We road test cleaning services so you don't have to

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So your entire (huge) family is coming for Thanksgiving and you have a 15-pound turkey, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, stuffing, and a pumpkin pie to prepare. You clearly don’t have any time to tidy the apartment up (and don't need any dirty looks from your neat-freak in-laws).

The good news: You do have time to hire someone to make the place look sparkling clean before the guests arrived. We tried out some of the best cleaning services around. So, they can mop your floors and make the beds while you can focus on basting the bird.

Typically, it costs between $50 and $58. Extras like laundry, interior window cleaning and refrigerator cleaning are extra—around $14 a pop.

The lowdown: Handy has a tech-savvy, easy-to-navigate website and app that lets you communicate directly with the professional who’ll be coming to your home.

The experience: Inexpensive and easy to book. But the company tries to hook you into subscribing to repeated cleanings—you’ll actually have to call an 800 number to prevent being signed up for further appointments.

Bottom line: Affordable and reliable—but the hard sell is tough to stomach.

$132.83 for a three-hour one-time cleaning of a two-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment. You can save 25 percent if you book weekly appointments, 15 percent for bi-weekly appointments, and 10 percent for a recurring monthly appointment.

The lowdown: MyClean uses insured cleaners who use green products and leave you with a checklist of what they’ve done.

The experience: Booking the appointment was quick and easy, and customer service was very responsive when our tester tried to change the time of the appointment at the last minute. Typically, you have to tell the company by 5 pm the day before the appointment if you want to cancel or change the time.

Bottom line: Expensive—it worked out to more than $40 an hour, and it wasn’t quite as sparkling as our tester would have liked. But the checklist was a nice touch.

Synergy Maids
Price: $119 for a studio; $129 for a one-bedroom; $139 for a two-bedroom; $189 for a three-bedroom (up to $399 for a six-bedroom). Or $35 per cleaner for a minimum of two hours. Discounts of 10 percent can be had for a monthly cleaning; 12.5 percent for a bi-weekly cleaning; and 15 percent for a weekly cleaning.

The lowdown: Synergy’s cleaners are bonded and insured. They clean in teams of two and bring their own cleaning supplies. You book your appointment online and pay by credit or debit card—also online.

The experience: Booking and paying went smoothly online, but the cleanings were inconsistent. One duo was so thorough they even cleaned the stove knobs, while another pair nearly forgot the half-bath entirely. If you have a great experience with a pair of cleaners, by all means, ask for them again.

Bottom line: It’s pretty pricey… especially if you end up with the forgetful, less meticulous duo. But if you wind up with the cleaners who did the amazing job, it’s totally worth it.

For more, read “NYC cleaning services that’ll do the dirty work for you—rated and reviewed.”

In Case You Missed It: Every so often, BrickUnderground digs through the archives to find the best advice our experts have shared through the years.


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