Professionals answer the most common questions about hiring a cleaner

Hiring a cleaner can be daunting – our experts answer the six most common questions you have

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There are several reasons why someone might want to hire a house cleaner, be it that you need some help to get your home back in shape or are looking to take some of the mental and physical load off.

Whatever the case, hiring help can be daunting and even feel embarrassing, meaning it is hard to find the answers to some of the most common questions about hiring a cleaner without feeling overwhelmed. However, if you are constantly finding yourself trying to clean your house when you're too busy, professional help may be the perfect next step.

We asked professional cleaners the six most common questions people have about hiring a helping hand, so you can get closer to having a clean home without the added stress.

The most common questions about hiring a cleaner

One of the most common cleaning tips experts recommend if you find yourself cleaning when you feel overwhelmed is to consult professional help. This isn't just a ploy to get more business – a professional cleaner can really help to make a dent in your space, even if they just work on a room or two. 

This is what the experts have to say to the six most common questions about house cleaners that may be holding you back from making a decision. 

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1. Is there such a thing as too much mess for a professional cleaner?

When looking to hire a professional cleaner to deal with an overwhelming space, it can be easy to worry that they will take one look at your home and say ‘Absolutely not!’. This is very rarely the case, however, with only a few small caveats. 

'Professional cleaners are trained and paid to tackle the hardest of household cleaning tasks, so there is very little that is too much for them,' Shayne Jeramos, cleaning specialist at Bright Cleaners, assures.

‘Generally, no mess is too large; professional cleaners are trained to handle a wide range of household cleaning tasks. Of course, some cleaners specialize in extreme situations like hoarding or post-disaster cleanup with the only limitation being potentially hazardous materials or conditions that require specialized handling,’ she explains. 

‘Be honest about the state of your home for the right services and pricing. In extreme cases, a pre-clean assessment might be necessary.’

Shayne Jeramos
Shayne Jeramos

Shayne Jeramos has been a cleaning specialist at Bright Cleaners for over 2 years and has extensive experience with residential and cleaning services. 

2. Do cleaners bring their own supplies?

'In most cases, you don’t need to worry about stocking up with the ultimate cleaning supplies list before you hire a house cleaner. Usually, they will pick and use their own supplies to ensure your home is spotless,' says Angela Rubin, cleaning expert and owner of Hellamaid. These can vary from chemical-based products for tough tasks to eco-friendly cleaning agents and equipment. 

‘That being said, many are flexible and willing to use your preferred supplies if communicated in advance,’ Angela assures – making hiring help accessible even if you have specific product requirements due to allergies or health issues. ‘Ensure to discuss this aspect during the initial consultation to align expectations.’

Angela Rubin
Angela Rubin

Hellamaid is an award-winning cleaning company in Canada that has been featured on multiple global media brands.

3. How long does house cleaning take?

If you are hiring help, it can be tempting to think that a professional will be able to clean a house fast, but how long it takes will vary depending on a few important factors, explains Karina Toner, operations manager at Spekless Cleaning:

‘The size of your home is a significant influencer – a larger space generally requires more time to clean thoroughly. The current state of your home also affects the cleaning duration; if it's well-maintained, the cleaning process is likely to be faster than if there's a significant build-up of dust and clutter.

‘Other factors include the presence of pets, as their fur and dander may require additional attention. A cluttered place may take longer to clean as items need to be moved around before you can access certain areas or surfaces.

‘All in all, the time required for house cleaning really should be a customized estimate that takes into account the unique needs of your home.’

Karina Toner
Karina Toner

Karina is the Operations Manager at Spekless Cleaning, a trusted maid service based in Washington D.C. The team has over five years of experience providing top-quality cleaning services for both residential and commercial clients.

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4. Why do I feel embarrassed about hiring a cleaner?

'Feelings of shame or embarrassment about the state of your home are some of the major signs it's time to declutter and clean up. When these feelings weigh down on you and make you feel like you need help, it is the perfect time to hire a professional – not feel worse,' encourages cleaning expert Angela Rubin.

