Hiring a domestic cleaner for the first time can often leave you with a few questions. Along with the prospect of inviting a stranger into your home, you may also have no idea as to what you should do prior to their arrival.
This is where communication is important, and it’s the key to a successful relationship with your domestic cleaner. By fully discussing exactly what they will and will not be doing, all ambiguity and awkwardness can be avoided.
As a rule of thumb, most Oxfordshire domestic cleaners will provide everyday household services including:
- Vacuuming carpets and cleaning hard floors
- Cleaning kitchen counter tops and appliances
- Interior window cleaning (sometimes exterior)
- Deep-cleaning of the bathroom and its fixtures
- Dusting surfaces, furniture and household objects
- Cleaning windowsills and mantelpieces
- Emptying and cleaning bins and recycling containers
There are also several tasks that are not usually included with a standard domestic cleaning service. Some of the following may be available upon request, but do not usually form part of a typical home cleaning service package:
- Washing dishes and putting them away
- Cleaning up after pets
- Changing bed sheets and doing laundry
- Deep carpet cleaning
- Cleaning curtains and soft furnishings
If any of these additional domestic cleaning services are required, they should be discussed in advance of your cleaner visiting. They can often be added as an extra service if your cleaner has the capabilities but will often not be a part of a frequent home cleaning routine.
Other than an understanding of the cleaning services that can be carried out, it is a good idea to know what you should do before they arrive. There is often a degree of flexibility with bespoke cleaning solutions. But as a rule of thumb, these are the basics to cover prior to the arrival of your cleaner:
1. Tidy up and improve cleaner efficiency
Cleaners are hired to clean and not tidy your home. This is the difference between a cleaning service and a maid service, so be sure to give your rooms a quick tidy beforehand. This means clearing clutter, removing obstacles and getting as many astray household items out of the way as possible. The easier it is for the cleaner to do their job, the quicker they’ll be done and the better the result.
2. Assign a place for stray objects
However thoroughly you tidy your home, your cleaner will inevitably come across items that need to stored away. Rather than asking what they should do with every item they encounter, it is far better to assign a place ahead of time for such objects. This could be a dining table, a box in the kitchen or a designated cupboard – somewhere they can pop the bits and pieces they find for you to sort later.
3. Keep control of your pets
You should always let a domestic cleaner know ahead of their visit if you have pets in your home. They should be kept out of the way to allow the cleaner to perform their duties – particularly bad-tempered pets that may cause a nuisance.
4. Provide your cleaner with accessibility
If parking is an issue, this should be brought to the attention of your cleaner in advance of their arrival. Likewise, if you live on the 15th floor of a tower block and the lift has been out of action since 1996, make sure your cleaner is aware of this. Accessibility issues can almost always be overcome, although it may call for additional planning. Good accessibility also applies to the individual rooms and spaces around your home. Be sure to unlock any rooms or cupboards that need to be cleaned, in advance.
5. Identify high traffic areas
There will be parts of your home that require more attention from your cleaner than others. There may even be spots of your home you do not need your domestic cleaner to tend to at all, given that they see next to no action on a day to day basis. It is therefore a good idea to identify high and low traffic areas around your home, so your cleaner knows where more the most effort may be needed.