​When you think about it, a good housekeeper is almost magical.

Piles of dishes suddenly become a non-issue, the daily living room mess disappears, and those mounds of laundry seemingly take care of themselves. That’s life-changing to any stressed-out parent or homeowner struggling to manage the demands of a career and a hectic household. 

With help on the most challenging housekeeping duties, you can finally get some relief. You earn time to enjoy your way, whether that means playing with the kids, going to the gym, or just hanging out and watching TV. 

There’s no need to worry once you land an expert housekeeper, but finding the right match is often an uncertain and stressful process. When you’re inviting them in your home and around your family, it’s crucial to work with a reliable, trustworthy, and skilled professional. Make the best decision by remembering these nine critical considerations for hiring a housekeeper.

1. Choosing an Independent Housekeeper or Working with a Company

house cleaner and a housekeeper aren’t exactly the same thing. House cleaners may offer weekly or monthly services, lending their expertise to help tidy or deep clean the house. By contrast, a housekeeper provides more ongoing help with a broader array of daily duties.

As with cleaners, you can hire housekeepers either as contractors or through cleaning companies. Working with a housekeeping company makes sense because you often get insured professionals who have undergone background checks and training. Knowing that you’re getting an experienced, trustworthy housekeeper is critical for your confidence.

The issue is that, unlike a house cleaner, a housekeeper becomes an integral component of your everyday life. Along with house cleaning, you may have them do dishes, go grocery shopping, or even watch the kids for a few minutes in an ongoing effort to make the days easier to manage. A housekeeper needs an extra level of trustworthiness and intuition. They need to fill gaps where you need them with dependable results. 

It takes time to achieve a comfortable dynamic with your housekeeper. You ought to be striving for a long-lasting relationship, and that’s one area where independent contractors offer clear benefits. While you may have an insured and bonded professional show up when you work with a cleaning company, the high turnover rate in the industry means there’s no guarantee that it’s the same person every time. That inconsistency won’t help when you want to develop a steady rhythm in your routine.

2. Cleaning Services and Skills

Before hiring a housekeeper, list the prioritized tasks for them to accomplish. That will make it easier to vet candidates and find the perfect housekeeper to meet your specific goals. These can include a wide array of general duties that contribute to a clean and organized home, such as:

  • Tidying rooms
  • Cleaning surfaces
  • Sweeping and vacuuming
  • Cooking meals
  • Doing laundry
  • Washing dishes
  • Running errands

Not all housekeepers have the same knowledge base or expertise, so it’s vital to dive into their work experience to see how it aligns with your needs.

3. Cleaning Supplies

Although the right housekeeping skills will ensure you get excellent value, you can’t forget to look at how your housekeeper handles their supplies as well. It might be a copout to say that a craftsman is only as good as his tools, but cleaning equipment will nevertheless have some bearing on the experience.

On a basic level, look at whether the housekeeper supplies their tools and materials. If they need you to provide the equipment, that’s not only inconvenient but also a potential sign of poor professionalism.

Housekeepers who provide their own cleaning supplies are generally more dependable. But you should also dig into what kind of equipment they’ll bring into the house. There’s a push for green cleaning right now because of the myriad health and environmental benefits of all-natural solutions. Given the options, it’s worth considering your family’s health needs and finding house cleaners who take a thoughtful approach to the tools they use.

4. Professionalism

The interview portion will tell you a lot about what you can expect from the cleaning service quality. Watch how your housekeeper candidates dress, communicate, and otherwise present themselves throughout the process. Some questions to ask yourself include:

  • Are they responsive when you email them?
  • Do they have good organizational skills?
  • Do they have detailed lists of references?
  • Are they providing clear and specific expectations?
  • Do they arrive on time?

Watch each candidate’s attention to detail during the hiring process. That will give you a better understanding of how they’ll perform their housekeeping duties.

5. Experience

You wouldn’t trust just anyone in your personal space, handling your belongings, or working around your children. When you consider that over 40% of housekeepers have stolen something from clients, it’s reasonable to be a little hesitant to hire one. That’s why a verifiable track record of satisfied clients and a list of references should be non-negotiable requirements for any housekeeper hire.

6. Communication and Conflict Resolution

Quality housekeepers know to follow directions, seek and provide clarification, and openly voice concerns to prevent conflict. It should be easy for both of you to have clear expectations so there is no ambiguity around pay rates, scheduling, or job details. When conflicts do arise, they should collaboratively handle them and exhibit professional behavior at all times.

7. Problem-Solving Skills

You won’t be able to answer all of your housekeeper’s questions at all times, so they need to be responsible for some decision-making duties. If you’re at work and they run into an issue, they should attempt to fix it with sound judgment and common sense. Ask questions in the interview about different problems they might encounter and how they would solve them.

8. Flexibility

Availability is one of the hallmarks of a great housekeeper because life is unpredictable and full of ever-changing needs. Your housekeeper should be someone who can enthusiastically take on new responsibilities, adapt to change, and be ready to help at a moment’s notice. 

9. Proximity

Flexibility is crucial, but no matter how willing your housekeeper is to respond in the blink of an eye, they also can’t have anything stopping them. If they live far away, rush hour traffic can keep even the most determined housekeeper in California from getting to you on time. It may not be the most critical consideration, but hiring a housekeeper who lives near you will set you both up for success.

Find Housekeepers in a Hurry with Anita’s

A top-tier housekeeper can transform your life for the better, but it’s no small task finding the best person for the job. Although you need to be discerning, you can simplify the decision with the proper perspective. Get started with these nine critical criteria, and you’ll be sure to find the housekeeper that clicks.

Want to save time finding the most qualified housekeepers in your area? We gave you the blueprint to hire the perfect housekeeper for your household, but you can skip the work by letting Anita’s find them for you! Request a booking today to find passionate, reliable professionals near you.


Anita's Housekeeping Editors