cleaning checklist and prepare company buildings for the freezing temperatures to come.

Flooring Cleaning

The upcoming season dictates a full facility floor deep clean and advanced planning. Plan a fall facility floor cleaning for common company down times or contact a commercial cleaning service that can deep clean floors during off-hours. Schedule floor cleaning for times when office staff are gone (such as weekends) or factory shut-downs when the floor is empty. A regular floor stripping and deep cleaning protects facility floors from long-term damage. Regular floor deep cleanings also can save money in other ways, as well; if floors are not deep cleaned, incidences of workplace injuries can increase and the next floor clean can cost more because of excessive build-up.

Duct Cleaning

Duct cleaning is an essential facility deep cleaning task, both for the health of the HVAC system and for employees. A comprehensive duct cleaning can improve system efficiency and overall employee air quality. Specifically, allergy sufferers are sure to thank facility managers; duct cleaning removes many common allergens, such as dust, mold, and mildew, and improve indoor air quality.

Restroom Sanitation

Regular restroom sanitation prevents the spread of illness and infections (i.e. cold viruses, stomach flu, influenza, hepatitis, etc.) which can reduce employee productivity and increase the amount of employee sick days (these other tips can keep employees healthy as well). Since winter is typically the time of year when illnesses spread, a complete restroom sanitation is a critical preventative measure.

Office Common Areas

Printers, conference rooms, kitchens, and other common areas can become a hotbed for germs and dust. Before windows are shut, and employees are trapped inside, do a general deep cleaning of office common areas.

Exterior Cleaning

A facility exterior cleaning is an important part of building maintenance; gutter cleaning, for example, can prevent ice dams and other issues throughout the winter. Other items on the exterior cleaning checklist should include parking lot maintenance, tree and bush trimming and clean-up, building pressure washing, window washing, and concrete washing. Allocate staff for exterior cleaning tasks that can be handled in-house, and outsource other exterior cleaning tasks to companies that can meet the seasonal deadline.

Rug Laundering

Rugs and mats are your first facility’s line of defense against tracked-in gravel and water. Strategically place rugs by all doors and in high traffic areas, such as hallways, restrooms, and break rooms. Track your employees’ activity to ensure that all high traffic areas are covered and the flooring does not wear down (and needs to be prematurely replaced). Have all rugs laundered regularly and promptly so they are ready to be replaced before more gravel—and even snow—is tracked in.

15 Tips for Organizing Your Cluttered Mudroom

coats in cluttered mudroomA clean and organized mudroom is worth its weight in gold, especially when you’re leading a busy life (there’s a lot of gear that comes with school, work, and hobbies!). That’s why we’ve put together a list of cleaning and organization tips that’ll give you a functional space that makes life easier (to make life even easier, hire a professional cleaner to keep it clean and organized).

Mudroom Organization Tips

  • Clear out everything so you can efficiently deep clean and organize.
  • When you clear all the gear out of a mudroom, divide the items into piles (i.e. shoes, winter gear, winter jackets, hobby gear, sports gear, pet items, etc.)
  • Get storage solutions for each pile, such as containers for winter gear and a shoe rack for footwear. (For other ideas, check out this list of mudroom storage ideas.)
  • Add hooks and cabinets at “kid level” so kids can easily put their items away and hang up coats.
  • Maximize the space you have; hang cabinets, hooks, and shelves so they efficiently use space.

Mudroom Cleaning Checklist

  • Clean the ceiling and remove spider webs.
  • Wash the walls. (Walls in a mudroom can get dirty easily from gear and foot traffic.)
  • Clean duct covers.
  • Deep clean flooring.
  • Vacuum mudroom rugs.
  • Clean trim work.
  • Dust and sweep benches and shelves.
  • Wipe down hooks.
  • Clean containers (i.e. baskets, fabric drawers, etc.)
  • If you have asthma and can’t handle the dust, a bad back, or don’t have the time, hire a cleaning service to take on your mudroom organization so you can enjoy an organized and functional space.

Back-to-School Cleaning and Organization Tips

Smiling schoolboy with backpack ready for back to school looking at cameraWhere did the summer go? And how did it go by so fast? The first day of school is near (and coming too fast for most kids). In addition to buying school supplies, it’s time to tackle those other back-to-school cleaning tips that make a very busy time of the year a little easier (on everyone!).

