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-   -   Is this bad cleaning service? (https://www.mothering.com/forum/311-mindful-home/1249474-bad-cleaning-service.html)

*MamaJen* 08-02-2010 01:15 PM

Okay, so before I go ballistic on this cleaning company, can somebody confirm that I did indeed get really horrible service?
I contracted with a big national cleaning company to do a move out clean on my empty house -- DS and I are living in an apartment in the city while I go to grad school, and I'm renting the house out to friends.
So my house is about 1200 square feet, three bedrooms, one story -- pretty small by any standard, and totally empty except for one table I left for the new tenants. It was relatively clean when I moved out -- I had cleaned the bathrooms and mopped/vacuumed in the last couple weeks, nothing growing in the fridge.
The guy on the phone who set up the service said it would probably take about one and a half hours, including fridge clean, but I might do two and a half hours to be safe --that's for two cleaners. So I set that up, and the cleaning team came and left, and they charged me $208 for the 2.5 hours -- that's five man-hours.
I went over there the next day, and the house looked horrible. The first thing I noticed was that they hadn't touched the floors to mop or vacuum, so I called to complain. They sent a quality control person over there, she agreed they needed to do the floors, and they would send someone over on Friday.
I went over there again this morning and they hadn't shown up to do the re-clean they said they would do on Friday. I took a closer look throughout the house, and this is what I saw.
They did:
--Clean the fridge
--Clean the microwave
--Wipe the kitchen counters
--clean the bathrooms (but not the floors) (ETA -- they didn't actually do the bathrooms, I just didn't notice at first since they were already almost clean to start out with).

They didn't:
--Set foot in the bedrooms, living room or dining area
--clean the floors
--clean the windowsills
--clean the mantle
--wipe the cabinets
--dust
--clean the blinds
--wipe the baseboards
--wipe the walls
--clean the stove (I hadn't asked them to)

So am I right to think that I got totally ripped off and demand they come back out and actually do the job I paid them $208 to do?

ChristyMarie 08-02-2010 01:38 PM

You were ripped off. At this point I'd clean it myself and consider it done. Assuming you have not paid them yet?

That's also a pretty high per hour charge. Just FYI.

SeekingJoy 08-02-2010 01:40 PM

Most cleaning services have a checklist of what is included in different types of cleaning (move in/out, maintenace cleaning residential, deep cleaning with appliances, etc). This seems really high for what you got to me, but I have limited experience with house cleaning services.

amma_mama 08-02-2010 02:09 PM

I don't know how explicit you were with the company about whether it was to be a "deep" clean versus a "regular", maintenance-style cleaning. Having moved often from similar-sized properties, I would have expected more hours to do a real "deep" clean to get everything spic-and-span for a new tenant, which includes all the tasks you have on the two lists. From my experience, it would take closer to 8-10 man hours. That said, my vote is that they did not do nearly enough for the time and amount paid. What they did sounds like what one person should be able to to accomplish in 2-3 hours.

While costs vary by city, I would expect to get a good maintenance clean for about $70 - you paid triple this amount so I would expect a deep clean like you expected, regardless of the number of hours. What you request/demand from them, though, would depend on what type of agreement you had--a fixed price for a fixed amount of work or as much work as they can do for a certain number of hours. It sounds like the latter. So I would take a compromise approach with them to get the rest of the work done. For example, you could tell them that you realize that you have underbudgeted the time required to get the deep cleaning you were hoping for, but, to be honest, they did not nearly do enough for the amount of time they were paid, and then offer to pay for another 2 man hours to get everything done.

*MamaJen* 08-02-2010 03:15 PM

So I just went back over there and took another look -- I realized that they didn't actually clean the bathrooms. I had left them pretty clean, so I didn't immediately notice them as being dirty. But when I looked closely, I saw that they cleaned one bathtub and didn't touch the rest of the bathrooms. (I want to stress that my house was not super gross at all -- I didn't even notice at first that some of the cleaning hadn't been done). They also didn't clean the fans, the insides of any of the cabinets or the pantry.

