“Pretty high cleaning fee for how dirty the place was when we arrived. Cobwebs in every light fixture. Bathtubs so disgusting I went upstairs to use a different shower...” Not exactly the impression you want potential guests to get of your property.
This quote is taken from an Airbnb review of a unit that clearly did not meet guest expectations, bringing the only host only three stars.* However, the host could have avoided this by working with a reliable housekeeper or cleaning company.
Smooth and consistent turnover operations aren’t just important for the guest experience—they’re central to your ability to run and scale a successful short-term rental business. Without this piece of the puzzle, you’re left with properties that don’t meet guest expectations, last-minute fires to put out, and negative reviews.
That’s why in this piece, we walk you through the top 5 sources for finding reliable cleaners. Additionally, we give you insights into what you need to keep in mind when selecting cleaners and tips for seamlessly managing your housekeeping staff.
Let Breezeway coordinate your cleaners for you
5 platforms to find the best Airbnb cleaners
If you’re lucky, a trusted friend or colleague may recommend you a reliable housekeeper. However, for the majority of hosts and property managers, that's not the reality.
Nevertheless, finding good cleaners is one of the best things you can do for your business. “Your cleaner can make or break your vacation rental business,” says Suzanne Hacker, vacation rental business coach and CEO and Founder of Welcoming Wow. “Receiving poor reviews on the cleanliness of your rentals can derail future bookings, and reviews with fewer than five stars can be difficult to come back from.”
Here are four places you can source trustworthy and thorough cleaners to deliver turnovers that meet your and your guests’ expectations.
Cleanster.com is one of the platforms that Suzanne recommends for finding cleaners. The website is easy to use, setting you up with cleaners in your area based on your needs. It’s available in a number of cities across Canada, the UK, and the US, so check the website to see if they operate in your area.
Cleanster.com isn’t specifically designed for vacation rentals, but you can specify when looking for cleaners that you want them for short-term rental purposes. You can toggle your property details, including how many bathrooms and rooms you have and how many hours you estimate the job will take, to get an estimate of how much each turnover will cost.
You can put in your property specs to get a quote for a cleaner using Cleaner.com in a matter of seconds.
While Airtasker isn’t specifically designed for vacation rental and Airbnb hosts, it can still help you find quality cleaners for your turnovers. To search for cleaners, you enter the details about your rental property and what services you’re searching for and propose a budget.
Then, cleaners bid on your job and you can review their offers and profiles to choose the best possible person for your needs. When searching through cleaner profiles, you can read reviews left by people who previously hired them, helping you select a thorough and reliable housekeeper.
Use Airtasker to help you find cleaners for your Airbnb rentals.
Formerly known as Angie’s List, Angi is a generic home service sourcing platform that can help you find workers to complete your cleaning jobs. To find a cleaner with Angi, you enter information like your location and project details.
Then, you’ll get matched with potential cleaners and cleaning teams, at which point you can request and compare quotes. What’s more, Angi can also help you find staff to handle maintenance tasks and plumbing services if you don’t already have a designated handyperson.
If you’re looking for a way to easily browse through cleaners in your area, look to Thumbtack. You simply enter your zip code and the job you’re looking to hire for and you’ll get a list of housekeepers and cleaning companies with their starting price, ratings, and reviews.
That way, you can sift through cleaning businesses and individuals to find a service provider that’s sure to deliver high-quality turnovers that will wow your Airbnb guests. You can also toggle filters like start date, frequency, number of bedrooms, and cleaning type to narrow your search and ensure you’re only getting results that are relevant to you.
Thumbtack gives you a quick look at cleaners in your area.
What to keep in mind when finding Airbnb cleaners?
Suzanne recommends getting referrals from other homeowners, hosts, and property managers when searching for cleaners. However, we understand that’s not possible for everyone, so here are a few things to keep in mind when finding housekeepers.
Pricing and packages
Pay close attention to each company or cleaner’s pricing model and package options when making a selection. For example, some housekeepers will charge an hourly rate, while others charge by project—having a fixed vs. variable pricing model will have a big impact on how you pay your cleaners and how you can budget for these costs.
Additionally, you want to note whether the cleaner will use their own supplies or if you are expected to provide them. Having to purchase cleaning supplies yourself adds up, so factor that in when estimating the total price of each turnover.
Notice and turnaround times
Last-minute bookings happen, and you want to be sure you work with someone who can accommodate all the unexpected changes in your booking calendar. The shorter the notice period the better, to allow for last-minute reservations, so keep this in mind. And be sure to include notice times when you create your cleaning contract to avoid any misunderstandings.
Additionally, ask your prospective short-term rental cleaners what their estimated turnaround time is for a normal clean. This helps you plan for two guest bookings within the same day, plus allows you to estimate costs if your cleaner charges an hourly rate for their rental cleaning services.
