The title of this post is one of the most popular questions I get asked. Sadly it’s a question I can’t answer.
The reason is because the only way I can bid something is to SEE SOMETHING. Plus I would need to know WHAT YOUR OVERHEAD IS among other variables.
Whenever I get asked this question I respond by saying all you have to do is “take your best guess” as to how long it will take to clean a unit then “multiply that” by your hourly rate. That may sound simple, but that’s all it is for the most part.
Once you get one complex under your belt, you’ll know within a pretty short time-frame whether or not your pricing approach was correct. if you are not making money, up the price for the next complex. If you are doing good, then SUPER! You got it right.
How long does it take to clean apartment turnovers?
I can “guide you” to an accurate guess by saying that a good unit is normally at least 3 or 4 hours worth of work in my opinion, and a bad one can easily double that. I can also add that I look at apartment turnovers in bunches of ten for perspective.
Out of every ten apartment turnovers:
- 4 will be in above average shape.
- 4 will be in below average shape.
- 1 will be pristine.
- 1 will be a disaster.
As you can see, there is no “average” of how dirty a unit will be. It’s all over the place. Some people live neatly and others… well, not so neatly. That’s just the way it is. I always kept this in mind when I went to bid a property.
How much did I charge to clean apartment turnovers?
Before I get started, keep in mind my company was cleaning apartments from roughly 2002 till 2012. I did tons of them in the 2004 to 2008 time-frame. Basically I started out with one complex, then added on others in the next few years.
Then around 2008 I started to pull out of this segment to do other things (ie: focus more on carpet cleaning). So when I give you ideas of what I was getting paid, you need to keep in mind that this pricing information is not current.
Sampling of pricing I was paid to clean apartment turnovers:
- One complex paid me $50 per unit (all sizes).
- One complex paid me $80 per unit (all sizes).
- One complex paid me $110 for a one bed, $120 for a two bed & $130 for a three bed.
- One complex paid me $130 for a one bed, $140 for a two and $150 for a three bed.
As you can see, the prices are all over the place. That’s just the way it worked out. The first two complexes (the one that paid me $50 and the one that paid $80) didn’t allow me to submit a price to clean them. THEY TOLD ME how much they would pay.
I only accepted the jobs if I was allowed to bid the common areas separately (hallways, foyers etc…). When submitting bids on them I MADE SURE I MADE MONEY on that side of the equation. If they accepted my prices, then I took the job (I viewed the turnovers as BREAK EVEN propositions).
The two higher priced accounts I bid at that price. I also did the common areas on those complexes too (I never did JUST turnovers, I always did the common areas too). I had other jobs that fell in-between these accounts I shared as well, but you get the idea I hope of how I approached things.
What ARE YOU charging for apartment turnovers?
In the spirit of sharing some knowledge between peers, I would like to ask everyone out there who cleans apartment turnovers to chime in and share what they are currently getting. No need to share your company name if you don’t like.
Just share your general location and what you are charging. This will help the newcomers out there better understand their market. I look forward to hearing from everyone out there and THANKS for reading my post today.
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