7 Things Your Housekeeper Wishes You Knew

We talked to a professional about etiquette and how to build a good relationship.

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June 01, 2021
By: Caylin Harris
Hands in gloves disinfecting kitchen counter and wiping with paper towel against viruses


Hands in gloves disinfecting kitchen counter and wiping with paper towel against viruses

Photo by: zoranm/Getty Images

zoranm/Getty Images

Maybe you’re new to hiring a housecleaning service or maybe you just want to brush up on your etiquette, but there are some things to keep in mind to build a successful relationship with your housekeeper. We spoke with Alexis and Anthony Davis, co-owners of Home Maid NYC about basic some dos and don’ts that will help you get the results you need while building a good relationship with the person or company cleaning your home:

1: Work With Someone Reputable

Davis recommends working with a company that’s licensed, bonded, insured or properly certified. At the very least, ask for and follow up with references. You can also see if they’re registered with the Better Business Bureau.

2: Make Sure They Know About Pets

Make sure that whoever cleans knows about any and all pets you have — they need to make sure they send someone without allergies who is okay with your four-legged friends. “Overall, it’s easier for us to clean without pets in the rooms we’re working in. Talk to the company about their preference, but keeping them comfortably corralled in another room is helpful.”

3: You Don’t Need to Pre-Clean (but You Can Clean While We’re There)

You don’t need to give your bathroom a quick wipe down before the housekeeper comes. However, Davis mentioned that it’s much easier to get a room clean if personal clutter is removed from surfaces. Having things that need to be moved and organized can increase the cleaning price, so it’s best to tuck clothing out of the way and keep surfaces like desks and nightstands free from surface-covering clutter.

According to Davis, it’s not uncommon to have clients feel so motivated by clearing mess and dirt out of their home that they’ll start organizing in a different room. “I’ve seen clients do this, and it’s so nice to see how motivated they are. A lot of people feel bad that their home gets to a certain point, so to see them realize that it’s manageable and can be done is wonderful,” she says.

4: Be Transparent About Needs

While Home Maid NYC typically does an in-person or video walkthrough of a space to come up with an accurate price, it’s really important to be detailed about the current state of your home whether your service does that or not. “We don’t shy away from big hard jobs. But we need you to be honest about what you require and how long it might take,” says Davis. “Communication is the key to getting everyone on the same page. Be detailed so they know exactly what they’re about to face.” As long as your housekeeper knows what to expect, they can show up with the right tools and extra help if needed, and they will be able to spend the correct amount of time in your home.

5: Ask About What Products Are Used

There are so many cleaning product options, and since it’s your home you need to feel comfortable with what’s being used in it. “We’re an eco-friendly company and we bring our own supplies but ask whoever you hire what they’re using,” says Davis. “We’re also happy to utilize whatever products you have at your home as well, just make sure to talk about it beforehand so it’s agreed upon, and we can come prepared.”

6: Personality Fit Is Important

Considering this person will be in your home, you want to make sure you all have a nice rapport. “Make sure that the person is personable and understands what your needs are. You want to be able to talk to them, make sure they’re respectful and not rushing through,” says Davis. “Working with the same person also cuts down on having to reiterate needs and expectations.”

7: You Don’t Always Have to Tip

It depends on the company, obviously, and you can if you really want to. But, it’s important to check what the company policy is beforehand.

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