Cleaning Tips, Guides & Resources

The Average House Cleaning Costs in Australian Cities

Adriana Aziz
October, 26, 2023
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If you hire a house cleaner or a cleaning service without doing any research beforehand, you are more likely to end up disappointed with either the cleaner, or the cleaning results, or both! While some of you might be lucky enough to strike gold the first time around, it is highly recommended that you take the time to learn about their background, irrespective of whether you are hiring an independent cleaner, or a licensed cleaning company. Of course, another major aspect of your research must include the cleaning rates they charge, and the price range you can expect to pay for different types of house cleaning services. Without this knowledge, you could get taken for a ride by a house cleaner that is overcharging you. On the flipside, it’s important to note that house cleaners who offer extremely low rates are the ones you typically can’t trust. 

That brings us to the topic at hand. If you are looking to compare the average cleaning costs in different cities in Australia, you’ve come to the right place. Today, we will be discussing different types of cleaning charges that determine the final price, as well as geographical differences that contribute to the cost of cleaning in Australia’s eight state capitals.

How Do House Cleaners Charge?

woman holding up signs that depict the different types of cleaning service pricing models

The pricing structure differs from one house cleaner to another. Typically, they will charge an hourly rate, or a flat rate, however, there are other factors that a house cleaner may base their service fee on. These are explained in brief below:

Hourly Rate

Depending on factors such as the type of cleaning service (standard cleaning, deep cleaning, end of lease cleaning, etc), or the size of the property, professional cleaners in Australia fix a per hour rate that may range from $25 to $55 (give or take a few dollars).

 

Flat Rate

With this pricing option, you will be charged a fixed amount for the entire service. Flat rate pricing is typically based on the number of bedrooms and baths in the property, and the type of cleaning required. Other factors may also affect the final price such as property size, and add-on services, if any.

Per Square Foot/Area

Some house cleaners and cleaning services charge based on the square footage or area of the property. A fixed amount per square foot or metre is set, giving customers an approximate final price for the full service. As you may have guessed, smaller properties benefit more from this type of pricing as compared to large houses.

Package Deals

For regular or recurring cleaning services, many house cleaners offer their customers discounted rates or package deals. For example, if you schedule cleaning appointments once or twice a week, they are more likely to charge a lower price as compared to a one-time service.

Additional Services

Additional services or specific cleaning tasks such as washing exterior windows, deep cleaning kitchen appliances, and steam cleaning carpets, are charged separately. In some cases, the house cleaner or cleaning company may offer customised packages wherein the homeowner can select the services they require, and pay a negotiated price for the service.

Remember to always discuss pricing in detail when hiring a professional house cleaner, and ask for a final quote. You should also inquire about hidden costs or additional costs for customising a cleaning service, as well as fees associated with cancellations or changes made to the appointment.

Independent Cleaners vs Cleaning Companies

a custom graphic depicting independent cleaners against cleaning companies

Right off the bat, it should be mentioned that house cleaners operating as individuals will generally charge lower rates compared to a full-fledged house cleaning service. This is true for any Australian city, with the rare exception of start-up cleaning companies offering heavily discounted prices for their services.

With that said, factors such as location, cleaning equipment, and cleaning frequency also play a role in determining the final cost of the service. Let’s take a quick look at a few other things that influence cleaning costs between independent cleaning contractors and professional cleaning services.

Independent Cleaners

Cleaning Companies

Work alone and therefore, are unable to take on large cleaning projects or properties 1 or more cleaners are assigned to the job depending on the amount of cleaning required
Generally accept payment in cash only Ask for online payments to be made to the proprietor
More likely to charge an hourly rate Typically charge flat rates
Provide approximate quotes and/or final price after arriving at the location Offer instant quotes 
Do not charge a cancellation fee May offer free cancellations up to 48 hours before the appointment
Charge extra if they are required to bring their own cleaning equipment and solutions Come equipped with professional cleaning tools and products

Average Hourly Rate for House Cleaning in Australia’s Capital Cities

graphic depicting the different costs for house cleaning in each Australian state

In recent years, the cost of house cleaning by a professional has steadily risen in Australia. Currently, residents pay anywhere between $25 - $60 per hour, while the national average is $48.70/hr for professional housekeeping services by either an independent cleaner, or a home cleaning service. The estimated costs are based on varying prices across all state capitals in Australia that were obtained from multiple professional house cleaning services and independent house cleaners.

Let’s take a look at the average hourly rates for house cleaning in the eight capital cities of Australia.

City

Hourly Rate

Melbourne $59 - $60
Sydney $54 - $56
Canberra $52 - $54
Adelaide $50 - $51
Perth $49 - $51
Brisbane $48 - $49
Hobart $46 - $48
Darwin $40 - $41

As you can see, the two most expensive Australian cities in terms of housing and cost of living, Sydney and Melbourne respectively, are also costlier than other cities when it comes to paying a house cleaner hourly. One of the reasons why Sydney offers lower prices than Melbourne is due to the sheer number of home cleaning services and house cleaners available in the city. 

Let’s take a quick look at why cleaning costs are set in these price ranges across the cities mentioned above.

House Cleaning Costs in Melbourne

There are countless house cleaning companies in Melbourne, Victoria, many of which have established themselves as a top-rated cleaning service in the city. With scope for cleaning businesses to thrive, along with the fact that residents already pay higher consumer rates for products and services, cleaning contractors and companies are inclined to charge more than the national average rate for cleaning houses. This typically adds up to approximately $59.50 per hour. Working professionals, as well as stay-at-home parents, have set the bar high when it comes to premium quality house cleaners, and we all know that quality comes at a price.

