A fantastic cleaner is worth their weight in gold. When you find ‘the one’, you need to keep them close. If you lose them, it is like losing a limb. I kid you not. This was borne out in a discussion I had with a friend of mine over her much loved Friday cleaner. Recently her sister rang her and literally begged her to swap her cleaning days. As my friend put it, ‘I love my sister. I would give my sister a kidney. But I am not giving her my cleaner!’

To make sure you too can find the perfect cleaner, follow these simple steps:

  • The Role: Work out whether you want a Cleaner or a Housekeeper. A cleaner will come to your home for a few hours and clean. Simple. A housekeeper will work more hours across the week and will tidy; clean; do the shopping; and make some meals (depending on exactly how much you wish to outsource).


  • Search AND Advertise: ask your friends; check the papers; advertise on a service such as Babysitters and More.


  • Shortlist and Compare: before you shortlist be clear on your ‘must haves’ and your ‘nice to haves’. Try not to compromise on the ‘must haves’ – if it’s important to you that the cleaner has a Police Check then don’t budge on this.


  • Telephone Contact: Not all of your preferred candidates will be available, so contact 4-5 candidates. Use your time on the phone to get a feel for their personalities. Listen to your intuition – if something doesn’t feel right, then don’t proceed with a face to face interview. For those you like, ask for their CVs (and make sure you read it!)


  • Face to face interviews: look for both the basics and the details: is the Candidate on time, appropriately dressed, prepared with copies of References? Has the Candidate thought about the interview – do they have questions for you? Make sure you sight their certification (such as their Police Check).


  • Reference Check: always contact referees – but ensure they are ‘employers’ or ‘past employers’ as opposed to personal referees.


Select the best Candidate and make a job offer. Via Babysitters and More you can expect to pay a good cleaner between $18-$22 an hour. Housekeepers are likely to cost you between $20-$25 an hour. These costs will increase if you use an agency as you will be paying the agency a commission.


Good Luck!