Last Updated: January 14th, 2018
You have been working on building a family, a career, a life, and you have realized the importance of time. You have decided that input equals output. So no more wasted time spent cleaning your home.
So you have decided to hire the best house cleaning services in Houston, TX or surrounding area! OK great, you have made a good decision for yourself and your family. Now you probably are looking for the reviews of the best right? Better yet, you want to find the best our town has to offer to invite into your home. We have put this guide together for you to check out and help in your decision making.
Ready? Here we go…
There is No Supposed “BEST” Houston Cleaning Services or Anywhere – Here’s Why
Really. It’s true…read on.
We see the gimmicky headline all the time, we are “the best this or that”. Well, the question becomes according to whom? There is no national organization that ordains each city in the U.S with a “best services of the year” award. It simply is not true and does not exist.
Once you accept that the companies who claim to be the best are in large part or mostly self-ordained as the best, then things will make some more sense.
But what about those big review sites that say this and that company is the best? Well, here why they make that claim.
All big home services platforms that are relevant charge businesses to advertise on or thru their site. They want you to believe that they have the best to offer near you in their system – because of their advertising profits.
That is not true, they just have businesses that have reviews from other customers [real or not real by the way] on their platform that is usually served up to you based on locating you. Basically, your cell phone ping, IP address, and location-enabled devices allow them to show the companies near you that offer whatever you may be searching for.
Here is how it works for most review platforms that claim to have the best choices in any city:
- You [the company] signs up for a profile on the site (there are paid and free versions to register a profile)
- You [the company] pays to have an add, to be served up to customers. The platform often sends the customer’s request to several businesses all of whom they charge the business as a “lead”. So one customer requesting one lead can have 5-10 business who are charged for that one contact information.
- Another method is a cost per click on each add. This is a little more straightforward. Click and the business pay for the click to bring the customer to their website or page
- Serve the add or send the contact information – after the customer clicks or requests the best house option in the companies are then sent the information to contact you. The companies that are sent the information are based on where you are located from your location or the location you enter.
In some cases, you can even get served up the worst options with terrible reviews, why? Because the platform wants more advertising income.
So the more relevant search should be to find good companies in Houston, TX based on certain signals, not necessarily the “best” based on their reviews and other factors. This is how the review platforms can help. More about that later.
Read the Reviews Objectively
According to the Harvard Business Review customers intuitively link past experiences to new experiences. This is why it’s important to remain objective.
In your search for the best house cleaner, you will likely read some reviews. This is how the home services platforms can help. You can read the review they have and digest what is said for your own needs. There are also onsite reviews of many that you would be interested in as well. Be objective when you read the review.
The five stars are an exaggeration as well as the one stars. These are the extreme ends. So most will look at the highest stars and read some of the bad reviews as well. Make sure to read the Houston maid service responses as well – all customers simply are not right – to be objective here.
When assessing the review stay in the middle. If you see a lot of one star and 2 stars with overall high stars, then that is a good sign. Also look at the dates of the reviews. Are they recent in the last 6 months or are the reviews older? The quantity of the reviews should not be a factor either as long as there is at least 3 or more. It is obvious which companies pay their customers for reviews which are highly frowned upon by most platforms.
Also, most customers read 10 or less review to form their opinion. In fact, 88% will form an opinion from 10 or fewer reviews while only 12% read more than 10. This is according to Vendasta.
Each customer has different needs and concerns. Some are big on security, some are big on customizable, some want a simple and easy process. Whatever is most important to you look for a few of those points in the reviews.
Just remember that a large number of reviews don’t mean the best, it just quantity.
Look at the quality of the reviews and stay objective.
The number one compliment we get from a new Ready SET Maids member is that our reviews are great, which is why the decision to sign up with us or contact us. Customers do not really care if you have hundreds or just a few. They care more about the substance of the reviews.
So be objective and look at what is important to you when reading reviews. Remember the reviews tell you about the customer experience management and quality of the work. Overall this is what you will need a gauge on to make a quality decision.
Here is What Ready SET Maids Members are Saying About Us!
