Cleaning is an essential element of a host’s life and can really make a difference in whether a guest enjoys their stay or not. Here in the Community Center it’s one of those things we all have in common and is shown in the many great conversations providing tips and solutions:
One of the tricky things when starting is to know how to calculate your cleaning fee, or charge one at all. Maybe you have a designated cleaner and so this provides a useful guide or you calculate it time/expenses.
Do you have any cleaning tips or routines that help you to prepare your listing? Do you have a cleaning fee on your listing, if so how do you calculate this?
I just hired a new cleaning person who suggested I take all the bed lines home a do the laundry at home. Since I have extra sets of linens, it has become a little easier for me. She packs everything in a bag and drops it off at my house. As far as the comforters go, she sprays them with a cleaning solution and sanitizes them in the drier. She only does the towels at the rental and sweeps and mop the floors. Bathrooms are a breeze to clean. We only use METHOD
cleaning products. Happy cleaning! BTW
as someone mentioned, it’s a great workout. When the cleaning lady can’t make it I do it. Have gotten great reviews and always “5” in Cleanliness.
Yes... I actually ask our guests in their check out requirements to strip the beds & put any used linen in a pile on the floor of our Airbnb Ensuite. This is a great way to also know what was used & what wasnt. Often the quilt cover is taken off the duvet... & at times not (if we've had warmer weather) as I also place a cellular blanket on the bed over the sheets. This system seems to work & often I can reuse some linen not used by the previous guest. Hope this helps!
for my short-stay renters, I use a duvet over a comforter. It dries quickly. For the others, I’m using a nice comforter which I was and hang on a line outside. Now that it’s getting colder in CA, I have to lay it over the couch. I think a nice comforter looks more formal which goes with my decor. Duvets are likely the solution.
You might want to try fleece bedspreads. May not match your decor, but they come out of the wash practically dry, and putting them out on the bed is usually sufficient to dry out the rest of the way. I’m not sure what your humidity levels are in Georgia, but in Philly I simply hang up all my fleece clothing and don’t put them in the dryer, and they dry the rest of the way in a few hours.
I am also seriously having linen and towel storage issues. Iv decluttered rooms and minimised all but essential bedspreads.
A friend also doing Airbnb is suggesting Guests bring their own towels.
@Ingrid267 Not providing towels is an option, but most guests expect those to be provided. If someone was driving to your place it wouldn't be a big deal to throw a few towels in the car, but if people are flying or taking other public transport, no way they want to lug towels along. Towels are a pretty basic part of hospitality.
I've found that many of my European and Caribbean guests travel with their own towels. They must be used to it squeezing it in their luggage, because they still have plenty of clothing and other personal items after unpacking.
@Debra300 I generally travel with my own towel, as well. Not a nice thick one like I'd use at home, but a more threadbare, smaller one that doesn't take up much space. I do it as a "just in case". I might even use it on the bed when staying with family and friends to protect the sheets if I have an itchy bite I might scratch in my sleep, getting a blood spot on the bedding.
Years ago I was staying with a boyfriend at his vacation home in Cabo San Lucas. His 13 year old son was there with him and then my 19 year old daughter showed up. Not one of them had their own towel and all three of them were using mine! After realizing that when I got out of the shower, only to find my towel sodden, I said "Am I the only adult here?" and told them we were going straight down to the second hand market stalls where they could each buy their own towel or drip-dry henceforth.
My cleaning method wouldn't work for everyone, say if you have wall-to-wall carpet or a lot of heavy furniture, but it works well for me.
I list a private room/private bath for solo travelers. The room is small and has a single bed, a couple of small nesting bedside tables, a chair. That's the only furniture- the closet is built-in, as is the counter/desk. The floors are tiled, and there is a small throw rug.
I start by shoving all the furniture to one half of the room. I have felt pads on the furniture legs so they slide easily and don't scratch the floor. Then I start with vacuuming from the ceiling down in the empty part of the room, working my way down. I damp wipe the window sills and frames, open out the curtains (I've found bugs hiding in there before) and give them a shake, wipe down picture frames, baseboards, etc. Then I vacuum and wash the floor. While that side of the room is drying, I start in on the bathroom. By the time I have half the bathroom done, the cleaned half of the bedroom is dry so I wipe down the furniture and shove it back to the cleaned side, then proceed with the second side as I did the first. Then I finish the bathroom and put all the bedroom furniture back in place, make the bed, put out towels and toilet paper and top up soap dispensers in the bathroom. Last thing is to pick a small bouquet of flowers or interesting leaves, depending on the season, and set the vase on the desk in the bedroom.
While cleaning, I use antibacterial wipes on the door knobs, the toilet, the faucet handles, and the light switches.
The only things that don't get cleaned each time are the windows and ceiling fan, which are done on an as-needed basis and a couple times a year I take the curtains down and wash them.
Whole process takes me about an hour and a half-2 hours, then I tidy up and clean the kitchen, which my guests have access to.
I have a 3-night minimum, as I don't want to spend this much time for a 1 or 2 night booking and it doesn't really lose me bookings, as it's not the kind of location where guests are just passing through for the night, they are coming on vacation. No cleaning fee, I feel the same as @Emiel1, that renting accommodation carries with it the expectation that it will be clean, so I just factor my time into my listing price. I can understand hosts who rent out entire homes that house many guests that require hours to clean, multiple beds to change out, and tons of linens and towels to wash, charging a cleaning fee, though.
Like @Sarah977, I don't add a cleaning fee. It smacks to me as a little 'Ryanair' (not the world's favourite airline) and their attention-grabbing fares, which can increase ten-fold with all the bells and whistles.
As for the room - I have yet to receive anything but a five-star rating for cleanliness. The things that get extra attention is the stuff that hides, like under beds, picture frames and under loo seats. I'll sleep in the listing room once in a while too, just to see things from a different perspective/angle. Oh, and antibacterial wipes...ever grabbed a crusty door handle or seen 'specks' on the remote?
Clean, clean and clean again.
Sometimes you get used to seeing things and just overlook them as if they're not there. For example scuff marks accumulating on a door or cobwebs outside.
If you use reading glasses then be sure to wear them for your final inspection of bath and bedding before being done with cleanings. Hair can survive the wash and dry cycles.
At the end of my season I re grout parts of the shower that have become stained.
I leave at least a day between guests but usually there's about 4 or 5 weekdays between guests, so that gives me plenty of time to leave the windows open all day and night. I want NO smell to my guest suite. At the end of my season I steam clean the carpet.
@Pete69 Very true about wearing one's reading glasses when cleaning or for final inspection. Many of us are of an age where our vision isn't as sharp as it used to be. A friend who hosts employs her 20 year-old son to help her clean. As well as doing some areas himself, he'll inspect the places she's already done. His sharp young eyes have often caught things she simply didn't see, like a hair stuck to a shower wall, or some dust in the corner of a bookshelf.