Originally from Brazil, Gian and Karoline visited the USA in 2014 and noticed a major gap in the market for high-quality, standardized cleaning services. The following year, they moved to California and founded their new cleaning company, Blue 3. We’ve asked them to share some of the secrets of their success – spoiler alert: boatloads of passion, and a commitment to providing the perfect clean every time.
Properly: Let’s start with your background. How did you get into the cleaning industry?
Karoline: When we visited the USA four years ago, we realized that there weren’t many cleaning companies working to a consistently high-standard or employing trained cleaners. A lot of service providers seemed to be focusing on volume of work rather than quality, so clients were left dissatisfied and there was high cleaner turnover due to the poor salaries.
Gian: We decided to try and fill this gap in the sector by launching our own cleaning company. Consistent quality is our main objective, so we ensure that all our teams are trained to the same standard, and we always follow the same cleaning process.
Properly: When did you start cleaning short-term rentals?
Gian: We’ve been cleaning Airbnb rentals ever since we founded Blue 3. In fact, the growing popularity of short-term rentals was one of the main reasons we knew there would be a market for our business.
Properly: You also clean residential properties, right? Do you think there is much difference between the two?
Karoline: We sure do. They both require the same level of care, but we find that they’re actually quite different. Since residences are typically cleaned less frequently, they always need a very thorough clean. On the other hand, we often clean the same Airbnb properties three times in one week; the place is usually cleaner, but we have to be particularly attentive to the details like towels, bed linen, and bathrooms. With vacation rentals, the important thing is to make the space as beautiful and welcoming as possible for the new guest.
Properly: Do you have a preference? Vacation rental or residential cleaning?
Karoline: We like both! House cleaning jobs are nice because you can get to know the residents, and they often become friends. But we also love the dynamics of vacation rental cleaning, and at the end of the job, there’s the satisfaction of seeing everything clean and perfectly in its place – it’s almost as though we’re inside a magazine photo.
Properly: Would you say that Properly helps you improve the quality of your service?
Gian: Definitely. What helps us most is having all the work in one place. Properly gives us easy access to all the information provided by a host; we can see our entire schedule, plan cleaning routes, check past cleaning details, and more. Overall, it’s just a massive boost to efficiency.
Properly: Blue 3 is a fairly new business – is Properly helping you grow?
Karoline: Our company is steadily expanding. Part of that is due to word-of-mouth, but we’re also attracting a lot of new customers through our Properly profile. It’s great how prospective clients can consult our profile and see a record of our completed jobs and our past performance – and if they like what they see, they can hire us!
Properly: What advice would you give to other vacation rental cleaners?
Gian: That’s a difficult question, because everyone is different. All I can say is: work with your heart. Don’t just clean for the money; clean with love and dedication.
Karoline and Gian’s advice:
Work with your heart. Don’t just clean for the money; clean with love and dedication.
Properly: And any advice for Airbnb hosts to improve how they work with cleaners?
Gian: Remember that cleaners have to meet their commitments with other customers as well, so they won’t be able to do any extra work that hasn’t been arranged beforehand. Provide all the information about the job upfront so that they accurately schedule your clean.
Karoline: And before hiring a cleaner, make sure they have the experience and expertise you’re looking for. Ask for references or photos from previous jobs – or just check their Properly profile!
Properly: It’s been great hearing about your business. But now we’d love to learn more about you. Tell us, do you have a favorite song that you like to listen to while you clean?
Karoline: We actually work in silence most of the time. We find it easier to focus that way. But there’s always some Bruno Mars in our playlist for when we’re having a hard day or doing a particularly time-consuming clean.
Properly: What’s your favorite thing about your job?
Gian: Knowing that we did the best we could to make everything perfect, then seeing a happy client satisfied with our work.
Karoline: We also love getting the opportunity to meet so many different people from so many different cultures every day. It’s not unusual for us to talk to someone from France in the morning, someone from China in the afternoon, and an American from Arizona in the evening.
Properly: Finally, what would you say is your cleaning super power?
Gian: As cleaners, we have the power to transform. We can breathe new life into any place that’s dirty, poorly organized or in need of renovation. But what we really need is a supercar so that we can fly to properties… the daily traffic makes us crazy!
As cleaners, we have the power to transform. We can breathe new life into any place that’s dirty, poorly organized or in need of renovation.