Organize your mudroom.

Your mudroom is the front line for getting out (and in) the door easily every morning and evening. Ready it for all the back-to-school activity that is to come (use this helpful back-to-school checklist). Clean from the bottom up: floor, shelving, lockers, walls, and ceiling. Organize as you go, including making room for coats and shoes (all the back-to-school shoes!). Clean out any gear that doesn’t fit any more; less clutter gives you more room for the backpacks, sports equipment, and other back-to-school necessities.

Tackle the pile of laundry.

A student with a busy school day plus after-school activities needs a lot of clothes. Be ready with whatever gear your child needs for the school year; get as many clothes through the laundry room as possible (or hire a cleaning crew to launder and fold clothes). Once the school year starts, make sure to launder bedding before the cold weather hits.

Prep the homework area.

Don’t tell your student, but the start of the school year comes with homework (cue kid groan). Ready your preferred homework area for the task, whether it’s a table, desk, or another quiet area. Stock up on school supplies that are running low. Wipe and dust the surface so your student is focused on their homework—and not on sneezing.

Get EVERYTHING ready for the first day.

If you want to improve the odds of getting everyone out of the house smoothly, prepare for a smooth departure on the first day of school. Pack books and all school supplies in backpacks. Lay out clothes and shoes. Have the pantry stocked with your student’s favorite lunch foods or money available for a delicious first school lunch.

Make a list of cleaning tasks to be done during the school day.

An empty house is the perfect chance to tackle cleaning tasks and organization. Schedule a floor cleaning (perfect for days when foot traffic is low) or a deep clean. For more specific tasks, give your home cleaning service a list of tasks (here’s how to vet cleaning services and find the best one for your home). When your kids are at school, make cleaning a little easier by de-cluttering and removing items that don’t fit or aren’t used.

Restroom Sanitation Checklist

restroom signs pointing to bathroom where cleaners used restroom cleaning checklistNo business owner or manager wants to deliver the ultimate customer experience, only to lose repeat business because of a grimy restroom. To be sure, nothing repels and repulses customers faster than a dirty restroom. A filthy commercial restroom can also spur negative online reviews and mar an otherwise stellar relationship with your clients.

To avoid the negative consequences of a dirty business bathroom, a regular restroom deep cleaning and sanitation is a necessity. Instead of entrusting this important cleaning task to an employee, use this restroom sanitation checklist or outsource restroom deep cleaning to a local commercial cleaning company.

Counters

___Sanitize counters, sink bowls, and faucets with disinfectant.

___Clean mirrors.

___Wipe down paper towel dispenser.

___Clean hand dryers.

Restroom Stalls

___Disinfect trash receptacles in stalls and change bags.

___Clean entire toilet exterior (including handles).

___Disinfect urinals.

___Clean toilet bowls.

___Wash bathroom stall walls.

Other Restroom Areas

___Deep clean flooring and grout.

___Sanitize air duct covers and HVAC ducts.

___Dust and clean light fixtures and fans.

___Wash walls, baseboards, and ceiling.

___Restock restroom supplies (i.e. soap, paper towels, toilet paper, etc.).

___Replace trash bags in receptacles (i.e. stall, main trash, etc.).

___Clean trash receptacles.

Going on Vacation? Get these Home Cleaning Tasks Done

woman with suitcase after cleaning home before vacationYes! You’re going on vacation!

The countdown to vacation has begun, and you’re dreaming about all the fun. But before you head out to the serene beaches, create your own calm at home.

Think about it. There’s something to be said for coming home to a nice clean home, with the only item on the to-do list is to recover from your vacation.

Prioritization is the key. The time before a vacation can get fairly hectic, with a hurried rush to get packed and take care of any last-minute vacation prep. Tackle the cleaning tasks that need to get done first (or contact a cleaner so you can work or pack while they clean), and then roll up your sleeves and get those “it would be really nice to…” cleaning tasks done next (we’ve put the top priority cleaning tasks first on the list).

Wash dirty dishes.

If you don’t want to come home to mold and a nasty smell, wash your dirty dishes. Clean the sink out and wipe down the faucet.

Take out the trash.

A foul odor is not something to come home to. Remove bags from every garbage can in the home, such as the kitchen and bathrooms.

Clean out the refrigerator.

