Everyone has chores they hate doing, whether it is washing the car, ironing, cleaning or even cooking. Sometimes they’re jobs that you and you alone have to do. But what about the rest? Is it worth your while to get someone else to do your unwanted chores? Would you outsource your chores?
I hate mowing the lawn. Absolutely detest it. I’m not sure when I started to feel this way, but it probably goes right back to when I was a kid. By the time I was old enough to mow the lawn we lived on a farm and over the years I have embellished the story to where I had to mow a lawn that extended far beyond the boundaries of any normal yard, well out into the paddocks. It’s one of those “When I was a kid I had to walk 50 miles uphill in the snow” stories, I suppose!
Anyway, I own three lawn mowers and I hate mowing the lawn. It only takes me about an hour, but I can never get the edges satisfactory and I hate knowing that at the end of the week I have it to do when I would much rather sleep in, spend time with the kids or catch up on a good book. So I did some math – how much was an hour of my time worth (you can use your hourly pay rate, or just give yourself a value) and was I willing to pay someone that much to mow my lawn? Put another way, was I willing to spend one hour’s wages to have someone save me one hour of work?
In the past I would have really chaffed at paying someone to do something I was perfectly capable of doing. Now, however, I am reaping the benefits of a lot more than the hour of time I have saved and the money I am spending. When I drive home after a long day at work, round the corner and see my perfectly manicured lawns I genuinely smile. I kid you not! Not only am I happy that I did not have to toil for an hour, but it makes me smile to see my house looking so good. I am hardly one for “keeping up with the Jones’s”, but it makes me happy to know my place is as neat and tidy as the neighbours.
We were so happy with the freedom that outsourcing the lawns created that we made a list of other chores we would rather get someone else to do. Mop the floors, clean the bathroom and iron our work clothes were high on the list, so we found someone to do these jobs. A lovely lady comes once a fortnight and does the whole lot at a very reasonable rate. There is nothing quite like walking into the house after everything has been freshly cleaned!
Outsource to reduce stress!
Outsourcing these jobs has had a huge impact on our stress levels. I no longer have that sense of dread when I see my lawn is a little long and I know I am going to have to drag the mower from the shed. We don’t have to get up earlier to iron a shirt for the day. We get to enjoy a neat and clean house at the end of a busy week, rather than spend our Saturday morning distracting the kids while we scrub toilets!
The most surprising thing is how cheap it all really is. So long as you shop around and get several quotes you will find a service that meets your needs and your budget. We had hired lawn mowing services before and most seem to be similarly priced, but we’re particularly happy with our current provider as they not only do a great job but keep in contact via SMS when they are coming to do a job, and invoice us in the same way – it may not be everyones cup of tea but it works well with the way we operate. The big surprise, however, was the cleaner. We thought only the rich could afford someone to scrub their toilets and the like, but it is outrageously affordable – particularly for the amount of time it saves us. If you haven’t investigated cleaners before, it is totally worthwhile getting some people in to quote you. The same goes for ironing.
What else can be outsourced?
On a purely domestic front, there is a host of everyday chores that others will happily do for you, for instance:
- Cleaning (everything from a quick mop to every job in the house)
- Exterior cleaning
- Garbage removal (often included in cleaning services!)
- Lawn mowing
- Vegetable garden maintenance
- Home maintenance / handyman
- Washing and ironing
- Car washing / detailing
- Pet grooming
Personally, I am really keen to try out some of the local meal delivery services. I love to cook, but during the week things tend to be rush-rush-rush and it would be great to know that there is something healthy, hearty and ready eat! It is probably a bit of an extravagance, but we currently make two separate meals most nights as our kids are such picky eaters – so this would save us quite a bit of time and energy!
What are the chores you would love to have someone else do for you?