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To think I'm worth paying?

(37 Posts)
Lucyinthepie Fri 22-Jul-11 09:49:10

OK, here's the cleaner rant from the other side of the fence. grin
Rant 1 - a lady who is a casual acquaintance was telling me that she's increased her hours at work and she's persuaded her husband she can get "help". She then tells me that she's told him she'll get me in for a couple of hours a week to clean. Thanks for asking me! - I've got people waiting for me to find a slot for them, but they don't want early in the week so I tell her that I'm really full up, but could probably fit her in 2 hours on a Tuesday. She says great. I go on to say that I bring all my own consumables and equipment, have public liability insurance and will give her a copy and remind her that my hourly rate is £11 (which she already knows). Her reaction "Oh, well we're only prepared to pay £8 an hour, that's the abolute max DH will pay for a cleaner". (There's a kind of change of tone in her voice on the word "cleaner" that I can't really describe, but it gives me an almost overwhelming urge to tip her cappucino in her lap!). I take a calming breath and assure her that there are plenty of cards in the newsagents advertising cleaners and she should look there.

Rant 2 - cleaners are traditionally paid on the day that they work. When I start with a new customer I ask them to leave the money, cash or cheque, on the day I visit. So why is it considered OK to leave a note saying they have forgotten to go to the bank but will pay the money next week? Or even decide that because they are a bit skint it will be OK to leave me a post-dated cheque? If I get a day or two of people messing me about with money and I start to feel quite financially challenged. Grrr!
That's it really, just felt like getting that off my chest before I pack up my Miele and set off for 5 hours work. Nice people today, they make me tea and pay me. I may be giving some others their written warning if they're not careful. grin

RabbitPie Fri 22-Jul-11 09:55:32

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catgirl1976 Fri 22-Jul-11 09:59:20

I would do the written warning if they mess you about again. They are paying you for a service - they would get short shrift if they turned up at the garage to collect their car and said "oh i forgot to go to the bank - I will pay you next time".

You say you have a waiting list so you can afford to be a bit firmer with you clients and not take any messing around!

Well done on the first lady - £8 per hour is well below the market rate for your work and she sounds like a bit of a hmm.

Zimm Fri 22-Jul-11 10:00:20

YANBU - £8 is not much for cleaning in my view as the hourly rate has to take into account the cleaner is not paid whilst he/she travels, shops for equipment, does admin e.g. paying in cheques etc. Ours asks us for £10 p/h (and we are in S/E) and I consider this a bargain (we provide materials). I once genuinely forgot to leave the money and she returned the next day for it - totally fair, would not dream of asking her to wait a week! £11 p/h is a very good price if you include materials.

Fuzzled Fri 22-Jul-11 10:03:30

Ahh, before you go work, can you answer a question? (Or even when you get back!)
Would a cleaner mind being asked to do a one off job?
Bits of my house are in desperate of a deep clean, but with a little DS I can't get the time to do anything other than the usual dust and hoover.
I don't need a regular cleaner, but would love someone to come in and gut a couple of rooms.
Would a cleaner be offended by this request? And how much would you charge per hour?

Lucyinthepie Fri 22-Jul-11 10:09:05

Ah, you caught me having a final cuppa! I should be gone...
I would be happy to do a 1-off clean. I bring in my new monster Miele vac and it really lifts the carpets. Then wash skirtings, damp dust, remove stains if I can... no problem and at the same rate as normal.
A good clean can make a real difference to a bathroom, liberal use of Cillit Bang, Grot Buster and Magic Cloths can do amazing things.

OK, now I really got to go... but thanks for the replies. What I did when I was left no money and post-dated cheques was to leave a little polite note saying fine this time, but I do count on the money so would appreciate being paid on the day I work in future. If they do it again they will find a letter terminating our arrangement immediately. No second chances I'm afraid, because it feels pretty disrespectful to me.

Scholes34 Fri 22-Jul-11 10:22:38

You should always treat people the way you would like to be treated yourself. You have a very professional approach and shouldn't be messed around by these amateurs! Stick to your guns. I'm sure your professionality would run to cleaning up any cappucino spills too!

wicketkeeper Fri 22-Jul-11 10:57:42

Go Lucy - where do you live?? Can you do Wednesdays?? Your respect for yourself means that your clients respect you right back - or at least they bloody well ought to.
Sadly this unwillingness to pay the f* up is endemic. DH and I are owed a considerable amount of money by big companies, who don't seem capable of paying on a simple invoice. They're probably run by the same people who don't pay you on time either.

howabout Fri 22-Jul-11 11:02:13

Good for you Lucy!! My view is if you're not prepared to do your own cleaning then respect and pay properly the person who is.

NerfHerder Fri 22-Jul-11 11:04:06

£11 p.h. is more than reasonable considering you provide all the materials and insurance!

<<whispers>> psst- whereabouts are you?

NettoSuperstar Fri 22-Jul-11 11:05:50

I'm looking for a cleaner, well I will be next week and I fully intend to pay them a decent rate, on the day they work, and make them a cuppa!
Come and work for megrin

AKMD Fri 22-Jul-11 11:20:16

YANBU. My MIL runs her own cleaning business with 6 employees and is sick of people leaving post-dated cheques. She also has a waiting list so I'll suggest your approach to her...

