Q. How do you price window washing?
A. Window washing has several cleaning time variables including operator experience, size and productivity of equipment, ease of access, soil condition of glass and size of windows. Sometimes it is easier to break the window size down into small, medium and large for bidding purposes. Many contractors figure 1 to 3 minutes per side depending on the size, soil condition and access for first floor windows and interior. This time may or may not include set up, ladder movement or removing obstacles. Then, you would calculate your hourly billing rate based on all expenses, frequency of cleaning, income potential of the account and desired profit.
Many janitorial contractors who offer window washing, charge $25-$45 an hour. Suppose you cleaned small windows in one minute - those that were easily accessible and not too soiled. If you were a winding washing specialty company and your billing rate was $60 an hour, then you would charge $1.00 per side. Or, suppose the windows are not cleaned often and heavily soiled (project work). You might charge $3.50 for first floor and interior, $4.50 for 2nd and $5.50 for 3rd floor and above. New construction window cleaning will take 3-5 times longer.
The important thing is to track your own production times and then develop a pricing chart that reflects your required profit level. You could even do this by starting at home. A recent report indicated 70 window washer deaths last year in the U.S., indicative of the high cost of workers comp. Some projects (especially high-rises) are best subcontracted to a professional service.
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