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Monday, September 01, 2014

Question

Can anyone tell me what the going rate for construction cleaning is in Columbus ,,Ohio? I may get the chance to bid on a luxury residential complex that has at least 7, 24-family buildings ..each 30,000 sq. ft. Please help me ! Thank You!


Answer

If you check our archives (http://www.icanatex.com/Index.asp) you will find numerous suggested rates for construction cleaning.
My recommendation is to use "going rates" with great caution and here is why.
Firstly, you need to know your own costs of delivering the service you offer. What others charge depends on their experience, equipment, overhead, labor costs, and a host of other factors that may not apply equally to your operation. And there is the possibility that some others just shoot from the hip when targeting this market rather than taking careful aim by doing on-site surveys and completing competent job costing. Sometimes they hit the target and sometimes they miss by a wide margin. You need to discipline yourself to do better.
Secondly, the fact that these are destined to be luxury apartments means nothing to the contractors doing the construction. Seldom are there stricter requirements for leaving high priced spaces more clean than there are for low rent units. Hence, you need to look at these units and document their condition upon construction completion. In this way, you will discover what you will need to do to make them move-in ready.
There is also the problem of scheduling your work due to delays in completion and last minute punch list items that are being corrected while, or after, you clean the unit. Rework needs to be minimized and making this a provision of the contract takes a lot of backbone on the cleaning contractor's part.
Make sure you are capable of working on this scale. It isn't likely that all 210,000 sq. ft. will be completed and ready for cleaning at the same time, but even 10 units could be a serious challenge. Are you up to it so you can do quality work rather than a quick hoe-out that leads to call-backs?
Prepare your own pricing based on your estimated cleaning times and the related labor, the actual needs and expectations of the project, and your desired profit on the job. Or, you can offer to clean several units before offering a fixed price per unit. This may seem strange to the purchaser, but it is a very fair way of responsibly pricing this sort of repetitive work and may make the project more attractive to you.
Lynn E. Krafft, ICAN/ATEX Editor
lekrafft@juno.com