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Tuesday's Ask the Experts: One-time cleaning

February 07, 2012
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Tuesday''s Ask the Experts question from a cleaning professional on the International Custodial Advisors Network (ICAN) "Ask the Experts" page: What should we charge for one time residential cleaning, and what should we charge for one a week residential cleaning? We start our employees at $9.00 per hour, and I have been charging $28.50 per hour, 4 hour minimum. Is this way out of bounds?

The answer:

You will need to establish your hourly billing rate to return a reasonable and required net profit. This is part of the pricing strategy needed to stay in business. With that said, I know of some residential contractors there in Arkansas who charge a few dollars an hour less than you do, with a $50 minimum. That doesn''t mean you will always be too high on your pricing. Somewhere between a double and triple markup (of labor cost) usually turns a good profit and yet remains competitive. Weekly work may need to be closer to a 2 1/2 markup, while one time can usually exceed a triple markup. Here is another pricing strategy ... — Gary Clipperton, president of National Pro Clean Corp.

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