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To be annoyed with my cleaner?

18 replies

Sugarmagnolia · 09/04/2007 21:16

I have a cleaner. I don't have a huge house and I would say it takes 2-3 hours to clean it well. A bit more if she's doing the ironing or changing the beds. I often do ask her to do the ironing and I'm happy to pay her for the extra time. But sometimes she seems to be here for absolutely ages and I can't figure out why. I usually let it go but today it just really annoyed me.

She was at my house for 4 1/2 hours. I was coming home just as she was leaving. "Oh, you were here for a long time today, I guess you got through the ironing for me then?" No, she says, I did a couple of shirts but didn't have time to finish. (DH's shirts are non-iron and take about 20 seconds each to do!)

I was ! I would be happy to pay her for 3 hours and do the ironing myself or pay her the extra hours to do it for me but I really resent having to pay her so much time and still have to do it myself. So I sent her a text saying that I just can't understand what she was doing for 4 1/2 hours if she didn't even do the ironing. So she wrote back and said, "well just pay me for 3 hours then."


Anyway, back to finish my ironing now.

OP posts:

PeckaRolloverAgain · 09/04/2007 21:18

Is the house absolutely spotless when she goes?

Does she do other things "above and beyond"

My house takes about 2 hours top to bottom for me to clean but this includes just tidying, hoovering, polishing surfaces, surface clean of bathroom etc

Is she really deep cleaning? skirting boards, walls, windows, cupboards etc etc


fireflyfairy2 · 09/04/2007 21:21

What exactly does the cleaner do?

Does she spend time tidying as well as actual cleaning?


Sugarmagnolia · 09/04/2007 21:26

Yes, the house was pretty spotless, but 3 hours should be plenty to get this house spotless. And it was pretty tidy to start with - toys away, beds made etc. I can tidy, hoover and clean all the kitchen/bathroom surfaces in an hour. She's been with me for 3 years now and I know 3 hours should be plenty unless she gets in her head to bleach the grout in my bathroom or do all the windows or something - which she didn't do today.

OP posts:

chocolateface · 09/04/2007 21:29

You are right to be annoyed. I've had the opposite problem though. I wanted my cleaner to do atleast 2 hours, but she only ever did one, and jsut gave the house a little tickle.

Could you give her a certain amount do do in a set time?


vitomum · 09/04/2007 21:32

i think the arrangement you have with her seams quite unclear. i think if you leave it to her as to how long she stays then there will be problems. why don't you just stick to the 3 hours every week for the basic. if you want her to do extra ironing, windows etc. then arrange it upfront with an agreed ammount of time and price. that way everyone will be clearer about where they stand. sounds like she is a good cleaner so would be a shame to lose her.


Sugarmagnolia · 09/04/2007 21:37

She is a good cleaner, and I like her but you're right - maybe we need to make our arrangement a little clearer. This isn't the first time this has happened and it always really bugs me.

OP posts:

twentypence · 09/04/2007 23:07

Why text instead of just having a conversation? Has she got nothing to get home for?


hana · 09/04/2007 23:08

I think because she said just pay me for 3, she knew she was taking advantage of you


vixma · 09/04/2007 23:12

Sorry to interupt, how do you start a new thread ( iI am assuming it is obvious)? have not been here for a while. Sorry for interupting....all the best....vix


TwirlyN · 09/04/2007 23:15

maybe take a look inside your kitchen draws and cupboards, skirting boards, edges of carpets, windows etc. I do a bit of cleaning for an elderly couple. I often feel guilty when I leave, as I know the daughters will be around to check. I do however make a point of telling them where i spent my 2 hours. They live in a 3 bed house. (it's quite big, not the norm). I still can't clean the Whole house in 2 hours. I suppose its a bit like the thread 'please tell me we all do this..' in only joking. Only I really do find one little job leads to another.


hana · 09/04/2007 23:17

you can start a new thread by clicking on 'add new thread title''s highlighted in blue at the end of the line


UCM · 09/04/2007 23:18

Vixma, you need to take a look right at the top of the page. Active conversations gives you what is being talked about in the last 20 minutes unless its busy then it's the last 20 seconds.

Topic list is a good place to start.

Welcome anyway.


vixma · 09/04/2007 23:20

sorry, just read ur thread. Have you employed her for a while? or not? If she has just started it seems she does not care, however if for a while and she is normally good, maybe she has something upsetting her or making her unhappy...she is only human however on the other hand maybe she doesn't care cos she has not been there for long. Do you know who you have employed?


vixma · 09/04/2007 23:22

thanks UCM!


Sugarmagnolia · 10/04/2007 07:48

Thanks for all the comments - I have employed her for 3 1/2 years now! Sometimes she's great and other times she can be a little unpredictable. I should really be used to it by now.

To be honest I'm sure she was doing something with the time and not just sitting around with her feet up - she mumbled something about pulling all the furniture out. But we had a bit of a spring clean only 2 weeks ago where I asked her to pull out all the furniture, clean the cupboards etc. I gladly paid her for the extra hours that week. So why would she get it into her head to do it again only two weeks later, when she clearly knows it wouldn't need to be done again so soon? I resent having to pay for that time when there were other things that did need to be done (ie my ironing!). Do you see what I mean?

OP posts:

mamhaf · 10/04/2007 14:21

This sounds a very familiar story Sugar - we've employed various cleaners since having dd1 and it's extremely difficult to find someone who's consistently reliable and good - no matter how much you pay.
But if your cleaner's been good in the past and makes the house spotless, then perhaps something has happened to make her go off the boil.
She may or may not tell you what that is if that's the case, but it's definitely worth you having a chat to her and agree a set number of hours, and what you expect to be done in that time, in some detail.
Do praise her for the work she does that's good - I'd be thrilled if I could say the house was spotless when I came home.
Ultimately though, if all of that doesn't work then you have to decide whether it's worth your hard-earned cash to keep her on or whether you should let her go and find someone else...but bear in mind that finding someone better and who you trust is likely to be just as difficult.


amidaiwish · 10/04/2007 14:42

i agreed 4 hours with my cleaner.
Sometimes she finishes in 3.5 hours
sometimes 4.5 hours.
i always pay her for 4.
i guess like anybody there are some days when you are fast and some days when you are slow.
i pay for the job to be done.
if there are extras then i will ask her and agree an extra half an hour or whatever.

it sounds like your cleaner knows she was on go-slow mode today and is happy to be paid for 3 hours. i wouldn't make a big deal of it.


Pannacotta · 10/04/2007 14:52

Agree with the ohers. Would state the terms more clearly, eg 3 hours per week, and if you need extra work/ironing done then try to agree it each time, not leave it up to her. Or else get ironing done at the launderette (I do this and they charge per item so is easier to know where I stand cost wise).
I have a cleaner and pay her more than the going rate and she has 3.5 hours here per week which is more than enough, but the house is never spotless, she leaves things lying around such as dirty cloths and she has broken several things and not offered to pay or contribute towards replacments, so have to say from my perspective you are doing ok with your cleaner!

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