Finding the Right Maids in Houston for You and Your Family: Which Maid Service Business Model is for you?
You do you want the best right? The reason we wanted to include this is that of the various types of options. Let’s review the business models to see what might be a good fit for you:
By the Job Model
The by the job model is Ready Set Maids house cleaning service model.
Obviously, we are prone to this model for many reasons. Chiefly, because it is a win for the customer, the professional cleaners, and the company.
Here is how it works:
- This model is basically an all-inclusive model. You can usually pick your packages and have a set scope of work. The scope of work is usually process driven. This allows services to move efficiently and consistently thru a home.
- You can also choose add-on features to like laundry, dishes or deep cleaning options most of the time.
- When you have a by the job option you can see what your scope of work will be each time. Usually, you are rewarded with more when you are in a regular rotation with the company
- This model is also the most transparent in most cases and the pricing can vary by the number of rooms in your home you would like cleaned and the square feet of your home.
- The by the job model is great for the customer because the professional cleaners are usually trained to conduct the same scope of work in each home. This can lead to a more consistent experience and a cleaner home over time. It also allows the company to better manage their budget and compensate their cleaners better because of the efficiency.Companies have expenses as a result of bringing a consistently good experience to you. This could include equipment and supply. Payroll and advertising and training cost.
Remember that you are letting people into your home and you don’t want people making less than or minimum wage in your home [more on this later].
The “Rip You Off with Hidden Prices Model”
This model of has gotten hammered for it hidden and cloak and dagger pricing. Basically here is how it works. You purchase what you think is a $99 every two weeks’ package. When they show up to do your work you find out the ceiling fans, blinds and baseboards are not included. Because there was no scope of work published in a straightforward manner and that each is an additional $25. Your price was just increased by $75 and since they did the work you’ll be charged for it.
Many franchises and “best maid services” played this game for a number of years until the consumer stopped booking them again and found new services. There are plenty of services that still play this game today however they do not retain customers because of it.
Here is how to spot them before you even book them.
Visit their website and see if you can get a clear and updated price. If you can’t be weary and use this as a red flag. Another piece you need to look for is the scope of work. Is it published on their site prominently or in the menu bar of their site? You should know what you are paying for correct?
The Hourly Model
This model is pretty straightforward. You purchase the number of hours you want and the maids will come clean for that amount of time. The benefit is usually a lower price but the work can be inconsistent. The reason for that is the consumer and the maid usually are not connected to how long it takes to clean a certain area. The time can vary based on the amount of clutter in them and build up.
It’s best to prioritize for the individual rooms you would like done for sure because often the whole house is not cleaned because enough hours were not purchased.
While you can spend less on hourly you usually will not get a thorough job. You have to be realistic about the size of your home, how many rooms you need to be cleaned and the amount of buildup you have. Larger home, more rooms, and large square feet equals more time it will take in your home
Also, keep in mind that you usually only get one cleaner on this model as well.
The Cheap of Cheap Model
Please, whatever you do try not to pick the cheapest you find. Here are some reasons why it’s a really bad decision:
- Labor Costs – If a company is cleaning your house for $10 per hour or $50 it’s a red flag for us. Housekeepers are people like everyone else who have expenses. If you are paying $10 per hour, what do you think they are making? Minimum wage probably or less if they are under the table or a non-legal resident.
- Turnover – It is likely a cheap company has lots of turnovers because most great companies refuse to pay minimum wage for this reason. So good cleaners leave the cheap company and go work for a higher paying company. So the inconsistently of people showing at your home when they are scheduled to clean and not doing a good consistently will be passed on to you – the buyer.
- The quality of Work – If your cleaner is disenfranchised with what they are making hourly they will likely do substandard work. They may not move efficiently and skip parts of your home entirely because they don’t feel like they are getting paid for the work they are performing.
- Security Concerns – If the option is so cheap companies may be cutting corners to save some money. They may not background check their people and if someone is making such little money more issues can come up. Such as theft. If there is a dire long-term financial burden of a profession housekeeper because of such low wages they may steal from you.
