How much do you pay for your windows being cleaned?

(114 Posts)
ameliagrey Wed 11-Jan-12 10:08:27

Outsides only. I pay £13 for a 4 bed house- 9 rooms in total I think, plus 2 doors- every 5-6 weeks.

I live SE north of London- Home Counties.

I feel this is quite £££ but am not sure. My biggest issue is that I don't really need them cleaning as often as they turn up. They don't do the sills and it takes 2 of them about 10 minutes!

Anyone else?

NeverKnowinglyUnderstood Wed 11-Jan-12 10:10:17

£15 he comes every 6 weeks.
18 windows I figure on about £1 per window,

dustyhousewithdustypeople Wed 11-Jan-12 10:10:49

£13 as well. Could you ask them to do yours every other round, so every 10-12 weeks?

KirstyJC Wed 11-Jan-12 10:12:16

You're supposed to clean them?!?

memphis83 Wed 11-Jan-12 10:12:23

In our last house 9 windows, 2 doors and a set of patio doors, they clean all the door, and sills and charge £4.50, in a rural village in Leicestershire.

memphis83 Wed 11-Jan-12 10:12:53

Wow seems we got it cheap!

Indith Wed 11-Jan-12 10:13:14

£4. NE though!

SaltireOShanter Wed 11-Jan-12 10:14:10

£6 for 7 windows, 3 doors and the patio doors. every 6-7 weeks

MoaningMinnieWhingesAgain Wed 11-Jan-12 10:15:08

£5. 6 windows inc 1 bay, they don't do doors here! They come when they feel like it about once a month

TheRhubarb Wed 11-Jan-12 10:16:21

We had a windowcleaner come round when we had just moved in and the outside of the house was very grotsome. He charged £12 for 8 windows, 2 doors and a set of French doors. We were then kinda sucked into him coming every month but I recently told him to just come and do them every 3 months.

He doesn't even use a ladder, just an extendable pole with a squeezy thing on top. After seeing what others charge I'm now feeling ripped off and will cancel. I'm sure we can live without.

ClaimedByMe Ghana Wed 11-Jan-12 10:17:34

£4.50 for 8 windows 2 doors and plastic stuff under the window in the front room every 4 weeks, we have decking in the back garden and if it's too wet and slippy for his ladders it only costs half the price, we are in Scotland!

ameliagrey Wed 11-Jan-12 10:18:03

Sounds as if I am paying a lot- unless everyone else is very rural or northern- my mum is NE and pays about £3!!!

On the other hand my BF is central London W1- and pays about £50!

spicyorange Wed 11-Jan-12 10:18:32

I pay 3 pound every 3/4 weeks. Live in a normal terreced 3 bed house.

ameliagrey Wed 11-Jan-12 10:20:18

Locations as well ladies- it does make a difference!

irregularegular Wed 11-Jan-12 10:20:23

We pay by the hour, but I can't remember how much. 12 pounds per hour maybe? Last time we paid 36 pounds. There are two of them and 1.5 hours sounds about right. There are a lot of tricky windows. Fortunately they don't come very often as they are so busy. I wouldn't want to pay that every month.

Rather bizarrely, one of them told us this week that she just finished her MA in Literature, but plans to carry on cleaning windows!

NoMoreCakeOclock Wed 11-Jan-12 10:21:39

5 pounds every fortnight. We have 8 windows, patio doors and the glass on the front and back door.

I think it's cheap.

Seona1973 Wed 11-Jan-12 10:23:10

our is £5 - 4 bed detached house with bay window at the front and extra window due to garage being converted into a playroom

hct123 Wed 11-Jan-12 10:27:35

£20 Herts

TheRhubarb Wed 11-Jan-12 10:28:41

irregular - if she gets paid that much I'm not surprised she wants to continue! Unless your home is Buckingham Palace I don't see how cleaning windows, no matter how tricky they are, will take one and a half hours. By your calculations that means that last time they visited they charged you for 3 hours? Or do you pay BOTH of them £12 an hour?
Shit, I might take up this job myself, it sounds a lucrative business.

I think most of us are being ripped off.

thenightsky Wed 11-Jan-12 10:31:29

14 windows.
2 doors
2 lots of french windows

£14

Village in rural Lincolnshire.

