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GBR Family Cleaning brings heart

Rachel Price, the owner of GBR Family Cleaning is serious about family. She and her husband, Brandon, have defined their work by bringing a special care to others. Their cleaning company is family based and family focused. From the very beginning they established family as the heart of their service. The company itself is named after their family as the GBR represents Gabriel, Brandon and Rachel. Brandon manages the business and Gabriel, their son, is an all-around boost to morale at the young age of five.

GBR was birthed out of what others could consider negative events or purely bad luck. A pregnant Rachel was put on bed rest secondary to her pregnancy with Gabriel. After four months her job was no longer there. As a solution she reached out to friends offering to clean houses. It was somewhat of an ironic turn because Rachel had long ago spoken of her dislike of cleaning. As a young girl, Rachel’s mom also cleaned. After work, mom would load up Rachel and her siblings and they would clean offices. Rachel reports, “mama would take us with her, because there was no one to watch us. We would help, doing things that little kids could do, like pick up trash or dust. I hated it. I hated it with a passion. I would be so mad I had to spend my afternoons as a kid cleaning. I can remember saying to mama, ‘This is not fair! I am not going to clean! I would never take my kid with me!’ My mama said, ‘Never say never!’” Mama’s advice indeed proved to be correct. However, as an adult, Rachel found herself enjoying the cleaning. Her passion for it grew until she had regular clients she was serving.

However, another hard event came her way. Brandon was involved in an accident at work which left him suffering from a wounded shoulder. He would not be medically cleared to return to work for months. Rachel and Brandon were now faced with having to formulate a plan to support their family. Knowing she enjoyed the families she served, she decided to seek out new clients once again. Facebook was utilized to mark herself as available and the response steadily grew. As she and Brandon were working hard to make ends meet, they made some cuts to their spending. They went down to one cell phone, lowered their insurance to a bare minimum policy, cut the cable, cut the internet and tightened up on all “extras.” Rachel reports, “Basically that year we lived off of $6000 dollars—with a child!”

When 2020 and COVID-19 started to show its face, she, like a lot of businesses, were questioning how to survive. However, the Prices needed to look not only at survival but growth in order to support their family. Although they initially were worried, it became clear over the unfolding days cleaning would be a much-needed art to mitigate the spread of the virus. “I chose to educate myself and become certified. If I am going to do this as a way to make money, I wanted to be knowledgeable.” So, Rachel dug in and became certified in many areas, to include how to provide protective cleaning services to stop the spread of COVID-19. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which is an arm of the federal government, offered certification for those like Rachel and Brandon who wanted to offer their talents to help the country overcome. After many hours of education, having to expand their talents in chemistry, and learning the appropriate methods and tools needed to combat the virus, the Prices were certified. Their work was quickly employed. At this point in COVID-19 history, there was no certainty as to how quickly the virus spread on surfaces, so every precaution had to be taken, to include what personal protective equipment was required and how to use it without cross-containment environments. Rachel reports, “It was scary.”

A high school friend had seen Rachel’s willingness to clean and contacted her to see if she perhaps was doing COVID-19 cleanings. Rachel reported she was, and her friend was satisfied she was very much competent to complete the task. The building they would clean was in Atlanta and housed government entities such as the IRS, CIA, FBI and the Department of the Treasury. To take on the task, the Prices had to be in Atlanta within 3 hours of a call. They made arrangements to respond in the timeframe. Since business was going on during the day, she and Brandon would often find themselves “clocking in” during late nights. Rachel recalls some jobs lasting until 1am, only to have to return to Americus once the job was finished. With their certifications, government clearings, and arrangements made for Gabriel, they took on the task. Along with their COVID-19 business growing and still working residential and industrial environments, the Prices found themselves with a thriving business. From 2016 to current, the Prices have found themselves being their own employers.

