Sarah Whatley makes one of the best smothered burritos in town and, despite spending years as a cook for the Denver Public School system, she still loves cooking. Sarah and her husband Fidencio started Electrifying Cleaning in Denver over three years ago and she hasn’t looked back.
“A lot of people miss out on spending time with their families because they’re cleaning their house. When I was working as a cook, I didn’t have time to go to any events or to the zoo or to movies, I had to clean my house and get ready for work,” Sarah said. With this insight, she realized that she could help families with this challenge, and launched Electrifying Cleaning soon after. “The name comes from me wanting people to come home to a clean house after a hard day of work and be electrified, saying ‘Whoa! That looks a lot better.’”
Another positive impact of the company is to provide a healthy home. “If you’re stressed out, it’s much healthier to live in a clean environment without clutter or dust or pet hair floating around. Cleaning makes the air better to breathe.”
Electrifying Cleaning is a family-run business—Sarah and Fidencio handle most of the day-to-day cleaning, but their 15-year-old daughter is pitching in for the summer and occasionally Sarah’s mother helps out with dusting. “My goal is to grow the business and be able to hire some people to take on the cleaning work so I can focus on looking for more clients. I want to eventually work on the business, not in it.”
Being a people person, Sarah loves encountering new faces every day. “I meet so many people in my line of work, sometimes I wonder, who am I going to meet today?” One of her favorite clients is a 90-year-old woman who always greets them at the door with tea—hot tea in the winter and iced tea in the summer. “She’s great—she really appreciates the cleaning because she can’t do any of it herself.”
Sometimes they can stumble into not-so-great clients, like the ones that were drunk and fighting when the cleaning crew arrived. After the wife threatened to pack up all her things and leave her husband, Sarah asked the man if they should come back. Instead, he asked her to clean the refrigerator, which she opened to find packed with beer. “They were partying all night and we ended up leaving after things started to get crazy.”
Sarah and Fidencio believe in giving back to their community and do pro bono cleaning for elderly people who are about to sell their homes. “I have a lot of realtor contacts and they call me when they have a senior who is selling their home and who needs to get rid of stuff. We donate the items they want to donate and drop things off at a shelter or somewhere in the community that needs it.”
Business is going well, but Sarah admits that in the first year she considered giving up. “I thought about giving up every day during that first year. Great clients got me through it by building my confidence and giving me good reviews.” She still has some of the clients that she helped in the early days and they loyally stick with her.
Running her own business enables Sarah to spend a lot more time with her family. They barbeque and have a regular Sunday dinner together where she gets to whip up her favorite recipes. “I love cooking!” Sarah said. Still, she’s pleased to have started a successful cleaning business instead of cooking for work. Those readers in looking for a cleaning service in Denver should check out Electrifying Cleaning.
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