Housekeeper help

posted 1 year ago in Career
Post # 2
2842 posts
Sugar bee

personally, I would quit the job because people area always looking for  a good housekeeper and you shouldn’t have a problem getting one.

Personally, I tell mine I prefer the smell of Clorox toLysol! Smells cleaner.

Post # 3
1460 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2019 - City, State

Terrible clients are rarely worth the extra stress, imo.

Post # 4
8992 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

View original reply
whatevergift410 :  if coming home to a perfectly spotless house isn’t enough to show them you do a good job then nothing will. And who wants to come home to strong smelling cleaners? That was one of my biggest complaints when I used to have a cleaning lady! 

Post # 5
258 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

Not worth the stress. Quit them and find someone else to fill their spot 

Post # 6
487 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2016

What have their other complaints been about?  I doubt keeping them as clients is worth the stress.  Some people will just never be happy.  

Post # 7
2542 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

Are they actually yelling and acting angry, or do they just act annoyed? I wouldn’t stick around for abuse but I would put up with some nitpicking as long as it’s not over the top.

I once worked for a relative who had her own house cleaning business and her little tricks were to make small but noticeable changes each time she cleaned, like after vacuuming couch cushions she would rearrange the pillows, and when dusting she would turn a picture frame just a little so it was obviously moved. Most of the homes she cleaned were kept pretty spotless between visits but she always stuck with her routine whether or not it looked like something needed cleaning. (It sounds like you do the same)

Post # 8
8992 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

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boogiewoogies :  my cleaning lady used to always rearrange my pictures/small decor and I thought it was because she just took it off to clean the surface and forgot how it had been. Drove me nuts! Now I’m wondering if she did it on purpose to show she had touched that spot….

Post # 9
5908 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: January 2017

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LilliV :  lol probably to prove to you they cleaned there!

These people sound nuts. If youre set on keeping them as clients then clean their house last so you’re not gone long before they return and they can enjoy the strong chemical smells. Weirdos.

Post # 10
7520 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

Ugh. Find new clients who appreciate your efforts and tell you how much they love arriving home after you’ve been there. Life is too short for this. 

Post # 11
567 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

Oh man. I worship the woman who cleans our house. She does an incredible job! Find someone who appreciates you! 

Post # 12
762 posts
Busy bee

I agree – if they’re that ungrateful, ditch them..

We did have some cleaners that we used for a while that always folded the ends of toilet paper into little Vs – like in hotels.  LOL we lost our shit when we first saw it – thought it was the best thing since sliced bread!!

Post # 13
681 posts
Busy bee

The nice thing about this type of job is that you get to fire your clients 😃 You should do that. 

Post # 14
4697 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

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whatevergift410 :  oh goodness my husband used to do cleaning work whilst he was studying and he told me lots of stories of just asshole people. He uses to have one lady who was notorious for planting tiny bits of  paper behind desks to then complain the cleaners were not doing their job. That was until her boss told her she was being a pig if she was throwing rubbish behind a desk as opposed to the bin provided….lol

Honestly, if you are stressing out about the job, I’d just move on and find another client who isn’t a dick. If their house is already clean then they don’t need a cleaner. 

Post # 15
936 posts
Busy bee

View original reply
boogiewoogies :  This is great advice.  We keep a modern style home, and that aesthetic “forces” us to have no clutter and very few decor items. Most of them are structural/art installations and one or two vase pieces. When you walk in and see an already tidy home, we walk out feeling like the place has been lived in. And, since we know our home well, if we see items that haven’t been moved, it feels like they have been cleaned “around.”  

The scent of cleaning products and small shifts in the location of items really helps things seem “cleaned” and in place. We also notice things that might seem petty and fussy to you, OP, (“please steam the curtains”), but since there aren’t a lot of things to be cleaned in the home, they are “big deal” visual/tidiness needs to us.  

Some weird ones are:

Vases/vessel style decor: wipe down the inside without cleaning products using microfiber cloth

Steam clean curtains, remove wrinkles

No “water spots” on stainless steel surfaces (dry these surfaces with clean cloth after cleaning)

Refresh bathrooms (master bathroom especially, with focus on areas I see when I’m taking a bath — staring a LONG time in the room, so low areas like under cabinets and the dust that collects at the corners of the room and steam/wipe down the glass in the shower, metal “no water droplets” rule applies)

Clean the baseboards and floor edges (dark wood floors/lighter walls leads to visual evidence of dirt and a lot of sweeping/mopping tools tend to miss those spots or push more debris into those edges)

Dust canvas edges on hanging wall art (approved list), don’t attempt to re-level the work if it has gone off center or accidentally came loose — just let us know.


This sounds really fussy, and it took a lot of communication back and forth about needs on both sides (how much time/salary adjustment she would need, and what our specific requirements are). She’s paid quite a bit more than a standard housekeeping salary, works a longer shift in our home, and there was a growing period for us as a team just like there would be with any job. We really love that she understands us and took the time to “see” the house how we see it, and we respected her when she discussed her feelings and point of view. 

Have you asked them to write a detailed checklist of items to focus on? With our staff (staff = designated laundry-only housekeeper, and one x2 a week housekeeper for the rest of the home — excluding windows, mirrors, ovens, dishes), we have a list of exact “fussy” items to check. Open dialogue from US to her was important so that she understood our needs, but it was equally as important for her to step forward and set her expectations and limitations.

If they won’t allow you to discuss your point of view, speak to you negatively,  don’t outline their expectations, or you feel that you cannot openly communicate with them and be heard and respected, then you aren’t a good match. It takes a great deal of trust and mutual respect to find a good match to allow someone into your most personal space and then give them the reins to take control of that space. There’s a big difference to me between finding someone to clean your home, and finding a housekeeper — someone who helps run your home. And so much of that lies in the relationship you build with them, and they with you. So while they may be replaceable easily to you as clients, you might not be as easy to replace to them as a trusted worker.

It sounds like you are trustworthy and hard working. I doubt that you will have difficulty finding someone else to fill that timeframe in your schedule. I agree with PP that some things are not worth the emotional cost. We absolutely adore our housekeeper. She is like the super hero that fixes our home chaos and creates the space for us to emotionally relax at the end of the day. But we have also had “trial periods” with other staff that didn’t work out with us because we weren’t a good match. At the end of the day, they are your clients — you have power — and if you cannot find a situation with them that is mutually benefitial, you have every right to sever that relationship. 

How do you feel about these people? If it feels like too much hassle, or you feel they aren’t treating you well, remove them from your schedule.


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