TeamEdward Wed 11-Jan-12 10:33:26

We were quoted £12 for a "Pureclean" window wash. I'm presuming that is front and back? Front only would be 2 large windows, one smaller window and a glass porch.
We're on south coast.

£7 for 3 bed detached (about 8 windows and a set of patio doors).

Town in North Wales.

breathedeeply Wed 11-Jan-12 10:35:39

£7 per month (3 bed house) in Bucks.

2 big bay windows,
5 other windows,
and a glass panelled shack "conservatory"

£12 in the SE.

Pudden Wed 11-Jan-12 10:39:34

£5 in ne england

porch
2 bay windows
sun room
patio doors
5 other windows

TimothyClaypoleLover Wed 11-Jan-12 10:39:42

£9.50 for 3 bed semi in SE.

Runoutofideas Wed 11-Jan-12 10:39:48

£13 for 3 bed semi - He does do the conservatory and its roof as well though - Bristol

laineylou Wed 11-Jan-12 10:42:58

£16 every 6 weeks or so. 5 bed (12 windows 3 doors) house in SE.

iwantavuvezela Wed 11-Jan-12 10:48:32

25 for 3 bedroomed house in london

Gigondas Wed 11-Jan-12 10:53:00

We have been done - 8 windows patio doors and 2 smallish conservatory roof and it's a lot more than irregular . I know they have to use ladders but it's a half hour job.

Flisspaps Wed 11-Jan-12 10:53:03

£20 for 12 windows and a door (Telford)

I thought at the time it was bloody pricey hmm He's been backed and knocked since to see if I want them doing again, he was told no.

Fo0ffyShmo0ffer Wed 11-Jan-12 10:57:31

8 windows
No doors.

£4 per fortnight.

In the North West.

MrsKitty Wed 11-Jan-12 11:03:20

£9 for 4 bed house, including attic conversion (the flat to the roof type windows - can't remember what they're called blush ) front & back.

I asked him to only come every other month. Figured they'd barely been cleaned in the 3 years previous, so only having them done every other rather than every month wasn't going to cause me too much distress!

We're in Cardiff

RachelHRD Wed 11-Jan-12 11:10:50

£15 in South East for 3 storey 4 bed:
1 x bifold doors width of house
2 x patio doors - 1 with glass panels above
1 x triangular 3rd floor window!
2 x standard windows
front door glass panels

PestoHurricano Wed 11-Jan-12 11:16:28

£10 for a monthly window clean here - Brighton outskirts

4 bed house including patio doors and front door glass aswell

jen127 Wed 11-Jan-12 11:24:22

40 euros angry
we have about 12 windows as he can't reach the back two above the conservatory ......

£10 every month, when a swarm of men arrive - 4 bed bungalow, with granny flat underneath (we're built on a hill). 13 Windows, small set of patio doors, 5 other doors with inset window thingies, . We're in the wilds in Central Scotland.

Shit,I am overpaying tooshock
5 windows,1 small bay window,1 set of french doors,2 velux kitchen windows.
In NW,£13.50!!!Every month.
Trouble is he's a really nice guy & I hate cleaning windows but now I've seen what everyone else is payinghmm

We have recently got a quote for £17 for our 4 bed house every 6 weeks. I also live in SE, home counties.

Think it is a rip off, am going to speak to someone along the street, saw their window cleaner this morning, so will ask what they pay.

Just counted our windows - 11 windows, 2 glass doors.

mustdash Wed 11-Jan-12 11:41:40

28ish windows, three sets of french doors. Just gone up to £40 a month! We had a lovely bloke do it for £15, but he got fed up with how long it was taking. We're on the coast, so the windows get really salty, and the upstairs is really high.

laurenamium Wed 11-Jan-12 12:02:28

3.50 and a cup of tea and he gets huffy if he doesn't get his tea grin

I've got 4 windows and a conservatory and he washes the plastics round the windows and all 3 doors and frames too.

He gossips about other peoples messy houses too grin

laurenamium Wed 11-Jan-12 12:03:25

4 big windows** I don't live in a box honest!

Fluffycloudland77 Wed 11-Jan-12 12:03:30

We only had ours once, he wouldnt do the window over the porch, the window above the conservatory or the conservatory itself.

Does anyone else have this problem? I felt ripped off paying £8ish for 4 windows (little village in midlands).

