Hourly Rate for House Cleaning

As a company that is new to commercial cleaning company business, estimating the price quotation for a house cleaning gig is no simple decision. Certain factors need to be considered to ensure you are charging the right price on your services. 

One question that comes up regularly, especially for service businesses that are just starting out, is “how do I charge for my services?”. 

Before answering this question, it is important to understand that there are different payment methods employed in service businesses. 

Some prefer one time payments, and many others prefer systematic remittance. Examples of this are charging hourly rates, daily rates, or per a particular metric.

In this article, our emphasis will mostly be on the hourly rates to charge for house cleaning gigs.

Let’s quickly mention that this article is not just for business owners. Every home owners can also use the services of a commercial cleaning company. 

Maybe you hosted a big party at your home or just completed a full-house renovation, you will need someone to take off the cleaning burden due to the aftermath of these events and that is where commercial cleaning services come in. 

So it is essential for you, as a potential client, to understand how commercial cleaning  pricing works.  

How much to charge for house cleaning?

House cleaning can be divided into two categories; regular cleaning and deep cleaning. Regular cleaning entails carrying out light-weight cleaning of the house. It’s undemanding and doesn’t take much time. Regular cleaning needs to be carried out daily to prevent the exposure and accumulation of dirt and germs.  

On the other hand, deep cleaning involves an in-depth or thorough cleaning of the house from top to bottom. In this case, you have to completely hose down every nook and cranny of all the rooms and corners ensuring that the whole place is spotless, sterile, and squeaky clean.

Obviously, deep cleaning will cost more because it takes more time, energy, and resources to pull off. That’s where hourly rates become practicable.

Many cleaning companies charge hourly because it justifies their efforts if calculated accurately. The median cost for a typical house cleaning operation falls between $90 and $150. On average, the national hourly rate for each cleaner is between $25 and $90.

If you are the cleaning business and you pay your workers per job, you may have to put a few things into consideration before arriving at your hourly rate per job. 

Here are five crucial things you must do in order to come up with a practical hourly charge for your clients.


  • Case the environment. First and foremost, it is important to check out the location so as to catch a glimpse of what you are cleaning. Never estimate your rate through a phone conversation.


Many people make this mistake negotiating the cost of a job without actually inspecting the place in question. Later, they find out they need more supplies, more workers, and more time to handle the work. Since you already negotiated and agreed on a price, you are left with nothing after buying the supplies, paying your workers and other expenses. 

Check the location to ascertain the number of rooms, number of square feet, the time it would take to clean, and the number of workers it will need.  


  • Estimate the clean-up time. An hourly rate infers how much you will charge per hour. Generally, a thousand square feet will take you about 1½ hours to clean from head to bottom, depending on the number of furniture to carry or remove and the general layout of the space.


For a 3,000 square feet home, it will take you approximately five hours to clean. Some other factors also contribute to the hourly rate per job, such as the dirt situation of the house. First-time cleanings should cost more than vacant homes when you don’t have to move anything.


  • Calculate the labor costs. House cleaning also requires labor sometimes. Moving chairs, beds, stools, and tables should also be considered and incorporated in your hourly rates. 



  • Calculate payroll taxes. If you have a staff, consider what is called FICA taxes, which is about 18% of your labor cost. Find a way to include it in your hourly rate so you won’t lose all your profits.



  • Calculate other expenses. Other expenses, such as transport, supplies, office rent, maintenance, and damages, must be considered.


How much should I charge for cleaning per square foot?

There are many methods you can use to price your cleaning services. I can only recommend four different ways which include:

  • The Hourly rate. Which entails charging your clients per the number of hours you work. 
  • The Flat fee. Which involves charging a fixed rate based on the value of the services you provide to the client.
  • Room rate. For the room rate, the client is charged based on an average per room rate. Here, you have to consider the number of rooms in the house. 
  • Square foot rate. It involves charging a client based on the square foot figure. For instance, you offer $11.50 per square foot. 

So for a house of 30,000 square feet, you will charge $11.50 multiplied by 30,000. Perhaps, you decide to charge for cleaning per square foot; use the following suggestions as guidelines on how much should be charged for cleaning per square foot.

Generally, choosing to charge house cleaning per square foot is a big decision because some things have to be considered. You have to consider the number of hours it will take, the labor cost, amid other things. 

However, for houses less than 1,000 square feet, you can charge between $90 and $100. For apartments up to 3,000 square feet, you can charge between $250 and $300

How much should a housekeeper get paid hourly?

Certain residential houses may require a housekeeper to work daily. Offering them an hourly rate is your best bet. All you have to do is assign a cleaner to their homes every day and charge them per number of hours the housekeeper works. 

A housekeeper is entitled to a minimum wage of $7.25 per hour by the federal government. The average hourly rate a housekeeper receives nationwide is $11.84, with a minimum cost of $9 and $17 maximum. 

How much do professional cleaning services charge per hour?

As a cleaning company, it is recommended you inquire about the hourly rate of professional cleaning services in your neighborhood before deciding yours. Many experts and experienced cleaning services offer as low as $75 and as high as $100 per hour for two cleaners.

If you are going to estimate per square foot, you can say about $0.10 per square foot. So cleaning a 3,000 square feet apartment, you will charge 0.10 multiplied by 3,000, which is $300 per visit.


This article took a two-pronged attack by addressing two different parties; the consumer and the entrepreneur getting into the housecleaning business. 

The consumer needs to understand how typical cleaning companies calculate their hourly rates to avoid getting ripped off. And also, the cleaning company needs to understand the right way to calculate its hourly rate. 

Use the guidelines highlighted in this article to try and estimate an hourly rate that will appeal to both parties.

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