Do you have a housekeeper/maid? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 18 Old 02-08-2004, 08:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I've been offered a job working in the nursery at a group home for teenage moms and although it doesn't pay much its on the weekends and will increase my monthly income about 40% which I really need right now. The downside is yes more time away from dd and less time for house keeping which we have a lot of. I was thinking of maybe hiring someone to come in 1-2 hours a week to clean. We live in a small 1 bedroom apt. (I'm guessing 750sq foot) and if your fast and not having a child undo everything you do you can clean the place top to bottom in about 2 hours. Do you think $10 an hour is fair? Most jobs around here are min wage I think and cleaning is a huge hassle for me as it takes all day just to get the kitchen alone done because dd thinks I'm her personal entertainment center (she's nearly 4 and still cant entertain herself for more then 1-2 minutes). We've been living here since Dec and still don't even have furniture yet so cleaning this place would be a cake job for someone.

This is what I would want them to do:

Vacuum entire apt. (about 10 min)
Mop kitchen and bathroom (about 15 min by hand)
Wash counters and stove top (4-5 min)
Load and run dish washer (put away dishes too as this is a biggie to me) (takes me about 30 min)
Clean shower and toilet (10min)
Change sheets (about 5 min when dd's not around)
Pick up toys (reminds me I need to get dd's toybox up here to make this job easier) (3-4 min)
Take out trash

I'm debating adding washing laundry which is about 3-4 loads and ironing my work clothes. (they didn't need ironing at my moms house but the washer here really wrinkles them )


Do you think this is fair pay for this work? Trying to get the house clean with dd around is one of the things that I find really aggravating because it takes 10 times a long as it should and I have to redo it several times which really ticks me off.

Seriously?
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#2 of 18 Old 02-09-2004, 03:51 PM
 
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I'd call some services near you and find out what they charge. Things like that tend to be very local in terms of a fair amount.

We don't have a cleaning service - I've tried to convince my DH, but he doesn't think we're the "kind" of people that have someone clean their house. Yeah, the kind with two parents, each working professional jobs, and a 1-year old? I think we're perfect candidates, but he just doesn't see it.
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#3 of 18 Old 02-09-2004, 11:03 PM
 
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my personal philosophy is that if you have kids, or are busy in general, and can afford it, then why not? kofduke, what you said basically sums it up.
we have used one once but they totally overcharged us, so we're looking for another one. i have only so much time in the day, and i need to use it being with the kids, my husband, and studying...housekeeping is just a pain. plus, i'm no good at it.

sounds like an awesome job, btw!
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#4 of 18 Old 02-10-2004, 12:32 AM - Thread Starter
 
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All I can say is OMG, I just found out they rasied the pay and and it will increase my monthly income by about 95% and i'll work fri-sat-sun 4p-2am. Not a bad deal (I have the option of working 1 more 10 hour shift which would add another $400 a month to my income but i'm not ready to not see dd for 24 hours 1 day a week from her POV) House keeper here I come!

Seriously?
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#5 of 18 Old 02-10-2004, 12:52 AM
 
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wow, that's wonderful!! congratulations!
the one time i had my house professionally cleaned, even though it cost way too much for what they did, i can't forget the feeling of walking into my perfectly clean house, and thinking that these people have to be the greatest people in the whole world.
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#6 of 18 Old 02-10-2004, 11:31 PM
 
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I had a housekeeper when I was pregnant. I wasn't even working, but we were living in a three bedroom home with three floors (including the basement) and since I am domestically challenged at the best of times....

She came every 2 weeks and did the whole house for $65. She brought a helper most days, and they did the whole thing in less than 2 hours. She was amazing. She cleaned everything, including the hardwood floors with this wonderful solution she made with pine oil. Coming home to a clean house was just the most wonderful experience!! Two weeks was as long as we could really go between cleanings. In the meantime, all I had to do was "tidy" things. It was worth every penny.

Then we lived in a series of small apartments and I was home with DD and DH was working from home, so we really couldn't justify the expense. However, now that I'm back at work full time, I'm having a hard time keeping up with things. DH suddenly finds that it isn't easy to clean a house AND take care of a child all day : It takes me half a day to clean this place (it's less than 800 sq feet, but like I said, I'm not good at this). And that is a full quarter of my weekend!

So...we're thinking of getting someone again.