Pascha Wed 11-Jan-12 12:08:43

£12 every 6ish weeks for 11 windows, 2 doors, 2 veluxes and a set of French doors in Kent.

irregularegular Wed 11-Jan-12 12:13:54

I think 12 pounds an hour is fine. I pay my cleaner 10 pounds and this is harder and more dangerous work, uses their own equipment and materials, it is not regular booked hours so they spend more time arranging the work and collecting money. It's a couple, they work together for about 1.5 hours and I pay for three hours. Sometimes their teenage son comes too to help but I don't pay him! It would certainly take me and my husband more than 1.5 hours if we did it. It's a big house, with a big garden-room conservatory, quie a few old small pane windows, windows that are tricky to get at because of the shape of the roof. And it probably does take longer as they don't come that often.

Beamur Wed 11-Jan-12 12:18:53

£6.50 for about 12 windows I think, no doors. West Yorkshire.

PigletJohn Wed 11-Jan-12 12:48:01

£16.50, once a month unless weather is bad. They always charge extra because it is a 3-storey house and they used to bring extra-long ladders. The current man says his insurance won't cover him above the first floor and he now uses purified water pumped up a long pole from a tank in the van. It doesn't take him so long, but I suppose he has the cost of the equipment. He also does the doors.

ameliagrey Wed 11-Jan-12 12:54:03

Update

they have just been and were here for 10-15 mins!

I called the owners to ask about reducing how often they came.
She told me we were down for a monthly clean- news to me as the company has changed hands about 3 x and they seem to come as and when- about every 6 weeks.

Have decided £150 a year is too much for clean windows so have requested a bi-monthly clean.

Listen to this- she said it would be more expensive because the windows would be dirtier! FFS!

I hesitated for a long time and she said it would be £1 more.

Blinking cheek.

I agreed but will ask around meanwhile.

tomme Wed 11-Jan-12 12:59:10

12 for 18 windows, 2 sets French doors & front door in south wales

HarriedWithChildren Wed 11-Jan-12 13:07:16

£12 every 3 months. No point having outside gleaming all the time when the inside is covered in greasy hand prints and slobber/snot is my view.
15 large window panes, 1 door
Looking at this we may be paying too much.

TheRhubarb Wed 11-Jan-12 14:06:13

Charging you extra for dirty windows??? FFS!
The whole point of having window cleaners is to clean dirty windows! How stupid to want to charge extra for dirty ones.

I can't believe what some people are paying compared to others. It seems to vary from £3.50 to £17 for the same amount of windows but in different areas. A window is a window, surely?

I can sense a Mumsnet Window Wash idea coming on....

Pagwatch Wed 11-Jan-12 14:08:39

£40. Loads of windows though and top floor at front is impossible to reach without their gizmos

TheRhubarb Wed 11-Jan-12 14:10:04

Make that from £3.50 - £40.

You know they sell those gizmos on ebay.

ReneeVivien Wed 11-Jan-12 14:12:06

£16 every 6 weeks. Leafy part of London.

Fizzylemonade Wed 11-Jan-12 14:32:47

£8.50 every 4 weeks, 4 bed detached, cleans all windows including french doored bay window, pedestrian garage door, 2 other doors, also had garage converted so 2 extra windows, and he does the window sills and frames.

Am in West Yorkshire. He also very accommodating when my two boys run from room to room to "watch" him clean the windows grin and he retrieved a rubber lizard from the gutter after my sons played a game of how high can you throw.

He has to walk on a sloped over-hanging roof to get to 2 windows so if it is wet then he leaves those and charges me £7.

mollymole Wed 11-Jan-12 14:54:15

£5 every 4 weeks - 14 windows (these include 1 x patio doors and 2 x windows so large the curtains are 120 wide a 72 drop)

oreocrumbs Wed 11-Jan-12 15:47:25

£7 once a month ish 11 windows, 2x french doors and front door. Last window cleaner charged £12. It is a town house so I don't know if that makes it more ecpensive or not. I'm in the north east.

oreocrumbs Wed 11-Jan-12 15:47:54

expensive not ecpensive blush

Deafworm Wed 11-Jan-12 15:52:22

£3.50 for the front £5 for the whole house.

