Paying for a cleaner: Getting someone else to do your dirty work could make you happier

Cleaning a dirty bath.
People needn't feel guilty about paying someone else to do their dirty work. Photo credit: Getty.

People too busy to clean their home or who prefer to spend time on other things may find that paying someone else to do it is worth the cost.

Depending on house size, $60 to $100 per week for a two-to-three hour clean could cost up to $5200 per year. But if it's planned for and the result is satisfying, people shouldn't feel bad about spending it.

EnableME Director and mum-of-two Hannah McQueen said that calling in a cleaner to remove chores from her "always long to-do list" makes her happy - an essential reason for spending.

"You need to make room in your budget for the things that help you enjoy your life - or you will find it hard to stick to that plan," McQueen said. 

McQueen doesn't feel guilty about the $100 per week she pays her cleaner - and as long as they're moving forward, other people shouldn't either.  

"The beauty of provisioning for things in your financial plan that make you happy is you don't have to feel guilty about it: it's planned for, budgeted for and you're still making progress - so that gives you freedom from guilt," McQueen added.

Mum-of-two Katherine Steffensen said that as a working mum, paying $80 for a cleaner frees up her weekends to spend precious time with her kids and other things she enjoys.

"My husband works and doesn't clean so I don't see why I should: I don't like cleaning, nor am I very good at it," Steffensen said.

While it may be a luxury for some, Sharee Magill, a busy mum and practice nurse, said that the $60 per week she gives her cleaner so she can walk in and see her home "absolutely perfect" is worth every cent.

"With kids, you don't get time to do those extra jobs - or you might do them to a certain standard but due to time, not an exceptional standard.

"I barely get time to do the washing, fold the clothes, make the beds and keep the house tidy, [so] it's actually much cleaner than what I would get it," Magill said. 

As the choice to spend money on a cleaner comes down to income, expenses and priorities, Money Mentalist Lynda Moore said that it's important that people think about their own needs - not what their friends do.

"I clean my own house because it fits with my underlying need and goal to be fit and healthy. 

"I put on music and away I go: The heart rate goes up, I have a workout, a clean house and I choose to [put] that money I could have spent into a pilates class," Moore said.  

If finances are tight, reviewing expenses to see where money could be used more smartly and finding ways to increase income could be the solution.

"Be creative about how you meet your needs - throwing money at them is not always the answer," Moore suggested.

"If it is time with your partner or children, then you may come to different decision and choose to have a cleaner," Moore added. 

Paying for a cleaner is a personal choice. People who would rather do their own cleaning could put that money into an annual family holiday instead.

For others, if paying someone else to do their cleaning makes them happy, that's not money down the drain.  

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