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Question DetailsAsked on 4/23/2016

How does pricing work for a maid service when you request dishes and laundry to be done?

Suppose I have two weeks worth of laundry and a sink full of dirty dishes, how much should I expect to be quoted?

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1 Answer


Assuming you are single, two weeks laundry would likely fit into two washing machine loads - one dark, one lights - so that is about 20-60 minutes first wash cycle, 30-60 minutes second wash and first dry cycle, 30-60 minutes second dry cycle, 10-15 minutes fold and put away second load (first load folded and put away while second load running). Another 30-60 minutes if you need a delicates cycle run too.

So - total about 1-1/2 hour minimum elapsed time to as much as 3-1/4 hours if wash and dry cycle are both 60 minutes. And another 30-60 minutes if a delicates cycle is needed too.

During those cycles there is more than ample time for doing the dishes (either by hand or with dishwasher - about 10-20 minutes in-sink plus after first washer load is running and another 10-15 minutes or so to dry and put away after 30-60 minute dishwasher cycle) and unless your washer and dryer cycle is real short would have ample time to do some general picking up and vacuuming and dusting as well while they are running. If there are so many dishes it is going to be two dishwasher loads than could extend the minimum possible time to something more like 2-1/2 hours assuming a modern dishwasher that takes an hour to do a 15 minute job.

So you are talking (depending on the cycle time for your washer and the humidity (which largely controls drying time) about 1-1/2 to 2-1/2 hours on the low end to as much as 4 to 4-1/4 hours if three washer/dryer cycles are needed. You can run the above numbers yourself if you know the cycle times, and assuming minimum 30-40 minutes dry time per load in low humidity or air conditioned house to 1 hour or even a bit more in high humidity air - to as much as 1-1/2 to 2 hours dry time probably if a load is washing blankets or mattress pads.

Then figure the time you estimate at the hourly rate - typically at least $10/hr and more commonly $15-20/hour with independent cleaners. So with quick wash/dry times could be from $25-30 minimum to more commonly $30-50. With longer cycles (newer equipment - especially energy saving ones) more like $35-50 in cheap labor area to more like $65-85 in high priced areas. And of course note some cleaners have a $50 or sometimes higher minimum per service call.

And if using a commercial multi-crew service as opposed to an individual house cleaning contractor, probably about 25-50% more than the above to cover overhead costs.

Of course, simplest is to ask several Housecleaning bidders (or your regular person if you are already using one). Course you would have to know the cycle times for the appliances.

I would also note, if the sink assumulation is two weeks worth, you need to cut that interval down to well less than a week for hygience purposes unless you are pre-washing them as they go into the sink - dirty dished sitting for 2 weeks will definitely be growing serious mold and such and your cleaner might refuse to work with ones in that condition.

Answered 4 years ago by LCD

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