sponges used by house cleaners

Do you tip house cleaners? I hired a cleaning service to clean my home this week and I’m not sure whether or not I should tip and if so just how much I should give. When I searched online I was surprised to find that most homeowners do not tip for cleaning services. It seems some folks provide a large tip around the holidays and some never tip at all. Simply put I’m not sure how much to tip a house cleaner or group of cleaners to clean my home. 

This is the first time I’ve ever hired a cleaning service and I could really use advice on this one. If you hire a cleaning service do you tip the men and women who come out to clean your home?  If so how much do you tip them? Do you tip them a specific amount or a percent of the overall cost of the cleaning?

After a lot of research here’s what I discovered:

How Much to Tip: Large Company

If you are using a large cleaning company contact management and ask if tips are welcome. They can provide you with a common tipping price; typically either a dollar amount or a percentage of the service you purchased. You can ask quite frankly whether customers are expected to tip and even how much is typically provided.

Unfortunately, just because a large cleaning company charges a lot for services doesn’t mean they pay their cleaners a lot to clean homes. If you are unsure simply ask. The company will let you know whether or not it is customary to tip. Don’t be afraid to ask how much to tip as well.

Remember that most cleaners are working for minimum wage. If you tip your hair dresser, bartender and waitress why would you not think to tip your house cleaner as well? These types of employees are often underpaid, so if you can afford to tip them don’t hesitate to do so.

How Much to Tip: Company Owner or Self Employed House Cleaner

If you use an individual person to clean your home weekly or monthly consider saving up for a large holiday or Christmas gift rather than tipping every time they clean. You can also provide a weekly tip and a holiday gift. Some homeowners prefer to provide both. An average Christmas gift is typically $50.

Why? Most company owners set their own rates. They account for the fact that most home owners won’t automatically tip and set their prices accordingly. 

Having said that it’s still nice to reward them for good work once or twice a year.

house cleaners vacuuming

When to Tip House Cleaners

If you receive house cleaning services every week should you leave a tip each time? This is a question a lot of people ask. I think it depends on who is cleaning your house. If the same set of cleaners are arriving each week you might want to consider tipping once a month. Of course, if you receive a different cleaner or group of cleaners every week then you’ll need to tip weekly.

How Much to Tip House Cleaners

How much do you typically tip for other services? I think the standard rates apply. What would you give your bartender or waitress? Most of us provide 15 to 20% tips. I think that’s a good place to start. That means a $100 cleaning will really cost you $115 to $120. If you need a little help calculating the amount simply type the cost of your service and the tip percentage into this calculator.

How to Tip House Cleaners

Keep in mind that you don’t need to pay each cleaner individually. If a group of cleaners arrive at your house it is perfectly acceptable to leave a $10 to $15 tip for all of them. They will be expected to split the cash among themselves.

house cleaners vacuum

When to Tip More

Consider the amount of work a cleaner might need to do inside of your home. If you keep your home neat and tidy with little dust and dirt then you might not need to provide a giant tip. On the other hand, if you have lots of children dragging crumbs throughout the house and dogs and cats leaving fur behind you should consider tipping more.

If your home is cleaned weekly it requires less work than a home that is cleaned less often. Deep cleans requiring oven cleaning and moving furniture should include a larger tip too.

Tipping Isn’t Required But It’s Nice to Do

Tipping isn’t mandatory, but just because it’s not required doesn’t mean it’s not the nice thing to do. Show your appreciation for those who are bending over, cleaning your toilets, scrubbing your floors and shaking out your rugs.

And if you find a really great cleaner definitely tip them. Cleaning homes for a living isn’t an easy job. Everyone likes to feel rewarded for a job well done.

Your Thoughts

Do you have any thoughts on tipping a house cleaner or group of house cleaners? If so, please leave your comments below. Most of the time any and all tips are greatly appreciated. In fact, it’s highly unusual for anyone to complain about unexpected generosity, but it does happen every once in awhile.