Front has 5 windows plus 2 doors, back has another 5 windows and 2 doors, we tell them on the day if we want the back doing but they also come every 5 weeks or so. We are in the north east but in a touristy coastal town

spamm Wed 11-Jan-12 15:53:47

I used to get my windows cleaned for 9 pounds every 6 weeks or so - 10 windows and 1 French door - in the South.

And then I moved to the USA, where it would cost me about $150 to $200 to have them cleaned once - although they seem to do inside and out. No surprise that people here have them done about 1 x year. I have not yet been able to build up the courage to book it!

BobblyGussets Wed 11-Jan-12 15:55:26

£15 every other month which is a lot, but we have largish four bed, three storey town house with large windows and high ceiling, which make everything higher/bigger IYSWIM. We are in the SW.

Issimma Wed 11-Jan-12 15:59:36

£4 every 4 weeks - does two large windows at front of the house (terrace) only. East mids.

hifi Wed 11-Jan-12 17:17:22

35.00,once a month,3 floor townhouse. we did have a cleaner a fe years ago who came down from the north east once a month, fri to mon,slept in his van and earned more in those 4 days in london than the whole month up north.

Mumptious Wed 11-Jan-12 17:26:33

OMG don't tell your window cleaners but in SW London I pay £70 for inside and out!!! 5 bedroomed house with full glass side return... I tried paying less but they were rubbish and the last one I had refused to get up on a ladder to do the glass roof, so I sent him away! It takes two of them a good hour!

Mumptious Wed 11-Jan-12 17:27:43

OMG don't tell your window cleaners but in SW London I pay £70 for inside and out!!! 5 bedroomed house with full glass side return... I tried paying less but they were rubbish and the last one I had refused to get up on a ladder to do the glass roof, so I sent him away! It takes two of them a good hour!

Deafworm Wed 11-Jan-12 18:23:02

I'd happily pay more for someone to do the inside too, I hate doing my windows, in line with local prices of course

inchoccyheaven Wed 11-Jan-12 18:26:43

We pay £12 for 8 and a tiny one windows, 1 door and 1 set patio doors every other month. In SE too.

Mumleigh Wed 11-Jan-12 18:34:34

£15 every five weeks for 19 windows inc. 2 large bays , two French doors and two large stained glass windows. I'm in the South East.

Piffpaffpoff Wed 11-Jan-12 18:42:18

£7.50 for 8 windows, two doors and two sets of patio doors. Once a month.

Piffpaffpoff Wed 11-Jan-12 18:43:32

And I'm in Scotland.

redglow Wed 11-Jan-12 19:19:23

If he doesn't use a ladder he is probably using a water purifier which is expensive equipment I think window cleaners are quite low paid for the worst job ever.

redglow Wed 11-Jan-12 19:19:47

If he doesn't use a ladder he is probably using a water purifier which is expensive equipment I think window cleaners are quite low paid for the worst job ever.

TheRhubarb Thu 12-Jan-12 16:07:02

Are you a window cleaner redglow?

Some might be low paid to do a really good job, but mine certainly isn't. He doesn't use a ladder and it takes him 10 mins to clean the windows of our 3 bed end terrace for £12.
If I got paid £12 for 10mins work I'd be laughing! And to be perfectly honest, without a ladder I don't see how they can do a good job of the top ones. He certainly doesn't do the sills anyway.

Some of the posters on here are paying a fortune to have their windows cleaned - there can be no justification for such a huge discrepancy.

And it's far from the worst job ever. I've worked in a dog kennels, cleaning, feeding, walking and getting bitten daily for £30 a week (YTS). THAT was the worst job ever. Standing there with a squeegy on a stick cleaning windows is a walk in the park in comparison.

dumbelina Thu 12-Jan-12 16:46:29

£15 every 8 weeks for 9 windows, 2 doors and a set of patio doors, they do all the sills and take about half an hour. We're in berkshire. I'm pretty happy to pay this as we live on a busy road so the sills and front door in particular get really grubby, but I hate heights and would not do them myself. Also far too lazy!

