Should You Tip Your House Cleaners?
Guidelines and Etiquette


In the vast landscape of service industries, tipping has long stood as a symbol of gratitude and appreciation for exceptional service. From the bustling tables of your favorite restaurants to the quiet diligence of hotel staff, the act of tipping enriches our exchanges, transforming them into opportunities for acknowledgment and thanks. When it comes to house cleaning services, this tradition of tipping navigates a unique space, weaving through the personal realms of our homes and the hard work dedicated to their care. Tipping house cleaners becomes not just a gesture of appreciation but a testament to their invaluable contribution to our daily comfort and well-being.

To Tip or Not to Tip?

The question of whether to tip house cleaners delves into a broader discussion about the nature of tipping practices within house cleaning services. Unlike the almost automatic gratuity left for a restaurant server, tipping house cleaners resides in a gray area—appreciated, though not universally expected. 

This variance largely depends on whether the cleaners are affiliated with large cleaning companies or are navigating the waters of the industry independently. Insights from sources like The Maids and TIDY suggest that, while the practices may vary, the appreciation for a job well done remains constant, underscoring the universal value of acknowledgment across service boundaries.

How Much to Tip

Determining the appropriate amount to tip your house cleaner can often seem like navigating uncharted waters, with general guidelines suggesting a tip range of 15-25% of the cleaning service’s total cost. This range, however, is not set in stone but rather flexes to fit the contours of the service provided. Factors such as the frequency of cleaning—be it a regular engagement or a one-time deep clean—play a crucial role in shaping the tip amount. Regular cleanings may lean towards the lower end of the tipping scale, while the intensive labor of a one-time deep clean might warrant a more generous tip, reflecting the extra effort invested. 

Websites like One Frugal Girl and TIDY echo these sentiments, offering a framework for tipping that respects both the service provided and the personal circumstances of the homeowner.

Special Circumstances

When it comes to tipping your house cleaner, certain situations might call for a deviation from the standard tipping practices. Deep cleaning and move-out cleaning services, for example, often require an extraordinary amount of work and attention to detail, making them prime candidates for a higher tip. Recurring services, where cleaners become a regular part of your household’s rhythm, present another unique scenario. Here, instead of tipping after each visit, you might consider a year-end bonus as a generous token of appreciation. This approach, highlighted by One Frugal Girl, underscores the relationship built over time and recognizes the cleaner’s year-long commitment to excellence.

Alternatives to Cash Tips

Tipping doesn’t always have to involve cash. In some cases, showing appreciation for your house cleaner’s hard work can take alternative forms. Positive reviews, particularly in today’s digital age, can be incredibly valuable, potentially helping cleaners secure more clients. Referrals to friends or family members signify trust in their service quality, acting as a powerful form of praise. Small gifts, whether it’s homemade baked goods or a thoughtful card, can also convey gratitude in a more personal way. The Maids remind us that these gestures, beyond their monetary value, can deepen the connection and express heartfelt appreciation for their service.


Acknowledging the hard work and dedication of house cleaners through tipping or other means of appreciation is more than a transaction—it’s a reflection of respect and gratitude for the cleanliness and comfort they bring into our homes. As you navigate the etiquette of tipping, consider the quality of service, your personal circumstances, and the specific context of each cleaning visit. Remember, whether through financial tips, thoughtful gifts, or public praise, every gesture of appreciation contributes to a culture of respect and recognition for their invaluable work.

Conclusion: So, what’s the best way to tip your cleaner? If you’re using cash, 15-20% of the total cost is a good guideline. If you’d like to give them something extra for a job well done, try leaving a nice note or perhaps some baked goods. No matter how you choose to show your appreciation, just make sure that your cleaners feel valued and appreciated.

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