As business grew, so did the need for employees. Rachel and Brandon had a very specific type of employee in mind. One who loved people and families, one who believed in their ethics, one who could pass an intense background check, one who craved education, and one who was creative in their approach to making a home into a sanctuary. It was a high call to put on employees, but one which would be met. Currently the Prices employ three full-time employees and one part time employee. When asked how she found such employees, her response is quick, “God. I prayed he swing the doors open for the right ones, and keep it shut to the ones who weren’t meant to be here.”

Rachel and the girls, Standing: Danielle Millwood, Faith Dunford, Kelly Bryan and Samantha Bowden. Seated: Rachel Price

Rachel, Brandon, Gabriel and her “girls” now clean three to five houses/businesses a day for five days a week. They love it. Their passion continues to grow day by day. Her business typically comes by word of mouth and there is solid reason why the Prices and their girls are often spoken about in such high regard. Everything they do is “extra.” Even their initial consultations have turned clients into friends. One of the first steps GBR asks of their families is to give them some personal information like birthdays, favorite flowers, favorite candies and other unique traits. When a client returns home to a clean house, they will find the extras. There will be a little candle welcoming them home. Often favorite flowers will be waiting for them, and a little sweet left behind to mark cleaning day as special. But GBR’s love for people is often surprising. A client might find the ends of their toilet paper made into bows or flowers. Their linens folded into elaborate designs and even special staging for youth in the home. Often a child has returned to find stuffed animals singing to an audience of other stuffed animals. Sometimes favorite dolls might be found playing Operation. Rachel reports her clients will remind their children GBR has been in the house, and they get excited to see what is left behind to find.

While GBR’s kindnesses and thoughtful expressions of love are much appreciated, they hold their cleaning to the highest standards. Not a hair is missed. Not a surface is left untouched. They have a way of finding the tiniest spots and applying their energy to it. But Rachel has instruction, especially for women. “Women are powerhouses. We give, give, give. Wouldn’t you love to come home, go into your home and not do a thing? Just sit down and chill out?” She tells the ladies on cleaning days to “get takeout for dinner, because you’re not going to want to mess up the kitchen!” Rachel and GBR have meticulous cleaning habits, but they also come with a refueling for the soul. GBR realizes to take care of their clients in such a way, they have to take care of the “girls” who she considers family. Rachel and Brandon bring their kindness to them as well. They offer incentives such as $10 for an earned compliment, massages, meals to celebrate the day, help with medical costs, paid extended time off, and even purchase “a night out” for them. Rachel and Brandon recognize these ladies carry their name and make it a priority they are cared for.

When asking Rachel where she gets this talent from, she mentions her mom again. Then she becomes teary. Rachel has a talent to see people. “People need to be happy. Things can get negative. Everybody seems to be hurting. I know what it is like to hurt and to go without.” However, she says her heart is very much moved by the Creator. When she bestows a gift of kindness upon another and receives gratitude, she tells the person the true One to be grateful towards. “You got to thank God, don’t thank me.” Rachel and Brandon have seen God’s hand on their lives and in their story. They take the love shown them and pay it forward in the workplace. When GBR Family Cleaning decided upon their name, they were intentional. It would start with them, but they are passionate about treating their employees and their clients as they are family too. GBR Family Cleaning also has GBR Family Cares. You will find them offering services free of charge for struggling single moms, those enduring a death, and cancer patients. For Rachel and Brandon, family has never been defined by blood, but has been defined by bonds. While they keep the highest standard in cleaning, they also keep the highest bonds set by God. Love God with all your mind, heart and soul. Love your neighbor as yourself.

September 17 was American House Cleaner’s day. We invite you to celebrate the Prices. They have taken their job and proven that each home is a mission field. Their services go from deep cleanings to weekly cleanings, organization and even pressure washing. To contact them, please telephone 229.591.9552 or email them at gbrfamilycleaning@ gmail.com Their office is located at 114 Cotton Avenue, Unit B. GBR Family Cleaning is licensed, insured, bonded and certified.