House cleaning can be a great way to start your own business. Not only do you get to set your own hours, but you can make good money doing it. Learning what to charge will help you stay competitive in the house cleaning market.
Compile a list of other local cleaning services. You can do this with a business phone book or with the Internet. Write down their names and phone numbers.
Research local cleaning prices. Call the numbers on your list and ask them what they charge. This will give you a good idea of how the cleaning market is doing in your area.
Figure out your average business expenses. Cleaning supplies like all-surface sprays, wash cloths and vacuum cleaners are an important part of the business. Don't forget to add in travel expenses to the clients' houses. Add them up to figure out how much you spend to clean a house with an average of four rooms.
Tally how much you need to make in order to live comfortably. Take rent, food and other services you pay for into consideration. Also add any money you want to put in savings or have as a surplus.
Add your average expenses to the amount of money you need to make at every house. Then, divide this by the amount of hours it takes to clean the house.
For example, you have £26 of work expenses per house, and you need to make £260 from each house you clean to cover your cost of living. If it takes ten hours to clean that house, you would charge £28 an hour.
Compare your hourly pay estimate from the previous step with the research you found in the first and second step. Are your rates similar to other house cleaning services? If they're lower, don't be afraid to raise your prices. If they're high, you may need to lower your rates to stay in competitive.
It's important to know how many houses you plan on cleaning each week. Then you will know if you're making enough each month. Some houses will provide their own vacuum cleaner. This shouldn't be a factor in what you charge, though.
When researching, stick only to competitors in your area.