I was surprised to read yesterday on the blog how many people still had housekeepers, and I wanted to relate a dilemma to you from another mom.
This mom has been using a regular cleaning service for a while. She has a team that comes to clean but the owner/manager doesn’t come to the house much.
A few weeks ago, after her cleaning, the manager/owner called her and told her that one of the maid’s mother had died and she wondered if the mom could loan her $500 to give to the woman. (I guess to help her get home for the funeral.)
My friend was shocked that she would ask for a loan and especially that much. Her compromise was to offer to pay for two cleanings in advance and give her $200. That is still a leap of faith because if they don’t do the cleanings, she is out the $200. But at least she wouldn’t be hounding them to give back the money, just the service.
But now she feels like they crossed a line by asking for the money and despite having paid for future cleanings, she isn’t sure she’s comfortable with them coming back.
I had never experienced anything like that… until later that day. I got a call from my yard guy’s wife. His wife said that his mother had died. I knew she had been sick. I’m so stupid. I said “Gosh, don’t worry about coming. Take as much time as he needs. We are totally fine. Please tell him I am so sorry for his loss.” She says, “Oh well thanks, but we were wondering if you could give us a donation?”
I was really surprised that asked and I just thought it was odd. I did give him some money the next time he came to do the yard. It was just a straight-up gift but not nearly as much as my friend gave in the first scenario.
What do you think of these two situations? Does it bother you or there’s no crime in asking? Would you want the housekeepers back in your house or would that bother you? Would you give as a straight gift, pay for future services, or a loan?