Kitsilano Thu 12-Jan-12 16:55:24

Mumptious - thank goodness I'm not the only one!!! Also in SW London paying £70 for inside at out. Though perhaps we are both being conned by same window cleaner...

devonsmummy Thu 12-Jan-12 16:58:58

6 windows & 3 doors monthly £7 Herts

bossboggle Thu 12-Jan-12 17:47:34

£4, again NE England. 2 doors, 8 windows. Every month. The cost of living down south must be horrendous!! Not too clever here though!!

perfumedlife Thu 12-Jan-12 19:02:24

I was charged £45 last month, for inside and out shock I was gobsmacked. Outside only was £25 but my windows are very tall, about 12 feet and am on top floor of a two storey building. Even so, the last guy was £15 or £25 for inside and out. Glasgow.

Window cleaners round my way are running a cartel.

wonkylegs Thu 12-Jan-12 19:03:48

£6.50 large 5 bed terrace every 4 weeks front & back

wonkylegs Thu 12-Jan-12 19:04:37

Meant to say thats in the North East - outside only , cleaner does inside

BrigitBigKnickers Thu 12-Jan-12 19:14:00

£22 for a 4 bed house (14 windows and two doors) but they do the conservatory too which is quite large. Commuter town near London.

Bunbaker Thu 12-Jan-12 20:04:45

I'm amazed at how cheap some of them are. I can't see how anyone could make a living out of that. Here in South Yorkshire we pay £10 for 11 windows and a conservatory.

£6.50 for 3 bed terrace in darkest Somerset. And he throws the ball for the dog at the same time

Mumptious Fri 13-Jan-12 16:36:01

Kitsilano We are probably being robbed blind but I can't seem to get anything that involves a tradesman done for less that £60 an hr in this town!!! My window cleaner is fab, and for that I am happy to pay what I pay... unless anyone knows someone good and cheap in SW London???

Dawndonna Fri 13-Jan-12 22:43:55

£10.00, eleven windows and a girt big conservatory.
East Anglia.

kansasmum Thu 19-Jan-12 18:47:00

Here in Devon I pay £14.50 once a month and we have 4 bed house so he does about 16 windows and 2 doors. I hate cleaning windows so well worth the money. The cleaner does the insides.

windowcleaner27 Sun 08-Sep-13 10:16:40

Hi all,

As a window cleaner remember you get what you pay for.

Is your window cleaner fully insured if he falls of the ladder on your property can he claim against you? Are they paying tax or just topping up their dole money? Are they following health and safety procedures? Are they doing a proper job by cleaning doors, frames or are they just giving the glass a quick wipe? You got to remember the time it costs getting to your house, unloading ladders etc, business expenses such as advertising, fuel, insurance, tools. You then gotta have something left over to feed your family and pay household bills. You won't get me doing a house for anything below £10 and for those who still disagree why not hire your own ladders and risk your own neck.

windowcleaner31 Sun 08-Sep-13 12:16:36

Just seen this post through a window cleaners forum.

I Agree with " window cleaner27"

Also It all depends on where you live, North being cheaper than South.
How good are they? If you pay peanuts you probably get monkeys.
I charge £12-16 for a 3 bed detached depending on whether there is a conservatory or not and this is in the south coast(Maybe £5-£8 North).I mainly clean every 8 weeks (so around 6 times a year) I do a good job,cleaning frames and sills and leave an invoice where there are a number of ways to pay(online banking,cheque,cash) .like most window cleaners i know i have a smart appearance and treat it as a professional business.
A lot of you Ladies on here seem to think you are getting ripped off,I have over 400 customers for around 8 years and they are very happy with me,I use the pole system and can get to every window including above conservatory roof, I send a text to most of them the evening before to let them know i am coming to leave gate open if going out (most of them work).
I am constantly getting undercut by other window cleaners starting up in the area ,sometimes by £5 (monkeys) but they always keep me ! Because i deliver a professional service ,on a regular basis and i pay my taxes.Like the previous post before me,there are outgoings to consider and bills to pay.

Hope this gives a little more understanding of what we do ,there are some decent window cleaners out there and unfortunately some bad ones.

Clittycat Sun 08-Sep-13 12:20:37

Surrey - £15 every 5-6 weeks for 10 windows and 2 patio/French doors. Sounds about right to me

NeilRobinson Sun 08-Sep-13 12:54:46

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

KatyTheCleaningLady Mon 09-Sep-13 08:47:36

Neil, that was a fantastic post. Unfortunately, it will probably be removed by admin. You can't link to businesses or appear to tout for business.

I get pm's all the time asking for cleaning even though I make a point of never even say exactly where I am. If you remove the links to your business, people will still contact you if they want.

