Cleaner mathematics and your personal finances

Should you pay for a cleaner?


Alright I admit it, I am middle class. Do you know I know that? My family had a cleaner when I was growing up. My cousins had a cleaner. My grandparents had cleaners. My friends had cleaners. It wasn't something we talked about, it was just a fact that was true in the background like that fact that I have two parents, or the fact that I need food to live. It just was the case.

The Uni years - the dirtier days


At University my flatmates and I decided that we couldn't afford a cleaner. The reality was that we preferred to spend our money on alcohol and going out. Even after University I felt that I couldn't justify spending any money on a cleaner. After I had committed myself to saving a set amount per month, after all the bills there wasn't enough money for such luxuries as a cleaner. So we cleaned! 

This wasn't a big deal. We made the mess so we cleaned. My flatmates and I tried (and sometimes failed) to set aside time each week to do a full house clean. The flat was never spotless but was in a decent condition.

Since moving in with my fiancé we have been cleaning the flat ourselves and have kept it in very good order. However, it's a real hassle each week, especially if we've been entertaining guests.

Cleaner mathematics and a justification/ excuse


We've both had pay rises in the last year due to promotion/job move. We both work harder and longer hours than previously and value our free time. Last week it finally happened. We have up and booked a cleaner. The cleaner charges £10 per hour and given that we have a small flat we reckon the whole lot can be completed in two hours. However, that will work out at roughly £90 per month on a cleaner! Certainly not cheap.

I've always been one to argue for restraint and frugality where possible. Perhaps my fiancĂ© is mellowing me. Perhaps it is spending inflation as my income rises. Or perhaps it is simply that I value my free time more than £10 per hour.

My net salary per hour after all pension contributions and taxes is just over £15. A hard and rational comparison would say that it makes more sense for me to pay someone to spend their time cleaning than for me to clean. This assumes that I spent the "cleaning time" generating additional cash. Obviously this isn't the case as I'd have to clean in my spare time. 

Perhaps I am just trying to justify the increase in my spending. Either way I'd much rather sleep a little more on the weekends and relax a little more at night. Thoughts?

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