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AIBU?

It's another cleaning one - sorry!

15 replies

springhassprung22 · 30/09/2022 09:29

Cleaner has been coming fortnightly for 2 hours at a time all year. She is reliable and hasn't once not turned up without notice, which I really value as I've had a lot of that in the past. The charge is £14 ph.

The first time she came with another cleaner, they did 2 hours between them. Being the first time of course it was a fantastic job, and one of them said they will be able to do extras as they come more regularly and are on top of it.

House is a 3 bed semi detached, 2 double bedrooms, one single (which only needs a quick hoover and dust), one reception room, one bathroom, one extra toilet and sink and an open plan kitchen/living diner. Hard floors only downstairs, carpet upstairs.

The first few times the cleaner came, she seemed to get round the whole house in about 1 hour 45 minutes and would then ask if there was anything else I needed doing which was great. She did things like cleaned inside cupboards in that extra time.

As time's gone on she is only getting round the whole house in 2 hours. I'd also say it's not a very thorough job - surfaces are clean but she misses things like along the bath and sink seals, at the base of the taps, so it builds up over time. The shower screen is wiped but limescale will be building up.

I'm loathe to get a new cleaner as I've had so many in the past and this always seems to happen - they either become unreliable and don't turn up without saying anything, or as above, the end result isn't as good as at the start. DH and I work full time and don't have time to clean much - I'll caveat with saying we do very little in between the cleaner's fortnightly visits, other than bleaching the toilet, sweeping/hoovering if DC have made a mess eating, quick surface wipes in the kitchen and bathroom.

AIBU - does 2 hours for my house sound fine, or AINBU she needs telling?

I'm rubbish at confrontation/feedback and she is lovely, we get on well, so it now feels very awkward raising it.

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

20 votes. Final results.

POLL
You are being unreasonable
60%
You are NOT being unreasonable
40%
NoSquirrels · 30/09/2022 09:32

I don’t think you need voting on this one.

The cleaner isn’t working to their previous standard - it’s not unreasonable to ask why, or tell them about areas that seem to have been missed. Then you have a conversation where the cleaner might give you information you don’t have and you can see what happens next.

NoSquirrels · 30/09/2022 09:34

But I would say fortnightly in a busy family house where nothing much is done every other week it would necessarily be surprising that 2 hours isn’t quite enough.

NoSquirrels · 30/09/2022 09:36

NoSquirrels · 30/09/2022 09:34

But I would say fortnightly in a busy family house where nothing much is done every other week it would necessarily be surprising that 2 hours isn’t quite enough.

it wouldn’t necessarily be surprising that 2 hours is not enough.

Every week 2 hours, every fortnight 3 hours, if you want extra jobs like cupboards etc doing on top of general routine tasks.

TooMuchToDoTooLittleInclination · 30/09/2022 09:38

I think 2 hours once a fortnight is perfectly reasonable.

why don't you do what you expect her to this weekend & see how long it takes. I get you work & have kids, but DH can surely take them out for 2 hours.

How tidy are you making the house before she comes? Instead of looking at why she's 'slacking' look at how differently you're leaving the house? How much more stuff you have to move? Kids messy bedrooms etc

DidYouFindYourCrumpetHoles · 30/09/2022 09:41

I wonder why she was at first doing a really thorough job in 1.75 hours and it’s now taking her 2 hours to do a more slapdash job? Have I got that right?

Aside from that, I think 2 hours for your house sounds about right and if you’re generally happy with her I wouldn’t confront her or let her go.

If you still have extra things that need doing that you would usually have asked for in those last 15 minutes, why don’t you ask at the beginning eg “Hey Sandra, if you have time today at the end of your visit would you mind giving the cupboard under the kitchen sink a deep clean?”

She’ll either say no and hopefully give you a reason why she no longer has the time “Your husband has been leaving the shower dirtier than usual so it’s taking me longer to clean” or she’ll agree to do it. Maybe she just thinks there’s nothing extra that needs doing. Is there anything specific that needs extra attention?

TCMcK · 30/09/2022 09:41

I am a cleaner and I no longer take on fortnightly cleans for this very reason. Are you cleaning it properly in between the cleaning coming? The number one problem with customers is them expecting too much in too little time. I would suggest setting a timer for 2 hours and see what you can do yourself in that time 🙂.

Pugsbladder · 30/09/2022 09:42

Personally I don't think 2 hours would cover the tasks you are expecting. Bathrooms alone can take ages due to fluff, hairs, limescale, dead skin, awkward shower doors. You sound petty and unreasonable in your expectations. Feel very sorry for your cleaner.

gogohmm · 30/09/2022 09:44

2 hours isn't long enough for a fortnightly clean. If you have 2 hours weekly, they do some tasks weekly, others only every other week. I found 3 hours was needed for fortnightly

Buttonmashingpickle · 30/09/2022 09:49

If you don't speak to them about your concern and just get a new cleaner then YABU. There is normally a reason for change, perhaps they are dealing with a hidden illness/disability. Maybe you guys have gotten messier and it's taking longer. Just have an adult conversation, you don't have to be confrontational. Good luck.

Singlebutmarried · 30/09/2022 09:52

3 bed semi and similar set up here. I do my own cleaning (bonkers hounds and cleaners don’t seem to mix).

The bathroom and loo are cleaned daily (as in wiped and bleach down the loos before leaving for work), I hoover/sweep and mop downstairs daily (dogs).

kitchen again wiped down daily.

then weekly I do the whole house. Takes me about four hours to do thoroughly. And that’s without doing cupboards.

so I think 2 hours fortnightly would mean just a tickle all the way round rather than anything substantial.

NurseInTraining · 30/09/2022 09:59

I'm looking at getting a cleaner at the moment. The lady who I have contacted has said that she can do a two bed house in one hour a week so it seems fairly reasonable to me but I live alone and one bedroom is closed off most of the time. Maybe have a frank conversation about your priorities with the cleaner?

80sMum · 30/09/2022 10:01

Two hours to clean an entire house? To me, that's astonishingly fast. It would probably take me the best part of a whole day!

I suppose a professional cleaner would be a lot faster than I am, but even so it seems like a pretty big ask - especially as there's a fortnight's worth of built up dirt and dust to tackle.

Grapewrath · 30/09/2022 10:14

2 hours a fortnight to clean a 3 bed house which is not cleaned in between is not sufficient. It’s likely she’s not getting to the nitty gritty as she’s needing to concentrate on the surface clean if it’s not been done in two weeks.
Maybe up your efforts in between and see if it makes a difference to her standard of cleaning

springhassprung22 · 30/09/2022 10:19

@Grapewrath yes I think that's probably it. We are very tidy before she comes, every surface is clear. But perhaps I was keeping on top of it more before she came...

She is definitely slower than she was at first, as in she gets round the house slower. I think maybe she was killing herself during the "trial" cleaning period and now that she's settled has slowed down. That probably happens in a lot of jobs.

I would love to have her come more often, or for another hour each time. I don't think we can afford it at the moment but I will consider it.

@DidYouFindYourCrumpetHoles that's a good idea. I will ask her today to really scrub the base of the taps where it's built up.

OP posts:
TheTeddyBears · 01/10/2022 10:28

Surely it needs done weekly. If you don't have time to do inbetween then it will be a harder job to do in 2 hrs. To be honest I'm surprised they agreed to 2 hrs fortnightly.

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