I am in a situation probably many of you have been in. I have a fairly new customer - about two months. The minute I met him I sensed trouble. His house is a total mess. I will try to describe it. He buys a LOT of stuff online. And when the boxes arrives, he opens them wherever and just leaves the empty boxes, wrapping paper, bubble wrap, etc wherever he opened the box. He appears to drink a lot,( judging from the number of alcohol bottles on the kitchen counter, and other clues.) Every time I get to his home, he is in bed (at 9:30 am). He has three cats that he seems to care about very much ( a plus in my mind). However, he tells me the kitty litter is cleaned daily and I can always tell that is not true.
Picture this: every surface in this 3 bedroom, 2 bath house, is covered in either trash, or lottery tickets, or small change, or receipts, opened enveloped, junk mail, half empty bottles, empty boxes, items that came OUT of those boxes, clothing (dirty clothing), etc etc etc. It always looks like a tornado hit the house!
Okay. I will tell you that every single time I clean there, I do an extremely good job considering the hundreds of obstacles. I sort through all that stuff and put in trash bags stuff that is obviously trash. In his bathroom, I do that plus put in the cupboards stuff he has recently bought. I try to organize all this STUFF and it is not easy and takes TIME. Two cleanings ago he started saying that he couldnt not afford 4 hours of cleaning. BS! He sure can. I replied as carefully as I could, and he backed down a bit and we are back at 4 hours. In all truth, it should take about SIX hours to truly clean this person's home!
Today, I get there and yup, he is in bed. I get to work. I always start with bathrooms because they are often grubbier than the rest of the home. He had become picky about his glass shower doors, so I re-thought how I do those and now do a better job. For THAT, I kind of thank him, in a weird way.
The last time I was there, I checked all three filters on his Shark vacuum ( a good one, just like the ones I use). They needed cleaning, so I cleaned them and left them on a paper towel next to the vacuum cleaner in the room he stores it in. When I got there today, the vacuum was in another room, so I went ahead and used it. At the end of the day, I checked the filters (as I always do) and guess what? HE HAD ONLY REPLACED ONE OF THE THREE FILTERS. I said something to him in a nice tone of voice and got snapped at. "You should have checked. That is YOUR job not mine." Since when???" I clean those filters as a courtesy, it isnt not a job requirement. And when I did clean them, I made a big point of telling him he needed to put all three back in once they were dry.
If business were not so darn slow lately, I would drop this customer in a heartbeat! I KNOW I do a great job and go way above what normal cleaners do. ( I clean his four kitty litter boxes, for crying out loud! Who does that???) But work requests recently have NOT been coming in to the sites I normally use and I cannot seem to find any other online sites with residential cleaning jobs. I currently use Thumbtack, Care.com Porch and Housekeeper.com.
I needed to vent, and thank you for taking the time to listen to me whine!!!!!
smile_big: Sometimes you have to both cry AND laugh over the stuff we run into!