‘You should never feel embarrassed about hiring help,’ she begins. ‘Hiring a professional cleaner is a pragmatic choice and a common practice for individuals with busy schedules or those seeking a well-maintained home. It's about valuing your time and investing in a clean, healthy living environment.’

5. How much does a professional cleaner typically cost?

Of course, there is no beating around the fact that hiring a professional house cleaner will likely cost more than buying the products and cleaning your home yourself, meaning it might not be the best choice if you are prioritizing saving money at home. However, hiring professional help will ensure the job is done properly and thoroughly without adding more tasks or stress to your week. 

Parveen Garg, professional cleaner and manager at Ola Clean, explains that the costs will typically vary depending on the size of the space, the state of the space when the cleaner starts, whether or not you have any specialized services or hazardous cleaning, and the area you live in. 

‘Cleaners can charge rates depending on the circumstances,’ he says. ‘Some choose to charge hourly rates for specific tasks. Others may prefer flat fees once they have assessed a space for a one-time cleaning, while others will set up a fee for continual cleaning that can be pre-agreed. Setting up a contract with a cleaner can sometimes work out cheaper than having a one-time clean.’

Parveen Garg
Parveen Garg

Parveen Garg is a dedicated and experienced Manager in the cleaning business, specializing in leveraging my extensive knowledge of cleaning practices and products to ensure exceptional cleanliness solutions. With 4 years of experience, he possesses a deep understanding of the industry and excels at leading teams to deliver outstanding results.

6. How do I find the right house cleaner for me?

When you are picking a house cleaner, it is important to pick someone that you can trust, that works well in your space, and that you can build a good relationship with. How to do that? A lot of research, cleaning expert Karina Toner says: 

‘Start by asking friends, family, or neighbors for recommendations – word of mouth is often a reliable way to find trusted cleaning services. You can also explore online reviews and testimonials to gauge the experiences of others,’ she suggests.

‘When narrowing down your options, consider what other people are saying about the customer support they received, especially when issues arise after a service. A reliable and responsive cleaner is a crucial aspect of a positive cleaning experience, ensuring that any issues or questions you may have are promptly addressed.

‘Consider the specific services offered by different cleaners and ensure they align with your cleaning needs. Don't hesitate to ask about their cleaning products, methods, and any customizable options they offer to ensure they meet your expectations.

‘Finally, it's best to prioritize cleaners who are licensed, bonded, and insured. This ensures that you're working with professionals who meet industry standards and provides you with added protection and peace of mind.’

FAQs

What questions should I ask a prospective house cleaner?

When contemplating hiring a house cleaner, it is best to ask prospective candidates for their rates, references, and whether they use their own products. If so, which products do they use to check for any allergens or fragrances that may irritate. 

Once you have hired a cleaner, you can then discuss the schedule if it is more than a one-time thing, how they will access your home, which areas they will and won't work in, and if they have any requests for you to make their job a little simpler (i.e. putting certain things like personal effects away).  

How do you trust a cleaner?

When hiring a house cleaner to come into your home, it can take a while to build up full trust. The best way to build trust easily is to work with a reputable cleaner with good references (preferably from people you know), or that works with a reputable agency. From there, building a relationship with that cleaner will make it feel less awkward, helping them to feel comfortable in your home and allowing you to trust them with your belongings.  


Whether or not you have a one-time clean or continue to employ a house cleaner will largely depend on your circumstances. A good approach would be to hire a cleaner for a one-time clean and judge how much having an extra set of hands makes a difference to your week. If it reduces your stress and makes you feel more comfortable at home, then you can go about employing them more permanently. 

Chiana Dickson
Writer

Chiana has been at Homes & Gardens for a year, having started her journey in interior journalism as part of the graduate program. She spends most of her time producing content for the Solved section of the website, helping readers get the most out of their homes through clever decluttering, cleaning, and tidying tips – many of which she tests and reviews herself in her home in Lancaster to ensure they will consistently deliver for her readers and dabbles in the latest design trends. She also has a first-class degree in Literature from Lancaster University.