“We’re not just a cleaning company anymore – we’ve become more like a concierge company, people come to us for everything and it’s all changed since we set the business up. One of things that we do is re-location services, we’ll get a house ready, home stage it, re-organise it and clean it ready for photography and marketing.
We also do the removals, the packing, clean the windows, sort the garden, handyman services and the property maintenance side of things, we move the family over and even get the house that they’ve left in a clean state too. We look after Airbnb, holiday lets and serviced apartments – we have two blocks that we look after, one in Ashford and one in Maidstone with the potential for us to grow that even more. We are also working with estate agents on property maintenance. I’m really looking at our marketing at the moment to make sure we deliver the message in the right way, there’s so much scope for us to deliver these services.”
Vanda Jooganah, Royal Home Services. February 2021
“Going back 20 years, I’ve always been in customer services, I started off with Thomas Cook on the YTS (youth training scheme) I had no idea what I wanted to do and this was the direction I was sent in, so I just went along with it. I was a business travel consultant and stayed within that industry for a very long time until the recession in the late 80’s when I decided I needed to get into a more stable industry. So, I moved into more office-based customer service roles away from the leisure industry. I carried on doing that in London but have also lived in Germany, Australia and Mauritius, which is where I am from, but whilst working in London, I was living with my 3 girls in a two-bedroom flat, working for a company that ran a HP service desk. It was all about customer services, managing engineers, parts for customers, systems and processes and warranties etc. It was then that I met my partner Gavin who lived in Tunbridge Wells and I was thinking of buying a house but didn’t want to live in London, I couldn’t face it, especially after living in Australia and Mauritius. I started visiting Gavin more in Tunbridge Wells and loved this area, so I rented out my property and rented a property in Tonbridge to be closer to Tunbridge Wells. I was commuting to London from Tonbridge and it was exhausting, I didn’t want to do it for much longer and by this time I had already bought my property in Tunbridge Wells, which came with planning permission for an extension.
I decided to give up my job in London, I had a bit of money behind me so decided to enjoy the country life for a while, which was great, just a better quality of life. I started working on the extension on my house when Gavin had an accident and slipped a disc in his back, he couldn’t walk, couldn’t work – at this time I had 5 children to look after, I had no job and scaffolding everywhere! I had no contacts as I had just moved to the area and didn’t really know anyone. However, I knew a lady that did part-time cleaning and was considering giving up her clients and she offered them to me. So, I took them! Carried on for a bit and actually really enjoyed it, meeting people, coming out of the office environment and just talking with people, that’s what I’m good at, that’s my thing. So, I carried on doing it and also joined an agency, but, wherever I went, the clients were complaining about their cleaners and housekeepers, and I was the one they would send in to find the solution and fix the problem.
Also, one of the things I found frustrating, especially with Gavin being sick, was that there was no support, even if it was just someone to help me with the children, moral support etc, I found that really difficult and quite isolating. Who would I call to find a builder?
One of my clients said to me “Vanda, you would be really good as a housekeeper, you are so organised!” it made me realise that the agencies were missing something, that connection with their clients, so I decided to set up my own business. I had all the skills and transferable skills, so I decided to set it up and see how we go. One of the key elements was the staff, how they look and how they presented themselves, I’ve previously seen people arrive looking like they are in their pyjamas with a cigarette in their hand! It’s crazy and creates the wrong image completely! I spend a good chunk of time with my clients, getting to know them, their lifestyle, their allergies, what their requirements are and if there is anything else, I can offer them.
The company has grown and grown, and I now have a range of staff that I mentor with my experience and knowledge, giving them a uniform and the confidence to make them feel good about themselves, they’re not just cleaners, they are very well taken care of. I pay above minimum wage, give staff benefits, we all go out together and that’s how they deliver their best. It’s quality over everything.
It’s not just a cleaning company, it’s a home service company, full laundry service, house cleaning, deep cleaning,window cleaning, carpet cleaning and End of Tenancy cleans It’s led on to some property maintenance, I can arrange builders, Handyman, plumbers, electricians, gardeners etc, all through my BNI group and other connections.
So, you have one person, who you can call to make all the necessary arrangements instead of googling and relying on reviews etc, no one has time for that.
I’ve been asked to look at office cleaning now too, so we are no longer just a home services business but a service business offering post Covid-19 cleaning for residential and commercial property.
I love what I do, and that’s the main thing!”
If you found this story insightful, fascinating and entertaining, please do share it with your network using the links below.
Royal Home Services is an independent company providing highly trained residential house keepers for homes in and around Royal Tunbridge Wells. We know that taking care of your home to a premium standard can make a great difference to your life.
Since opening our doors, we’ve been committed to providing service of the highest quality. Our mission at Royal Home Services is simple: to provide high-quality services in a timely manner. Our team caters to each client’s specific needs to ensure excellence.
For more information or general inquiries, feel free to get in touch today.