Having a successful cleaning business can provide you with a lot of financial freedom. The demand for cleaning services is ever-increasing, and profit margins can be high on a cleaning job. It is then essential to have properly drafted legal contracts or legal documents in place for the protection of your company.
Contracts are important because they outline the expectations for both parties and protect both parties if expectations are not met in a commercial cleaning contract.
Service contracts also lock in the price that your customers will pay for your services, which makes things easier to resolve if any disputes arise. This article outlines some of the key legal contracts your cleaning business needs with a written contract template.
A service agreement is a legally binding document between you, as the service provider, and your client, who is receiving the services.
As a cleaning company, having a service agreement between your business and your clients is crucial. This is so because having everything spelled out in black and white helps prevent any misunderstandings down the road.
Your service agreement serves as a risk-mitigation tool, and in the event of a dispute, you can always refer back to its terms in the cleaning services contract for any issues.
Offerings of Assistance
This section of the agreement will detail the services you will be providing to your client, and both parties agree on the hourly rate and price in it. You should specify the areas you will be cleaning, and the types of cleaning you will do in the cleaning services contract.
When defining the scope of your services for an agreement, be as detailed as possible. In many cases, disputes arise because the scope of the work to be provided is not clear. The more detail you include in your agreement, the less likely a dispute will arise between your business and client.
Supply of Cleaning Products
To avoid any confusion, it is also helpful to set out who will be providing and maintaining the cleaning equipment and products when it comes to home or office cleaning. Whether you will supply the cleaning products for your clients or your customers prefer that you use their own cleaning supplies, you can accommodate their wishes. If you are responsible for providing and maintaining the cleaning products, you should factor this into the rates you charge.
Period of Work
Your service agreement should state whether you will be providing cleaning services on a one-off basis, or a regular basis. If it is on a regular basis, this should detail how often you are to perform the cleaning services and for what period of time you are engaged in this contract.
Entering and Exiting Premises
Your agreement should outline how your clients will provide you with access to the premises they need you to clean. You should also be clear about whether there are specific procedures you need to follow when entering or exiting the premises. You should detail all this information in your service agreement.
Fees and Payment Terms
The success of your company and the smooth operation of your finances depend on the pricing terms outlined in your service agreement. You should include clauses relating to how overtime will be charged for jobs that take longer than initially expected, or are at unsociable hours. You may also wish to charge additional fees for providing and maintaining cleaning products as well as travel expenses.
Your agreement should specify the payment terms and how you will be paid by your clients.
You should also specify in the agreement the amount of time a client has to pay an invoice and the consequences for paying late. In some cases, you may want to include charging interest on payments that are not made within the set timeframe.
Your service agreement should state when your clients can cancel your services and on what basis they may do so.
Your Service Agreement should detail how clients can terminate the contract. For whatever reason, you can decide they can’t just quit on you. Or, you may require a notice period, for example, 30 days, so you have time to find another regular client and manage cash flow.
Your service agreement should have a dispute resolution clause which will detail how disputes are to be handled if one was to arise. This may require parties to attempt mediation before any disputes can be taken to court and can reduce the legal costs you will need to bear if you do end up in a dispute with your client.
Your service agreement should limit your business’s liability to the fullest extent possible under the law. You will be able to see exactly what your liability is limited to be in this agreement, and this clause will restrict who can sue you for breach of contract.
It should also limit the amount of damages (i.e. compensation) you will be required to pay if you were in breach of your contract or if something was damaged whilst you were providing cleaning services.
Why Is a Service Agreement So Important?
For all the above reasons, it is crucial that you have a contract in place between yourself and your clients. This way, all issues are detailed in one central document, and both parties are clear on how the arrangement is going to work.
This reduces the likelihood of a disagreement over the scope of work and payment later on. How a client can terminate the contract or cancel work will also be clearly outlined, meaning you will not be left with clients cancelling on you at the last minute.
If a dispute were to arise, your liability would be limited. This puts you at a lower risk, and the agreement will outline how that dispute is to be handled. Both parties will be clear on their rights and obligations under the agreement, and it makes for a smooth relationship going forwards.
Employment or Contractor Agreement
It is crucial to have a proper agreement between your company and any employees you hire to help you provide cleaning services to clients.
If your workers are employees, you must have an employment agreement in place. Also, if they are independent contractors, you need a contract with them. You must correctly classify your workers as either employees or contractors to provide them with the appropriate entitlements.
If you incorrectly classify your workers, you may be subject to fines and have to pay your workers’ entitlements on top of what you have already paid them.
Your employment and contractor agreements will outline the arrangement you have with your workers, including information on:
- their expectations regarding work
- prohibited conduct
- cancellation; and
- limits on one’s ability to trade with others.
Clients’ personal data may include:
- telephone no.
- inbox and street address.
- what kinds of private data your company gathers;
- how you use personal information;
- under what circumstances you can disclose the information to third parties; and
- client confidentiality and the rights to their personal data.