House Cleaning Costs in Sydney

Sydney, the capital city of New South Wales, is Australia’s wealthiest and most populated city. Still, hiring a professional cleaning service is a little cheaper than it is in Melbourne because there is a higher demand for house cleaners, and an equally high number of skilled house cleaners working in the city. This keeps the average price for a professional house cleaner slightly more competitive at approximately $54.35 an hour. With that said, one should note that with the growing need for home cleaning services, there are many contractors that are willing to work for less. However, it is important to do a background check on these individuals as many of them are unverified and uninsured.

House Cleaning Costs in Canberra

In comparison, full-fledged house cleaning companies outnumber independent cleaners by a rather big margin in Canberra; this is one of the reasons why the average house cleaning cost is slightly higher than it should be. Nevertheless, the Capital of Australia is cheaper than both Melbourne and Sydney with an hourly rate of approximately $53.50. If you choose to hire an independent house cleaner, you might find one for a significantly lower rate, however, it is rare to find recommended or experienced cleaners for a cheap price. 

House Cleaning Costs in Adelaide

As the capital city of South Australia, Adelaide has a fairly decent and affordable price range for hiring professional cleaners from licensed and established house cleaning companies. While the hourly rate for a house cleaner is somewhere around $50.90, homeowners may find flat rates to be a better pricing option, particularly for smaller homes (1-2 bedrooms). 

House Cleaning Costs in Perth

Many reputable cleaning services operate in, and around suburbs of neighbouring cities. With that said, you will notice that many residents in Perth prefer to hire companies that are based in Western Australia. This has led to a fairly competitive cleaning industry in the city, leaving the average cost of house cleaning by a professional at $50.30 per hour. Depending on where you are located, it is possible to find lower-priced house cleaners outside of WA, however, it is important to get a final quote from the contractor or company as many charge an additional fee to cover travel expenses.

House Cleaning Costs in Brisbane

Although the average rate for professional cleaning services is around $48.90, prices tend to fluctuate within Brisbane. Depending on the suburb you live in, you may see a difference of a few dollars between different areas including the Inner City, Moreton Bay, Western Suburbs, and Southside. Discussing your exact location, as well as factors like access to free parking, are crucial before booking a service. Most companies and contractors are unable to provide a final quote until the aforementioned details are factored in.

House Cleaning Costs in Hobart

As one of the most inexpensive Australian cities to live in, enlisting hired help in Hobart is pretty affordable. There are quite a few options to choose from with varying levels of experience, however, many locals are happy to pay for more experienced cleaners since the average rate is relatively cheap. You can expect to pay approximately $46.60 per hour when hiring a skilled and professional house cleaner in Hobart.

House Cleaning Costs in Darwin

Out of the eight capital cities that we have researched, you will find the lowest average rate for quality, professional housekeepers in the city of Darwin. This makes sense since it is also the most affordable capital city to live in (in terms of overall cost of living in Australia). There aren’t too many established cleaning companies in the city which allows independent contractors to undercut professional house cleaning services. While their hourly rates can be much lower, the average house cleaning cost in Darwin is $40.70.

Average Hourly Rate for House Cleaning in Other Cities in Australia

While many other cities may be smaller and/or less populated, cleaning costs can actually be slightly higher than some of the capital cities. There are typically fewer cleaning services and house cleaners operating in these areas because the demand for professional housekeeping is lower. This keeps the average cleaning cost in smaller cities within the price range of $42 to $52 per hour.

Here are some of the other cities we researched, and the average hourly rate we concluded for hiring a professional house cleaner.

City

Hourly Rate

Wollongong  $51 - $52 
Cairns $50 - $52
Geelong $48 - $49
Launceston $48 - $49
Newcastle $47 - $48
Bendigo $47 - $48
Gold Coast $46 - $48
Toowoomba $45 - $46
Townsville $44 - $45

The Reason Why House Cleaning Costs Have Risen in Australia

woman holding blue bottle of detergent and a card scanner with MaidForYou's logo in the middle

Although cleaning rates have been rising over the years, in Australia, homeowners saw a bigger hike in prices due to the country’s international borders being closed during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. As soon as the announcement was made, many skilled house cleaners from foreign countries made the decision to go back to their homeland as the duration of the borders being shut was indefinite. 

With a staggering drop in the number of experienced and trained cleaners available, cleaning companies began to increase their hourly and flat rate pricing to compensate existing cleaners that were now dealing with an increased workload. This is on top of the shortage in cleaning supplies and the added costs related to accessing these items. 

FINAL THOUGHTS

The cost of hiring either a house cleaning service, or an independent house cleaner varies due to multiple factors. From the level of experience a house cleaner possesses, and the size of the property, to the complexity of cleaning tasks, and additional services required, one can only determine the true cost of hiring a professional cleaner by simply contacting them for a direct quote. On average, however, you will likely pay $48.70 per hour which is the national average for house cleaning costs in Australia. 

Adriana Aziz is the operations manager at MaidForYou. With over 6 years of experience managing cleaning operations, she knows all the best hacks when it comes to cleaning residential and commercial buildings. With expert experience in managing house cleaning operations, interior design and logistics. She spends her free time with her family and as a freelance food critic.

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