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What is your mission statement?
Seattle Green Cleaner’s mission is to provide top quality environmentally friendly and cruelty-free house cleaning, to be a socially responsible employer, and to positively impact our Seattle community.
What do you mean by “socially responsible employer”?
Unlike most cleaning companies, our cleaners are W-2 employees, not independent contractors. Our full-time employees receive top pay, paid time off, paid holidays, a weekly gas allowance when they use their own vehicles, AAA memberships, weekly bonuses, plus L&I insurance and unemployment insurance. Everything they need to do a good job is provided for them by the company.
What’s the difference between an employee and an independent contractor?
In Washington State independent contractors must have a business license and pay taxes. In the cleaning industry, an independent contractor must also provide all their own equipment and supplies and they are not covered by L&I insurance or unemployment insurance. The company has no say in how an independent contractor does their job, only the end result. To ensure that our clients are completely satisfied, guaranteeing that our products and cleaning methods are truly green, and that we’re socially responsible, in good conscience we don’t use independent contractors. Are the cleaning services you’ve hired in the past able to say the same?
What is your definition of “green cleaning”?
We define “green cleaning” as: Using cleaning products that do not negatively impact the planet with harmful ingredients (non-toxic), products which have no animal derived ingredients and that were not tested on animals. They should come in recyclable packaging, should be biodegradable and should be ordered in bulk. Paper towels and other “disposables” should not be used (even the sponges we use go into the compost bin after being used many times). Appointments should be scheduled within proximity of each other and cleaners should carpool to appointments. Additionally, quotes should only be given on-line, reducing carbon emissions. Yes, we are serious about being green!
Don’t you want to see my house before you give me a quote?
We have created a formula to calculate how long each cleaning should take. Based on the information you provide, we will create an estimate which will be emailed to you as a .pdf attachment, that shows you exactly how we came up with your estimate. When the estimate request is filled out completely with factual square footage, all rooms are accounted for, and the condition is described realistically, our cleaning estimates are accurate to within 30 minutes! This also makes our estimates green (since we aren’t driving from house to house giving estimates). When we arrive for your first appointment, we will know right away if it will take significantly more or less time and will immediately let you know.
Why do you want to clean my whole house at the initial cleaning appointment? What if I only want the kitchen and bathrooms cleaned the first time?
Our policy is to clean either the whole home or at the very minimum, the whole main living level of the home (first floor, for example) at the initial cleaning. After the initial cleaning, we are happy to customize our service to fit your needs by working off a priority list if necessary. Although we’ve received very few complaints over the years, 100% of those complaints were from customers who didn’t have us clean the whole home at the initial cleaning appointment. Our policy of cleaning all areas or no areas protects the reputation we’ve spent years building and leaves our employees feeling like they’ve done the best job possible.
What if I want you to clean with my products instead of your own?
We provide all cleaning products and cleaning supplies. If you have particular products you would like us to use, just let us know well in advance so we can research that product. We will only use green products (green by our definition) that were not tested on animals and contain no animal ingredients. If we can’t be sure, we won’t be able to use it. We have tested all of the products we use and have never damaged any surface with these products. Please note that our Customer Satisfaction Guarantee is not applicable when using a customer’s products.
WARNING: If we are asked to use vinegar on floors and anything caustic has touched them (i.e.: toilet bowl cleaner, tile & grout cleaner, etc.), it can create a violent reaction that may “burn” surfaces. Since we don’t use anything toxic, we can not be held responsible for any damage occurring from the mixture of vinegar & any caustic products you may have.
What is your policy if something gets damaged or broken?
If we ever damage or break something and you are there, we will let you know immediately. If you are not home, cleaners will take a picture of the item, leave you a note and email the picture of the item & note to Jen right away. We are insured and bonded and will make every effort possible to A) replace the item, B) give you a cleaning credit or C) pay for repairs.
WARNING: While we do our best to never break anything, there are some common sense things you can do to help us. Please don’t put expensive breakables (or anything valued over $50) in an area where it can be easily broken. A crystal vase for example, probably shouldn’t be sitting next to a bathroom sink, where it has to be moved to clean the area properly.
What if we don’t wear shoes in our home?
We understand that some customers don’t wear shoes in the home. As a Washington State Employer, we can not have our employees working in an unsafe environment. We are more than happy to wear booties/shoe covers (provided by the customer) over our shoes, as long as they have good traction to prevent slipping or falling. These disposable booties are an okay option, but to be even more eco-friendly, why not provide these reusable shoe covers? They’re machine washable too!
Do I have to be home when you clean?
Not at all. As long as we have clear instructions for entering & locking-up, and payment has been arranged, it isn’t necessary for anyone to be home.
Can I give you a key? How are Keys Protected?
Absolutely! Keys are tagged with first names only and are kept in our secure and insured lock box, in the office. Keys for that day’s appointments are given to the cleaners each morning.
Why do you charge a 100% cancellation fee for same day cancellations and no-show appointments?
Our customers have peace of mind knowing without a doubt we will be at every appointment we schedule. We request the same courtesy from our customers. Since we schedule weeks and often months in advance, when an appointment is canceled at the last minute, we aren’t able to fill that spot. Our cancellation/rescheduling policy protects our cleaners who depend on the hours we have scheduled for them.
Do you offer any discounts?
Yes! The best way to receive a discount is to refer a friend. Once we’ve cleaned for your friend, you will receive $25 off your next cleaning!
Are you insured?
Yes! We are licensed, bonded and insured. We will provide a copy of our liability insurance at the customer’s request.
Are you locally owned and operated?
Yes! We are a small business based out in West Seattle. Jennifer is the owner/member and is a self-described, “Passionate, neat-freak, environmentalist, advocate for animals, and world traveler”
How long have you been in business?
Jennifer started the company in November 2007, after years of being a Mortgage Funder, when she was looking for a green cleaner for her own house. She spoke with other cleaners who called themselves green, only to find out they couldn’t answer questions like: “Do your products contain phosphates or other harmful ingredients? Are they easily biodegradable? Are your products tested on animals?” The light bulb came on and she realized, with so many like-minded people in the area, there was a serious demand in the Emerald City.