I just think it's a shame that your wonderful post may be deleted. You made many excellent points that many potential clients never think about.

Fairylea Mon 09-Sep-13 08:54:29

I have never cleaned the outside of my windows since we moved in about 3 years ago. The rain does that, right....?

<lurks off feeling embarrassed>

Trumpton Mon 09-Sep-13 12:37:42

Neil Thank you for that post . I live by the sea and have 30 windows cleaned every 4 weeks by a man with a pole system . I have to say that he is worth every penny of the £25 it costs.
It was good to read such a balanced and informative post.

nemno England Mon 09-Sep-13 12:44:15

4 patio doors, 9 windows. £15 in Home Counties. Uses ladder for upstairs, comes every 2-3 months.

NeilRobinson Mon 09-Sep-13 13:36:20

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

KatyTheCleaningLady Mon 09-Sep-13 13:40:14

Copy and paste it again, removing the links. They will not turn a blind eye.

KatyTheCleaningLady Mon 09-Sep-13 13:45:55

Your post is seriously too good to lose. If I hadn't broken my arm on the job, I would do it myself. But I am reduced to tapping away on my phone.

I feel like your post is good because it is true for all cleaners. I run a legit business, with all the taxes, insurance, and professional equipment that entails. I get annoyed at people who expect cleaning for peanuts because of the benefit cheats and tax dodgers out there. They are participating in fraud, and then they complain about shoddy, unreliable, and dishonest cleaners!

Troubleintmill Mon 09-Sep-13 13:54:22

We pay £50 a month in the summer months for 4 storey townhouse in the north. He does pretty much all of it by hand and the window sills and door frames. He's much better than the last ones who left the windows smeary with their gadgets!
I always clean up the dog s**t before he comes and while he's here if necessary! (grin)

Trumpton Mon 09-Sep-13 16:51:57

Because its too good to lose


Hello Mumsnet
I happened across this thread as it was mentioned on a window cleaning forum, and I just thought i'd step in to answer a few points that seem to have been raised.

My name is Neil, i'm the owner at xxxxxx Cleaning - we're window cleaners in Xxxxx , Norfolk, and we serve a range of customers from large stately homes through to regular residential customers and even a few static caravans too.

A lot of the concern on this post seems to be based around two things - how much person A is paying relative to person B, and whether or not window cleaning is an easy/difficult job for the money. Finally, there's been some discussion about the tools we window cleaners use to get the job done, and I get the feeling that the majority don't feel a good job can be done without ladders.

The cost/price
In terms of costs, there are a few things to consider. Firstly, obviously, is the number of windows, the size of your property. More windows equals more cost, and we can all agree that makes sense. However, it is also a well known fact that the further south you go, the more you can expect to pay for your window cleaning. For example, there's a person above who mentions that they're getting their front porch, 2 bay windows, sun room patio doors and 5 other windows cleaned for a fiver, in North East england. Personally, when I read the description of that job, i'm thinking at least £10/11, because that's the going rate down here where I am, in the east. Where and why that discrepancy exists, I don't know - I just know that it does. I would surmise that it has a lot to do with the costs of running the business, but having never run a business up north, I can't be sure.

There are also other factors that may affect the price of your window cleaning, for example access. Do you have a nice driveway that we can pull our van into, get the gear our easily and get straight to work? Or do we have to find parking on a busy street, then negotiate a difficult garden to get to work? As cut-throat as it sounds, when we're out working time is money, and if we can see that access is a nightmare we'll price the job higher because we know it will take us longer. If the route your window cleaner has to take once on your property is an overgrown mess, try cutting it back a bit and making his job a bit easier. Once this is done, point it out to him and ask for a couple of quid off the price - you may be surprised at the effect it has on the cost of your window cleaning.

Another HUGE bugbear for us is dog poop. Most of us use a water fed pole system these days (more on that later) and if we see fresh 'deposits' in the garden when we're giving you an estimate, you can expect an extra fiver dropped on the price straight away, if not more. The problem is that while for you it may be easy not to step in it, we're looking up the whole time, trying to work fast and do a good job, so stepping in dog poop is not something we can easily afford. And then there is the hose - I know from experience that getting dog poop on the hose isn't nice. Its gets on the hose, it gets on your hands, then it gets on the pole, or your steering wheel, before you know it its everywhere and its totally disgusting! I have, in the past, dropped customers because of dog poop in their garden. I just don't need it, and I can replace them with another customer who doesn't have a dog poop issue. I know that was a bit of a whinge, but honestly, getting dog poop all over our hands and kit will make us hate you. Please, clean it up, we're human beings too!

