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Price Watch: Spring Cleaning

The price of spring cleaning

Smell that? It’s the signature fragrance of spring: daffodils, damp earth, Pine-Sol. Satisfying our urge to banish grime and tame rapidly breeding dust bunnies can carry a hefty price tag. During the past five years, the U.S. market for janitorial and housekeeping cleaning products grew from $2.8 billion to about $3.2 billion, according to the market researchers at Kline & Co. But this rite of spring needn’t be a DIY event. If you’re willing to pony up, you’ll find an elbow-grease army to polish, scrape, and spot-treat every corner of your home.

illustration of the areas in a house subject to cleaning

1. Chimney
Olde English Chimney Sweeps (708-649-9000) $89.95 for one chimney and fireplace cleaning, plus safety inspection
Chimney Solutions, Inc. (800-929-0322) $135 for one chimney and fireplace cleaning, plus safety inspection

2. Closet organizing
White Space (312-275-4000) $75-$100 an hour
Altogether Organized (847-266-9166) $60-$70 an hour (based on organizer’s experience level); $75 an hour for evenings and weekends

3. Drapery cleaning
Eddie Z’s (866-641-6390) $4 per pleat for standard drapery, in-home; or $7 per cu. ft. in-home (for pickup and installation, add $65). Standard size panel: 36 in. x 84 in., or 21 sq. ft.
Chicagoland Drapery & Blinds (312-719-8800) $4-$10 per pleat, and $20-$50 for 48 in. x 84 in. panel. No additional charge for standard pickup and installation

4. Maid cleaning
Manic Maids (773-342-7424) Flat rate of $22 per hour (with a minimum of three hours, or $66). Cleaning supplies not provided. Average two-story house with two adults and no pets takes four or five hours.
Merry Maids (773-262-5740) $170 for one-time cleaning; $95 for weekly cleaning (for a two-story, 2,500-sq.-ft. house with 3 bedrooms and 2 baths)

5. Gutter cleaning
Gutter Monkeys (800-901-1366) $115-$125 for two-story, 2,500-sq.-ft. house with attached garage
All Seasons Exteriors, Inc. (847-947-0400) Starts at $130 for two-story house

6. Garage cleaning
Junk King (866-458-6554) Includes loading and disposal of junk. Truck is 15 cu. yds., and fees are based on volume. For a 1/4 -full truck, $165; half-full, $225; full, $445
Able Removal Service (847-338-0588) Includes 40-cu.-yd. Dumpster and crew of 6-8 people. Minimum fee is $650 for 10 cu. yds. of material, and $150 for every additional 5 cu. yds.

7. Dog poop cleaning
Affordable K-9 Poop Patrol (847-414-8543) $11.50 once a week, $59 one-time cleaning (for one dog)
Dogs By Day (630-254-2112) $12.50 once a week, $40 one-time cleaning (for one dog)

8. Vents/Air Ducts
4-New Air Inc. (1-800-4-NEW-AIR) $140-150 for one-furnace home, unlimited vent openings
Clean Air Inc. (847-433-5124) $300 for one furnace and 15 vent openings ($20 per additional opening)

9. Upholstery
Sealmaster, Inc. (847-480-7325) $1.50 per inch for sofa width, including loose seat and back cushions ($120 for an 80-in. sofa, for example). For fabric queen-size headboard, about $60. Average chair with removable seat cushion, $45-$50 
Geralex Cleaning Services (312-593-1711) About $70-$85 for an 80-inch sofa; $40 for loveseat; average chair with removable seat cushion, $35; sectional, $160-$175

10. Carpet cleaning
ServiceMaster(847-676-1600) 25 cents per sq. ft.; $125 minimum charge
DJR Cleaning Enterprises (630-893-0757) 19 to 24 cents per sq. ft., minimum charge for northwest suburbs $75-$100; Chicago and North Shore suburbs have a $125-$150 minimum.

11. Window cleaning
Fish Window Cleaning (847-446-2500)  For first floors, $3.50-$4.50 per pane of glass (both sides); for second floor, $4.50-$5.50 per pane (both sides). Price is 35% less for outside cleaning only. Average two-story house costs about $250.
Crystal Clear Window Washing Inc. (773-715-0000) Price based on number of windows (average two-story house has about 25 to 30 windows). Home with 19 to 26 windows, $129 ($90 for outside only); 27 to 34 windows, $154 ($100 for outside only)

Illustration: Peter and Maria Hoey

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