This model in our opinion is not good for several issues. There are irregularities with the house cleanings in term of work. The cleaner may not show up on many occasions and when they do, they are likely to do bad work.
So overall you should consider the price you will pay for picking the cheapest route you can find. Often people learn the hard way
The Independent House Cleaner
Do you prefer an independent house cleaner over a company? Here are the pro and cons for you to assess:
- Price is typically lower
- Can be great if you happen to find a diamond in the rough
- Often referred by neighbors
- You can highly customize if you want
- Independent domestic cleaners are their own boss and can come anytime they want, or not
- No background check is conducted in many cases so you don’t know who is in your home
- Quality of work can vary because no one is holding that person accountable for their work even if you customize
- If they break an item in your home. Well, you are probably stuck with the cost of replacing or repair
- There is usually no bonding or insurance of these cleaners. They can bring help with them raising more security issues.
- You can be held liable by the IRS for employment taxes and for personal inquiries to the cleaner that occur in your home.
Overall there are less and less independent house cleaners. According to the U.S. Bureau of labor statistics https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes372012.htm,
there are only about 4% of independent cleaner overall. This, of course, varies by market and those you actually reported their work as 1099”s
We are not advocating that independent cleaners are bad by any means. It’s about finding the good ones out there. They are usually filled up however so it gets harder and harder to find a great independent house cleaner.
This model is not very prevalent today but it used to be a high hourly rate model. You basically come up with the list of household cleaning that you wanted and the company would give you an estimate on how long it would take. Some offer the customization option as an add-on however it is not often popularized or marketed. Usually, if someone can afford a high degree of customization they often hire in-house nanny’s or lives in housekeepers.
Do You Want Local, Franchise, National or International?
Finding the best fit for you may also include a preference for a local Houston, TX company or maybe a franchise or national/international company. So let us pull the onion back and look at what the difference really is.
What is the Main Difference between a Local and Franchise Cleaning Service?
A local business in Houston, TX is exactly that. Incorporated in our city and pays their taxes in the state of Texas. Often their owners live and work in the local community and understand the local culture. Most if not all their profits and spending is in the local community or city itself.
Franchises are also local to some degree. Many do not realize that most franchisees are independent business owners as well. Let’s say you buy a subway. You incorporate that business as a Texas company (if in Texas) usually. You pay Texas taxes and the owners usually live and work in the community as well.
Franchises owe the franchise parent a royalty for using their “propriety” system. This fee can be from 1% to 15% and more depending on the franchise agreement and the franchiser themselves. Most often these fees are off of top line sales. So for instance, if your local franchise maid service does $1,000 a week a portion of that (let’s say 4%) goes back to the franchiser. The franchiser can be and is often based in another state where that income is funneled back to. Meaning that (franchise fee) income is taken out from circulation from the local community.
But wait, there is more…
In a franchise system, the franchisor has the right and often does control the supply chain. This means the franchise has legally agreed to purchase supplies, products or even services from the franchisor in their franchise agreement. Basically, if you don’t sign the franchise agreement, you don’t get the franchise.
Many franchisors if not most use supply chain control as another profit center.
So instead of the franchise buying supplies from a local business, they may be forced to buy thru the franchisor taking more dollars and taxes out of the local community.
The Maid Service Franchise Myth
There are some myths that some have been led to believe. It’s not just in our area either. These myths are appropriate for most markets, even those overseas.
- Myth – Franchises do a better job than local businesses or independent cleaners.
- Truth – Well, take a look at the reviews of maid services. When you are a great company or just a bad choice, it doesn’t matter if you are a franchise or not. It comes down to management and accountability, and a customer first perspective to keep building a great company. Just because it’s a “brand” doesn’t make it good or bad.
- Myth – Franchise has a unique or proprietary system
- Truth – wrong, wrong, and more wrong. Most good companies follow a checklist of what to clean and how. There is not anything that is unique or proprietary. Most do a top to bottom clean. Meaning they start from the top of the room [ceiling fans, high dusting] then > [top of appliances/counters] then > [counters & appliances] then > [floors last] to the bottom of the room. They are also taught to move left to right or right to left. Nothing proprietary, nothing secret or special.