It’s amazing how fast items in the refrigerator can go bad, even when you’re only gone for a few days. Go through the refrigerator and pull out any items that would be unsafe to eat or drink, such as milk and fresh produce.

Wipe down the counters.

Ants and other pests can move in quickly, especially if you leave out temptations. Wipe down the counters to ensure that you don’t have to come home to pest extermination and cleaning.

Sweep the floors.

A floor full of debris can be just as much as an attraction for pests. Sweep the floors as thoroughly as possible and vacuum carpets. If you have time, mop the floors as well or contact a local cleaning service to give you a home of pristine floors you can come home to.

Clean the bathroom.

A clean bathroom definitely fits into the “it would be really nice to…” but it doesn’t have to be done. However, there’s no denying that a clean bathroom is a very nice luxury, giving you peace of mind while you’re away and one less thing to do when you get home. If you don’t have time, schedule a cleaner to get the job done while you are away.

Launder bedding.

Clean sheets feel and look great, and feel like heaven after a vacation. Launder all sheets and bedding before you go on vacation; make sure the bedding is hung up to dry or dry before you leave to prevent having to rewash the bedding.

Event Clean-up Tips

floor clean and ready for eventA grand opening, special event, or company picnic can be hugely beneficial for any business, but it can also be a colossal undertaking—especially when it’s time to return to business as normal. Event clean-up just adds to an already long facility maintenance checklist and requires more staffing time and resources. The event clean-up process doesn’t have to be lengthy or a major interruption to operations, however, especially if you follow these event clean-up tips.

Maintain the clean.

Before any event, an intense deep clean should be undertaken. Floors should be scrubbed and waxed (or the task should be outsourced to local floor cleaning professionals during off hours). Restrooms should be sanitized and restocked. The front lobby should be dusted and polished. During the event, take steps to maintain that deep clean. Hire day porter services for cleaning and restocking restrooms or allocate staff members specifically for the task. Put out a large amount off trash cans for guests to ensure that litter is not an issue and the clean-up is less labor intensive.

Organize materials for a clear clean-up process.

As much as possible, organization is key to an efficient event clean-up. During set-up, items get thrown haphazardly into storage closets and back rooms. This leads to a long take down and clean-up process as items are searched for. Or possibly worse, items are left wherever they were put, leading to storage and disorganization issues.

Outsource as needed.

The preparation and post-event cleaning checklist can get long; analyze costs to determine whether it is more cost-efficient to pay for additional staff hours or to outsource to a local cleaning service. If cleaning is needed during off-hours, such as an intense floor waxing when staffing is low, make sure the cost of overtime or late shift is used in calculations.

Be conscientious.

Moving large items is often part of event clean-up and take down; make sure that care is taken to protect doorways and walls. Assign conscientious staff members for moving or outsource the task so the clean-up is as successful as the event.

6 Tips for Cleaning the Allergens Out of Your Home

young woman sneezing into a tissue with really bad indoor allergiesAllergies can turn perfectly pleasant days into not-so-pleasant days. The sneezing, wheezing, runny nose, and itchy eyes can be a real annoyance, especially when you want to enjoy the warm temperatures. While you can’t get rid of the pollen or other seasonal allergens outside (unfortunately), there are cleaning steps you can take to keep those annoying allergens out of your home (and away from your body!).

Remove your clothes in the mudroom or laundry room before you enter.

The first step to keeping allergens out of the home starts as soon as you get home. Designate an “allergen area” where you can remove your clothes and bag them. Ideally this would be a mudroom or laundry room so the clothes can be laundered immediately. Removing and washing clothes before entering removes allergens on clothing so they are not brought into the home.

Use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter.

Regular vacuum cleaning is an important tactic in the allergy sufferer’s arsenal. Vacuuming removes allergens trapped in carpet and on furniture. Research every vacuum cleaner before you buy and select a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter (purchase a similar filter for your furnace so allergens are not circulated through the ducts). Vacuum regularly or outsource the task to a service that can stay on schedule.

Wear a mask when cleaning.

As you clean, wear a mask to protect your body from contact with allergens. Use a microfiber cloth which picks up and traps allergens. Make sure that you don’t leave any surface wet; moist environments can breed mold and other allergens.

Regularly launder bedding.

Even with removing clothes before you enter the home, allergens can still be carried into the home. Wash all bedding regularly, or hire a cleaning service to launder and make the bed so you don’t have to come into contact with allergens that cause your allergy symptoms to flare up.

