to be furious with cleaners(48 Posts)
Moved house today. Wanted to leave house nice and clean for buyer but end of tenancy quotes I got were extortionate. So just booked 2 cleaners for 3 hours (usually have 1 cleaner for 2.5 hours) fully accepting it wouldn't be as high a standard as end of tenancy.
house was almost cleared out, most rooms including bathroom empty. Cleaners arrived, said it was too much for the time, I said just do what you can. They then proceeded to spend best part of an hour outside on the phone to their office. Removals arrived to get final items and they then left saying they had another job to go to despite the fact there was still 1.5 hours left on my 'clean'
I had to rush around trying to clean as best I could and feel embarrassed it's not as clean as I intended for my buyers.
AiBU to be furious the cleaners wouldn't just clean for the 3 hours I booked?
If you saw them on their phones you should have said something. Had you already paid? Demand a refund/ slate them on social media if they refuse
Obviously don’t pay them a penny. Is it some ginormous mansion? 2 people and 3 hours should mean a sparkling property, particularly as it’s empty. YANBU.
I phoned the office myself when I saw them on their phones and was initially told they would get them to do it. When they left they said they would try and find someone else but obviously it was last minute...then heard nothing further. I'm assuming we haven't been charged but need to check. I have sent a strongly worded email complaint.
It's a 4 bed town house, small bedrooms though, one en suite, bathroom, kitchen/diner and living room. Floors needed a good hoover/mop and kitchen cupboards, wasn't particularly dirty though.
At least you care. The house I bought recently was left filthy for me and I’m still struggling with it.
So they should have had 6 hours between them? That's plenty to clean your house.
At least your cleaners turned up. Mine didn't and due to things outside my control the house was nothing like I'd have expected to leave it.
Sorry, that doesn't really help you. Definitely get your money back if the payment has gone through.
That’s so shit. Make sure you write a review so others will know.
Side note: MN have snuck a link into your OP!
That is terrible service. Even if they hadn’t finished, they should have both cleaned for the full 3 hours each and done as much as they can.
I think in terms of fixing it, a nice option would be for the company to offer your buyers a whole house clean for free. And obviously you don’t pay for their failed attempt at cleaning.
Agree with Cheby. Get the company to offer the new owners a free full house clean.
Where is the link?
Did you book them for a certain time though & it wasn't ready to start ?
Sorry re read it. I don't understand why they couldn't just make a start in the empty places. Were you clear you didn't expect it all done etc
Very very clear @sausages75. There was an overlap with the removals but when I asked why they couldn't work in the empty rooms they couldn't give me an answer.
That's what I've suggested @Cheby
Really weird I am a professional cleaner & would of just got stuck in.
I’m not sure you were being fair OP. An “end of tenancy clean” of an empty home is always priced higher than a regular clean as when furniture is removed there are large clods of fluff etc and dusty skirtings etc. And to be fair on them they had no way of knowing you wouldn’t - having just told them to do what they could in the time - then say it was unacceptable and expect more. Maybe you didn’t realise but I think however inadvertent you were actually unreasonable to expect this type of clean without being upfront.
I run a cleaning business and although what happened is entirely unprofessional it is frustrating when people want an end of tenancy clean (property empty) but don’t want to pay the price... they say just do what you can in your normal time. End of tennsncy cleans are usually much more work, incredibly dusty and dirty woodwork, floors take ages to hoover from all the furniture being moved ... I very much doubt you’ve been charged though ...
But from my understanding they didn't clean any thing. Just chatted on their phone and left
@CharlieBoo but she booked more than double the normal time. And while I can see why hoovering will take longer, surely it’s made easier by the fact that there is nothing in the way at all?
My friend does end of tenancy cleans for £300 and it's usually a full 8 hour day.
But charlieboo why can't they just do what they can in their time? If that ends up being one room or whatever so be it. OPs cleaners didn't even get started and left 1.5 hours early.
OP already said she knew it wouldn't be to the standard of an "end of tenancy clean" and was fine with that.
