To (privately) disapprove of my friend having a cleaner

(537 Posts)
Unami Mon 29-Apr-13 16:08:54

Ok. This may be long, but I will do my best to explain where I am coming from. My friend has a cleaner and I privately disapprove. I would never make an issue of it to her, or even bring it up. It was brought up by another friend when we were at her place for drinks. She was a bit hmm about it, and it led to a big discussion, but I didn't say anything committal. I do recognise that she can hire a cleaner if she likes. If she likes she can hire a troupe of jugglers and have them juggle in her kitchen all day, if she likes. It's none of my business, I get that.

But I still privately disapprove. AIBU?

Her cleaner comes to her two bedroom flat twice a week and gives it a full clean, and that apparently includes hoovering all carpets and upholdstry, dusting all surfaces, polishing wood, sweeping and cleaning wooden floor in hall and kitchen, emptying waste bins in the house and taking kitchen bins round the back, cleaning mirrors, cleaning the inside of windows, full clean of the kitchen including inside the fridge, full clean of bathroom. Once a month she also gets the oven cleaned, extractor fan cleaned and polished (!?), cupboards dusted inside and out. She says she pays £45 a week for this.

It's just her in the flat. She doesn't have kids and doesn't live with her bf.

Here's my perspective. People say that having a cleaner is just like hiring any other service provider. But it's not. Domestic cleaners clean intimate, private parts of our houses, and clean up our bodily mess, and it's low paid, low status work. Yes, people hire gardeners and window cleaners, but these are roles which require specialist equipment and insurance, and they only work on the outside and periphery of your home. Yes, I recognise that cleaners are employed in offices I use, cafes I eat in and so on, but it's not really the same either. Most commerical cleaners are employed as staff and so get holiday pay, sick pay, NI etc. Agency workers don't have it so good, and I disagree with the terms of their employment too. But domestic cleaners are often paid cash in hand because employers think they are doing them a favour. But they have no holiday, sick pay - what happens if they have an accident in the house they are cleaning in. I know there are some well organised small cleaning companies, but I think they are the exception.

But most of all, I just feel like my friend is just being lazy or thinks she's too good to pick up after herself. If you are elderly or disabled or immobile, then I see nothing wrong with getting the help that you need. Likewise, if you have a busy family, and don't want to be stuck being the person who picks up after everyone else - get the help you need and show the family how much your time costs. But if you have a quiet life and are fit and healthy, I don't see why you think it's ok to have someone over to clean your toilet. I also think that people who say they are so impossibly busy with work that they can't lift a duster once a week really ought to think about cutting back their ft hours, and give others access to the surplus of work they have.

I'm not going to have a go at my friend. But I just don't think it's right.

OP’s posts: |
givemeaclue Mon 29-Apr-13 16:10:31


Why do you care?

D0GWithAYoni Mon 29-Apr-13 16:10:33

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

Trill Mon 29-Apr-13 16:12:10


It is only unreasonable to have a cleaner if you:
1 - treat them badly
2 - then go on to complain that you can't afford other things

As long as you treat your cleaner well and can afford to pay (or are happy to make the sacrifices that you make in order to be able to afford it) then there is nothing wrong with it.

UnChartered Mon 29-Apr-13 16:12:15

if i was her i'd worry more about the friends i had, not how i chose to spend my own cash hmm

SDTGisAnEvilWolefGenius Mon 29-Apr-13 16:12:30

I am afraid that I think you are being very unreasonable. If she can afford a cleaner, and it frees her up to do other things that she'd prefer doing, then that is absolutely her right. Some people enjoy house work - clearly she isn't one of them, so why should she do something she doesn't enjoy if she can afford to get someone to do it for her?

rubyslippers Mon 29-Apr-13 16:12:37

Jesus that's a loooong post


I don't understand the sneering that goes on about cleaners

Your last sentence about cutting down working hours to have more time to clean made me snort


Thegingerpig Mon 29-Apr-13 16:12:55

Maybe she just doesn't like cleaning? If she can afford it, then why shouldn't she have a cleaner?

Mintyy Mon 29-Apr-13 16:12:55

Did it have to be so long?

I would be concerned if a friend of mine thought her flat needed to be cleaned so thoroughly.

Oh and yes yabu.

Trill Mon 29-Apr-13 16:13:24

I also think that people who say they are so impossibly busy with work that they can't lift a duster once a week really ought to think about cutting back their ft hours, and give others access to the surplus of work they have.

This is ridiculous. Why would it be better to have someone else paid to do my job, and for me to do dusting, than to pay someone to do dusting and I'll get on with my job?

Alligatorpie Mon 29-Apr-13 16:14:40

I have a cleaner - she is wonderful. I love coming home to a clean house. And I don't give a shit what you think.

Tee2072 Mon 29-Apr-13 16:14:44



MissyMooandherBeaverofSteel Mon 29-Apr-13 16:14:50

So what if she is being lazy, its not like she is asking you to clean her flat. confused

givemeaclue Mon 29-Apr-13 16:15:09

You also sound a bit jealous

Francagoestohollywood Mon 29-Apr-13 16:15:15

Oh, pleaseeeeeeeeeeeeee

Goldenbear Mon 29-Apr-13 16:15:17

YANBU, I agree with you.

PumpkinPositive Mon 29-Apr-13 16:15:37

Is this a wind up? confused

musickeepsmesane Mon 29-Apr-13 16:15:41

glad you are not my friend. Are you for real or just stirring?

IneedAsockamnesty Mon 29-Apr-13 16:16:06


Its a good thing her cleaner should be declaring income ad should also be insured.

Your friend is putting money back into the economy.

Get a grip.

Tee2072 Mon 29-Apr-13 16:16:10



Emsmaman Mon 29-Apr-13 16:16:33

YABU. It's her money and I presume she's not standing behind the cleaner whipping her? Also re badly paid - cleaners in London often get £10/11 per hour so more than many office jobs!

The only time I've been judgy about getting a cleaner was when my NCT teacher told us about one of her former students who took out a loan to pay a cleaner when she had the baby. I do get judgy about getting into debt for a luxury and for someone else to be condoning and suggesting it is a good idea to others!

ApocalypseThen Mon 29-Apr-13 16:16:36

I'd be all over that if I could afford it. Having a cleaner do a thorough job twice a week is something she wants to spend her own money on. If she treats her cleaner properly and adds to her enjoyment of life, why not?

Would you like her to give you the money instead or something?

KellyElly Mon 29-Apr-13 16:16:40

If you don't like cleaning/can't be arsed/have better things to do than clean and you can afford a cleaner you hire one. I don't see your point at all. YABU.

JakeBullet Mon 29-Apr-13 16:16:51

YABU, I really really struggle with housework despite being a SAHM currently. I would LOVE a cleaner and would employ one if I could afford it.

Groovee Mon 29-Apr-13 16:16:57

confused I think you need to find a hobby to stop you overthinking your poor friend.

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