Keeping it Clean

Three(ish) months ago, hubby and I decided that life was too short to clean the house. I mean, we pick up, the kids have chores, but there comes a point when things just aren't getting done as often or as well as they really ought. And so the search for a cleaning service began.

I got some estimates (and holy cow, I knew getting a cleaning service was a luxury, but I didn't realize it was THAT much of one) and finally decided on a company. I liked the fact that they're licensed, bonded and insured and that they make a point of saying all their cleaners are full-time employees with payroll taxes and benefits.

So they got us on the schedule. The first two cleans were going to be a little more expensive (and a more thorough clean). No worries, I get the idea of needing to get everything clean before being able to do the more routine work. So fine. We had our first cleaning and it was lovely.

Well, sort of lovely. They forgot the basement bathroom. And I'm just particular enough that having someone else clean means I need a few deep breaths when I get home and then about thirty minutes of putting everything back the way it's meant to be. (Honestly, I don't understand why it's such a challenge to dust one item at a time. Pick it up, clean it and under it, put it back. Why do cleaners feel they need to move everything and then try to get it back the way it was? Cause that never happens.)

So when cleaning #2 came along, I made sure to point out that hey, you need to do the basement bath, too.

All was well. Until a week later when I got a bill for $8. I gave them a call and asked exactly what that was about. They said the basement bathroom. I'm like, "Um, it's on the estimate sheet as something that's to be done every week." We went back and forth, she finally got the original estimate sheet and, lo and behold, the basement bath was supposed to be done every time. So sorry, we'll fix that right up.

A week and a half later, I get another bill, this one saying it's past due. Sigh. So I call them up and we go through the whole rigmarole again and am assured that no, no, they'll get it squared away and I don't owe them anything.

They were supposed to come for the third cleaning yesterday. We waited around at home as their arrival time came and went. After an hour, I called to see what was going on. The lady said she'd check into it and call me right back. Another hour later, I called them back. No one has any idea.

At this point, I'm kind of done. Because it shouldn't be quite this hard. Not with the kind of money that's going out the door. So I cancelled the whole shooting match and the kids are going to have a lot of chances to earn some extra cash with additional chores. Because really, there are four of us. It's not unreasonable that we can clean our own house.


  1. We have "The Maids" come in every other week to do a deeper cleaning than we manage day to day. (Three cats, a dog, and no help from the daughters means Mrs. R and I can't quite keep up with everything by ourselves.)

    They're generally pretty good, but they have a bad habit of rearranging the top of my dresser. I've got a bunch of religious paraphernalia there: an icon, my mother's comfort-cross, several Saints' cards, a couple auxiliary rosaries, meaningful postcards, and the like, and for some reason, they always feel the need to rearranging these things.

    I know they're not just moving things out of the way to dust and putting them back at random, because the rearrangement is always the same.

    Very strange.

  2. Oh gee, rearranging would drive me completely up the wall if it wasn't simple random "we dusted, deal with it."