House Cleaning Services: The Pros And Cons Of Cleaning Homes For A Living

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My name is Charity Cummings, and I am currently self-employed cleaning homes for a living.

In my experience of cleaning and being self-employed, there are some ups and downs to this business.

In case anyone’s interested in starting a cleaning business, I thought I’d share some of the things I learned along the way. Plus, some of the differences between working for a cleaning company vs being self-employed with your own cleaning service.

How To Get Started

Here’s how it went for me…

I first started cleaning as an occupation when I was 16 years old. I had a job as housekeeper at a local hotel. I did that for awhile, then I moved on to working for individuals who were working for themselves cleaning homes.

I really enjoyed the work that I was doing but I saw greater potential if I were to start my own business. I wanted more.  So I started by placing an ad in the local newspaper. It went slowly at first, but finally I  received a call.

I worked hard, and over a period of about a year my business had grown to over 20 clients.

I learned some valuable lessons along the way.  Plus, there are differences in working for a company  and being self-employed.

Working For A Company vs Being Self-Employed
If you work for a company, there are some good things like not having to worry about taxes, making schedules, and firing or hiring workers. You simply have to show up to work and do your work.

On the other hand, if you’re self-employed, you are your own boss. Therefore, you make decisions on when you work and when you don’t. If you’re working for a company, you may not have that kind of flexibility.

Plus, as a company employee, there will probably be a set hourly rate that you work for — meaning that you only get paid for exactly how many hours you work. However, if you are self-employed, you decide what your wages are for the work that you do.

So, if you would rather let someone else do all of the paperwork, then maybe self-employment is not for you. But, if you think you would enjoy the freedom of working when you want and being able to take vacation when you want, then here are a few tips to get you started.

How To Be A Self-Employed House Cleaner

  • First of all, get out there and spread the word that you are starting your own business.
  • Take pride in in your work and always do your best to please your customer.
  • Give a follow-up call to ask if they were pleased with your services. If the customer is happy with your work they will more than likely recommend you to other people.
  • Always be honest and trustworthy.  People want someone that they can trust to come into their home.
  • Be professional at all times. You want to make a good impression to your customer, and anyone else who might see you arriving or leaving someone’s home.
  • Be firm but fair when pricing jobs. Make sure to take into consideration what time and money you have already invested to complete the job at hand.
  • Keep track of all the money that you have made, products you bought, and mileage on your vehicle throughout the year — you will need that information for tax purposes.

If you are considering cleaning for living remember this: Take what you are passionate about and run with it. The doors are right in front of you all you have to do is open them.



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I'm a professional house cleaner. I have been self-employed for the past several years, and I thoroughly enjoy cleaning houses for a living. Yes, it can be very tiring, but I find that it can be very rewarding, too.

4 thoughts on “House Cleaning Services: The Pros And Cons Of Cleaning Homes For A Living

  1. Hi Charity! I am a full time college student and I am considering working as a housekeeper after classes but I don’t know how to advertise. Any tips?

  2. hello,im a single mom and i am considering starting a cleaning business ,but dont have big start up cost .is ins. and bond be a big issue in starting the business

    1. chemalie – you will get more business (and more money) if you’re licensed, bonded, and insured:
      However, it’s completely up to you as to how you want to run your business.
      You won’t be able to charge as much as others who are insured and bonded, so you’ll actually have to work harder to earn as much money.

      Here’s some more helpful advice regarding bonding and insurance before starting a cleaning business:

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