12 Tales of Hiring a Housecleaner -- From the Perks to the Cringeworthy (PHOTOS)

Wendy Robinson | Sep 23, 2015 Home & Garden
12 Tales of Hiring a Housecleaner -- From the Perks to the Cringeworthy (PHOTOS)

Cleaning windowFor many of us, the thought of getting a cleaning service and having someone else tackle the task of keeping the dust bunnies from taking over the house sounds like a dream come true. Unfortunately, sometimes the reality is a little more complicated. Having a cleaning lady means that someone else is in your house, touching your stuff, and seeing your mess -- and, well, sometimes that gets weird.

Read on for hilarious true stories about the sometimes mortifying cleaning-lady moments that both parties would probably like to forget.

Fair warning: Mothers of teenage boys might find themselves cringing at #7!


Image via © Casarsa/iStock

  • Drug-Free Home



    "I was really surprised when I got a call from the cleaning company we used that they were canceling our account. I asked why and they said that our home wasn't a safe working environment and that they were committed to a drug-free work place. I was like, 'What are you even talking about?' because I don't even drink!

    It turns out that the cleaning crew reported that there was fine white powder on the table and thought it was cocaine. It was powdered sugar from brownies I'd made the night before. We party really hard at my house!" -- Sarah F., East Lansing, Michigan

  • Hairy Situation



    "After my daughter was born, I had two babies under 2 and was a tired, hormonal mess. My mother-in-law, God bless her, ordered a cleaning service for me for the first few weeks after the baby was born.

    I'd never used a cleaning lady before and I felt kind of weird about her cleaning while I was there, but I wasn't really ready to leave the house yet and I had a baby that was clusterfeeding, so I just camped out in the living room.

    It was all going fine until she came into the room with a big clump of hair from the drain (hello, postpartum hair loss!) and said, 'You should see a doctor! This is too much hair! I worry you are going bald!'

    I totally burst into tears. It was really, really awkward." -- Mandy B., Washington, DC

  • Mellow Yellow


    © jeangill/iStock

    "I once worked as a mother's helper and my duties involved some house cleaning. But the lady I worked for was the super hippie, crunchy granola type and she yelled at me once because I was flushing the toilet too much and that I didn't need to clean it every week, especially if there was only pee in it.

    Yes, she enforced the 'if it's yellow, let it mellow' rule and would let pee sit in the toilet for days. So gross." -- Sarah K., Tucson, Arizona

  • Letting It All Hang Out


    © NAKphotos/iStock

    "We have the sweetest, most thoughtful older lady that comes to clean for us a couple of times a month. My only complaint is that she loves to hang clothes on the line to dry. This is great, except we live SUPER close to our neighbors and she hangs up EVERYTHING. I'm always a little embarrassed to come home and see my thongs or sexy bras waving in the breeze, five feet away from my neighbor's 3 year old." -- Willa H., San Jose, California 

    More from The Stir: Dryer Ate Your Bra? 5 Laundry Tips That Will Keep Them Safe

  • Between the Sheets


    © Alija/iStock

    "My husband and I got frisky before work one morning and I totally forgot the cleaning lady was scheduled for that day. I got home and freaked out because I couldn't remember if we'd put away the lube, condoms, and, um, special device that we'd used. My husband was like 'I'm sure she didn't notice!'

    WRONG! She left a note that she had sanitized the room 'including all items left on the bed.' Yeah. She washed my vibrator." -- Lacey J., St. Paul, Minnesota

  • Chillaxing


    ©Heidi van der Westhuizen/iStock

    "It was a little weird when I came home one day at lunch and found the cleaning lady lounging on the couch, watching Judge Judy. I walked in and said 'Um, hi?' and she didn't even blink. Just glanced at me and said, 'I'm on my break,' and went back to eating her sandwich." -- Sharon P., Lubbock, Texas

  • Crusty



    "I have a teenage boy in the midst of puberty. He is, well, doing a lot of what boys do, apparently. I got a note from the cleaning lady that she was no longer going to be washing the socks that she found under his bed because it made her uncomfortable. You and me both, lady." -- Name Withheld, Minneapolis, Minnesota

  • Stain Remover



    "I once got an apologetic note from a cleaning lady that she was sorry she couldn't get the wood floors to look 'less dingy.' I guess she didn't realize we had a darker stain on it and she scrubbed so hard to get it off that she actually left the floor scratched and in worse shape than when she found it. That was a bummer. An expensive bummer." -- Alexis F., Scottsdale, Arizona

    More from The Stir: 5 Tips to Get the Kids to Help You Clean the House

  • Nope


    ©Jodi Jacobson/iStock

    "My college-age stepson was getting ready to move out of his off-campus apartment and was worried that he wouldn't get his security deposit back, so I hired a cleaning crew for him.

    He called me on the day they were supposed to come and said that they came in, looked around, and then said, 'Nope, this is more than we signed up for' and left.

    Lesson learned: Never underestimate how disgusting an apartment full of college boys can be." -- Monica S., Edina, Minnesota

  • Room With a View



    "This isn't about my cleaning lady (because that would be ME) but is cleaning-lady related so I'll share!

    Last year for our anniversary, my mom took the kids, and my husband stayed home for the day. We were having sex in our room with the shades open because it was beautiful outside and I figured nobody would be home in the middle of the day to see us, right?

    WRONG. I happened to look out the window and saw the cleaning lady from the house behind us staring at me. She'd been cleaning the windows and totally caught us in the act. Oops." -- Nikki R., Wheaton, Illinois

  • The Ruler


    ©Izabela Habur/iStock

    "I worked for a maid service when I was in college. There was this one [client] who was THE WORST. She was super anal-retentive about stuff and she'd bitch about the smallest thing. She also had this ruler that she wanted us to use when we were folding shirts to make sure they were all the exact same width across so the drawers didn't look messy. She'd double check our work and make us do it again if things were even 1/8 inch off.

    Of course, she was rich as heck but never tipped. I dreamed about using her toothbrush to clean the toilet but never did." -- Helena W., Des Moines, Iowa

  • Toy Story


    ©Dario Egidi/iStock

    "I never tell my son when the cleaning lady is coming. He gets so excited when he gets home from preschool and finds his room is clean. He thinks his toys did it themselves. Sometimes our cleaning lady even spells his name out in Legos and makes it look like Mr. Potato Head did it. So cute!" -- Mallory O., White Bear Lake, Minnesota

    More from The Stir: My Dirty Housekeeping Secret


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