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Cleaning Fee - Yes or No ?
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Kate11



Joined: 02 Apr 2016
Posts: 32
Location: Portugal

PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2016 2:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We just got back from a 2 week trip to France, staying in 2 different places. Both charged a cleaning fee which we didn't object to at all in the first, even though we still left the gite extremely tidy. But in the second there was such a long list of things we had to do before departure - including stripping the beds & leaving sheets & pillowcases folded (we'd had to pay already for the hire & laundering of the sheets and we had to make the beds up ourselves on arrival), emptying all the bins, emptying the dishwasher, wiping all used surfaces & ensuring bathrooms were left 'as we had found them' - that we wondered what the 'cleaning fee' was actually paying for. We would have left everywhere tidy anyway but the fact that it seemed we were expected to clean before our departure AND have someone inspect what we had done before returning our 500 euro deposit- then pay an extra fee to that same person for them to 'clean' (ie remove our used sheets, as that seemed the only thing left to do) left us feeling just a little 'ripped off' at the end of a great holiday.
By all means ask people to leave a property at least reasonably tidy OR they could be charged but I don't think it's fair to leave an extensive list of chores AND charge a fee on top.
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Jenster



Joined: 08 Mar 2016
Posts: 398
Location: Cornwall

PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2016 5:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe if you're just using it to get the pricing right you could call it something else. 'fixed fee per booking' or something, and explain somewhere what it is. Not sure if this would be too confusing?
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Musetta



Joined: 27 Feb 2006
Posts: 1892
Location: Campania, Italy/NJ, USA

PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2016 12:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I also 100% agree. I hate separate fees and I have always included it in my rates. I am finding it difficult, however, to compete on Airbnb, for example, with my inclusive rate when locals tend to have an additional cleaning fee (& per person fee and sometimes in Italy they also add laundry fee, electricity fee, etc. drives me nuts!)
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ronsat



Joined: 14 Dec 2011
Posts: 41
Location: Neffiès, Languedoc, France

PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2016 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We don't charge a cleaning fee, but do give a 50 euro reduction on the 2nd and subsequent weeks. So, essentially the cleaning fee is built into the 1st week's rental fee. The only trouble with this approach is that the HL and TA systems (where we are listed) cannot handle the idea of a reduced fee for the subsequent weeks - and so always give an estimate that is too high for those booking longer stays.
I also think that, by including everything in one fee, (sheets, towels, beach towels etc), that we end up with a more satisfied customer - and therefore more likely to get a good review.
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Fil



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 334
Location: Lisbon Portugal

PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2016 1:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Musetta wrote:
I also 100% agree. I hate separate fees and I have always included it in my rates. I am finding it difficult, however, to compete on Airbnb, for example, with my inclusive rate when locals tend to have an additional cleaning fee (& per person fee and sometimes in Italy they also add laundry fee, electricity fee, etc. drives me nuts!)


I normally dislike the idea of a cleaning fee, but try to watch the evolution of the market and know from experience that there is no point in fighting it.

This being said, some facts seem clear to me:

- AirBnB is leading the market and dictating new trends (see how HA is desesperately trying to follow ...)

- Most AirBnB adds include a cleaning fee, so they can show a lower daily price upfront
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gardenboy



Joined: 02 Jul 2011
Posts: 224

PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2016 2:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do not charge a cleaning fee but would do if I discounted a week. I already charge for utilities so don't want to appear too mean. My rental rates are competitive though.

I think a separate clean fee is mean, I hate all the add ons which are not optional. However I can see how the market is going with the automated booking, my idea of a personal holiday home let is rapidly dIminishing.
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OrangeBlossom



Joined: 30 Dec 2014
Posts: 43
Location: Tavira, Algarve, Portugal

PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2016 11:35 pm    Post subject: Agree about cleaning fee but what about additional guest fee Reply with quote

I don't charge a separate cleaning fee and would avoid having to pay one myself. However, I get the impression that some offsite owners prefer to charge one (especially if they live in another country from where their property is located) because they can have it paid directly to the cleaner. That presumably doesn't apply when going through a big listing site where it's being paid up front though.

I do try to keep my headline rates down by showing a headline price based on a lower occupancy though. I felt I had to do this for two reasons. 1) my apartment is a large 3 bed apartment but for much of the year it is single couples that want to book it. Basing occupancy on 3 means that if one person occupies each room, the price doesn't have to be adjusted and if a couple book, they're not likely to ask for a reduction. 2) Others lower their headline rate with all kinds of fees and so my headline rate is more competitive.

Does that seem unreasonable?
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kevsboredagain



Joined: 20 Jan 2007
Posts: 3209
Location: France

PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2016 3:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Many people saying they hate a cleaning fee and would not even rent a place charging one but at the same time completely avoid the question as to how you handle nightly rates for short or longer stays for those websites which force this model upon you.

Many of us that charge a cleaning fee for some listing sites have only done so out of pressure to fit a particular pricing model, which is geared for hotels or B&B rather than longer lets. I cannot speak for everyone but I've certainly not done it to make more money and the price for a week comes out exactly the same as it did before and the same as the all inclusive price I show on my website.

I don't think it has anything to do with showing a lower headline price but more to do with ensuring that a quote for 3 nights is just as accurate as a quote for 7.
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Sam V



Joined: 20 Nov 2009
Posts: 1610
Location: Villa in Gale, Algarve, Portugal. At home in Fetcham, Surrey, UK

PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2016 6:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm with you on this Kev, I think it was discussed on another thread as a method to make rates fit, I've done it myself on the short breaks
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Ondine



Joined: 23 Jul 2015
Posts: 19
Location: France

PostPosted: Tue Jul 19, 2016 10:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frenchlady wrote:
We clean gites for a living and charging a "cleaning fee" to your guests could spell trouble for your caretakers (or you if you do the cleaning). If guests pay a separate fee they have done their bit and why would they do anything to leave the house in good order ..... they have paid you for someone to do that for them. We have only had 1 gite that went down this road and every changeover was dreaded as people had just packed their bags and gone.

If you build it into your costs you can then just ask people to leave the house clean and tidy and point out that they could lose some of their security deposit if the condition of the property is unacceptable. Usually does the trick in making them attempt todo something before they depart.

Also I personally hate finding a gite I would like to book and then seeing the "add on's" which increase the price. Just my opinion as a caretaker.


We have a cleaning fee that is mandatory for all our guests. We have several gites that vary in sizes and the cleaning fee reflects that. I have never thought or got the feeling that guests have treated the house differently due to having the fee. Some guests are a bit messier than others but thats normal human behaviour where everyone is slightly different.

We are upfront about the cost of a stay and give a complete breakdown of the price. That means any quote given to a enquiry includes ALL costs (rent, tax, cleaning, linen, towels, dog). No-one has ever questioned any of the fees.
From my experience different nationalties are used to different pricing systems. The UK & Irl is very much about a all-included price, whereas the mainland europeans (Ger, Bel, Fr & Holl) have grown accustomed to a price + add ons/extra model. We mainly have mainland european guests so we have stuck with a model that works for us and our guests are used to.

Our cleaning fee is the same for short & long term stays. We always do a deep clean irrespective of the length of stay. Once again we have never had any issues or questions related to that.
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nuneatonmark



Joined: 08 Jun 2012
Posts: 44
Location: newquay

PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 3:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Our apartment in Cornwall has an inclusive fee and our condo in Florida has an extra cleaning fee which seems to be pretty standard in the US and doesn't seem to put anyone off although personally I think it should be all one inclusive fee shown up front.
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