@roseblush did you request a 6 hour clean? So 2 x cleaners there for 3 hours each or a 3 hour clean where 2x cleaners were there 1.5 hours each? You said cleaners were there 1 hour outside so you had 1.5 hours left in your clean.. that sounds like you’ve booked a 3 hour clean and they’ve sent 2 girls for 1.5 hours each...
It can be easier when there’s nothing there yes but an end of tenancy includes all woodwork, windows, pvc of windows, deep clean of bathrooms and kitchen including inside of cupboards, there’s a lot of work and op lives in a 4 bed town house so 3 floors... if you booked 6 hours then yanbu but afraid 3 hours wouldn’t touch it
All the people saying that not enough time was budgeted ABU. The cleaners instructed could have just willingly used their 6 hours to the best of their ability, OP is not being in the least unreasonable.
I’m reading op knew it would be 2 cleaners to stay for 3 hours, ergo 6 hours. Very unprofessional of the company.
I think the problem is that you weren’t honest about it being an end of tenancy clean rather than a regular clean.
I don’t think there is much you can do about it now except not pay. Must have been very stressful though.
They knew you were taking the agency for a ride with your normal-cleaning-rate-paid-but-it-was-actually-a-moving-day-cleaning-job.
Their agency has probably asked them to get in touch before proceeding if it was obviously a bait and switch on the customer's part, which is what this was.
While you might have been happy with a less than stellar result, cleaning agencies get business based on their reputation. If they did what was basically an end of tenancy cleaning job to less than stellar standards they would have risked their reputation.
It's their company name on their van.
If they did what was basically an end of tenancy cleaning job to less than stellar standards they would have risked their reputation
Pretty sure being booked, turning up, doing basically nothing and then saying they had to leave for another job isn’t great for their reputation either.
If the manager was telling them not to do it, while also telling OP that they would get them to do it, that’s shockingly bad for their reputation. They should have been upfront with her.
I must admit that I have issues with the whole “you have to pay more than the going rate per hour for this type of cleaning because it’s a harder type of cleaning” nonsense. Before I had my twins I was self-employed and charged an hourly rate for my work. If a piece of work took two hours, that’s what I charged for, even if the work in that time was more or less challenging. I never did better work for special occasions - I did my best work all the time. If something was very difficult it took more time so I was paid more. Mopping really dirty floors is harder work than mopping basically clean floors, but it will also take much longer so that’s where you’re compensated fairly.
I do not understand the idea that regular cleaning will cost you say £12 an hour but if the house is empty it will cost you £35 an hour. If it’s much more demanding work it will take you longer so you’ll be paid more. If it’s only a set number of hours you’re being paid for, you should ask the client to prioritise tasks and work as hard as you can for those hours you’re being paid for.
6 hours total cleaning @CharlieBoo
Thanks for all the replies. I take the point of those who think iabu but the text message confirming said this is an hourly based service. The cleaner said she would only be able to do the top floor, ie 2 small rooms and an en suite. I said fine. At least with two of them all bedrooms and bathrooms would have been done. I cleaned the fridge/freezer and was able to give the house a once over in 2 hours. Cupboards just needed a quick wipe.
I don't think it's fair to have to be pushed into an end of tenancy clean when that's not want I wanted or needed.
We've had one off cleaners in the past when our regular cleaner was away who haven't been able to clean the whole house in the allotted time, but always did what they could.
Well put @SinkGirl I don't know why it had to be all or nothing.
Wow, I've moved house 3 times and have never got cleaners in. The things MNers find to be embarrassed about.
@roseblush yanbu ... 6 hours wouldve been plenty for that, shocking that they did not stay.. apologies I read it as a 3 hour clean in total.. don’t pay a penny...
If I understand it she didn’t need a ‘proper’ end of tenancy clean because she was selling her own house - just being nice to the buyers by leaving it clean?
Yeah the reasons end of tennancys are more expensive is because it’s usually on a rented property and letting agents require the property to be thoroughly and professionally cleaned for the next tenants in order for the current tenants to get their deposit back. They can be absolutely filthy and everything needs to be deep cleaned.
