A Guide to Outsourcing Vacation Rental Cleaning

Nov 09 2023

Get tips on how to use Hostfully to optimize your vacation rental business and make more profit.


What’s in this article?

Outsourcing vacation rental cleaning can be a game-changer for property owners and vacation rental managers alike. Not only does it help save valuable time and effort, but it also ensures that guests enjoy a clean and comfortable stay. In this article, we’ll explore why you should consider outsourcing your vacation rental cleaning and provide recommendations on how to do it effectively.

Why you should outsource your vacation rental cleaning

There are several compelling reasons why outsourcing your vacation rental cleaning is a smart move. Let’s delve into a few of them:

Save time and resources

No one wants to spend a lot of time and physical energy on those Airbnb or Vrbo cleaning tasks. As a busy property manager, not only do you have to spend hours scrubbing and tidying up, but you also have to invest in cleaning supplies and equipment. By hiring a cleaning team, you free up valuable time that you can invest in other aspects of your rental business. Imagine being able to focus on marketing, guest communication, and improving the overall guest experience, rather than being stuck with a mop and a vacuum cleaner.

Additionally, professional house cleaning companies often have access to high-quality cleaning products and tools that may not be readily available to you. They know which products work best for different surfaces and materials, ensuring that your vacation home is not only clean but also well-maintained. By leveraging their expertise and resources, you can achieve a level of cleanliness that may be challenging to attain on your own, especially during peak seasons.

High standards are now standard

Today’s guests have high standards when it comes to cleanliness. They expect a pristine and hygienic environment during their stay. By entrusting your cleaning needs to professionals, you can ensure that your property is spotless and meets or exceeds guest expectations.

Professional cleaners are trained to pay attention to every detail, from sanitizing bathrooms to dusting hard-to-reach corners. They have a systematic approach to cleaning, ensuring that no area is overlooked. Need a deep clean? They can tackle tough stains, eliminate unpleasant odors, and create a fresh and inviting atmosphere for your guests.

Moreover, outsourcing your vacation rental cleaning can help you maintain consistency in cleanliness. When you rely on a professional cleaning service, you can establish a regular cleaning schedule, ensuring that your property is always in top-notch condition. This consistency will not only elevate the guest experience but also contribute to positive reviews and repeat bookings.

Cast a larger (pet-friendly) reach

Pet hair, dander, and odors can be difficult to remove, especially if you don’t have the right tools and expertise. Professional cleaners who specialize in short-term rental cleaning have the experience and knowledge to effectively remove pet residues. With the use of specialized equipment, such as high-powered vacuums and pet-specific cleaning products, they ensure properties remain fresh and allergen-free. By entrusting the cleaning to professionals, property managers can rely on a welcoming space for pet-owning guests without compromising on cleanliness.

Even more enticing, outsourcing the cleaning of pet-friendly vacation rentals can help you attract a larger pool of potential guests. Many travelers specifically look for accommodations that allow pets, and by providing a clean and pet-friendly environment, you can tap into this lucrative market segment. Additionally, you can add an additional pet cleaning charge to offset the cleaning costs.

Implementing a vacation rental cleaning service

Ready to save time and boost your cleaning game? Here are some ways to outsource vacation rental cleaners.

Google cleaning companies

The first step in finding the right cleaning company for your vacation rental is to do some research. Start by Googling licensed and reputable cleaning businesses in your local area. Look for companies that specialize in vacation rental cleaning, as they will have the expertise and experience to meet your specific needs. Take the time to read customer reviews and check their availability to find the perfect fit for your property.

Referrals and recommendations

Nothing beats a strong referral. Recommendations are a great way to find cleaning services that have already proven themselves in the industry. Reach out to other property owners or property managers in your network and ask for their experiences and recommendations. They can provide valuable insights into the cleaning companies they have worked with and help you make an informed decision. Seasoned property managers may also have useful suggestions you may have not yet considered.

