Couples who both work FT...(61 Posts)
... and don't have a cleaner, how do you fit it all in?
Chocolate, I'm liking your thinking, and I might adopt it for DP and I!
We do a bit every day. All our friends think that it's funny
and that I am a nightmare because we have a blackboard on the kitchen wall which outlines what we have to do everyday. Monday is bins, Tuesday is beds, Wednesday is floors, Thursday is full bathroom clean, Friday (because DH finishes early) is hoover and dust.
We both work full time so we have to work together and this is something that DH took a while to accept, but hey ho, he didn't marry a slave. On top of the daily jobs, the shower gets sprayed and toilet gets wiped over with toilet wipes every other day. The kitchen tops and cooker are cleaned every time we wash dishes and clothes washing is done whenever there's enough for a wash.
We have low standards.
Even so it turned into a major strain on our relationship - we both hate the lows that the state of our flat could get to, we both agree intellectually that the chores should be divided equally, but we'd always end up with arguments and petty bookkeeping on who has done how much and who is more stressed with work/admin obligations.
I also felt like a failure for contemplating hired help to tackle something that I felt I should be able to do.
We now have a cleaner who comes twice a month to tackle the worst of it. We do the dishes and laundry and spot treat the worst disasters in betwen.
Our books are in our study. We got a carpenter to build shelves practically up to the ceiling on one wall with cupboards at the bottom to store lever arch files (house admin).
Viking, well worth looking into this, if you can. It makes things so much neater and easier to access (esp files), with masses of storage so you don't feel guilty buying yet another book.
Ah yes, but we will be keeping all our bookcases in the office/library. I agree in a living room they would look cluttered.
I couldn't cope with book 'clutter'. They get way too dusty and look messy unless sets/ matching ( to me).
Hence the books we have kept are all hidden behind doors, and just x2 shelves of children's classic are on show but behind glass door ( all red/ blue/ green, gold lettering, same size). Iv had them since a child and now read to my children ( things like secret garden/ jungle book/ Swiss family Robinson)
They do make the place look cluttered though. I have an alcove with shelves for my books, but it always looks busy, iyswim. my neighbours' living rooms seem so much tidier without.
I love my books, but do indeed need shelves because right now most of them are cluttering up the place in boxes, but yes, once they're put away they definitely don't count as clutter!
"Book clutter" doesn't create work though, does it? Books just sit there on shelves.
I have a kindle thanks, you know not all books are available for e readers right?
I straighten the couch cushions and clear any used crockery to the kitchen while im waiting for the kettle to boil.
Well in our household we both work f/t but my dh does all the cleaning and tidying. He starts and finishes work early so comes home and tidies/does some light cleaning then makes dinner. I tend to wash the clothes so will put on a load after the kids go to bed. At the weekend I will normally take the kids out for a couple of hours and he'll do some more intensive cleaning/ hoovering.
I know it sounds like my dh is my housekeeper but it works for us. Plays to our strengths - he does the house, I take the lead with the kids.
I employ dd1 (13) as our cleaner. She gets £10 per week for hoovering, cleaning the bathroom and kitchen, and she also does the dishes twice a week. She's not as thorough as a proper cleaner would be
and she moans about it , but she's cheaper and it means she doesn't have to get a paper round or ask us for money every time she wants to do anything with her mates.
I do the washing and drying of clothes (I don't iron unless it really needs it), mostly at the weekends. Dp does most of the cooking and the washing up that dd1 doesn't do. Dd2 (3) makes the mess and occasionally helps tidy her toys away. We do have lower standards than some people, which helps I think.
I don't know how families in England manage. We paid about 250 a month for DD when she was at the crèche (the amount you pay is calculated on your joint income; we were on about 40k back then I think). Then at the end of the year it's tax deductible, so although we didn't get any money back, it meant we had less tax to pay (in fact we didn't have any tax to pay, we got a rebate because we bought a house 4 years ago and yes, that's tax deductible too).
My mum comes once a fortnight and does a big clean . We keep on top of it in between.
Living in France, library books tend to be in French, so we end up ordering them off Internet.
I like the idea of Billys with doors, just looked at the website, the doors are three times the price of the bookcase
Alanna I think all domestic help and childcare costs employed by two income households should be fully deductible. The current system results in double taxation and I think it is a huge barrier to women progressing the workplace. I think if the UK changed to this system it would result in a lot more families getting the financial help they need. I have friends in London earning GBP100k and are bringing home about GBP10k a year after taxes and childcare costs for 2 children under 5.
In our house books are borrowed from the library for the children. Adult books are borrowed using ebooks only. So much easier as no late fees and no storage issues.
I have two of these bookcases for the children. Our Billy bookshelves have doors on them so contents don't need to be dusted and children can't climb them. I frosted the glass so you can't see the mess inside of them.
I am working through the clutter, but there is so much stuff that I want to keep but which doesn't have a home. I think I need to buy more storage. We have boxes and boxes of books in the attic and in the garage, but the two bookshelves are full already. Maybe I need to go to Ikea and pick up some cheap Billys.
I gave up with cleaners because it took too long to manage them properly. As to lady, your comment came across as rude. Not sure what your intent was.
With doing a bit each day and using things like wipes and paper towels it doesn't take long at all. Excluding the vacuum cleaner it costs us about $10 a week to keep our house clean. It would cost me about $200 to hire someone and the dishwasher would still need emptying, food cooking and the laundry put away.
I'm really surprised at those saying 'just get. A cleaner'! They cost money! Me and DH both work full time, we have 2 children, and would love to have a cleaner but we can't afford one.
We do a bit each evening then blitz at the weekend, takes a couple of hours to be done properly.
I'd much rather spend the money on something fun though!
Basically here you pay a cleaner min 8/hr, then you pay about 5/hour to the state, then you get about 50% of the total back when you pay your tax.
Oh and we live minimalistic ( mostly)
So out of the 3 hours cleaner cleans, she will roughly do bedding/ hoovering and mopping/ bathroom for 1 1/2 Monday, then hoovering mopping/ kitchen/ clothes wash Friday 1 1/2. It helps that she's there for 3hrs though as will put washing in , start cooking, then sort floors out whilst stuff cooks for example
We Weren't sure we should get a cleaner either but the money we save by actually being able to fit in more work pays it back easily. Ie we might both work fri night from home rather than clean.
Really advise getting rid of clutter though, as we barely have anything else to do now. So a quick Hoover is quick as floors clear of stuff in the first place, and kitchen sides are clear so it's quick to wipe down
Am I the only one amazed that a cleaner is tax deductible in france? Wow.
We have a cleaner. But even keeping on top of everything else is hard work. One of us puts kids to bed (bath-books-bed), the other zooms around. Then we stop when kids asleep and enjoy some time together. Means the kids' room only gets any serious attention at the weekend but at least adult space is returned everywhere else!
Ironing - only shirts, and our cleaner does those.
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