The guy who set up the service rattled off a long list of things they do for a deep move-out clean, which is what I requested and paid for. They didn't do the vast majority of the list.
After going over there one more time, the things that they did were cleaning the fridge (which was not significantly dirty), stovetop (not inside the oven) and microwave, cleaning one bathtub, and possibly wiping the counters. Literally, that's all. For $208 and five man hours.

I talked to the company manager on the phone, and she was seriously unhelpful at first. She tried to tell me that they had come back out and vacuumed the floors. I had to argue with her for five minutes that no, I promise, really, they did not come out and vacuum. I called her back after I went over there again to tell her that they didn't actually do the bathrooms.
She said she was going to talk to the cleaners and find out what they actually did. In the meantime, I'm going to send her an email outlining all the things they didn't do.

ChristyMarie 08-02-2010 03:34 PM

Take photos and dispute a portion of the charge with your cc company. Honestly, this does not seem to be worth the aggrevation of arguing with the company any longer. If they were going to fix it, they would have by now.

But then, I used to go through maids every few months because I'm picky and not inclined to deal with bu!!sh!t.

journeymom 08-02-2010 03:35 PM

Sounds like a good plan.

When I worked for Merry Maids we had a computer print-out check off list that we worked from. If you ever do this again (move-out clean up service) I'd ask for a copy of any similar list to be emailed to you before cleaning day. Then you can walk through the house with the check off list afterwords.

Seriously, two professional cleaners working steadily for 2.5 hours should have been able to do quite a bit more than what you listed in your first list. Perhaps if they'd cleaned the kitchen and bathroom floors and hands and knees that would have taken up the rest of the time.

They took one look at your relatively clean home, rolled their eyes and did what they figured was the minimum they could get away with.

*MamaJen* 08-02-2010 03:41 PM

Here's the email I sent them:
X,
We talked on the phone earlier today. This is the cleaning that was and was not completed on my house at [address], by room. Basically, literally the only things they did were cleaning the fridge, one bathtub, microwave and stove top. If you look at this list, you might be able to see why I'm so upset at the quality of the work, and why I feel strongly that it's your responsibility to send a team out to the property to complete the job. Otherwise, I am planning to dispute the charges with my credit card company.
Sincerely,
Me

...

Team of two cleaners for 2.5 hours; $208

Kitchen
Completed: Cleaned fridge, stove top, microwave, possibly wiped counters, possibly wiped down outside of cabinets (hard to tell, they’re still a little dirty and they had been recently cleaned)
Not completed: They did not wipe down inside of cabinets, inside of pantry, clean stove backsplash, clean baseboard, mop floor, wipe outside of appliances, polish sink

Dining Room
Completed: NOTHING
Not completed: They did not clean windowsills, clean baseboards or mop floor

Living Room
Completed: NOTHING
Not Completed: They did not dust fan, clean windowsills, clean baseboards, clean mantle or mop floor

Master Bedroom
Completed: NOTHING
Not completed: They did not dust fan, clean windowsills, clean baseboards or mop floor

Master Bathroom
Note – This bathroom had been deep cleaned in the last two weeks and I did not immediately notice they had not cleaned it.
Completed: NOTHING
Not completed: They did not clean tub, toilet, sink, mirror, inside of cabinets, clean baseboards or mop floor

Bedroom 2
Completed: NOTHING
Not completed: They did not vacuum, clean windowsills, or clean baseboards

Bedroom 3
Completed: NOTHING
Not completed: They did not vacuum, clean windowsills, or clean baseboards

Guest bathroom
Note – This bathroom had been deep cleaned in the last two weeks and I did not immediately notice they had not cleaned it.
Completed: Cleaned bathtub
Not Completed: They did not clean the toilet, sink, mirrors, cabinet, clean baseboards or mop floor

Hall
Completed: NOTHING
Not completed: They did not clean baseboards, mop floor or clean door

zebra15 08-02-2010 05:34 PM

Man, if i lived closer I would come over and deep clean for the $200. That is just insane. Yes I would be quite upset and would either stop payment on the check or dispute the charges depending on how I paid. I would take pictures after each and every 'cleaning' and be sure never to use this service company again. So sorry for your pain.

