How much?

I occasionally see posts on social media lambasting the cost of residential cleaning.  It’s funny as I don’t think I have ever seen such posts criticising how much plumbers, electricians or builders charge – and they often have a charge just for turning up – the dreaded ‘Call Out’ charge.

When I see posts about how much is reasonable to pay someone to clean someone else’s home my thoughts are twofold, firstly I’m thinking; why don’t you do it yourself if you feel you are being asked to pay too much, and also why is a cleaner worth so, so, so much less than a plumber – do you do your own plumbing?

I, like you, know that plumbers, electricians and builders go through significant years of apprenticeship and on the job training to master the skills to become ‘qualified’ tradesmen and ‘Masters’, and the rates they charge are an accepted consequence of that – you don’t want any old Tom, Dick or Harry wiring up you house or plumbing in your toilet do you!

But all these businesses offer a service, one that you are free to accept or decline, if you think the plumber charges too much why not have a go at doing that burst pipe or blocked toilet yourself?

When you get your builders bill for the roof repair you couldn’t do yourself do you take to social media to bemoan how much you got charged for something you either cannot do yourself or you didn’t want to do yourself?

Whilst cleaners don’t do apprenticeships or long years of training, they do clean your toilet, and lots of other toilets, cleaning is hard graft because you expect your home to sparkle far better than if you were doing it yourself.

A cleaning business like any other business has overheads that contribute to the price you are charged, here are those I could think of in 15 minutes: –

  • Recruitment – (advertising/staff checks).
  • Staff uniform.
  • Staff pay – (plus provision for holidays/sickness/bereavement/absence cover).
  • Staff incentives/bonuses.
  • Training time & cost.
  • Cleaning equipment – (Vacuums/Mops/buckets/caddies/brushes/etc.).
  • Electrical equipment repairs.
  • Electrical equipment safety checks – (6 monthly).
  • Consumables – (scrubbers/latex gloves/dusters/cloths/etc.).
  • Product – (toilet cleaner/window cleaner/scale remover/disinfectant/etc.).
  • Computer operating system.
  • Accounting software.
  • Scheduling software.
  • Website management & hosting.
  • Accountant.
  • Insurances – (Public liability/Statutory liability/Commercial vehicle cover).
  • Office Equipment – (Computing/printer/telephone/filing cabinet/etc.).
  • Stationary – (Print toner/print paper/folders/labelling/pens/files/etc.)
  • Externally sourced printing – (Advertising material/business cards/etc.)
  • Vehicles – (Fuel/maintenance/vehicle replacement/WOF/Rego/AA cover).
  • Laundry.
  • Overdraft – (to allow for those long/late client payments).
  • Bank fees.
  • Advertising – (Facebook/Google/Neighbourly/Discount Cards).
  • Rework.
  • Waste disposal.
  • Workshop/business set up – (tools/desks/workbenches/storage/etc.).
  • GST, Tax (PAYE & Corporate), ACC.