Do you need a housekeeper? Take our quiz to find out!
If you're like most people, you work full time, pick the kids up from school, drive them to their after-school dance lessons or soccer practice and come home after seven o'clock at night only to cook dinner and start household chores. You finally make it to the weekend, and you find yourself hunched over a toilet and scrubbing the shower. You need some help!
Ever wondered if you should hire a housekeeper? This quiz can help you decide.
Is your problem just with household clutter?
Yes: If your problem is just with clutter, a personal organizer may better serve your needs. They can institute organizational systems for mail, clothing, shoes, kids' and babies' needs and even pets' needs, and teach you how to maintain that structure within your home. (Many cleaning companies also offer this service.)
No, my problem is more than just clutter. Okay, keep reading.
Do you struggle with big projects, like spring cleaning or post-holiday tidying up?
Yes: If it's just big projects you need help with, you may only need an occasional housekeeper. Post a job on Care.com before a holiday or family visit and you can have your home in tip-top shape quickly.
No: I need year-round help. Okay, read on.
Do you know how to make your carpet last longer, the safest cleaning products to use and the most efficient tips and tricks for home maintenance?
Yes: If you already know the best ways to maintain your home, then perhaps you only need a service to come in on a monthly basis to help with deep cleaning.
No: I don't have a clue. Not everyone can be Martha Stewart. Maybe you don't have time to worry about the life of your carpet -- or maybe you're just not interested. Housekeepers will be happy to help you maintain your carpets, floors, bathrooms and kitchen. They can also suggest the best products for your needs, such as green cleaning products.
Do you need extra time for your career or family?
Yes: The most common feedback from people who have hired housekeeper is that they love having extra free time. If you find yourself spending more hours than you'd like scrubbing down the bathroom or mopping floors, having someone come in to help once or twice per week might be just what you need.
No, I've got it covered. If you don't need weekly assistance, maybe hiring someone to come in once a month or once every six months for a deep clean is what you need to keep your home looking brand new.
Are you a new parent?
Yes: You love your little bundle of joy -- but not the bundles of dirty diapers and laundry that come along for the ride. As a new mom or dad, you have a lot on your plate right now and you're probably not getting much sleep. A housekeeper could help relieve some of the burden of cleaning chores, leaving you more time to get to know your new baby.
No new baby here: Enjoy your sleep and keep reading.
Are you caring for an aging parent or relative?
Yes: If you are caring for an elderly family member, a housekeeper may be just what you need. If your parent or relative lives with you, you can hire someone just to clean up the bedroom and bathroom once a week. Or, if your parent or relative is aging in place in his or her own home, you can arrange for a housekeeper to help your loved one once or twice a week or even daily with household chores and errands. Sometimes a senior care aide can also perform these duties.
No: All right, keep reading.
Are you comfortable having a stranger in your home?
Yes: When you hire a housekeeper, chances are it will be someone you've never met. So you'll be in good shape if you're fine with having someone new in your home.
No way! Don't write off a housekeeper just yet. When you hire someone through Care.com, you can request a background check. And you should always check references before you hire someone. Schedule the housekeeper to clean while you're at home to help allay any fears.
Can you afford to pay someone about $14 per hour?
Yes: The cost of cleaning your home will vary depending on where you live, the size of your house and how often you need someone. But according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the national average wage for housekeepers is about $14 per hour. If your budget can handle this, you should have no problem finding someone.
No, that seems pretty steep. Remember, if you live in a small house, condo or apartment, it will take less time to clean, so you'll end up spending less money than someone who owns a large house. Have a housekeeper only do the rooms in your house that need the most attention, like the kitchen and bathroom. Or try tidying up before a housekeeper comes, so she can spend her time on more deep cleaning projects.
If you think you need a housekeeper, post a job on Care.com describing what you want help with and how often you want someone to come. Once you find a great match for your situation, you'll be dust-free and stress-free in no time!
Amanda Mole is a freelance writer in Tampa Bay, Florida. Her work can be found here.