Join vacation rental cleaning services social media groups

Online communities and search platforms dedicated to vacation rental management can be a goldmine of information when it comes to finding cleaning service providers. These platforms often have sections or groups where you can find and connect with house-cleaning companies that specialize in short-term rentals.

By joining these groups or platforms, you gain access to a wide range of options. You can browse through different cleaning service providers, compare prices, and read reviews from other property owners or managers. This can make it easier to find the perfect fit for your needs and ensures that you are making an informed decision.

Get cleaning management software

To streamline the process of outsourcing your vacation rental cleaning, consider investing in cleaning management software. These tools are designed to simplify and automate scheduling and communication with cleaning providers, ensuring that your properties are always clean and ready for guests.

Cleaning management software allows you to create cleaning schedules, assign tasks to specific providers, and track the progress of each cleaning job. It also provides a platform for seamless communication between you and the cleaning staff, making it easier to address any specific requirements or changes in cleaning instructions.

By using cleaning management software, you can save time and effort in coordinating with cleaning providers, giving you more time to focus on other aspects of your vacation rental business.

10 questions to ask when hiring a rental cleaning team

When evaluating a professional cleaning company, ask them the following questions to ensure they meet your specific needs. You also want to ensure safety protocols for a pleasant guest experience. Here’s a list of important questions you might consider asking when interviewing:

  1. What cleaning products do you use, and are they eco-friendly?
  2. How do you handle special requests, deep cleans, or specific cleaning tasks?
  3. Do you provide your own cleaning supplies and equipment, or do I need to supply those?
  4. What is your policy regarding damages or theft during the cleaning process? What about items left by guests?
  5. Are you insured and bonded? (Note, at least $1 million liability coverage is recommended. If the property is subject to rules about outside vendors, you may need to explore any minimum coverages you’ll need to secure.)
  6. How do you screen, train, and supervise cleaners? (Look for extensive onboarding.)
  7. How can property managers monitor and provide feedback on quality? (Platforms with checklists and messaging are ideal.)
  8. How do you handle last-minute schedule changes or rental extensions? (Flexibility is a must!)
  9. What are your COVID turnover cleaning protocols like the use of disinfectants, protective gear for staff, etc.?
  10. What systems ensure consistent quality across all properties? (Training, cleaning checklists, turnover, and inspections should be robust.)

Cleaning service cost considerations

Incorporating the cleaning fees into your rental budget is necessary for proper financial planning. Consider the frequency of cleanings, the size of your property, and any additional cleaning services you may require, such as laundry or deep cleaning. Assessing the return on investment in terms of guest satisfaction and time saved can help justify the expense. Professional vacation rental cleaning services offer different pricing models, including:

  • Per clean pricing: Charges a set fee per clean based on factors like property size, bedrooms, and bathrooms. This provides predictable costs.
  • Volume discounts: Companies offer discounted rates if you commit to a minimum number of monthly cleanings across your properties. This rewards larger accounts.
  • Hourly rates: Some cleaners charge an hourly rate per person on site. The final cost varies based on time spent.
  • Monthly packages: Packages provide a set number of cleans per month for a flat monthly fee across all properties. This simplifies budgeting.

Be sure to understand the pricing model and all inclusions and exclusions when signing a service contract. Factor in transportation fees, minimums, and supplies. For more information, read about vacation rental cleaning fees.

Evaluating a cleaning company’s effectiveness

Regular assessment of cleaning quality

Regularly evaluating the quality of the cleaning services you have outsourced is crucial for maintaining consistently high cleanliness standards. Conduct spot checks and inspections after each cleaning to ensure the cleaning service is meeting your expectations. Address any deficiencies promptly and provide feedback to help them improve.

Handling issues with your cleaning service

Despite careful selection and communication, issues may occasionally arise with your cleaning service. In such cases, it’s important to address the concerns promptly and professionally. Maintain open lines of communication and work with the cleaning service to find mutually beneficial solutions. If necessary, explore alternatives to ensure your vacation rental’s cleanliness remains uncompromised.