Experience in the industry
Suzanne emphasizes that a short-term rental cleaning is not the same as a normal house cleaning. As a vacation rental or Airbnb business, you’re dealing with last-minute changes, quick turnaround times, and high guest expectations (which can impact whether or not you receive positive reviews). So be sure whatever housekeeper you end up working with has experience in the short-term rental industry.
We also recommend you pay close attention to reviews before deciding on a cleaner. Many of the platforms we mentioned above include reviews and ratings for cleaners, so go ahead and read through what other hosts and property managers have to say before making your decision.
5 tips for managing your Airbnb cleaners seamlessly
Finding your cleaners is just the start of managing your turnovers. Now, you have to schedule cleanings, assure the quality of each clean, control your expenses, monitor task status, communicate with staff, and manage inventory. Here’s how to do all of that seamlessly with Breezeway.
1. Automate your cleaning calendar and task scheduling
Breezeway syncs with your PMS and online travel agency (OTA) accounts like Airbnb and Vrbo to automatically schedule a clean whenever a guest makes a reservation. By setting customized rules for each reservation, guest type, property attribute, and length of stay, that platform knows exactly when and how to schedule tasks.
If a guest changes or cancels a reservation, Breezeway automatically updates your calendar and notifies your team, making the whole process entirely hands-off.
Breezeway connects to your PMS to automatically create new turnover tasks when a guest makes a reservation.
2. Build custom checklists for each property
Suzanne recommends you “clean your vacation rental yourself a couple of times to prepare a list with your expectations. Don't just assume your housekeeper will clean to your level of satisfaction.” After doing that, use Breezeway to create and share your checklists.
The platform’s cleaning checklists help you ensure consistent quality with every clean. You can use checklist templates to customize requirements for cleaners and then share them with your housekeepers—they can access these checklists via the Breezeway mobile app while they’re out on the job. Plus, cleaners can upload images of their job so you can ensure the property is ready for the next guest and will meet their standards.
3. Use task timing to control your cleaning costs
Especially when working with a new cleaner or running turnovers on a new property, it can be hard to know how much to budget for housekeeping. Breezeway’s task timing feature gives you visibility over how long cleaners are on the job, helping you forecast future costs and identify places to cut down on expenses.
For example, if you notice cleaners are spending an excessive amount of time at one of your properties, you may want to remove one of the time-consuming tasks that’s holding them up— you could remove washing all the windows from your turnover checklist and turn it into a monthly recurring task.
Pro tip: Breezeway also lets you schedule recurring tasks to help you stay on top of tasks like routine deep cleans and quarterly maintenance.
4. Track task status and communicate quickly with cleaners
Tracking down cleaners to make sure all tasks are completed can eat up a good part of your day. But with Breezeway, you can coordinate work and monitor task status in real time via the platform’s dashboard. What’s more, you’ll receive instant notifications when a task is completed or a cleaner records an issue.
Breezeway also makes it easy to communicate with your cleaners when they’re out in the field by centralizing all your communication. You can message housekeepers and leave comments on tasks all within the platform, meaning you’re not jumping between text messages, WhatsApps, and calls all day.
5. Monitor and manage inventory levels and linen packing
To make your turnovers run as smoothly as possible, you need to make sure cleaners have everything they need to do their jobs. Manually managing inventory and linens is cumbersome, error-prone, and time-consuming.
Breezeway automates this process with its inventory management program, which uses data from property care tasks to help you track your inventory and ensure you always have everything you need in stock. What’s more, the platform lets you create and export supply sheets to help you manage linens and ensure housekeepers always show up at a property with exactly what they need.
Use Breezeway’s inventory tracking feature to make sure a housekeeper is never caught without the cleaning supplies they need.
Find the right cleaners (and manage them well) for smooth turnovers and happy guests
If you’ve been sifting through Facebook groups and Craigslist to no avail, use the five platforms we recommend to find quality, reliable cleaners fast. But optimizing your turnover operations doesn’t stop with finding a consistent, reliable cleaner.
Use a tool like Breezeway that helps you automate and standardize your processes when working with vacation rental cleaners. With Breezeway, you can:
- Automate your cleaning calendar and task scheduling
- Build custom checklists for each property
- Use task timing to control your cleaning costs
- Track task status and communicate quickly with cleaners
- Monitor and manage inventory levels and linen packing
Build custom checklists for each property
Use task timing to control your cleaning costs
Track task status and communicate quickly with cleaners
Monitor and manage inventory levels and linen packing
Getting your cleaning operations under control with Breezeway will give you back more time in your day, as you’re no longer tasked with creating scheduling calendars, tracking down cleaners, and manually managing inventory. What’s more, Breezeway helps you consistently deliver spotless properties that exceed guest expectations, meaning glowing reviews, increased bookings, and better business results.
Let Breezeway coordinate your cleaners for you