26 Jan
If Cleanliness is Next to Godliness, I Might Be Going to Hell

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

I have a twice-a-month housekeeper (a HUGE luxury on my salary) who did a great job at first, but now she’s seriously slacking. When I first hired her, I went over what I expected. I pick up the house and clean the toilets before she comes because I don’t want her to think I’m a total slob. But the last time she came, I couldn’t even tell she’d been here other than the check I gave her was gone! She left dishes in the sink, trash in the trash cans and the beds unmade. I think she vacuumed, but I’m not sure. The mop was still dry too. I’m not sure WHAT she did. Should I not clean before she comes to make sure she’s actually doing something? Do I let her go via email, or do I call her and review the detailed list of what I expect and give her another chance?


Clean It Like You Mean It


Dear Clean It Like You Mean It,

I can totally relate to your problem because I, too, have the same issues with my slack-job of a cleaning woman. This poor excuse for a housekeeper never makes the beds, uses spit to clean the mirrors, and one memorable time last month, she chugged an entire bottle of hard cider, then shoved five Mr. Clean erasers into her pants so she could dust the credenza with her “boo-tay quake steam machine, yo.”

(Raise your hand if you’re the only person in the room who doesn’t yet realize that I’m my own cleaning woman.)

But yes, as we all know, having a real live housekeeper on your payroll is a true luxury, and therefore you definitely want to get your money’s worth. It sounds like she did an okay job up until recently, so I suggest sending her an email telling her that you aren’t happy with her current performance. Maybe she’s just having some personal issues and needs to be reminded to shape up. However, if that doesn’t work, you should certainly bite the bullet and tell her that she needs to take her Playtex rubber gloves elsewhere. (But don’t have this conversation when she’s holding a bottle of bleach or you may suddenly find yourself a brand-new blonde.)

Finally, what’s up with scrubbing your toilets before the cleaning woman comes? Do you also change your car’s oil before you take it to the mechanic? Wax your own hoo-ha before you go to the salon? Roughly manhandle your own breasts before you get a mammogram?   Stick the specul—okay, you get my point. If you’re paying to have your house cleaned, put down the toilet brush, put up your feet and enjoy it, baby.

Because it sure beats spitting on your own mirrors.


Wendi, TMH

11 Responses to “If Cleanliness is Next to Godliness, I Might Be Going to Hell”


Comment by Sophie.

…roughly manhandle…. rofl pimp

Anyhow: I had to do this with my cleaning lady, too. Mine likes to use lots and lots of detergents, but still sometimes her work is only so-so. So I called a meeting. Conveniently enough it was at around the one year anniversary for her working for me, so I called it a meeting to summarise the year and see if our expectations from one another changed during that time. It sort of helped, as she no longer feels free to go into my wardrobe and bathroom drawers. (Defiled privacy, anyone?)


Comment by Brianna.

Dude, if you’re actually dipping into your funds to pay someone to clean, they best be doin their damnedest to earn that paycheck. Because with the economy the way it is, they may not find another gig so easily! Call her on the behavior and let her know (nicely, if you must, LOL) that as a luxury, she’s completely expendable. That you don’t WANT to let her go, but if she’s not doing the job you pay her for, it’s money you can afford not to waste.

(Also, does your cleaning lady work for sexual favors? Because my house is getting kinda junky, and I ain’t got much money. ROFL)


Comment by becky.

I have to totally agree that you should not be cleaning your toilets before she gets there. I had a housekeeper in China work for me 40 hours a week. Yep, I said it 40 hours baby!!! If you have to live in China you might as well enjoy the cheap labor. I was all weird about her seeing my mess and then I just got over it! It was nice to not have to do everything for once. Alas, we have moved back to the states and I am the housekeeper now. The house has never been so disorganized. I think I may have to fire myself!


Comment by GrandeMocha.

We had to fire our service and go private. The service kinda wiped a rag over stuff but never really cleaned. The Polish lady does crazy stuff like organize under the sink. Totally not required. My house has NEVER been cleaner. She does a way better job than I ever did.

The only problem with this arrangement is that I don’t get any credit for it from my husband. I pay for the cleaning lady so that counts as me cleaning. No joint account.


Comment by Wendi.

A friend of mine just told another friend that the cleaning woman she recommended stole her designer jeans. The friend then said, “Yeah, she stole from me, too, but did you see how clean she gets the tub??”

Amy Reply:

Wendi you are a hoot. Thanks for the laughs 🙂


Comment by katbron.

This had me rolling – thanks for the laughs. Just fired my 7th cleaning lady. Yep, sadly I’ve had 7 during the course of 10 years – almost one a year. The other 3 years I was my own as I am now. Best cleaning lady I ever had.

marathonmom Reply:

dayumnnn… your story would make a great lifetime movie. Especially if a few of them disappeared mysteriously or had affairs with your son’s best friend. IJS


Comment by Grandmother of 5.

OK—She knows your not that stupid!!!—Before i would warn her and keep her I would look around for a new housekeeper AND THEN let her go!!!!Im afraid she will do something dastardly if you piss her off!!!—like put your tooth brush in the toilet-spit on it etc. etc.—-You just cant take that chance!—-let her go—in this economy you will find one that is a cleaning angel like the girl I found (I love You Chris:):):):)


Comment by marathonmom.

Maybe she found your um, video, stash. ??
And it was a long dry holiday season for her?

I’d give her another chance because if you can trust someone to come in and clean without stealing your xanax, designer jeans, and surfing the net it’s really worth something in this day and age.

Personally, I hate my dishwasher, my mop, and master bath and really could almost not blame her for cleaning mine that’s why I make my husband do it.


Comment by Amy.

I say look for someone else then fire her.. I agree with the above poster that said she may do something nasty out of spite. But then I am a wimp, what do I know. (And I would so fire her through email or have my hubby do it 🙂

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