Cleaning Business Contracts
Cleaning business contracts allow you to handle your business smoothly from the start. A contract's purpose is to detail the expectations of both parties. A contract is necessary for many reasons. It gives you and your customer an objective document on which you can clarify your business agreement. People make verbal contracts all the time, but if you want to protect yourself, your business and your reputation, it does not make sense to skip the written contract. Without a contract, neither party has written proof about who agreed to what. This is an awkward situation that puts people at odds with each other.
Never make the mistake of thinking that everything you say will always be perfectly understood by all your customers. On the contrary, you can probably count on being misquoted much of the time. This is not a reflection of your communication skills. It's simply that people often hear what they want to hear instead of what is actually being said.
When money is changing hands, it pays to get it in writing.
Let's say a customer hires you and your team for a one-time move-out house cleaning. You tell her your fee is $15 per hour, per person. However, she hears you say only $15 per hour. Big difference. When it comes time to get paid, you will have a dispute on your hands. The contract would eliminate this type of misunderstanding and save you from getting into trouble.
A cleaning business contract does not need to be long or wordy. To be useful, it should cover these basic questions:
- What will you do for your customer?
- What will your customer pay you?
- When will you be paid?
- How and when will you report to your customer?
- How will you interact with your customers?
Customers, being human, are capable of making assumptions, which isn't likely to work in your favor. (Remember, "A-s-s-u-m-e" makes an "ass" out of "u" and "me").
Those assumptions are usually based on their personal value system and their past experiences. The customer in the example above might have hired a super cheap cleaning service in the past. Three people swooped in, cleaned her house for next-to-nothing, then swooped out. Of course, they didn't do a bang-up job like you would have. They ignored all sorts of dirty spots that you have too much integrity to leave behind. Perhaps they were fast, but they were certainly not thorough or professional.
As a rule, most customers would be displeased with shoddy work like that. However, there are always exceptions. This particular customer may not have given a fig that they didn't do a good job. She may have cared only that it cost less than the price of a movie ticket.
You might think the need for a contract signals a lack of trust. In reality it creates trust by clarifying each party's expectations and reducing surprises. Your developing business takes revenue and energy. You don't want to spend unnecessary time fixing problems after the fact. Taking the precaution of creating a written contract is proactive. It's good business.
Once your agreement is on paper, there is no need to guess what should be done next. You are free to concentrate your energy on the work at hand. The contract allows both parties to relax. Without it, a certain amount of anxiety lingers, creating a feeling of uncertainty between the two parties. Surprises can cost you money and take time from which to recover.