Cleaning, we all make dirt and mess but as with many things in life – we’ve all got a very different, very personal approach to it and one thing that’s sure to divide folk is whether or not you hire someone to help you with it.

I hired a cleaner last year, here’s what I learnt from paying someone to help me keep my house clean.

1 ~ Everyone and I mean EVERYONE will have an opinion on the fact you’ve chosen to spend your money on having someone do the cleaning.

And not only will they have an opinion, they will feel obligated to share it with you. Never mind the reasons behind your choice, they will tell you what they think of it.

People that already use cleaners will share, like a guilty secret, the pure joy that is offloading an aspect of your domestic life to a professional. People that don’t hire cleaners will be incredulous that you pay someone to clear up your mess and, more often than not, imply that you are financially reckless, lazy and a domestic slattern – possibly also a traitor to the feminist cause.

2 ~ Coming home to a clean and tidy house at the end of the working day feels wonderful.

It is amazing to get home and not be affronted by the fact you’ve not washed up the breakfast things and the landing hasn’t been hoovered for several weeks. Bins are empty, corners are dust free and sofa cushions are plumped. It is deliciously freeing when you’ve been used to doing everything yourself.

3 ~ Plumping all the pillows on the  bed makes your bed look fancy.

If you have more than one set of pillows, don’t just plump the top ones, plump the underneath ones too. Combined with a tidy duvet or bed cover this gives a hotel-chic rather than Tracy Emin-carnage feel to your bed.

4 ~ Having someone fold my pyjamas feels weird and too intimate.

I do actually make my bed of a morning and my PJ’s are either under the duvet or haning on the end of the bed. What I found very unsettling was that the cleaner folded my PJs  up, they were still under the duvet, but neatly folded. I actually found this more intimate and slightly embarrassing than the day I went to work and realised that I’d forgotten to double flush away a floaty poo.

5 ~ Having a house cleaned all in one go on one day makes it easier to keep the house clean and tidy in between times.

One thing I was never particularly minded to do when I was doing my own cleaning was to have a cleaning day. At best Sunday mornings were usually set aside for a thorough clean of the kitchen. Hoovering was every other week or so and the bathroom was left till I had visitors and really couldn’t justify not doing it. But with a cleaner, where everything is done in one go, it becomes much more easy to stay on top of things in the rest of the week. It also liberates me from the nagging voice in my head that I’ve NOT done the cleaning and am a terrible human being and slattern.

6 ~ Living in a tidy house makes life easier.

Again the freedom from the nagging voice,  but also knowing where stuff is, not having piles of stuff glaring at you accusingly, waiting to be put away. Everything  becomes easier to manage because the stress of the untidy stuff has been taken away.



7 ~ I’d rather save for a holiday than have a cleaner.

A couple of months after hiring the cleaner my daughter and I decided we’d like to go to Lapland on holiday – not a cheap trip so the thing that got axed for our savings goal was the cleaner. I have friends who will sell their children before they dump their cleaner and that’s all good, but for me, I’d rather live with my un-tidyness and afford a holiday from it every once in a while.

All in all  hiring a cleaner was fantastic and liberating, it gave me not only a tidy house but a relief from feeling that I have to do and be on top of everything in my life. I know that at some point I’ll probably go back to having a cleaner, but until then I’ve been inspired to improve my own clean and tidying habits to keep a little bit of the ease that living in a tidy home brought me.


Vintage plates on a draining board