Are you looking for a cleaning company or janitorial service to help you with that really tough job known as “spring cleaning”? It’s got to be done, but you don’t have to do it alone if you hire the right cleaning company.

Here are some suggestion and questions to ask to help you make the right choice of cleaning company:

Make a complete list: Walk around your home and note everything you want done in the upcoming spring-cleaning project. Look carefully. Do your walls need washing? Do the venetian blinds have to be soaked? Does the floor need stripping? When you list is done, ask to see the companies standard cleaning (and price list) and compare your list to theirs.

What is considered special cleaning to the company? Will they pull out all the appliances and clean behind them? Do they sweep ashes and soot out of a fireplace?

Will they disassemble faucet heads, getting rid of mineral deposits? Do they wash windows and window screens? Will they disinfect garbage cans? How much extra will it cost for any additional services you want done?

Ask how many people they are sending and how long the job will take? If you want curtains taken down and laundered or storm windows removed, that piano moved or carpets beaten, you better ascertain that they are sending several people. You’ll also need to know how long you (and any pets) must stay out of the cleaning crew’s way.

Is the cleaning company licensed and insured? Holding a license means the business is rooted in the community and not just a fly-by-night operation and, at the very minimum, the cleaning or janitorial service must hold liability insurance in the event one of their employees gets hurt on your property.

Are their employees screened and bonded? Background checks are important since you are basically opening your doors to strangers and having their employees bonded means the cleaning company is responsible in case of any theft of your belongings.

Ask for references and comparison shop: Do call the list of references the janitorial service or cleaning company gives you. Ask about the scope of the job they had done and were they happy with the service? Also check around and compare cleaning companies. Once you veer off of “standard cleaning,” services and costs vary widely.