How to Manage STR Cleaning with Automation

cleaner management

By The Hospitable Team

If you’re just starting out as a short-term rental host, you’re probably quickly realizing just how complicated managing everything can be—especially when it comes to cleaning and quick turnaround times.

That’s why truly efficient rental managers and hosts automate as much as possible.

Rather than keeping track of new bookings and check-ins and check-outs manually—and contacting cleaners each time—you can save time, stress, and effort by scheduling messages so they send whenever there’s a new booking or check-out.

That’s right, you can notify cleaners automatically whenever a turnaround is needed and even get alerts in the event of a last-minute booking, or a late or early check-out.

Connecting your cleaning management to smart locks means you can also automate access, so cleaners and guests can come and go without anyone having to let them in. Even better, you’ll eliminate the hassle and stress of keys getting lost, stolen, or locked inside.

So, with an automation platform like Hospitable.com, there’s no more waiting by your phone for guests to check out, last-minute panics, unwieldy spreadsheets, or the risk of guests arriving at a dirty rental.

Here’s how we do it.

All your STR business in one convenient window

Automate communication, manage channels, sync calendars, push pricing updates, notify your team, and much more!
Start now with a 14-day free trial.

5 benefits of automating your STR cleaner management

Automating cleaner management brings major benefits to you as a short-term rental host. One of our users called it a “no brainer,” and another said it was “invaluable” for running her business remotely. 

But exactly how does it help? Here are five major ways:

1. Save time and effort

02_Hospitable_Automate Cleaner Management_A hand looking at a smart watch to show saving time
Automating cleaning can save you serious time

A major benefit to automating short-term rental cleaning is the significant time, stress, and effort you’ll save on what would otherwise be a manual, anxiety-ridden process. 

Whether you’re managing cleaning via text, email, or hard-to-read spreadsheets, trying to coordinate everything manually is a recipe for disaster. 

Without automation, you’re forced to stay glued to your phone or laptop to check for any last-minute issues or bookings, verify when guests have checked out, and follow up to see if a clean has been done as planned. 

Instead, using an automation app means cleaning updates are sent automatically and scheduled and timed to bookings without any stress. No more typing out messages hoping your cleaner will see them in time, panicking in the event of last-minute bookings, or manual follow-ups. 

As one of our users, Koa Kalamau, a host in Honolulu, said: “You don’t know how much time you’re wasting until you stop wasting it.”

2. Avoid mistakes

03_Hospitable_Automate Cleaner Management_A man holding his head in hand to show mistake
Automation saves time and reduces the risk of mistakes and human error

Automation not only saves time: automatically sending alerts and scheduling cleans practically eliminates the risk of human error overnight—and lets you breathe a sigh of relief, too.

Automation times everything to your booking calendar and sends cleaners real-time alerts, and you can easily check that cleans have been done via the app. With our integration partner TurnoverBnB, you can even send cleaner payments automatically so there’s no risk of dissatisfaction or late wages.

All this means there’s very little risk of messages being missed, no late turnarounds, and no guests accidentally turning up to a dirty space (the fastest way to get a terrible review!).

3. Manage your rental better, remotely

04_Hospitable_Automate Cleaner Management_A woman looking at smartphone in cafe to show remote management
Automating cleaning means you can run your rentals from wherever you are

Automating cleaner coordination makes it far easier to run your rental remotely. 

With everything set up to run automatically and according to schedule, there’s no risk of you missing a message due to being in a different time zone or out of state or country. 

Connecting your rentals to smart lock keyless access also means that cleaners and guests can come and go without you needing to be there to welcome them or collect and hand over keys. That keeps your rentals secure while also alleviating worries about people getting locked out or losing keys.

Automated management also contacts cleaners automatically, so even if you’re managing your business from a distance or as a side-hustle, you can relax knowing that everything is running smoothly in the background without you.

4. Improve team coordination and communication

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Improving team communication will improve staff happiness

Because automation makes sure that cleaners receive consistent, predictable, and timely messages, it vastly improves staff communication and coordination. This gives team members ample time to check their schedules and removes the panic of last-minute bookings as much as possible.

Clear time communication also helps cleaners better manage their time and reduces their stress, so they’re likely to be happier, respect you more, want to stick around in the long term, and do a better job overall. 

When staff know that cleaning requests come in automatically through an app, they’ll feel confident they aren’t missing anything, leaving them free to do a good job whenever they’re needed. 

Coordinating cleaners via an automated app also helps you manage their tasks, including giving them a set Airbnb cleaning checklist (or a Vrbo cleaning checklist if your listings are mainly on Vrbo!), so they don’t have to do anything more than arrive at your property and get to work.

5. Scale your business without extra work

06_Hospitable_Automate Cleaner Management_Someone using Airbnb to show short term rental business growth
Harnessing the power of automation means you can scale your business sustainably

Automating your STR cleaning not only makes quick turnovers possible with one short-term rental—it also enables you to roll out the same system across multiple units without taking up more hours of your time.

Without automation, more rentals mean more stress and more complexity in coordinating increased check-ins and check-outs, especially if you’re managing everything manually. 

Instead, with automation, you can set up the same system for each of your rentals as your business expands (whether you’re growing to two rentals, 20, or more!). 

Long story short: with automation, more properties to clean doesn’t have to mean more work for you.

How to automate your cleaner management

Now you know why automating your cleaner management is so useful, so let’s look at how to do it. Hospitable.com makes the process straightforward.

