Chris Deulen is the owner of Green Team Window Cleaning. He claims to be the only 100% green window cleaning company in Kansas. In this interview, you’ll read why that claim is easy for Chris to make.
If you are currently shopping for a window cleaning company, take note that: 1. You won’t pay more for green. 2. There is a way to have 50% of your window cleaning bill REFUNDED back to you. 3. Look for the DIY tip that will help you keep your windows spotless between professional cleanings.
1. Chris, you claim to be a green window cleaning company – what does that mean?
Chris: Green to us means taking every step possible towards becoming environmentally sustainable in our business as well as in our personal lives. We only have one earth, so we like to treat it with care.
2. What really sets you apart from other “green” cleaning companies?
Chris: We use eco-friendly biodegradable soaps, towels made from organically grown cotton, and our vehicles are fuel efficient – some even running on alternative fuels.
3. Does this green stuff really make all that difference?
Chris: We believe that everyone is responsible for their own business/life. If everyone were to run their business the way we did, there would be an enormous positive global impact.
4. Okay, does this mean your customers will pay more?
Chris: From what we’ve researched in the KC metro area, our prices are middle of the line. Some of our customers say we’re expensive, others say we’re affordable! Going green doesn’t mean one has to spend more. In this case, we’re in line with many other window cleaning businesses.
5. Now, if a homeowner ends up not choosing you, what are the 3 most important questions a homeowner needs to ask when hiring a reputable window cleaning company?
Chris: 1. What kind of soap do you use? 2. How many employees do you have? 3. Where can I find some of your reviews from an independent 3rd party organization? (BBB, Angie’s List, etc).
6. How does a homeowner make sure that they get what they pay for?
Chris: The average window cleaning business charges in the neighborhood of $60 per man-hour. If you have 2 guys show up for an hour and they charge you $200, you’re paying too much (unless they’re performing unusually risky or specialized work).
7. So, what is the process like…if a home owner has never hired a professional window cleaner?
Chris: First, we find a date/time that works for the homeowner. We schedule arrival in 2 hour increments (similar to the cable company). Our cleaners will call when they’re on their way. When they arrive, they will introduce themselves and let the homeowner know the game plan. Usually one person cleans outside while the other is inside. [You may recognize our towels as baby diapers, which my mom sews together for a better towel. They dry fast, soak up a lot of water, and are perfect for the job.] After the wash, you’ll see the typical window cleaner’s squeegee come out and zip off the water for a perfect gleam. Before leaving, we make sure the homeowner is completely satisfied with the service we’ve provided, so we can be sure they will refer us to other homeowners who need windows cleaned. The end!
8. Do you offer a discount? How does a new client receive a discount?
Chris: We offer a 10% discount to our Angie’s List customers. Additionally, if we get several customers in the same neighborhood who want a cleaning on the same day, we will discount up to 25% off (with 3 or more). It saves our company time and money, so we pass the savings on to the homeowners!
9. Your business thrives on referrals – how do you reward your clients for helping you grow your business?
Chris: 10% off for 1 referral, 20% off for 2, and with 3 paying referrals, we’ll mail half your bill back to you!
10. That sounds too good to be true: 1/2 of the window cleaning bill refunded?
11. Okay, when should a homeowner have their windows cleaned?
Chris: We recommend two times per year on the outside, and one time per year on the inside.
12. Inside and out – or does it really matter?
Chris: If you really “live” in your home (i.e. a lot of people coming, going, cooking, playing, etc) we recommend two times per year inside and out. When you can see black water coming off the windows from the squeegee, it’s time for a cleaning. Our customers are amazed and delighted when we clear the haze!
13. What can a homeowner do in between professional cleaning to keep the windows in top shape?
Chris: Some lightly soapy water and a towel can get off a myriad of stains. When it rains, be sure to pay attention to the gutters and where the water drips to prevent wood rot around the windows.
14. Are you willing to give a solid DIY tip to anyone who decides to clean their interior windows on their own?
Chris: If spots are getting the best of you, take some steel wool to them and watch the spots disappear without scratching the window.
15. How about for the exterior?
Chris: Don’t clean in the sun!
16. What is this futuristic microfiber cloth that you use?
Chris: It is called the e-cloth! It has a million and one uses.
17. You are getting ready to launch a rain-barrel installation service. What are the details?
Chris: We’ll be sending out a card to sign up for rainy-day rain barrel installation. When it rains, we’ll install a barrel on any gutter downspout you want. It saves the homeowner money, conserves water, keeps us busy on rainy days, and makes a statement that says you care about the earth.
18. What about converting your vehicle into a vegetable oil powered car…when is that happening?
Chris: In the next few weeks! One step at a time.
19. What do you do in your personal life that is green or sustainable?
Chris: We have a quarter acre garden behind our house where we try to grow our own food in. We co-habitate with our family, reducing our carbon footprint and lowering our impact. We try to buy organic, locally grown produce and can it ourselves. We recycle and purchase recycled goods, as well as sustainably produced goods. We try to buy second-hand or organic clothing. We try to reduce our waste output (i.e. compost, re-using materials for secondary purposes). We have decided to only have 2 children (a person is a big carbon footprint!). We let others know ways they can live more green! There are many other ways, but I’ll stop there!
20. What are your favorite websites that align with what GTWC stands for?