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Home Businesses - Maid Service

How to Start a Maid Service or House Cleaning Home Business

By Ron Dicker

(LifeWire) - Overview of this Business

A maid service or house-cleaning service spruces up or scrubs down houses and offices, aiming to build a clientele for repeat business. Most maid services begin as home businesses. Entrepreneurs who want to make it a career may eventually hire others to do the actual cleaning, while they focus on managing and promoting the business. Success depends on the quality of the work given the rate charged. One Cincinnati-based service charges $80 for a two-bedroom, two-bath home, for example. To drum up business, maid services home businesses often try to focus on specific neighborhoods for convenience, scheduling and word-of-mouth referrals.

Pros of Maid Service Home Businesses

  • It's always in demand.
  • Expansion can be explosive after jobs well done.
  • The start-up overhead is low.
  • Cleaning gets easier with experience.
  • You can start the business while you work another job, and grow it at your own pace.
Cons of Maid Service Home Businesses
  • Cleaning is arduous, demanding basic fitness.
  • Some of the work can be disgusting; you are cleaning up after others, after all.
  • The cleaning field is crowded, making it perhaps tough to gain a foothold.
  • Men might have a tougher time earning trust when entering a new home.

What You Need to Get Started with Maid Service Home Businesses

  • Generate word of mouth by doing friends' and families' homes for free or at a discounted rate.
  • Find a reasonable insurer to get bonded and insured. Rates differ.
  • Have a website built or create one yourself. This reassures potential customers that you are professional. Websites can also be used to make appointments.
  • Market yourself through magnetic or vinyl signage on your vehicle, an ad on craiglist.org or in the local paper, and business cards and flyers to pass out and post anywhere possible. Referral discounts might help, too.
  • Many customers prefer you bring your own cleaning products, and some might want you to use eco-friendly products to wipe, scour and sweep.
  • Get free tax and accounting advice from an accountant friend or local small business bureau.

Maid Service Home Businesses: Real Life Example

Cincinnati-based Patti Page began Page's Personal Cleaning in 1998 and promoted it by using environmentally safe cleaning products, according to her company's website. Her service charges $150 for an initial cleaning of small homes, and $90 per visit weekly or bi-weekly.

LifeWire, a part of The New York Times Company, provides original and syndicated online lifestyle content. Ron Dicker is a New York-based freelance writer who covered sports for the New York Times from 1996 to 2005.
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