You have small children or you work long hours, and you’ve decided to hire a domestic cleaning service to straighten out the chaos. Here are some valuable tips to help you choose the right one.
The right service
- Avoid brand new cleaning companies, as there is no way to know whether their employees have been properly trained and whether they are sustainable. Look for established services with a good reputation.
- Ask if the service you are looking at pays their employees a salary, or takes part of an hourly rate – the second option is not the best, as it can often mean unhappy workers.
- Don’t choose a service that only works on a long-term contract with high cancellation fees: if you want to cancel the service, you will need to pay punitive costs to get free.
- Security is important as this service will have access to your home. Ask them for some references and so some online research on the company.
Don’t opt for the first one you see. Rather speak to a few professional cleaners – look for consistency, flexibility and some guarantees.
Sure, you already know how to clean your house, but it’s not that easy if you’re trying to do it around small children. Here are tips to help keep it simple.
1. Organise the kids. Get them together in one place, line up a snack and a distraction, and you’ll buy yourself 20 or 30 minutes to tackle the dishes or the bathroom. If your little ones are too small for distractions, wait until they’re asleep or someone is around to watch them.
2. Get some laundry done. This isn’t the time for fancy sorting, just separate the light from dark and put a load in! Take 10 minutes to fold whatever is dry, and you’ll have conquered some of the washing pile.
3. Get the little ones get involved. A good place to start is have them carry their dishes or cups to the kitchen once they’ve finished eating. Let older kids help you fill the washing machine, or hand you dry items from the dryer. Turn putting their toys away into a habit – work is play to little ones, not punishment.
4. Turn playtime to your advantage. When the kids head outside to play, this is your moment to vacuum! Whether they’re going to a play date or just running around in the garden, hit those carpets!
5. Golden half-hour. Once the kids are in bed, tackle quiet jobs like mopping the kitchen floor or doing a quick dust and polish – even if you just feel like falling over, it will look so good in the morning!
Most important: stop beating yourself up about not having a picture-perfect home. While the children are tiny, they are the major event. Even if it feels endless, this stage of their lives passes really quickly – enjoy them.