Schedule your cleans automatically

07_Hospitable_Automate Cleaner Management_Calendar to show schedule cleans
Scheduling cleaning automatically links them to calendar bookings

Most importantly, link your cleaning requests and messages with your schedule so they’re timed and connected with bookings. 

That means cleanings will be scheduled automatically whenever a guest is due to check out or a new one is set to check in. You can also set up your automation system to send last-minute requests in the event of a late booking.

Last, it’s useful to schedule deep cleans and maintenance every few months to keep everything in good working order in the long term—saving you money on replacements, repairs, or downtime.

How to schedule cleaning tasks in Hospitable.com 

08_Hospitable_Automate Cleaner Management_Assigning cleaning task on Hospitable dashboard
You can assign cleaning tasks to cleaners via the Hospitable.com dashboard
  1. Set up your cleaners as Teammates inside the Operations section of your Hospitable dashboard.
  2. Create your task rules within Task Rules, which you can add as a checklist that includes timing for every turnover.

Now, new reservations for your designated properties will automatically generate tasks for your team.

  1. Note that you can also create new tasks in your Calendar view.
  2. On your Operations tab, you can then select an Unassigned Task and assign it to a cleaner for a set date.
  3. And if you go to your Hospitable dashboard, you can click the Task tab to see your upcoming tasks and choose to assign them to a cleaner there, too (see image above).

Give your cleaners access to your calendar

Next, give your cleaners access to your calendar so they can see the bookings schedule and get notified in case any changes happen. That means cleaning team members can take charge of their own schedules, aren’t waiting on you to communicate every change as it comes up, and can plan their work in advance.

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Giving cleaners access to your calendar means they can see changes easily

How to give cleaners access to shared calendars using Hospitable.com

  1. Head to Settings at the bottom of your dashboard.
  2. Click User Management.
  3. Hit the red button that says Invite your user.
  4. Enter the user’s name and email.
  5. Provide them with custom access, selecting which properties they’ll be responsible for.
  6. Check Calendar to give them access to the calendar for those properties.
  7. You may also want to check Tasks to give them access to tasks and toggle Update their tasks to enable them to control their own tasks (such as check-in times).
  8. You can also toggle Update all tasks if you want a cleaning manager to be able to change tasks for other cleaners.

While Hospitable is designed to schedule messages and share calendars, our integration with TurnoverBnB enables you to automate payments and sync all your calendars from different channels like Airbnb, Vrbo, and Booking.com.

Don’t have a reliable or in-house cleaning team yet? TurnoverBnB can help.

With a network of more than 25,000 cleaners globally (who together have completed more than 1,200,000 cleaning projects), TurnoverBnB’s Marketplace enables you to search for local trusted cleaners in your area, meaning that it works whether you have an existing team or still need to find one. 

Centralize all your communications

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Centralizing your inbox enables you to see all your communications at a glance

Automation tools like Hospitable.com send notifications and reminders via email or SMS to ensure everyone on the team is in the loop and can reply and/or act quickly. 

No more “hoping to God that the cleaner gets my message in time when a last-minute booking comes in,” as one host put it. Just easy, quick, streamlined communication via a single platform.

The Hospitable inbox is also highly customizable, enabling you to organize by segments and filters and archive old conversations to keep things uncluttered. You can also send requests and messages to guests, change their preferred names, and resolve conversations as you go.

Pay cleaners automatically

10_Hospitable_Automate Cleaner Management_TurnoverBnB Automatic payment screenshot
TurnoverBnB has advanced tools like automatic cleaner payments
Credit: TurnoverBnb.com

Of course, paying your cleaners promptly is part of efficient cleaning management, which is why the TurnoverBnB app enables you to automate payments so you always pay your staff on time without even having to think about it.

Just like any manual process, making payments piecemeal “by hand” is time-consuming and opens up the process to delay, missed payments, and human error. Cue unhappy cleaners—and more stress and unnecessary work for you. 

TurnoverBnB estimates that its users save more than 40 hours per year on sending cleaner payments by using its automated system. All those fiddly minutes add up!

Automated cleaner management: Efficient turnovers, minimal time, no stress

Automation is a total game-changer for short-term rental management. It transforms turnarounds from being a complicated, stressful, and time-consuming logistical nightmare into a smooth, automatic, and well-oiled process that runs predictably in the background.

Save time, avoid mistakes, manage your rental remotely, improve team communication, and scale your business with minimal stress—all with the power of simple-to-set-up automation.

Tools like Hospitable.com and TurnoverBnB make it possible, enabling you to set everything up once and go. Hospitable offers a 14-day trial, so you can check it’s right for your business before committing. And if you need more advanced tools like automated payments, TurnoverBnB is for you.

As one user said: “Automation just makes life simpler.”

Put your cleaning on autopilot and watch your rental business go from stress to success.

All your STR business in one convenient window

Automate communication, manage channels, sync calendars, push pricing updates, notify your team, and much more!
Start now with a 14-day free trial.
Choosing a cleaning company

How to Choose a Cleaning Company for Your Short-Term Rental

In the short-term rental industry, one thing is certain: hiring an Airbnb cleaning service for your vacation rental is necessary to ensure consistent turnovers and provide peace of mind. Check this post to learn the top 5 considerations for selecting a professional cleaning company.

Airbnb cleaning checklist

Airbnb Cleaning Checklist: Don’t Miss a Spot

No matter what type of accommodation you offer on Airbnb, cleanliness is of the utmost importance to your guests. If your guests notice one small thing that was not cleaned properly, they’ll let you know if your cleaning standards aren’t up to par. It’s crucial not to miss a spot and our list will come in handy.

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