Again, the quality of an experience comes down to management and accountability.
Any good company that provides domestic services will use a checklist and a process for their cleaners to deliver good execution of their offerings.
- Myth – Franchises provide background checks and have higher standards for their people.
- Truth – These companies are just like any other company because they are independent corporations themselves. A franchiser cannot dictate how to hire and what practices to use. So the hiring practices for professional cleaners are up to the franchisees themselves.
Good companies’ in-person interviews, reference checks, utilize criminal background checks and provide good training for their people.
- Myth – They are the authority on housekeeping services
- Truth – nope, sorry. Using good products, a checklist, a process and taking good care of your good customers can make any most options a great choice
- Myth – Being in business for decades makes us the best choice – Nope!
- Truth – Then why do so many local companies outrank them throughout the U.S. and abroad?
There you have it, the most popular business models to choose from. This is why we say pick the best option to suit you and your families’ preferences. We are biased to a by the job, local company for many reasons as you see above.
How Do the Top Ranked Housekeepers Hire? An Important Point to Consider
People make the difference. Here is why:
- Security & Background – It should be clear that the company you are looking at has done diligence in checking the background of their employee or contractors. Both credit and criminal checks are important. You want to make sure that professional cleaners are not in debt to their eyeballs that they are likely to steal from your home
- Interstate Criminal Check – Do you know most agencies only check criminal background at a state level? Yep, it’s cost-effective and quick. It is not a huge deal however if someone has committed a crime outside of your state and has no warrants you or the company may never know. This is why Ready SET Maids conducts interstate background checks.
- In Person Interview – I know this sounds strange that a company will hire cleaners even if they have not met them in person or via Skype. It does happen more often than you think. A company that is considered to be one of the best house would surely have conducted at least one in-person
- Training the Maids – Good and consistent companies will spend time engaging their team and training them to do a great job.
- Sourcing People – The source of where companies are finding people to clean your home is important. This industry has a very high turnover and it is increasingly more difficult to find folks who want to me professional cleaner their entire life.
- We have seen that many make listings on employment sites which are a good measure and some also use hiring firms to help assist with finding professional cleaners.
- We have also noticed that some sources of cleaners are a bit more questionable such as hiring illegal immigrants under the table without any background checks.
- Team Culture – Treating the team well and with respect will translate into a better experience for the customer and the company overall. You should have a sense of how the company treats its folks from your first interaction with them. A happy cleaner makes for a happy experience.
What to Expect from One of the Top Ranked Companies?
So here is some quick advice and common issues that may arise:
- Price – We already shared with you that you are likely going to get what you pay for. If you have room in your budget spend a little more. You want the company to make money to keep training their folks, pay them well and use quality products and equipment.
- The Job — You will likely get a bad job every now and again. All companies good and bad will make a mistake. Focus on how they fix the problem. Most people want to do a good job. Try to be patient.
- Tips – if you want to tip, go ahead. It is very much appreciated
- The scope of Work – it is a common problem that customers don’t read their scope of work in detail this can cause an issue if you make too many extra and special requests. Being overbearing and unreasonable could actually get you fired from your company.
- Broken Items – Accidents happen in spite of the best training. Be patient and again give the company a chance to resolve the problem with you. They didn’t break your item on purpose
- You Love the Company – Hey if you have a great experience share it and refer a friend. Most companies give you a discount for a referral.
Having a maid service is a great help to many of us who lead busy lives. Once you find a good company who will take care of your needs you will enjoy the experience even more.
You are looking to hire a good fit to help you get some quality time back for yourself and your family. Don’t make the process overly exhausting or difficult for yourself. Ready Set Maids has built a company with you in mind. You not only can get your house cleaning service price immediately, you can also book your house cleaning in Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Fulshear, Pearland Texas, and more in just 60 seconds right here on our site.
If you there is something we have forgotten to answer for you, please give us a call at 832-939-4500.
Address: 19901 Southwest Freeway, Sugar Land, TX 77479