I didn’t know there was a difference between an end of tenancy clean and hiring a cleaner.
I just thought that if there was more work to do it would just take longer.
This wasn't an end of tenancy Clean as those relate to rental properties which must be cleaned in full and to a standard.
There is no reason why the cleaners could not have cleaned the house for 6 hours. They could have asked OP what to prioritise if necessary. Basically 3 hours of normal cleaning for this size of house and an extra 3 hours of deep cleaning - kitchen cupboards/windows.
There is no way the agency could know that someone clearly moving out was ending a tenancy or selling. To all intents and purposes the effect is the same, and the standard required by the agency to keep up their reputation is probably important to them. It doesn't matter that the OP would have been happy with a less than stellar job.
I don't think it's fair to have to be pushed into an end of tenancy clean when that's not want I wanted or needed.
We've had one off cleaners in the past when our regular cleaner was away who haven't been able to clean the whole house in the allotted time, but always did what they could
If you wanted a bespoke service then you should have hired an agency that offered that. You are not being fair to a company that offers a standardised service when you ask for a finished result that is less than the one their reputation is built on. The buyers of your house might well badmouth the state of the fridge, the kitchen cupboards, or the downstairs and neighbours may well remember the name of the cleaning company that was parked outside.
If you badmouth this company on the basis that you essentially baited and switched and they didn't fall for it, you won't come out looking good, their headless hen response notwithstanding.
SinkGirl, it's not that moving out/ending a tenancy is a 'special occasion' like a wedding where a premium is added to every item or service 'just because'... End of tenancy cleaning is often a matter of dealing with mountains of left behind filth, fridges full of rotting food, cupboards with all sorts of nasty surprises in them, toilets that haven't been cleaned in years, bathroom floors that have absorbed gallons of pee, mess left behind by pets, ovens and hobs that are completely crusted over with baked on grease, bathtubs that are too dirty to wash a dog in, and lots more.
I wish I had taken photos @mathanxiety. We took pride in our home and we kept it clean. No rotting food, WCs cleaned every week etc.
You obviously feel very strongly about this and are projecting. Over twice as much time as a regular clean was more than enough.
I am not projecting, nor am I implying that your home was in any way filthy.
I am just presenting the matter from the possible pov of the cleaning company. A move out clean has to result in a spotless residence. Asking for a less than stellar result puts the cleaning company in a very difficult position. The cleaning company's reputation is only as good as its last job. Trying to get away with paying (less) for one category of cleaning when you wanted another is not fair to them. It really is a bait and switch.
I do get your point @mathanxiety, you've made it very well.
I just think as the customer I should be able to request how much cleaning I want/need/can afford! I wanted 6 hours cleaning when I ordered the clean and that's what I wanted when they arrived. As for reputation the cleaners weren't concerned about giving a bad impression to my street talking loudly on their phones rather than discretely in their van.
I'll just have to see what they come back with!
you essentially baited and switched and they didn't fall for it,
Err... what?! This is quite a leap from what actually happened @mathanxiety
This is also the second thread I’ve noticed you get really over invested and try to tear the OP apart. Maybe chill out a bit eh?
Yanbu, you asked for 6 hours cleaning and did not want an extensive clean. The cleaners spelt out what they could do in that tkme which was good by you but instead they spent ages fannying about and left.
End of tenancy cleaning is often a matter of dealing with mountains of left behind filth
which clearly wasn't the case with the OP, so at the very worst if we go that way, the cleaners had a lot LESS to do than expected, so even less excuse not to do a decent job!
I think you have to look at the wording op uses.
She asked for 2x3 hours cleaning and to start on the rooms that were empty and to get as much done as they could.
Op didn’t ask for an end of tenancy clean.
The fact they had to leave before their allotted time was up suggests the company had double booked and it might be possible that they told the cleaners to leave early if they could. Might have thought you wouldn’t be there and could have left after a cursory clean
You were there and wanting them to work the full time you had paid for and they panicked and decided to just not start as then they couldn’t walk off the job mid way.
I would make sure there is no payment and would leave a strongly worded review.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, quick, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Get started »
Please login first.