Just wanted to add... that I think husbands who refuse housekeepers SUCK. My dearest friend works herself to the bone looking after her DH and 2 young girls, works nights and up early to clean, prepare wonderful homecooked meals. Even though she brings home a nice paycheck the DH thinks only "snooty" people have housecleaners. Notice it's the men (the ones who don't do much of the housework) who are so quick to decide "we don't need one". Pah-lease!! :


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#7 of 18 Old 02-11-2004, 11:19 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Piglet68

Just wanted to add... that I think husbands who refuse housekeepers SUCK. My dearest friend works herself to the bone looking after her DH and 2 young girls, works nights and up early to clean, prepare wonderful homecooked meals. Even though she brings home a nice paycheck the DH thinks only "snooty" people have housecleaners. Notice it's the men (the ones who don't do much of the housework) who are so quick to decide "we don't need one". Pah-lease!! :

Well, it sucks in the sense that I'd prefer a housekeeper - but truth be told, my DH probably does do at least half of the cleaning (he does all the bathrooms & all the vacumming, I do the kitchen & dusting) - it's just that I don't like doing the cleaning I DO do, and the time he's cleaning I'd rather him be hanging out with us.
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#8 of 18 Old 02-11-2004, 11:33 AM
 
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I have a cleaning service that comes and cleans every two weeks. I have a 4 level, 5 bedroom home. with three kids, 2 dogs a cat and a rabbit, i need help. Between the kids, my work and school schedule, i was getting more and more stressed, so i hired someone. These people do an excellent job. scrub my baseboards and walls, and the house sparkles. My husband wasnt crazy about paying someone either, but he also wasnt willing to scrub the floors, so i hired the team anyway. I have never regretted it, and they are worth every single cent. Its $80 every two weeks, $110 if they only came once a month.

What a huge load off my shoulders.
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#9 of 18 Old 02-12-2004, 12:33 AM
 
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We have a single story 3 bedroom house, 2 dogs and 5 cats (all indoors), and have someone come in once a week for about four-five hours who essentially goes through the whole house (no laundry, dishes or bedmaking though). We pay her $50 a week, which I believe is a bit much for where we live but probably not in more urban areas. Anyways.. Good luck in your new job!

mama to my August boys ('03 & '06)
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#10 of 18 Old 02-12-2004, 12:44 AM
 
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I worked as a housecleaner a few years ago, and if you've ever read Nickel and Dimed...please don't use a commercial service...the women are not often treated very well, only get a fraction of what you pay, and don't generally clean very thoroughly...just "visibly". A woman working for herself keeps everything you give her...you can sometimes set up easy ways to do taxes there are companies who do that if you're not comfortable with under the table. You can have more control over what and how things are done, and she has more control over her working environment. I have had many cleaning people over the years, and I will choose independent every time. I usually find them by networking with friends and neighbors. Prices do vary widely, but remember service prices are almost always very $$$, independents are less, but she gets to keep everything you give her. You have to interface with a specific woman, which many people are uncomfortable with...but I found that treating people that work for me with respect is nicer than an anonymous corporate franchise that gives me the illusion that real women aren't involved. A lot of my SF area friends were so tormented about having someone clean. I thought it was ridiculous...when I did it I liked it. It was good money, a safe job, flexible hours...better work than many women with limited work experiences can get.
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#11 of 18 Old 02-12-2004, 04:51 PM
 
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I love my housekeepers

Ok so love maybe too strong of a word but I personally don't know how we would get by without them. it's 2 sisters who come every other week. For $75 the clean my entire house including, changing all the sheets, mopping all the floors (even rolling up the rugs to get underneath), wiping down the walls/baseboards, cleaning out the fireplace and lots of other xtra's. They are there an average of 3 1/2 hours which breaks down to just about $11 hour per person.

After we hired them the big "fights" between my husband and I stopped. Before we would spend most weekends cleaning and/or arguing about cleaning and who would be doing it. Now its is a secondary thing and maintaining it is fairly easy.

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#12 of 18 Old 02-12-2004, 05:15 PM
 
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Thanks for bringing up Nickel and Dimed, Clarity. I was going to say the same thing. That said: I have a house cleaner and I love her too. It is amazing how the cost of housecleaning can vary so widely from place to place (and even cleaner to cleaner). I have a four bedroom, two bath, smaller house. My house cleaner comes every other week and charges $110 and is usually there for four hours. I had someone cheaper who was there for six hours and only charged $75 but her work wasn't as good. I decided it was worth the extra money to have the job done well. This woman is obviously a professional. She does a great job! I highly recommend it for all working mamas who can afford it. I also suggest it as a gift for pregnant women and new mamas.

