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How long should it take to clean a house?  

Posted by julieg (julieg), 5 December 2003
My second question today. I started a residential cleaning business in Sept. On average it takes me on my own 3-4 hours to clean a 3 bed house. The competition (well known franchise and others too) claim to be able to clean a 3 bed house with a team of two in one hour so 2 man hours. They claim to hoover, mop floors, clean kitchen and bathroom and dust knick knacks, remove cobwebs, clean skirting boards, wipe window sills. Maybe I am being too thorough. I don't want to provide a sub standard service, but these companies are reputable. Am I missing something?


Julie G
Posted by martin_606 (martin_606), 5 December 2003
I do one-off cleans for letting agents so I go deep..

Deep, deep undercover!

A 2 bed house for me would take about 6 hours, but this includes the oven, bathroom, all kitchen units and fridge if there is one, washing machine, carpets etc etc etc.

It takes longer but the financial reward is greater Grin

Really don't want to get into domestic, hourly opart of the biz if i can help it, personal choice.


Martin Cool
Posted by Mike_Boxall (Mike_Boxall), 5 December 2003
Hi Julie

I wouldn't worry too much about it - what people say they can do and what they actually do are 2 different things entirely.

Many people say that productivity actually decreases with the number of people working i.e. 2 people working together get less work done than 1 working twice as long. The more there are the less productive they become. Not quite sure why though Undecided

Maybe you should actually promote the fact that you take more time over it because you pay more attention to detail. I don't think you can be too thorough!


Posted by RAINBOW69 (RAINBOW69), 6 December 2003

Doing a proper clean of a house, would take more than 2 people two hours. It's the quality of the service you provide. They are saying this to get the work, and knowing from experience this is what they are telling their cleaners. I once cleaned a two bedroom house top to bottom in four hours, two of us and that had no furniture in!. My advice visit the property, and stick to a price what you believe is fair price for the job. If they say they have had a lower quote and can you beat it walk away, or you will be working for nothing. They are price shoppers. Forget doing the mega-rich as they wouldn't part with the steam off their sh*t never mind their cash.
Posted by petra (petra), 7 December 2003
Six man hours for deep clean is about righ..that how long it takes us..
Posted by ScaryMARY (ScaryMARY), 7 December 2003
9 hours
Posted by domestix (domestix), 8 December 2003
Depends how big house is and what the client wants.  Obviously an empty house which is either being sold or re-let will take longer as it has to be spotless.

A normal domestic property of 3 beds should take between 3-4 hours.  Two cleaners do not do as much as if they leave 10 mins earlier it is actually 20 mins!  Also if they stop to chat it doubles the time etc.  Individual cleaners work at their own pace and they know if they have missed something out and can pace themselves accordingly.  We only supply 2 cleaners at large properties where there are lots of beds to change and lots of nooks and crannies.

Nothing wrong with being too thorough, just hope the clients appreciate it!

Posted by Musicman (Musicman), 8 December 2003
3 years and still not finished in my wife's case.

A woman's work...

Posted by macxbyford (macxbyford), 19 December 2003
[flash=200,200]I am a self employed "house-keeper". I work alone and all of my customers live in properties of 3 beds plus. In reality it should be moire staright forward to clean an empty building. I have to work round the clutter of messy teenagers and even though I have refused to polish the teenagers rooms (because of the amount of junk & clutter) i still have to waste time picking clothes, underwear, toys, games, shoes and rubbish off of the bedroom florrs before I can even vacuum the floor. A basic clean (no spring cleanind, washing paintork etc) takes me 3 hours. Roll Eyes[/flash]
Posted by A_to_Z_Clean (A_to_Z_Clean), 10 January 2004

2 hours ? wath they do use magic Huh

Don't worry - 3 bed flat regular weekly service 4h a week.

1 off is a another thing, i'm trying not to use time i'm pricing per job, but for last 2 bed flat with windows took team of two 12 hours( 2*6), and i'm going deep ( hi martin Grin Grin)

good luck
AtoZ Clean

Posted by martin_606 (martin_606), 10 January 2004
Hi Adam

Hows it going, not seen you on here for ages, hope you have beed busy. Hows the carpet cleaning going?

I did a 3 bed detachted just before xmas top to bottom and that took about 5 hours. just put a quote in for their carpets 75m+14 stairs (wool) fingers crossed.


Martin Cool
Posted by Ian_G. (Ian_Gourlay), 11 January 2004

What cleaning tasks did you carry out in 3 Bed detached

I mean what were you required to clean and what method and equipment did you use.

Just trying to get idea of typical job.


Posted by martin_606 (martin_606), 17 January 2004
Hi Adam

I hoovered and freshened the carpets top to bottom
cleaned all the windows inside and the garden patio at the back in and out. De-limescaled and sanitised the bathroom, wiped all mirrors, dusted all wooden furniture and staircase. cleaned out the oven, and wiped outside units, cleaned stone kitchen floor twice, de-gunked the washing machine, sanitised the kitchen, wiped down doors and any woodwork.

My typical clean needs...
industrial de-greaser (brillo)
industrial anti-bacterial
industrial limescale remover
TO4 oven cleaner (the business)
Shake and Vac
white dishcloths
and the most important ingredient...

Customer Service!


Martin Cool
Posted by petra (petra), 19 January 2004
I belive that time depend on who is working the job...we have different grades of cleaning teams, what takes some team's (of two) four hour another can do the same job to the same excellent standards in 2.5 hour. Less chat more sweat that's my motto

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