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More help, please! Housekeeper and Maintenance


Denise
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OK, last one!!!! (at least for today).

Need the protocol on how to find and pay a housekeeper and maintenance person.

Will need a housekeeper  about 3-4 times a week, a couple of hours each time , reliable maintenance person when needed. Our housekeeper NOB liked to be paid weekly and our HOA fees took care of maintenance .

Any suggestions or recommendations?

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What do you expect the housekeeper to do?  and what would  you like her to do?  I know of a couple coming available when their present employers move north but they each have varying strengths and weaknesses. Also there are not many who will break up their day to a 2 hour segment multiple days a week without compensation that make it worth their while.

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6 minutes ago, solajijic said:

What do you expect the housekeeper to do?  and what would  you like her to do?  I know of a couple coming available when their present employers move north but they each have varying strengths and weaknesses. Also there are not many who will break up their day to a 2 hour segment multiple days a week without compensation that make it worth their while.

Ok, rephrasing! We would like a housekeeper to work about 15 hours a week, maybe 3 hours a day MWF. If that is not the norm, please, tell me how they do it SOB.

I expect a housekeeper to clean; dust, sweep , mop, clean the bathrooms and kitchen. We are very , repeat very clean people, so her job won't be tragic just maintain from her last visit. Windows will need to be done but that will be once in awhile and extra compensation will be given.

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The more usual situation is a six hour day, once or twice a week, with a contract in Spanish specifying the duties, hours and payment.  The employer is responsible for paying the Christmas Aguinaldo before 12/20 each year, and termination pay based on length of employment, etc., etc.  The employer‘s responsibilities must be satisfied before a property can be sold.

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We have about 2400 sq feet and our maid comes once a week for about 5 1/2 hours and the pay is $250p. It is the rare household helper that has a car. Most walk or ride the bus so more frequent visits to your house will cost a lot more. Depending of how many square feet that needs to be cleaned, you can use my example.

You will have to do your own vacation pay and Christmas bonus calculations ( www.rollybrook.com ). We still retain Chapala Realty/Coldwell Banker to manage the maid, gardener and pool guy from the time when we were here only part of the year. They do this for $900p a month. That is good for us not to have to have cash available or do all the aforementioned calculations. 

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3 minutes ago, tomgates said:

We have about 2400 sq feet and our maid comes once a week for about 5 1/2 hours and the pay is $250p. It is the rare household helper that has a car. Most walk or ride the bus so more frequent visits to your house will cost a lot more. Depending of how many square feet that needs to be cleaned, you can use my example.

Hmmmmm, that is very interesting! I never thought about it that way. We are in town(Ajijic) does that make a difference and I have no idea what the footage is, it is upstairs/downstairs and a 3/2 ?

Do you pay holiday pay and vacation pay? I want to respect the custom of where we are at , so whatever you can share will be much appreciated.

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2 minutes ago, RVGRINGO said:

And......they will do it their way & with their traditional tools and products. 

Custom does apply, but there are payments to be calculated and they are LAW.

 

Of course.

Now here is a question, NOB they have Merry Maids that you can call and they provide a house cleaner, do they have such places in Ajijic and if so, can anyone recommend a service?

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I have a wonderful handyman who works for us 2 1/2 days a week.  We are in the village of Ajijic.  Beto has some other regulars but Iis always eager for more work.  He does lots of things that I would have to call a specialist for such as minor appliaappliance repair, fumigation, etc.  Let me know Iif you want to contact him.  His English is good but I find in person to be easier.

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36 minutes ago, Denise said:

Of course.

Now here is a question, NOB they have Merry Maids that you can call and they provide a house cleaner, do they have such places in Ajijic and if so, can anyone recommend a service?

no but Spring Clean is here but very expensive for routine, regular cleaning.

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26 minutes ago, nothernewbie said:

I have a wonderful handyman who works for us 2 1/2 days a week.  We are in the village of Ajijic.  Beto has some other regulars but Iis always eager for more work.  He does lots of things that I would have to call a specialist for such as minor appliaappliance repair, fumigation, etc.  Let me know Iif you want to contact him.  His English is good but I find in person to be easier.

We are in the village, also. Definitely would like to contact him.

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We have about 2400 sf in a village two story 2/2 with 2 living rooms and a dining room and an extra den office on the second floor.  Pantry shelving, windows, polishing and kitchen cupboards are on a monthly rotation.  Wiping out the rerigerator and freezer are every other week. All the weeks laundry is done, folded in the basket for the ironing lady and the personal items taken to the bedrooms and towels/linens put away stocked in the baths.  We have 4 cats so every upholstered item is vacuumed in addition to numerous area rugs.  We also have a 2/2 single story 1000sf rental next door where all the same things are done. 