QuietTiger Fri 22-Jul-11 11:21:04

I "had" similar problems as a pet sitter. The arrangement I have is that payment is left on the first day of the petsit. The majority of my clients are fabulous, but I had one (she stands out because she is financially LOADED with all the trappings that money brings) who the first time she used me "forgot" to leave payment for a 4 week petsit and left a note to that effect. I obviously fed her pets, but it then took me a further 2 months to get my money. The cheque was always "in the post".

Eventually I got it by ranting to my best friend, who happened to be a senior colleague of hers and was how she'd been given my name in the first place. The next time she asked me to petsit, I was totally blunt and said I needed cash payment up front on the first day like all my other clients, (who include 4 of her colleagues, so it's not as if she couldn't check my terms of petsitting with others) otherwise I wouldn't feed her cats. She called me unreasonable! Suffice to say, I've advised her to make other arrangements for her pets as I'm not prepared to petsit for her.

Her attitude was that I was the "hired help" and so below her on the food chain and as a result she could do what she liked regarding payment. Oddly, her cleaners keep quitting too...

CalamityKate Fri 22-Jul-11 15:20:29

Ha! Are you me??? I've had a particularly bad week this week - I've been paid once LOL!

All my ladies are lovely and I'm absolutely sure they don't think "Oh, it's just the cleaner..." but yeah, it's a bummer when you end the week with less money than you started with grin

Still, next week should be a good one grin

As for people who say the word "cleaner" in that tone (and I'm pretty sure I know exactly the tone you mean) - well I haven't met any yet but I can say for certain that I wouldn't be cleaning for anyone with that attitude. It wouldn't matter how much they paid me! Well, maybe it would.... grin

CalamityKate Fri 22-Jul-11 15:25:32

[£11 p/h is a very good price if you include materials.]

You reckon??

I use my own stuff and I charge £8 ph!

I did start off using clients' stuff but just find it easier to go in with my own bucket o' tricks, rather than going hunting in their cupboard and then possibly finding out they've run out of floor wipes or whatever.

Oooooer Missus - I'm cheap!! grin

Quenelle Fri 22-Jul-11 15:37:45

YANBU on both scores.

If I were you I'd bin the late payers pronto and give their slot to someone on the waiting list.

NettoSuperstar Fri 22-Jul-11 16:01:36

The bizarre thing for me is that I am a cleaner, except I had to give up work due to ill health and now I need a cleaner.

I'm not beneath anybody and I don't feel anyone is beneath me!

northerngirl41 Fri 22-Jul-11 16:57:00

Christ - I'd be too terrified that my cleaning angel wouldn't come back if I didn't pay her - she gets it BACS transferred every week!!!

Stupid woman!

Lucyinthepie Fri 22-Jul-11 17:21:22

Lucy returns triumphant, fully paid and happy! The Friday folk always pay on time. grin
Well, I'm glad people are in agreement, and it made me feel much better to have a rant before I went out today.
This is how she said it : "that's the absolute max DH will pay for a cleeenaah!". hmm
I am sure everyone will pay on the nose next week, they will be scared after my polite notes I'm sure.
I'm in Kent, working within about a 10 mile radius of Brands Hatch. I don't really have enough time to take on any more work though. I have two jobs, I'm a clerk to school governors as well. However... anyone wanting a 1-off clean during the holidays can pm me for sure. wink I think I'm worth £11 an hour for the mere fact that I cart about my super-dooper Miele cleaner, it's so powerful I have to turn it down sometimes because I can't move it across the carpet. Small pets need to be kept clear is what I'm saying...!
I do mop spills. Anyone know how to get mulligatawny soup out of a carpet?? That's the challenge set in a very apologetic note today LOL!

Familyguyfan Fri 22-Jul-11 17:22:49

My lovely cleaners came today. I have a team of two, not because my house is huge or terribly dirty but because they work as a team and each do one hour. I asked them if they'd like a drink and one of then said 'no-one has ever offered us a drink before.' why not?? I understand that other clients might be out or rushing but surely, at some point someone should have asked!

Lucyinthepie Fri 22-Jul-11 17:23:16

p.s. Calamkate, you are cheap, but there will always be someone cheaper. You just have to hope that word will get round that there is a really good cleaner about who is reliable, never pokes about in people's private business and who does a really good job. Put it this way, agencies charge a lot more, but their staff are paid a lot less and people are always complaining about them.

TheMitfordsMaid Fri 22-Jul-11 17:28:22

I'm surprised people don't get offered drinks. I always leave out tea, coffee and biscuits next to the envelope with money inside.

Dozer Fri 22-Jul-11 17:35:55

Yanbu, unless you're not paying your taxes etc, in which case yabu.

giyadas Fri 22-Jul-11 17:40:53

YANBU - btw which miele vacuum do you have? my house is like a farmyard with all the animals I have and really need a good vacuum. I had one that advertised itself as being really good for pet hair etc but was rubbish.

brainhurtsandconfused Fri 22-Jul-11 17:56:11

Good on you lucyinthepie! We work damn hard for our money, I certainly know that I'm worth £11.50 an hour and like you supply all materials.

I think I must be very lucky with my customers as I've yet to be messed around and even have one lovely lady who insists on paying a month in advance.

calamkate, if you know your Providing an excellent service could you not give your customers notice of a price increase? in my experience customers are usually so happy to find somebody that is reliable, consistent and trustworthy that they'll pay the extra to keep you.


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