VillageMom6 08-02-2010 05:37 PM

I had the same thing happen to me and the company was so unresponsive that I put a "stop payment" on the check that I had given them. You'll be in even better shape if you used a credit card.

Definitely fight this! That's over $200!!

I think a previous poster is right... they took one look at your clean, empty house and decided that since you had moved out, you'd never know what they did or didn't do.

I knew that my crew had not vacuumed because there was still straw in my carpet from the hayride that we had gone on.

Good luck to you! Let us know what happens.

JD5351 08-03-2010 09:44 AM

The company I worked for, a move out clean on 1200 square foot house..Probably would have scheduled 3-4 man hours, and they charged $25/hr. (In Columbus, Ohio.)

Move outs were my favorite since I didn't have to do furniture. In 4 hours max, that house would have been spotless. The only thing we didn't do was wash down walls unless you added that on, and that would of course increase the time we'd have been there.

surrogate 08-03-2010 07:25 PM

subbing to see outcome lol

*MamaJen* 08-03-2010 09:10 PM

They sent a team out to "reclean" the kitchen and bathrooms, and vacuum the bedrooms. I was there while they were cleaning, and while I haven't seen the final result, the tenant who's already in there said it's much better.
While I was there, I asked them to wipe down the windowsills and baseboards. They said they actually weren't allowed to do that since the manager only sent them to do specific things. So I asked to borrow a rag and I got down in my office clothes and did that part myself, lol. Now the main thing that wasn't done was the floors in the living room/dining room.
The owner of the company is supposed to call me tomorrow.

surrogate 08-04-2010 10:24 AM

oh I would be ill...tell him that you want a refund. I would also let him know you plan on posting reviews on all the review sites you can

JudiAU 08-12-2010 09:13 PM

You were ripped off. I think they should refund your money totally.

ivankasmith 01-23-2017 02:02 AM

Your experience was too bad towards this cleaning company. First off all their services were so expensive, secondly They should refund you.
There are lots of cleaning companies which provides affordable, economical and satisfactory cleaning services. You should search for right services before call.

drnina 02-03-2017 11:11 AM

Sounds like a ripoff

DanOstin 06-02-2020 09:34 PM

I also always need help from aside to clean up the house. We have a big area and I can't handle it myself. We had the same unpleasant experience with a cleaning company who also made nothing and took for it too much.

RoyFollman 06-04-2020 08:38 AM

Indeed, there are many cleaning companies that create just the appearance of cleaning but in fact, there is dirt everywhere. Indeed, it is hard to find reliable and conscientious workers. Fortunately, we have a Cleaning service near Burbank and I asked them once to wash the carpet from our bedroom. They made it very carefully and there disappeared all the old spots I thought that will be never removed. In the end, we called them to make cleaning in all our house and I remained very pleased with the result. So, we collaborate with them for some years and I assure you that their work is worth the money paid.

DanOstin 06-04-2020 10:18 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RoyFollman (Post 19766551)
Indeed, there are many cleaning companies that create just the appearance of cleaning but in fact, there is dirt everywhere. Indeed, it is hard to find reliable and conscientious workers. Fortunately, we have a Cleaning service near Burbank and I asked them once to wash the carpet from our bedroom. They made it very carefully and there disappeared all the old spots I thought that will be never removed. In the end, we called them to make cleaning in all our house and I remained very pleased with the result. So, we collaborate with them for some years and I assure you that their work is worth the money paid.

I hope it will be a good acquisition as my budget is limited


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