 

Our household help comes once a week, Tuesdays so we don't hit any holidays, and is scheduled 9 to 5 for $500 pesos for both houses.  She drives, walks or rides a bike.  She prefers to hustle thru the day and is always moving so she often does not have to come until 10 since we are not that messy, an she can sometimes be done by 4.  However she keeps meticulous track of that hour before and after and uses it to accomodate us when tenants move in or out on a day between her regular cleaning days.  If the days are adding up she makes arrangements to come for an afternoon to dust and polish the dinnerware closet items. She has her routine, she starts at the top and works her way out the door.  I provide all her preferred products, all the old towels and tshirts she wants to cut up for rags and a new mop and broom whenever she says.  We also pay her vacation, a two week bonus in late July for school expenses and her aguinaldo in mid-November plus for new years we gift her with a full meal with liquor certificate to Ajijic Tangos - her choice and onher birthday I pay for her lunch celebration with 5 girlfriends at a restaurant of her choice. 

 

I asked her once if she wanted money instead of the meals and she said no that she and her husband can provide well enough for the kids but there never seems just enough more for she and her husband to go out to a nice meal without a crowd of family along and this gift lets them say, "no just us".  Also most of her girlfriends (since grade school) simply put cannot afford to eat out for any special occasion let alone a birthday lunch but it makes everyone feel great that she is not paying but using a gift and they are all getting to go out. 

 

We pay the woman who irons for us whom we've know since 2004 - my gosh that is a long time - a flat rate of $200 pesos per ironing session.  If we have been vacationing and have an extraordinary amount of ironing I pay the additional time at 60 pesos rounding the total to the nearest 100 demonination.  We pay her even when we have renters in our home and we do not use her services.  She too keeps track and is available at a moments notice to help especially during difficult times or to take care of the cats.

So it is all about what you want and what you are willing to do.  Many people I know have extremely personal relationships with their household helpers, they fix juice in the AM and lunch. They loan money, give rides into Guad for doctors etc... etc... we don't go that route.  Theyhug and coo and oww and ahhh when they run into each other.   We say hello so nice to see you, the children are lovely.  Respect with distance. 

So that is why I asked what do you want.

 

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3 hours ago, tomgates said:

no but Spring Clean is here but very expensive for routine, regular cleaning.

I don't consider Spring Clean expensive when you consider that there are no "extras" like vacation pay, aguinaldos, termination pay etc., and they bring all the cleaning supplies with them when they arrive to work.

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21 hours ago, Denise said:

Hmmmmm, that is very interesting! I never thought about it that way. We are in town(Ajijic) does that make a difference and I have no idea what the footage is, it is upstairs/downstairs and a 3/2 ?

Do you pay holiday pay and vacation pay? I want to respect the custom of where we are at , so whatever you can share will be much appreciated.

Vacation and holiday pay is not a custom, but mandated by law, Aguinaldo (Christmas bonus) too. If not paid during employment, it builds up till termination.

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Denise,

I would say that more people have a maid two or three days a week for 3-4 hours, not a full day at a time.  Pay runs the gamut from 50P an hour to 70 to80  pesos an hour which is very high.

Like SolaAjijic I do not get involved with the maids personal life and business.  I have lived here many years and I have seen many times when the maid was treated like one of the family and it ended very badly and the employer was left feeling used and abused.

Mexican culture enters into this scenario.  Sometimes it does work out but the stories are very sad when it doesn't

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Some people have never had employees, so they unwittingly blur the line between being a boss and being a friend and/or a "patron".  This results in some very awkward situations where people lend money to their maids, end up paying for school uniforms and generally getting far more deeply involved than they want to be.  Some wise folks actually do draw the lines and even have contracts made up front.  The worst scenario happens if the employer has to fire a maid or gardener for any number of good reasons. The employee can go to the labor board, which nearly always rules in favor of the employee.   In other words, employer beware.  Lots of sad stories out there.

I like using a contract service.  It keeps life simple, even though it may seem more expensive.  The ladies do work hard when they're here, so no complaints.  If there is some issue, I deal with their boss separately and she has always resolved it very well.

I you are interested in Spring Clean, you can call the service to come to your house, assess the hours it will take and the cost.  You can also specify what level of cleaning you want done.  I keep it pretty basic and do most of the easy jobs myself, but those dang tile floors....the maid can have those.

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If you do decide to employ an individual maid, make sure that they sign and date for their pay which clearly states hours worked and amount paid. They should also sign for vacation pay and for their Aguinaldo. That gives you written proof. It never happened to us, but I have heard of disgruntled employees (usually it's a relative of the employee who is the instigator) who have gone to the labour board with stories of more hours worked and more pay received or vacation pay and Aguinaldo not paid. Protect yourself... always.

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