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Anyone have their own cleaning business?

I am thinking of jobs that I can set my own hours.
Cleaning homes comes to mind.
Never done this, besides my own.

Anyone doing this now?
How did you start?
What to avoid? What have you learned?

any other lob that you can think of, that I can set my own hours and make a descent, living wage? Doing the Party selling thing is not up my alley, as I do not have contacts.



Asked by fiatpax at 7:35 AM on Dec. 3, 2013 in Money & Work

Level 46 (221,572 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (11)
  • I do not have a cleaning business but had a sewing business out of my home for years. I also have a friend who had a cleaning business. Make sure it is something you love to do so it is pleasurable. My friend loves to clean, I love to sew. See what the going rate is in your area. Look at to see what people will pay. Use the pulldown to look at all the job categories. I believe you can look without registering at the site, but it is worthwhile even if you have to. Some women supply the cleaning products, some do not. So, that is a cost factor. I used to have a cleaning lady and she used my stuff. Taxes would be done as a sole proprietor/self emplyed so keep all receipts and your mileage so you can subtract your expenses from income at tax time. You want to start by telling all your friends you will be doing this. Post a sign at your local grocery store bulletin board. Have tabs that people can pull off

    Answer by silverthreads at 8:02 AM on Dec. 3, 2013

  • Be honest and provide the best service possible by being on time and thorough. You could also provide other services. has jobs in child care, companion/senior care, pet care, etc. You could pick among several and fill your week up. That is what I do now....some child care, some errands, and some senior care. GL

    Answer by silverthreads at 8:07 AM on Dec. 3, 2013

  • pleasurable... lol
    certainly cleaning is not that

    can sew as far as a straight line to take up a pair of jeans- that is far as my sewing skills go

    i can paint
    thought i would be good at painting murals in kids bedrooms- but can not see this as business, at least not easily

    supply and demand

    Comment by fiatpax (original poster) at 8:10 AM on Dec. 3, 2013

  • You might want to look into doing the murals if there are areas within reasonable driving distance that would support that. It would be harder to advertise it, but there is a market for it along with the sponged walls, etc. I mentioned doing something you love so you avoid "burn out". Best wishes

    Answer by silverthreads at 8:22 AM on Dec. 3, 2013

  • that thought crossed my mind also when i was cleaning my house the other day. i think if you want to do it you should get business cards printed up and leave them everywhere in your community to get your name out there.

    Answer by tnm786 at 8:30 AM on Dec. 3, 2013

  • I didn't have an actual business with a license and all but I cleaned houses on the side and got paid cash. I only did this for about a couple of months but my sister did it for years and was self-supporting as a single mom.

    Most ladies who hire a cleaning lady will want the house cleaned every other week, maybe once a week or month, and maybe an extra cleaning before a holiday. Rates vary. My sister and I charged less than the competition at an average of $75 for a 3 bedroom, 2 bath ranch-style house. We would typically clean bathrooms, kitchen, dusting, sweeping/mopping, vacuuming, laundered sheets in master bedroom or whatever is agreed on. You could charge more the first time to see how long a job will take and then give a discount if they let you clean every week or every other week and for a referral to another client.

    Answer by HHx5 at 9:29 AM on Dec. 3, 2013

  • is it a good idea to have a partner?

    not just to get job done faster, but for safety reasons? or am I being anal?

    Comment by fiatpax (original poster) at 9:37 AM on Dec. 3, 2013

  • I worked for Merry Maids and I would not be looking to di it again! Some of our housed were cakewalks really- seemed to be barely lived in at all, but some of them were HORRIBLE every time we went. I don't know what people DO in the two weeks between the cleanings but holy moly! We always went in teams of 2. Usually one did bathrooms and kitchen while the other did the dusting, floors...
    Some take way longer than others- depends on how dirty they are and how many knick knacks and things you have to dust and what kind of floors they had. Wood floors suck. Also if there are pets that leave a lot of hair...ugh

    First time in's were usually HELL and took way longer than our regular houses. People are also VERY picky and we had one guy who actually called the office to tell us we nissed a popcorn kernal. NOT kidding. We had to go back and re-do his kitchen floor. He was one of our worst.

    Answer by charlotsomtimes at 9:50 AM on Dec. 3, 2013

  • We also had a house we did every 2 weeks that had SO SO SO many little things to dust and had a lot of antique stuff, and they would literally follow us around and check EVERYTHING when we were done.

    not trying to steer you away from this, but just pointing out that it's hard work and people are picky. The worst generally seem to be people who never dusted in 30 years and when you do the cleaning for their holiday gathering they want to be all anal...

    also, be aware that things can and probably will get broken. I broke a glass ship once in a house that we always wondered why we were cleaning- seemed no one even lived in it. Weird...but yeah it shattered and I felt HORRIBLE

    *we did not do dishes or laundry, but you could if you want

    Answer by charlotsomtimes at 9:56 AM on Dec. 3, 2013

  • I would definitely start my own cleaning business. I haven't done it myself but if I did, I would call my Mom's friends to pass the word & ask if they know anyone looking for a cleaning girl. I think it's all really by word of mouth. Maybe go to a local Senior Center & pass out cards. They are always looking for a cleaning girl or just someone to drive them to Dr. appointments/shopping. My Mom has a cleaning girl & once a week she cleans the house then the other week she takes my Mom to appt.'s/shopping etc. My Mom pays her a lot!


    Answer by ILovemyPaulie at 10:16 AM on Dec. 3, 2013