TIPS ON MAINTAINING A GOOD RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR HOUSE CLEANING SERVICE PROVIDER

House cleaning. It is the bane of our existence at times since our parents made us clean our rooms to the current weekly ritual of scrubbing everything down. Let’s face it, house cleaning is a lot of work and sometimes we don’t have time for it. This is where hiring a house cleaner can work for you, but don’t hire just anyone. There a lot of cleaning services in Ottawa, so you will need to know how to pick the best one for you.

If you want a smooth relationship with any of Ottawa’s cleaning services, then please keep these 8 tips in mind:

1. Be realistic. Okay, you are a family of four with two dogs and a long hair cat and you want your house spotless, but you want it done in 30 minutes. That probably isn’t a realistic expectation. Can that family of four get their house spotless? Absolutely, but it will take longer than 30 minutes. If you discuss your goals with your prospective house cleaner, then that person should be able to give you an estimate of the time involved cleaning a particular house. It is fine to shop around and pick the best cleaning service in Ottawa, but make sure you know a cleaner isn’t a magic wand; a house cleaner is a professional who will take the time to finish the job to your needs.

2. Decide what products you want used for your house cleaning. Do you want pet friendly and child safe material only? Is going green important to you? Do you have an allergy to a cleaner that smells like flowers? Maybe you miss the smell of your grandmother’s cleaning tool (aka bleach) and you only want that used. Make sure you know what you want your house cleaned with, or, at the very least, what you do not want your house to be exposed to while cleaning.

3. Know how to hire a house cleaner. As stated already, they’re a lot of house cleaners in Ottawa. What makes each of them stand out from the other is a matter of preference, but there are some things you want to really consider. Does the cleaner have a license to clean? Are they bonded? Do they have great reviews? Do you feel safe with them? Is there a contract that you can look over the terms before signing? When you hire a house cleaner, you are hiring a stranger to literally go through your dirty laundry. Make sure there is trust in your decision.

4. Be clear from the beginning. If you want someone to clean your house every day with a tooth brush, then make sure that is what the cleaner agrees to before starting. If you want someone to vacuum every other week and dust every week, then make sure that is agreed upon up front. It might be okay with some cleaners to do a special cleaning for a party or something, but make sure the person (and you) knows what to expect each week. This also brings us to #5.

5. Cleaners are people too. That’s right. This one should be automatic to know, but sometimes we forget in the hustle and bustle of our lives that the people we hire aren’t robots, but rather people who need to be treated with respect. The cleaner is not your butler. Do not have them babysit the kids (that is just a bad idea for all involved. Would you have a plumber babysit while fixing a pipe? Then why would you leave your kids with a cleaner?). Do not have them cook or anything else. Cleaners clean. Also, make sure your house is welcoming. Is a dog barking at the cleaner? Maybe make sure the dog is tied up and away while the cleaner is over. Are your kids playing rough and want to include the cleaner? Please don’t let the person you are paying to clean become a jungle gym. Also, if you are having a bad day—do not take it out on someone else. I know, most of this should go without saying, but there have been a number of instances where an employer stepped over the line with their worker.

6. Trust. You are having a stranger come into your house and clean your items. This can be nerve wracking for you and for the cleaner. Do you trust the person to clean while you are away? If you can’t trust someone to do your house cleaning, then you have the wrong cleaner. This goes back to #3 and finding someone licensed.

7. Communication. When I had a house cleaner, the key to our successful relationship was communication. If she did a great job, I would tell her (and usually tip). If she needed to touch a spot up again, I would tell her that too. If you like something give a compliment; if you think something could be done differently, then tell them—politely—how you would prefer it to be done. Remember, you are unique. Your cleaner is unique. Just because you like something done one way, doesn’t mean the cleaner’s other clients like it the same way. If you tell your cleaner your expectations, then you can avoid a lot of frustration.

8. “I don’t do windows”. It is punch line to many jokes about house cleaners, but it can hold true. There are certain things some cleaners just do not want to clean at all. For example, some house cleaners are okay with cleaning the litter box of a cat and some are not. This is why it is important to have great communication and see, from the beginning, what is acceptable and what isn’t for your house cleaning routine.

Remember—hiring a house cleaner is a relationship. A relationship goes two ways. If you are open and honest, then there is no reason you shouldn’t find the perfect house cleaning solution for you in Ottawa.

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