Deep clean flooring.

Carpeting can trap allergens. Allergens can blow around on hard flooring, stirring up annoying allergy symptoms and making you miserable. Deep clean carpets and hard floors at least once a year, or more often if you have respiratory issues. If you don’t want to be present for the cleaning (and sneezing and wheezing and…), hire a professional cleaning service to deep clean floors while you are gone.

Don’t leave any corner uncleaned.

Allergens can get caught in the most unlikely places, so make sure that you don’t leave any corner untouched. Clean under couches, behind corner tables, under appliances, and under beds. Hire a cleaning service to tackle regular cleaning tasks on a regular basis so you can live virtually allergy symptom free.

What are day porter services?

office space in a facility where they are analyzing outsourcing or in-house cleaningDay porter services is a term used to describe a collection of services that keep almost every part of a facility clean and well-kept. Day porters provide behind-the-scenes maintenance without being overt about their duties; they keep every interior and exterior space presentable for clients and customers, and hygienic and neat for employees and visitors.

What are day porter services? What areas of a building are maintained via day porter services?

Day porter services are extensive, and can include (but are not limited to):

  • Picking up trash
  • Washing windows
  • Cleaning restrooms
  • Restocking restroom supplies
  • Mopping lobby floors
  • Power-washing parking lots and sidewalks
  • Cleaning counter tops
  • Removing trash and replacing garbage bags
  • Cleaning benches and dispensers in the parking lot
  • Water plants in containers and pots (interior and exterior)
  • Wiping down cafeteria tables
  • Cleaning kitchen
  • Washing and maintaining patio
  • Cleaning off seats and chairs
  • Conference room/event set-up
  • Alerting management to repairs and facility issues

Day porter services can be used on a daily or as-needed basis, such as during a large conference, grand opening, or customer event. Day porters work in the parking lot, patio, lobby, conference rooms, office areas, restrooms, kitchens, cafeteria, and hallways.

What facilities require day porter services?

Almost every different kind of facility may require day porter services. Some facilities outsource day porter services as a cost-saving measure over the cost of additional staff, while other companies contact cleaning services for event day porter services. Churches, hospitals, retail, and manufacturing facilities all may hire day porter services.

To get quality day porter services, use these guidelines for selecting the right cleaning service for the job. Make a list of day porter services that your company needs, and contact a local cleaning service for a customized, free quote.

Summer Home Cleaning Tips

happy young family have fun on swimming pool at summer vacationWhen the sun is shining and the summer temperatures start rising, it’s hard to find the motivation to clean your house. Who wants to clean when there’s so much to do? And so much fun to have outside? However, a clean house is imperative as you try to keep up with all the grill outs, vacations, sports schedules…(cleanliness is next to godliness, as the saying says). The list can go on and on, leaving you strapped for cleaning time. That’s when you should use these tips to maintain a clean house and a fun summer schedule.

Speed up your cleaning process.

There are a lot of small things you can do to speed up your cleaning process, such as carrying your supplies in a container (cuts down on trips back and forth), clearing out clutter, and other tips for faster cleaning we listed in a recent post. The faster you clean, the faster you can head out to enjoy the beautiful weather.

Bring in outside help when needed.

If you want to head outside sooner than later, hire a home cleaner to help take on some of the summer cleaning tasks you’re juggling. Contact a cleaning service with a list of cleaning tasks you need done (i.e. bathrooms, laundry, etc.), and enjoy the benefits of a shorter cleaning list.

Prevent the mess as much as possible.

An ounce of prevention can gain you hours of fun. Place mats and rugs by your doors to keep the mud at bay. Clean up after you cook as much as possible. Daily clean your shower doors.

Use bags for organization.

To keep up with all those activities you have scheduled AND try to keep your home clean, use bags to make sure you have everything you need when you need it. Unpack and reload those bags on a regular basis so you are ready for the next fun day.

Dine outside.

Al fresco dining has another advantage: it’s easier to clean up when you’re done. Take advantage of the warm temperatures as often as possible, and enjoy the advantages of a simple clean up.

Keep your laundry room ready to go.

Summer is a time for fun, and dirty shirts and shorts. Ready yourself for those unexpected surprises, and organize your laundry room so you can spot shot as soon as possible (or hire someone who can keep up with the laundry!).