When the Covid-19 virus hit the country in 2020, Norberto Cruz’s prosperous cleaning business in San Diego took a hit too.
“They were closing everything, all of the businesses were closing, and my business was struggling,” he said. Norberto and his wife, Karla Zepeda, packed up their five children and moved to Utah where there weren’t quite as many state-regulated restrictions for businesses.
In 2014 Norberto graduated from California Polytechnic University with a bachelor of science degree in industrial engineering.
After working as an electrician for a while, he decided to give his business one more shot. He liked the idea of being his own boss again and saw a need for his services in the Salt Lake Valley. He began rebuilding and Clean Inn Services took off.
Why am I telling you all this?
Not long after Norberto began rebuilding, I began developing a Turn-Key Home Sellers’ Service. Real estate inventory was painfully low. During the worst parts of the pandemic, people didn’t dare move. After more than 30 years in the real estate business, I began to really think about ways to make the sales process easier and more comfortable for those who really did want to sell their homes once cases of Covid-19 dwindled.
It turns out, people just get overwhelmed with life. Even if a homeowner has a strong desire to downsize (or upsize) the thought of preparing a home for the big event is daunting. Decluttering, cleaning, yard maintenance, repairs, improvements – they all take time and money. These are all part of the process if a seller wants top dollar for his or her home. With work, family, social activities and all that comes with this busy life – some people just can’t maneuver it.
That’s when I decided I could help the market move by providing those services. People are often strapped for cash, so I decided to pay for the services at no extra charge to the clients.
A friend and associate introduced Norberto and Clean Inn Services to me. He came highly recommended and it didn’t take me long to understand why. The clients love his work! They are amazed at their homes’ appearance once he completes a job. About 50 percent of the clients he serves give him a big tip because he is just that impressive. It makes people happy, solves a big problem for the homeowner and helps us sell homes faster for a solid price.
I recently asked Norberto how he does it. What is it about his work clients love so much? He grinned and kind of shrugged, but he said his clients speak highly of his work and often express that with a tip.
Norberto Cruz owns my #1 cleaning company, Clean Inn Services. When a person lists a home with me, I hire Norberto to do a thorough cleaning from top to bottom. He is extremely popular with the clients and I asked him to tell me about his process.
Start with the Entrance
“I always start with the entrance. I make sure it looks really great. I clean the front door and really make that entrance shine,” he said.
Norberto knows what home buyers are looking for. “I notice they watch the walls,” he said.
The goal when he cleans a home is to have it look and smell great. “Odors in a home are very, very bad,” he said. Don’t try to mask smells with candles and other fragrant products that might turn potential buyers off. If you do use a scent in a home you’re trying to sell, he recommends a fresh linen scent, something subtle and clean.
Once the entrance is sparkling clean, he moves on to the kitchen and the bathrooms, “Those are the most important rooms they consider. ”I make sure I clean every corner. Dirt can make a home smell bad just like pet odors can,” he said. He washes the interior windows if needed, cleans the floors and polishes all visible surfaces in those important rooms.
Norberto made the right move
Norberto recently told me he is sure he and his family made the right move when they came to Salt Lake. “It’s so much more family-oriented,” he said. “To me, San Diego is for single people and people with no children. It’s just not the best place for families.”
Now, his business is thriving and his family is happy with the relocation to the great Wasatch Front. His business is booming and I couldn’t be happier with his work.
3 Professional Cleaning Tips
from Clean Inn Services Owner Norberto Cruz
I hire Clean Inn Services because I only hire the best. Following are a few of Norberto’s favorite cleaning tips:
- When interior windows are dusty, I clean them with dish soap. I use Dawn Platinum. Put three or four teaspoons in a bucket of water. Use a rag or a sponge and lather it up on the windows. Then, wipe it off with a squeegee. That’s it. They will sparkle.
- Industrial vinegar is the best thing to use to clean tubs, showers and mirrors. It is available at Home Depot and other home improvement stores. It smells very strong, but that doesn’t last long and it really does the job. I use it full strength. I like to put it in a spray bottle and apply it that way. Again, use the squeegee and wipe it all the way.
- If you have excess build up, especially on shower doors, get some #0000 steel wool. Put three tablespoons of Dawn Dish Soap in a bucket with some vinegar. Dip the steel wool in the vinegar mixture and scrub the build-up off. Rinse it with hot water. That’s it!