Need to Hire A Housekeeper? Read This First!

Housekeeper with a vacuum cleanerMany home-owners all over the world wonder whether they should hire a housekeeper or not. Most common questions they have in mind are how much a cleaner costs or what a housekeeper’s duties are. It is an important decision to make so you better not jump on the first one that gets on your way. It is essential to hire a reliable maid since that person will have access to your private spaces.

We came up with a list of seven common questions to be answered before hiring a housekeeper. A quick research helped us find the answers for you.

So if you’re wondering…

1. How Much A Cleaner Costs?

Generally, the price of a given thing is a common question. In terms of cleaning services, prices may vary depending on several factors:

  • Frequency of visits
  • Service quality
  • Type of the cleaning service
  • Number of rooms/size of the house
  • Self-employed housekeeper/agency worker
  • Additional requirements, such as ironing
  • Having any kids/pets
  • Pricing rate – duration/type of service

Pricing depends of your location too. Living in the big city is way more expensive than in a small one. If you look for housekeepers in Melbourne, cleaning an average-sized house usually costs $25 to $40 per hour. Therefore, if you offer a long term collaboration, then you might find a housekeeper for less than $25 per hour.

2. How Often the Housekeeper Should Visit You?

It depends on your personal needs and cleaning habits. If you are not into housekeeping and your home quickly turns into a mess, probably a maid should visit you more commonly. Usually people hire them for three or four hours every fortnight. Mums whose families live in a large house and have a few kids often have no time to clean it up. Thus a cleaning lady is needed every week. Some households with both family members working full-time prefer to have a live in help for a couple of days every week. This is because some of her duties may include cooking the meals.

3. Can You Really Trust A Maid?

Everyone nowadays has doubts about whom to trust, the extent of trust or when not to trust. When it comes to inviting a stranger in your house to touch your stuff, the trust issue is even bigger. The best thing you can do to make you feel completely safe is hire a good housekeeping agency to do the job. Some of them will even come to clean once more if you are not satisfied with the quality of service by the first time.

Still there are a number of things you can check to ensure your reliance is well placed:

  • Criminal background – Involves checking the country and state records if there are any crimes on file about your applicant. It may take some time if the cleaning lady has lived in two or more countries or states.
  • References – Involves contacting the cleaners’ personal and professional references as well as reaching their prior employers for a feedback.
  • Credit checks – Inspect the credit history of your candidates. This is a key point if your housekeeper would have unattended access to your home and assets. You must have a signed consent that she allows you to review her credit history.

4. What Actually the Housekeepers’ Duties Include?

Every cleaner has its own way of work. Some of them prefer to do the cleaning part only and refuse to collect clutter, iron or do the laundry. Once you know how much a cleaner cost you, you will be able to judge what to require of her. Some cleaning women will even cook your dinner just to take some extra cash. Yet, their most typical tasks are:

  • Dusting and disinfecting surfaces, walls, skirting boards, door handles
  • Cobweb removal
  • Cleaning of cupboards and drawers, fittings and switches
  • Window, glass and mirror cleaning
  • Upholstery vacuuming
  • Sweeping, mopping and vacuuming floors
  • Polishing
  • Emptying of rubbish bins
  • Dish-washing

Her duties also depends on how many hours per week or month she is visiting. If she comes twice a month, the dish-washing and throwing the rubbish would be probably your responsibility.

5. What About Pets?

Many households have pets and usually this is not an obstacle to hire a maid service. Your consensus with the housekeeper should include these circumstances. Some of them are afraid of dogs for example, so you have to settle this up. If yours does not mind any animals, she may even walk them outside, regardless that this is not part of a housekeeper’s duties. It may be suitable to introduce your animal fellow to any new cleaning staff. However, every unsociable or dangerous animals should be separated to a secure spot while the cleaner is nearby.

6. Who Delivers The Tools And Supplies Needed For Cleaning?

This is also an issue which you have to decide mutually. Most of the freelance housekeepers rely on public transportation. Thus it will be a good idea to supply all the large tools and items necessary. Some of them prefer to bring the cleaning products they’re most satisfied with. Fortunately most are flexible and ready to use those that you prefer as long as you provide them. If you hire a housekeeping agency then you should have no worries about this since most of them provide all the equipment and supplies needed.

7. Do I Need To Be Home While The Cleaning Lady Is Working?

No, but it is important that you meet the housekeeper to discuss your needs before the cleaning visit. Both you and your cleaner will be happy if your cleaning requirements are arranged in advance. You must also specify the best method of gaining access to your home if you will be absent at this time. Some people feel uncomfortable leaving a key to a stranger, so here are a few other methods you can try:

  • fix a special place to hide the key
  • use electronic entry systems
  • give a key to a neighbour
  • place a key entry system like a lock box


If you have any questions, please ask below!