Also a factor worth considering is regularity. As window cleaners, we want monthly work. It means our income will be regular and dependable, and it also means we can do a good job keeping the windows and frames in their cleanest possible state. 2 monthly work is acceptable, but will cost more as there is more dirt, and personally I won't take on any work with a longer frequency than that. If you're asking your window cleaner to only come every 3, 4 or even 6 months, then he'll have a lot more dirt, dust, debris & detritus to clean away, so expect to pay more as a result.

The water fed pole system
Another thing I noticed in the thread above is the use of the brush on a pole. People seem to think that it doesn't do as good a job as getting up there with ladders, but actually if it is used correctly (just like any other tool) then the results will actually be better!

The secret is that the water we use isn't just any old water, it is specifically filtered through an expensive system of one type or another (typically a 4 or 5 stage reverse osmosis filter) to remove all dissolved solids - in laymans terms, the minerals and salts, the things that leave marks on your windows when the water evaporates off and leaves them behind. The key to washing with a Water fed pole (wfp) system is that the brushing action agitates all the dirt off the glass and into the water as the brush does its work, and then the brush is lifted off the glass and the window is rinsed - this leaves only the purified water behind and if the job has been done right, when it evaporates off it dries totally clear as there are no impurities to be left behind; it is pure H20.

This system has several advantages for you, the customer, too - primarily it means that your window cleaner can now scrub and clean the frames and sills of your windows on every visit too, keeping your upvc bright and white throughout its working life. The water used is also totally chemical free, so it's completely safe on and around your plants/pets/children. Windows that would be impossible to reach using ladders can also be cleaned, such as windows over a conservatory roof or sloping roof - In the past a window cleaner would have to risk his neck and your roof by climbing/standing up there - so no broken legs and broken roof's is something everyone can agree is a good thing I think!

Like any other tool tho, if not used right, problems can occur. But that's most often down to the technique of the window cleaner, not the tools themselves. Certainley there's no reason to think you are not getting as much of a 'proper job' - rather it means that your window cleaner is a professional who has invested in his business to bring the best possible service to his customers. The wfp system in the back of our vans costs over £4,000 a pop - and thats before you start factoring in the cost of the poles we use, which can easily run to £500 each as they are made from carbon fibre to be both rigid and strong.

The window cleaner / being a window cleaner
Some people above have suggested that being a window cleaner is an easy job. There might be the odd day where things are great, but let me assure you that overall, it is not.

Firstly, if you're a professional window cleaner, that means you have invested in professional equipment, undertaken training (I have a city & guilds qualification in window cleaning, believe it or not..) and got proper insurance, plus gotten a proper van with valid insurance for commercial work. In addition, a professional will have professional window cleaning insurance, meaning that any damages or injuries that occur while on your property are covered and you are protected. I'll come back to insurance in a minute, so bear with me. Now, consider all the time and money a professional has invested to run a proper business, versus the guy that comes round with a dodgy old ladder and a bucket and some rags and offers to do the windows at less than half the price. Is he trained? Is he well kitted out? Likely no. Is he probably on benefits, looking to make some extra quick cash? Quite possibly. Is he going to bother to do a good job..? Unlikely.. But he still quotes £4 for a £15 job, so he makes the professionals look expensive and like they're "ripping people off". We aren't, its just that sometimes its made to look that way by people charging way less than the going rate to nick work off us. The chances are, that come winter, they won't be showing up.

Working in winter
It's horrible. Truly. Hoses freeze, the squeegees ice over, the mops and applicators freeze to the glass as soon as they touch them. Add in that we're working with water, so we invariably get wet at some point in the day or other, and you've got a recipe for being very, very cold, through a lot of your working days. £7 to clean your windows in the lovely sun might seem like a right lark, and to be fair it can be, but believe me, we pay for it in the winter, when it's dark and cold and we have to get out into the howling wind/rain/sleet to get the work done.. A professional will stick it out, get the job done and your windows cleaned as agreed, but Mr bucket & rags will be long gone, with his feet up and his dole money in his pocket watching jeremy kyle.. Who would you rather hire?

