Tips for Offering Move-In / Move-Out Cleaning Services

People and businesses are moving from homes, apartments, and offices on a daily basis. As people and businesses move, they either need their old location cleaned or want to make sure their new location is clean before moving in. Your cleaning company can fill this niche by providing what is known as move-in/move-out cleaning. It can be an added service that your cleaning business provides, a way to give employees new skills, and a great way for your company to make more profit!

Move in/out cleaning can be cleaning a building after an old tenant moves out or before a new tenant moves in. The type of clients looking for move in/out cleaning includes residential and commercial property owners and managers. Commercial move in/out cleaning can vary from small, quick jobs of just a few thousand square feet to large office buildings of 15,000 square feet and up.

A good place to start when looking for move in/out cleaning accounts is to contact property management companies. If you happen to be located in a college town there will probably be no shortage of work. If you have been cleaning commercial buildings, your clients will no doubt ask you to provide move in/out cleaning services when they move into a new office or building.

When first starting out with move in/out cleaning it may be necessary to meet with the property manager on-site to give an estimate on the time it will take to clean the apartment, office, or building. Once you establish a relationship with the property manager you may be able to skip doing an estimate and just bill for your time. They will most likely need floor cleaning services too (carpet, tile, wood). These are specialized cleaning services, which you will charge separately for. Offering these specialized services will also add more profitability to your cleaning company since you will charge more for these services.

The prices charged will vary depending on the type of facility you are cleaning, but you should be able to bill $20 – $25 for your services. Apartment buildings tend to be less profitable than commercial buildings because many apartment managers have a budget to adhere to, so they like their cleaning contractors to bill a flat fee because it’s easier to stick to their budget. Cleaning contractors need to be cautious about bidding this way. Some apartments take much longer to clean than others so you don’t want to lose money because you underestimated your time.

No matter if you are cleaning a residential apartment, home or a commercial building there are several steps you should take to guarantee your success and your customer’s satisfaction with your move in/out cleaning services.

· Use teams of 2 to 4 people for apartment cleaning, depending on the size of the apartment. Larger teams may be needed for commercial locations.

Team members should be specialists in the tasks they are performing. For example, in a two person team, one person will be assigned to dusting, windows, and vacuuming. One person will be assigned to bathrooms, kitchens, hard floor vacuuming, and mopping.

The team leader is responsible for making sure that all equipment and supplies are brought to the job site and gathered when the job is complete. Put all tools and chemicals into a plastic tote.

· Before you begin check with the client to make sure the job site has working utilities. You cannot clean without running water and you need electricity to run a vacuum. If it is the middle of the summer, you should make sure the building’s air-conditioning is working properly. Cleaning chemicals and drying times can be affected by heat and humidity.

· Begin cleaning by removing all trash. Pick up all trash that is too large to vacuum. You will be able to vacuum more efficiently as you will not have to stop and pick up large objects.

· Use a microfiber flat mop for cleaning ceilings, walls, baseboards, and doors.

· Proper vacuuming is an important step in move in/out cleaning. Using a backpack vacuum with the proper attachments can speed up the tasks at hand and make work easier on the cleaning staff. Remember to vacuum from high to low, including light fixtures, window tracks, blinds, and along the baseboards. It is also much easier to vacuum out cabinets and drawers than wiping them.

Some of these items will need to be wiped down after vacuuming; light fixtures, insides of cabinets and drawers, ceiling vents, heat registers, and blinds.

· Windows and patio doors should be washed with an applicator and squeegee. Use scrapers or #0000 steel wool to remove stickers and bugs. Be sure the window is wet when using these tools or you could scratch the glass. Frames and tracks should be vacuumed and then wiped down.

· After picking up trash and vacuuming, start cleaning the stuck-on grime and dirt. Chemicals to have on hand include: bowl cleaner, fume-free oven cleaner, window cleaner, all-purpose cleaner, degreaser, neutral floor cleaner, stainless steel polish, and furniture polish. Save money by using concentrated chemicals rather than RTU (ready-to-use) chemicals.

Spray spots and make sure you give dwell time so the chemicals have time to work. It is important that you have enough air movement so employees do not breathe in fumes. Make sure that your employees have the correct personal protective equipment (gloves, goggles, etc.) when working with chemicals.

· Deep cleaning. If you need to loosen build-up, use the correct cleaning tools – paper towels, terry cloth rags, microfiber cloths, pads, brushes and scrapers. Use caution when using these tools – you don’t want to damage surfaces.

. Use paper towels, terry cloth rags, or microfiber cloths for most cleaning tasks. Use a green microfiber cloth for dusting; blue for windows, glass and polished surfaces; red for cleaning restrooms and yellow for countertops, sinks and walls.

. Use hand brushes for scrubbing showers, sinks, stoves, and refrigerators. Use grout brushes for cleaning up grout on countertops and ceramic tile floors. Toothbrushes can be used for detail cleaning around faucets and around the rims in toilet bowls.

. Use white pads for surfaces such as glass, chrome, stainless steel and plastic. This is because white pads are not as abrasive as green pads.

