It’s no secret that the British keep tight-lipped about what happens behind closed doors. So you probably didn’t know until now that a whopping six million of us pay someone to help with their housework, and nationwide research shows that over 60% of us don’t tell friends and extended family about it. That’s a lot of cleaning hours each month to keep quiet! So why do we keep our home habits so secret?
This month our CEO Rune Sovndahl spoke to The Telegraph and The Daily Mail about it. We recently surveyed over 1,000 of our customers and it seems that the trend to keep it quiet applies to them too! 67% of them keep shtum about using domestic services.
Rune explained to The Telegraph that he thinks it’s down to a general unease we have about flaunting wealth. “In the US,” he says, “people positively go out of their way to flaunt their wealth… But in Britain, people still don’t want to be seen to be getting above themselves.” And he has a point, as Journalist Jemima Lewis who wrote the Telegraph article explains. She writes about how she hires a cleaner three times a week. Twice for cleaning and once for ironing and quips “We make Downton Abbey look understaffed.” In the 1920’s it was perfectly acceptable to have a home full of helpers but these days our affinity with domestic services is one that we like to keep quiet for fear of appearing to be snobs.
In the Daily Mail article, Rune told them that people in the UK would rather ‘try to hide the fact that they’re spending a little every week to make their own lives better. It’s a very endearing quality actually, but there really is no need to be so shy about it.”
And he’s right! With ever increasing time pressure at home and work it seems perfectly reasonable to have a cleaner. There’s nothing snobbish about taking pride in your home. Times have changed and we all have some cleaning task in our home that tends to get missed, no matter what we do. The time that you budget for a cleaning service is time that you give back to yourself and your family. Time well spent.