Insurance
Before I begin, here's a fact for you. Being a window cleaner is officially the most dangerous job in the UK.
That might not seem that relevant to you, but here's another little known fact. Let's say your window cleaner is cleaning your windows, when he falls off his ladder, or goes through your conservatory roof, breaks a leg, and can't work for 4 months. Who do you think is liable, legally speaking, for that? Believe it or not, it's you, the home owner/customer!! And this is why hiring a professional with proper insurance is so important.

Mr bucket and rags is only there for your money, not to build a business or career, so when the no win no fee lawyer asks him if he's had an accident recently, the pound signs will light up in his head you can expect to be getting a very expensive phone call - Probably up around the £10,000 mark.

A professional, on the other hand, might cost a few more quid, but will be fully insured, meaning that not only will you not end up in the dock, his primary concern (once the leg is taken care of!) will most likely be to sort out another window cleaner he knows to cover his round so that you, the customer, doesn't lose out. His injuries and income will be protected and compensated for by his insurance, and so will any damage that occurred to your property!!

Despite what you've heard, window cleaners do tend to stick together and watch eachothers backs, and covering work for a friend who has had an accident is just something you do because you know that one day, it could be you that needs the help. Again, window cleaning is officially the most dangerous job in the UK. And believe me, physically it is very demanding work too! I usually crash out totally knackered around 9pm or so, and that's fairly common amongst other window cleaners I know.

And just as a final nod back to the brush on a pole.. no ladders = no falling off them!!

conclusion
I hope this has been an interesting look behind the scenes at what it's like to be a window cleaner. If anyone has any questions or comment, reply in the thread here and i'll do my best to respond.

Thank you Neil

£75 but there are a lot of windows and glass doors (Kent).

SignoraStronza Mon 09-Sep-13 17:09:59

3 bed semi, 11 windows of varying sizes (no patio windows though) plus one back door upper window bit.

£10 every six weeks or so (not actually sure).
Last time they came, was introduced to the new guy working with them, who will be doing it in future. I swear I blushed - rather looking forward to the next visitwink .

Dededum Mon 09-Sep-13 17:12:00

£20 SE England for a 3 bed semi- we are so overpaying!

mummylin Mon 09-Sep-13 17:21:26

£15 for all outside windows including a conservatory. He comes once every two months. They do clean the sills.

4 Bed Det with sodding awkward dormers and a patio door.
£7.50 and I have them done once a fortnight.
I'm a sucker for shiny windows smile

KatyTheCleaningLady Mon 09-Sep-13 18:31:52

Thanks Trumpington!

cheryl19843 Mon 09-Sep-13 20:42:14

£4 for 3 bed semi once a month. North east.

LynetteScavo England Mon 09-Sep-13 20:56:24

I pay £8 for 8 windows, but have them done bi-monthly.

Thank you Neil for your post!

£2.50 a month, 3 windows and a front door, but we're up in deepest, darkest Cumbria so it's probably the cheaper end of the country.

lovelyredwine Mon 09-Sep-13 21:10:17

£5 - Up north. 4 bed house.

I dont have them in London, but am moving out soon so am sadly really looking forward to having a Window Cleaner grin Neils post gave really interesting food for thought.

Daisybell1 Mon 09-Sep-13 21:20:08

In Cumbria too Todays and ours are £10. But then I've got those blooming little panes which takes forever to work through.

babyboomersrock Mon 09-Sep-13 21:30:56

In Scotland - rural village in Fife - we have 10 windows plus patio doors, and last time he was here, he apologised for putting the price up to £5.30.

I think it's brilliant value and they work really efficiently. We do give them a Christmas bonus.

TarkaTheOtter Wed 11-Sep-13 20:05:46

£15 for 8 windows, front door and patio doors in rural West country. Is quarterly though so works out at only £60 a year.

jennymac Fri 13-Sep-13 09:17:34

We recently paid £28 for our windows. Rural setting but quite modern new build with larger than average windows. Not huge house though - only 4 bedrooms. I told dh that we would do with them being done every 3 months at that price. Am happy to do the kitchen windows and any others that look really bad in the intervening periods.

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