. Green pads are good for greasy areas including cabinets, toilets and scrubbing shower stalls. Be careful when using green pads however, as they can scratch surfaces.

. Use a 2″ utility scraper for build-up and adhesives in kitchens and bathrooms.

· Save time by spraying the inside of the refrigerator and showers/tubs with a pump-up sprayer rather than using a spray bottle. When cleaning kitchens, be sure to pull out the stove and refrigerator. Clean the walls, sides of appliances, sides of cabinets, floor, and vacuum the coils. Also clean the oven hood and filters.

· Clean floors last. Use the backpack vacuum to give the floors a final vacuuming, and then mop all hard surface flooring.

Offering move in/out services is one way to start your cleaning business. It also provides a way for an established cleaning company to provide added services to their existing clients while putting extra dollars onto the bottom line.

Few Tips To Consider Before Freezing On Your Preferred Rented Apartment

Are you in search of an apartment that you need to rent while you don’t have enough finances to buy your own space? Various families tend to rent apartments in the meantime prior to that and can save enough money to purchase a dwell and seek the help of a credit or loan. Finding rented apartments according to your preference is really not that tough these days, but you will have to be patient enough while looking for the right one for you and your family.

Therefore, here are a few ways that could help you in properly searching a place for rented apartments and renting one for the time-being:

  • The first thing you will need to prepare is a renter’s prospective, where you can put all your previous addresses and landlord’s contact details in it. You can also put your employer details and how many years have you been working with that organization. You could even include your salary details, preferences and various other concerns that you need to include. A credit or financial report can also be attached to the resume if you really want to smack it off well with the prospective of the landlord. Therefore, preparing your renter’s perspective will provide you with a frame among other renter’s out there where you will be having a higher chance of having the apartment.
  • The next step is to decide the budget that you are interested to spend on the rent. You cannot press on through your search if you don’t have any idea about how much you can pay for it. First of all, in a rented apartment, you need not pay more than 30% of your monthly income otherwise you’ll eventually start losing money for your other payments. After that, if you already have decided on your budget, then it is the perfect time to initiate your search for rented apartments with the help of local newspapers, classifieds, or even internet.
  • Finally, you need to find an apt option to hire a rental agent who could help you to find out an apartment, but evidently, you need to pay him for the services they are offering to you, which could just add on cost to you. It would be better to take an apartment on sharing basis with any other person, who might also be willing to move out of their current home and live independently.

After finding your prospective rented apartments, the best thing would be to visit them personally and look over all the penny details of the place if there are any damages and how much will it cost you to repair them.

Real Estate Tips That Will Prove To Be The Confidence In Every Decision You Make

Real estate tips are useful when you are exploring the many different opportunities in the real estate industry. Tips are good for both buying your first home and or becoming an investor within the rental industry. In order to make the best investment you’ll need to align yourself with the appropriate information to help qualify the choices you make.

There are so many different areas within the real estate market where one can find their niche and financial success. In order to accomplish this you must first get clear about where your passion lies as this will allow you to align yourself with the right sources. Finding a mentor or professional who is living the experience you want to acquire for yourself is a smart business move.

Finding an agent that makes you feel like they have your best interest at the forefront of their mind is a requirement for the success of the process. You can measure their level of dedication by how well they listen to your needs; and how that translates into the properties they want you to view.

A strong real estate professional will not only have an interest in the type of home you are looking for; but they will also inquire about the environment you want. This is a very big deal and no portion of it should be taken lightly as it will serve as the foundation on which you will live your life. Take your time is making a hasty and compromising decision could lead to unfavorable circumstances.

The same guidelines holds true for anyone interested in the investment aspect of the real estate industry as someone who is looking to purchase a home to live in. It is vital that you put yourself in your potential renter’s shoes and ask yourself if you would want to rent the property. You want to challenge yourself to purchase properties that are appropriate for the market you intend to serve.

Being an investor will also call for you to consider how you want to manage the properties you’ve acquired. There are a number of reputable property management companies that can help you both screen and maintain the grounds on a monthly basis for a small fee. Once again it is important to assess your level of commitment to the process and to only take on the responsibility for aspects of it you will follow through on.

Having a system where you are able to screen your candidates is vital. A potential renters credit history alongside their rental patterns will help you choose responsible people. While this may be a headache for you to take on under your own there are professional services that can streamline the process for you.

Real estate tips are a great resource when they speak to the aspect of the industry you are interested in. They can help you both avoid making costly mistakes and find the level of confidence you require to make the right choices. Getting the best information can be easily attained by aligning yourself with like minded people.

Eight Tips for Negotiating an Office Lease Renewal

So I’m meeting with our landlord tomorrow to discuss a lease extension, and I’m in the process of pulling together my thoughts on the renewal.

Our office building is owned by a small group of investors, so we have a personal relationship with the owners/landlord. I consulted with several colleagues of mine, and here are our top considerations for effectively negotiating a lease or extension:

1. Be a good tenant

It’s so basic to sound business practices, but it bears repeating, particularly when you’re dealing with individuals and other small business owners. Resolve issues along the way as amicably as possible -it all comes back to you in the end.

