4 Things to Consider When Budgeting for a House Cleaner

Sharon Greenthal
Written by Sharon Greenthal
Updated October 5, 2021
Female cleaner mopping bedroom floor
alfa27 – stock.adobe.com

Figuring out if hiring a house cleaner is worth it for you may come down to whether you think time equals money

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Hiring a house cleaner can be a great decision for you and your family. You can stop spending hours each week doing household chores and spend that time doing things you enjoy instead. However, deciding whether hiring a house cleaner fits into your budget—and knowing who to hire—is a personal decision. 

Before deciding to spend your hard-earned money on bringing a professional cleaner into your home, you’ll want to consider these four essential factors.

1. Can You Afford to Hire a Cleaner, and Is It Worth the Money to You?

The average cost of a house cleaner will vary depending on where you live and the size of your home. The national average for a house cleaner is $120 to $235 to clean an entire house.

The first question to ask yourself is if you can spare that much each month (or more often). If you can, hiring a house cleaner will then depend on whether you think it’s worth the money to get some free time back and know that your home is in the hands of a qualified cleaning professional.

Ask yourself these questions: What is your time worth? Do you want to spend it keeping your home tidy? The average homeowner spends between four and seven hours a week cleaning their home, and most don’t feel that that’s enough time to get everything done. 

If you’d rather not spend your free time mopping and you have the budget, then hiring a house cleaner could be the right decision for you. If you have to stay on a strict spending plan, you may want to keep tackling cleaning on your own for a while. Alternatively, you can also hire a house cleaner to come less frequently and only tackle certain jobs.

Note: Tipping the cleaners who come to your home is always a nice gesture, so be sure to factor that into your budget too.

2. Do You Want to Hire a Cleaning Service or an Individual?

cleaning team in uniform cleaning living room
alfa27 – stock.adobe.com

There are pros and cons to hiring either a local cleaning service or an individual house cleaner. Picking the right one for you can help you make an informed decision.

Cleaning Service Pros:

  • A team of people comes to clean and does the job quickly

  • Services have worker’s compensation and liability insurance (check with any service you hire for this)

  • They provide all of the cleaning supplies and tools

  • They’ll send substitute cleaners if your regular team is unavailable

Cleaning Service Cons:

  • There is little opportunity for special requests

  • Services are generally more expensive

  • If you cancel last minute, there is a fee

  • Your house cleaners may change frequently

Individual House Cleaner Pros:

  • You will be more likely to develop trust and a rapport with one person than a variety of people

  • You can pick and choose what products they use in your home

  • There is more flexibility about what gets cleaned during each visit

Individual House Cleaner Cons:

  • It’s unlikely an individual will have the extensive insurance needed to cover accidents or breakage

  • If you hire one person, there is no one to step in if they get ill or otherwise cannot work

Whichever option you choose, make sure the person or house cleaning service you work with is well-vetted, reliable, and gives you references. Hiring the right cleaning pro for you will make all the difference.

3. How Often Will You Need Your House Cleaned and Where Will You Be?

Determine how often you would like a house cleaning pro to clean your home and how this fits into your budget. Keep in mind, though, that generally, the more often you have a house cleaner to your home, the less it will cost per visit.

If you opt for a house cleaner once a week—the most common frequency—it will often be less expensive per visit than if you hired them once per month, since most cleaning services offer discounts for more sessions. For example, it’s likely if you were to hire a service to clean your house once a month, it would be $200 per session, but if you sign on to have someone come once a week, the weekly fee would be $150.It’s worth speaking with a cleaning pro about your unique needs and budget to work out a plan that works best for you.

You’ll also want to think about when you’d like them to come during the week or month. As you grow more comfortable with your house cleaner, you will probably want to leave while they are in your home vacuuming, dusting, and moving furniture around. A good, reliable house cleaner or service will be trustworthy, and you’ll feel comfortable handing over a key or giving them the code to your keypad lock. 

It’s also a good idea to clear away clutter and put away as much of your family’s stuff as possible before your house cleaner arrives so they can focus on actually cleaning. Be sure to schedule house cleaning when you can make time for that little bit of preparation.

4. What Are Your Priorities for Your House Cleaner?

It’s best to make clear from the start what your priorities are for your house cleaner or cleaning service. For example, you may want your floors washed thoroughly every visit instead of a quick mop and vacuum, or you may need special attention paid to dusting, especially if there’s someone in your house with allergies.

Most house cleaners don’t do laundry or empty the dishwasher, but if that’s something you want help with, you should ask and see if you can work something out with either the service or the individual you hire. Making sure you’re aligned on what tasks you value most can ensure a cleaning service is well worth your money.

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