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What’s the average price per square foot a building service contractor should charge? This is by far the question I’ve been asked the most by readers ever since I joined the cleaning industry 15 years ago. It’s even been dubbed the “Holy Grail” of answers by consultants. 

The best way to determine the answer is for BSCs to do their own workloading. Every facility, staff size and cleaning times is different, so there is no one-size-fits-all answer. 

Unfortunately, this isn’t what readers want to hear. That’s why, in conjunction with our sister publication Facility Cleaning Decisions and BSCAI, Contracting Profits created the “Cleaning Costs And Frequencies Report.” 

By surveying more than 600 facility executives, we have determined a benchmark of price per square footage for 13 different building types. Cost per square foot is also broken out by geographical region as cost of living varies across the country, which affects pricing levels.

Obviously, BSCs shouldn’t simply plug this number into their bids, but still determine their own individual and accurate prices. However, this number can help gauge whether BSCs are pricing themselves out of the market, or leaving money on the table. 

Cleaning costs is just the beginning of this report. Facility executives were also asked to provide janitorial staffing levels for their buildings. This data is broken down into three distinct positions: night-time janitors, day porters or day-time cleaners, and project workers such as window washing or floor stripping crews. Data is shared based on facility size to help BSCs determine appropriate staffing levels.

The report also covers cleaning frequencies of 16 cleaning tasks in six types of facilities. During the Great Recession, cleaning budgets were cut drastically. However, in the years since, most facilities have returned to a normal cleaning schedule. BSCs can use these tables to justify their current frequencies or increase them if areas aren’t being addressed often enough.

The complete report is available as an e-book or PDF, both of which can be purchased at