2. Start early and understand your options

Particularly in a very tight commercial real estate market, you’ve got to allow at least 9-12 months for the process to play out. It can take several months to research your alternatives, open up negotiations with prospective landlords (especially concerning tenant improvements), and then come back to your current landlord. And you’ll want to allow 2-4 months if you have to plan a move (assuming you’re an SMBE like us).

3. Understand your market, and particularly concessions that new tenants can extract.

While market rental rates are important to understand, there are a number of other considerations new tenants may enjoy, including tenant improvements, rent holidays, and other benefits.

Understanding these will not only give you a sense for what you might expect if you go elsewhere, but it can also help you negotiate your current renewal. Why shouldn’t you enjoy at least part of those benefits on the renewal?

4. Consult with (if not retain) a broker.

I’m a big believer in at least talking to experts in a field, and I generally recommend using them to represent you in a lease negotiation. Depending on the size of your business, this can represent anywhere from a $350k to a multi-million obligation over a 3-5 year period.

Brokers can give you a sense for the market, current conditions, and offer other valuable input. Face it -while you may know your business better than anyone, you’re probably not an expert in commercial real estate.

If you are going to use a commercial real estate broker, I suggest using a tenant only representative, as they are less likely to be conflicted than brokers who may represent either side.

That being said, they are a lot like realtors in that they only get paid when a deal gets done. The good news is they are frequently paid for by the lessor, but that may affect the terms of the deal.

5. Depending on how much leverage you have, work to ‘share the savings’.

Just as you may want to avoid the headaches and costs associated with moving, your landlord may have the same interest. If you’ve been a good tenant and are paying near market rents, the last thing your landlord wants to deal with is several months of vacancy, showing the space, negotiating and paying tenant improvements, and then having to deal with an unknown. So work to value how much benefit each side is getting out of the renewal and see if you can’t find some common ground.

6. Think outside the box and understand your landlord’s situation.

Your landlord is interested in three things – the underlying value of the property, current income/cash flow from the property, and avoiding headaches. Understanding the relative importance of each can be very helpful in your negotiations.

For example, commercial property is essentially valued at a multiple of cash flow (it’s a cap rate if you want to be specific) over a period of time, with an emphasis on future cash flows. If the landlord is thinking about re-financing or selling the property in 2-3 years, she will want to boost the cash flow in that later period. This can provide you with a path to reducing your near term rental outlays in return for increasing the rent at a time when it particularly matters to the landlord.

7. Put together a spreadsheet balancing overall costs for your various rental options

Feel free to let your landlord know you’re doing this, and make sure that you’re getting all the information you need to make a balanced and informed decision.

8. Get your hands on a bunch of actual lease agreements and extensions.

This can help give you ideas for different terms that you might want to incorporate into the lease that you may not have thought of. Of course, if you have representation, you should encourage them to do this -you’d be surprised how often this is overlooked.

There are lots of resources out there for looking at sample and (even more helpful) actual, negotiated lease agreements

Eight Tips to Consider When Looking at Apartments for Rent

Finding apartments for rent can be a stressful task. However, there are several tips that can alleviate the annoyances and make the search for a new place fun.

Be Specific

When apartment hunting, make sure to determine which features are a must-have and where it’s okay to compromise. If there’s a perfect two bedroom in a great location, but it lacks the perfect yard, it may be time to adjust priorities. Decide what is necessary and stick to it, but try to remain realistic.

Find Out the Included Utilities

This is another major must-do when looking for a new place. Many rentals include some utilities, but there are hidden costs to look out for such as trash or water costs. If not included, these costs can add up quickly. As well, there may be additional charges for parking or a security system.

Ask Around

This may seem obvious, but asking friends of the family for landlord referrals is helpful. If anything, it’ll help weed out the inattentive and neglectful landlords. Who knows, a friend may even know someone who has apartments for rent.

Take Measurements

Depending on what furniture one currently has, this may be an important part of house hunting. Making sure the bed fits in a smaller bedroom or being able to comfortably walk around seating in the living room is essential to a cozy environment.

Avoid Scams

We all know of popular classified sites that offer rental deals, but if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Make sure the listing includes photos and a local phone number. Also, be sure to check the average rent prices in the area; if the price seems like too good of a deal, it likely is. There may also be a catch to a cheaper place, like bad parking or poor renovations.

Check the Pet Policy

If a pet is important, double check the lease for costs such as a pet deposit. Also, there may be weight, number, and breed restrictions to consider. Some listings may not mention a pet policy, but it’s worth asking. Some landlords allow pets on a case-by-case basis.

Bring a Friend

Always have someone tag along when looking for apartments to rent. It always pays to have an extra opinion, and they may be able to point out things that wouldn’t always be noticed on a solo look. It’ll also be convenient to have one person ask questions while the other takes photos and measurements.

Make a List

This may not be common, but it’s a great idea to make a list of questions to ask when hunting for apartments to rent. Getting caught up in the excitement of the search can make one forget about asking about things such as the average electric bill cost or if the washer and dryer are included. Having a list makes a person prepared, but it also makes them appear responsible to the potential new landlord.

Keeping this advice in mind, one can be sure to find a great new place to make a wonderful home.