5 Features You Should Have in a Commercial Cleaning Contract

Once you have done your research and settled in the right commercial cleaners for your business, you will need to draft a contract detailing your relationship with the cleaning company. It is important to cover every base to avoid surprises along the way, as some of them may be very costly to you. The provisions thereof should be as detailed as possible, and all terms enforceable as needed. The following are the most important elements that should be included.

1. Labour and materials

This is the most important feature in a commercial cleaning contract. As regards labour, the contract should stipulate the number of workers you are assigned and their labour costs. The contract should detail the pricing plan as well as the hourly rates for your assigned cleaners. In addition, it should detail the types of cleaning materials that will be used, and the party responsible for providing necessary tools (this is typically the cleaning company).

Have your calculator at the ready so that you can determine the exact cost of everything to your company. If the cleaning company has their contract ready, you can enlist legal help in deciphering terms you don't understand. Before signing, ensure that there aren't any hidden costs or fine-print terms that will cost you or your business.

2. Cleaning procedures

Closely related to the above, the contract should state how each area will be cleaned—materials and tools that will be used, who provides them, what should be done (e.g. sweeping, dusting, moping, vacuuming) etc. Do not assume anything; including the person providing small items like soap and gloves—these will be very costly in the longer term. You should also be clear about the number of cleaners that will be there throughout the day to touch up specific areas, e.g. toilets and client-hosting areas (full-time), and the ones that will only come for cleaning duty in the morning/evening/during lunch hour (part-time). Consider the benefits and costs of each before making your final call.

3. Transportation fees

Find out the cost of transporting workers to and from your premises—have they been factored into the pricing plan or are they separate? How will these costs be covered?

4. Service schedule

Your contract should state the frequency of cleaning services: they can be one-time jobs like window washing, carpet cleaning and yard maintenance or recurrent tasks like office and bathroom cleaning, dusting and vacuuming. These services should be specifically named—don't just say 'clean the office'—state how often in a day/week each task should be done e.g. dusting twice weekly, sweeping and mopping once daily, cleaning toilets four times a day etc.

5. Special terms

Finally, there should be details on how special cleaning duties will be handled e.g. when services are required outside of the scheduled times (such as cleaning before and after an event). You can also account for seasonal changes e.g. more frequent cleaning in the wet season and more dusting during dry, windy seasons. In a nutshell, the more details you include in your contract, the less likely you are to run into a glitch that will cost your business. Be willing to revise it until you come up with agreeable terms both of you can keep to.