Kofduke--maybe you could just hire someone to do your part of the cleaning!

Mama to two wonderful daughers: 02/03/03 and 10/19/05
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#13 of 18 Old 02-12-2004, 05:34 PM
 
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i hired someone to come tomorrow! i'm so excited, our house is a wreck, i have a million papers due and my dd is having breastfeeding issues...this will be so nice.

i have a question--do i need to clean before they get here? how much do i need to do? anybody know?
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#14 of 18 Old 02-12-2004, 05:50 PM
 
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I would not do anything "special" before she gets there. It's better for them to see how you live in real life. It is also an opportunity for you to show her things that you don't want cleaned. Like: see this desk? it's total mess but please don't touch! In know where everything is!

Think about what your biggest priorties are. Mine was the kitchen and bath rooms. Then walk her thru and show her exactly what you want done. Don't assume that she will know that you expect her to bleach the grout in the corner every time.

Also- does she come with her own supplies? If not, I would stock up on what you need, get her a bucket, sponges etc. Show her where you keep the rags, etc. Then set up system to let her know when you run low so you are never caught without.

Lastly- be prepared for her to be there much longer the first time so you are not surprised that the next time she comes the visit is much shorter. She will probably do EVERYTHING the first time and after that she will only have to do the walls etc every month or so.

PS: I totally agree that this is a wonderful gift for new moms! My husband surprised with the cleaner coming every week of my maternity leave so that he and I could focus on nothing but baby and never have to worry about keeping up with the house chores.

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#15 of 18 Old 02-12-2004, 05:57 PM
 
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It's better for them to see how you live in real life
i don't want to scare her... :LOL

Quote:
nd after that she will only have to do the walls etc every month or so.
wow! i'm supposed to clean those?
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#16 of 18 Old 02-12-2004, 06:24 PM
 
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If you have a lot of clutter she will end up spending most of her time stacking and picking it up than doing actual cleaning...which is ok, it's just more like a double job (at a double price). But it's something you can discuss. If it's obvious where things go, then why not? But with me, it's hard to figure out where to put something at our house.(and for me to find it after someone puts is away). I found, if you can, it's easier to schedule the first few cleanings when you're home so she can ask questions. It also inspires me to work on bigger organizing projects if someone's there to clean alongside. But my house it pretty chaotic.
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#17 of 18 Old 02-13-2004, 08:12 PM
 
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my home looks beautiful (well, as beautiful as this place could look!). it feels so nice knowing i won't have to spend half the weekend catching up on housework!
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#18 of 18 Old 02-20-2004, 05:51 PM
 
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I'm thinking of getting one, at least occasionally when I just can't take it anymore.

There are some who work independently (I won't use a service, they treat their employees horribly!) and charge $10/hour. I think we could afford it, especially if it were just for a few hours a month. Dh thinks we can't afford it, but I don't see why. We've been getting a little more than we expected in student loans, our rent is paid several months in advance, we are able to buy furniture and electronics, as well as pay off a few old bills.

We are both students, and neither of us really have time to do anything around the house. I decided I was sick of it so I packed up all the dirty dishes and stuffed them under the sink just so I wouldn't have to look at them anymore, and I hid all the clean dishes, so dh will either have to wash everything himself or admit that we could use a housekeeper.

I will try to clean one bathroom today, but that's it...dd also knocked over a vase and the flowers and water are still all over the kitchen floor, and she knocked over a table in the living room, so papers are everywhere. I don't care...I'm not touching it...

I don't mind laundry. That's no trouble at all. What I hate is mopping the floor and cleaning the bathroom. I don't mind doing dishes unless every dish in the house is dirty, which is how it's been lately. If it's just a day's worth, no problem.

We also have a chicken coop that dh built, but the way he built it, it's too big for me to clean! It's built for 2 chickens, and it has a metal tray to catch all the droppings, and you just remove the tray and dump out all the sawdust. But the tray is so big and heavy I couldn't lift it even if I weren't pg, so dh has to be the one to do it, but he only does it every few months. I feel bad for the poor chickens. I've asked him to either rebuild it so I can clean it, or to do it himself more often, but nothing...I wonder if it's something a housekeeper could do?

How many hours does it take for your housekeeper to do all the stuff you want done? All I want done is the chicken coop (if they do that), bathrooms, and kitchen counters and floors. It doesn't seem like it would take that long.
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