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If You Use a Housecleaning Service, Do You Tidy Up Before They Come?


A few days ago, as I perused my Facebook timeline, I came across a discussion started by a friend of mine from here in Washington, D.C., where he was saying that you should stop cleaning, or tidying up, your home before your cleaning people show up, since they already know how filthy you are and know that you’re cleaning up before they get there.


As if this particular post were speaking to my soul, I hollered like a hit dog. While I don’t often have cleaning folks come to my home—I have never balled like Jim Jones—it is a luxury item with which I’m infrequently familiar.

We’re talking not even once a month ’round mi casa, though I’d LOVE to have more. I’ve got three kids; things get out of hand quickly in my home. Plus, my two youngest children are avid fans of—hmm, how do I say this properly?—destroying shit. There are spills, drops, crumblings of Goldfish and grindings of foodstuffs into carpets. Their current pastime? Writing all over the walls, fine collectibles and furniture.


So, on occasion, we look around and say, “Can we afford the cleaning folks this month? Yes? Call the cleaning folks.”

Now, we usually make that call—or text, really—at least three or four days in advance. And I can’t lie, I immediately start looking at my home and thinking of what needs to be tidied up in order for me to maximize the cleaning that the cleaning people do.

See, in my mind, if I make it easier for them to get to specific places, then they can actually clean them. Our cleaning people aren’t taking full-fledged messes and making them go away. They’re cleaning people, not magicians. And I don’t need any excuse for folks to not be able to get to an area, including, “Hey, there’s a huge pile of clothing here on the floor and we ain’t folding up everything here because we don’t have 10 hours to kill, so we just moved on.”

But I also think my homie, Joe (the author of the FB post), makes a good point. I can’t pretend that it doesn’t cross my mind that perhaps if I tidy up, they won’t think our family is nasty or filthy, though we aren’t. They gon’ think what they think. We’re just messy on occasion. And by occasion, I mean a lot of days of the year.


I kind of figured most folks did some variation of such before the cleaning folks came. It turns out, Facebook let me know that more than I expected do no such thing. The mindset is that cleaners are there to clean and a service is being paid for, so the reaches of that financial transaction will be realized. I can see how one might be like, “Baby, let’s dip and let them have at it—they’ve been Cash app’d half already!”

But what about you? Do you do any cleaning before the cleaning folks come?

Inquiring minds would like to know.

Panama Jackson is the Senior Editor of Very Smart Brothas. He's pretty fly for a light guy. You can find him at your mama's mama's house drinking all her brown liquors.

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KC Complains A Lot

I remember being so annoyed the last time me and my girl moved to an apartment. I rented a big ass truck, and I rented movers. I was looking forward to not doing jack shit when I moved.

Sure enough, my fiancee was like “let’s just have them take the big stuff and we’ll take the other stuff in the car.”

Do you know how many trips it took to get the “little stuff”? Too many. And we were moving into an apartment on the third floor. There was no reason for us to do ANYTHING. I’d paid to not have do anything. But my fiancee thought it’d be rude to make the people we paid to move our stuff to have to move ALL of our stuff. And, well, happy wife, happy life, so I didn’t argue about it too much.

I think I’d do just enough tidying up to not look like a complete and utter cesspool and let the cleaners handle it. But I think my fiancee would have us do everything but vacuum and dust if we hired a cleaning crew.