Automate your vacation rental cleaning

Once you’ve successfully outsourced your vacation rental cleaning, it’s time to take it a step further by automating the process. Most vacation rental businesses use management software which can be invaluable when coordinating cleaners and guests. Here’s why:

Increased efficiency

Automating your outsourced vacation rental cleaning can greatly increase efficiency. By implementing automated systems, you can streamline the entire cleaning process, from scheduling to task assignments. This eliminates the need for manual coordination and reduces the chances of errors or miscommunication. With automation, you can ensure that your vacation rental is always cleaned promptly and thoroughly, providing a seamless experience for your guests.

Save time and money

Automating your vacation rental cleaning can save you both time and money. By eliminating the need for manual coordination and supervision, you can free up your time to focus on other important aspects of managing your vacation rental business. Additionally, automation can help reduce labor costs by optimizing the cleaning process and minimizing the need for additional staff. This can result in significant savings in the long run.

Consistency and quality control

With automated systems in place, you can ensure consistent and high-quality cleaning for your vacation rental. By setting predefined cleaning checklists and standards, you can ensure that every house cleaning task is performed to your desired level of cleanliness. Automated reminders and notifications can also help ensure that nothing is overlooked or forgotten. This level of consistency and quality control can greatly enhance the overall guest experience and contribute to positive reviews and repeat bookings.

Real-time monitoring and reporting

Automation allows you to monitor the progress and status of your vacation rental cleaning in real time. With the help of digital tools and software, you can track the completion of cleaning tasks, view photos or videos of the cleaned areas, and generate detailed reports. This level of transparency and visibility can provide you with valuable insights into the efficiency and effectiveness of your cleaning operations. It also allows you to address any issues or concerns promptly, ensuring that your vacation rental is always in top-notch condition.

Scalability and growth

Automating your outsourced vacation rental cleaning can help you scale your business and accommodate growth. As your vacation rental portfolio expands, managing the cleaning process manually can become overwhelming and time-consuming. By implementing automated systems, you can easily scale your cleaning operations without sacrificing quality or efficiency. This scalability allows you to focus on expanding your business and acquiring more vacation rental properties, knowing that the cleaning process is taken care of.

Hostfully integrates with Turno, offering access to pre-vetted cleaners, and is complimentary for Hostfully users
Hostfully’s integration with Turno allows property management teams to peruse Turno’s pre-vetted vacation rental cleaner pool. Turno is also complementary to Hostfully users. Source

Cleaning service benefits outweigh the costs

While outsourcing cleaning does add costs for high-volume hosts, the benefits often outweigh the expense. Professional cleaners enable vacation rental hosts and managers to focus on high-value tasks like marketing, improving listings, and maximizing bookings rather than hands-on cleaning.

Consistently flawless turnover cleans (hello spotless bathrooms and wrinkle-free linens!) also lead to better reviews, enhanced word-of-mouth promotion, and repeat visits. By increasing occupancy rates and rental income, professional cleaning services can provide a positive ROI compared to self-cleaning. The cleanliness level pros achieve would be nearly impossible for owners to match across many units.

In conclusion, outsourcing your vacation rental cleaning is a logical and practical decision for property managers and owners. By delegating this task to professionals, you can save time, meet guest expectations, and even tap into the growing pet-friendly bookings market. And for hosts managing multiple vacation rental properties, outsourcing the intensive cleaning requirements to service providers ensures your next guest enjoys a pristine stay — and makes operating your short-term rental business far more sustainable.

Frequently asked questions about outsourcing vacation rental cleaning

Can I share my Airbnb calendar with a cleaner?

Yes, you can share your Airbnb calendar with your cleaner to ensure seamless coordination. By granting them access to your calendar, they can schedule cleanings based on check-in and check-out dates, ensuring that your property is clean and ready for every guest.