It’s a dirty job and these moms do it

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By Debbie Arrington
darrington@sacbee.com

 

 

By Debbie Arrington The Sacramento Bee

Last modified: 2012-01-23T00:15:35Z

Published: Saturday, Jan. 21, 2012 – 12:00 am | Page 4 CALIFORNIA LIFE

Tracy Parrott loves to clean. She snags pesky pet hair off the bottom of chair legs and steams kitchen appliances until they look like new. With grapefruit-scented spray, she makes every switch plate sparkle.

A Sacramento mother with two children, she fits cleaning in around chauffeuring her kids to school and sports practice. But her clean-freak passion has a dividend. She’s also found a way to make her housework pay.

Parrott is a member of Mothers Cleaning Co-op, a profit-sharing house-cleaning cooperative of “soccer moms.

“We clean like moms,” she said. “We likely have a home a lot like yours. We won’t ding the furniture or scratch the floor. We’re very careful and very thorough.”

Mothers Cleaning Co-op fills a unique job niche for stay-at-home mothers who want to work part-time but still have the flexibility to drop their kids off at school, volunteer in the classroom and drive on field trips, Parrott said.

The co-op was founded by Carmichael’s Betty Nicholson, who had managed a professional cleaning company for years before launching Mothers.

“When it comes to cleaning, I always felt that nobody did the job I could do,” Nicholson said. “People think of house cleaning as a dead-end job, but this co-op allows us all to be partners in our success. We’re all helping it to grow while doing what we love.”

So far, 18 moms have joined the co-op. They work in pairs, building personal relationships with their clients and each other.

“People keep their house cleaners for years when they find someone good,” said member Tish Fridley of Sacramento.

Danielle Mullineaux of Carmichael was looking for a new house cleaner when she stumbled on the Mothers Cleaning Co-op.

“I loved the name,” said Mullineaux, herself a busy mom with two young children and a cat. “The concept of these soccer moms as cleaners appealed to me.”

She found a perfect fit and like-minded helpers.

“They’re thorough and always reliable,” Mullineaux said. “I trust them. I also really like them. I have a lot in common with them.”

The moms also could relate.

“For example, my son is a Lego fanatic,” Mullineaux said. “He’s very particular about his Legos and doesn’t want anyone to touch them. Tracy’s son went through the same Lego phase. She totally understood.”

For the Mothers, the co-op allows them to earn money – $25 an hour – for the extras their children want and need.

“I’m spending the money on my children,” said Nova Harris, who discovered Mothers after being laid off from her accounting job. “I don’t have to feel guilty about paying for extra music lessons or another soccer jersey. And when I need time off to go on a field trip, I don’t feel guilty about asking for it. Another Mother will step up and fill in for you

Trust underlines a housecleaner’s duties.

“You have to be able to trust your cleaner,” Nicholson said. “They’re in your home. Dependability is very important.”

Most of the Mothers met through their children. Nicholson recruited Adrienne Cummings at her daughter’s birthday party.

“Betty asked me if I cleaned my kitchen myself,” Cummings said. “I thought it was weird, but she was impressed.”

Like the other moms, Cummings takes pride in her cleaning.

“I love to clean ovens,” she said. “I love (client’s) reactions when they see it sparkle like new.”

Her secret? Steam. The moms steam-clean and sanitize appliances plus kitchen and bathroom surfaces.

“And you get a free facial in the process,” added Marianne McMorris, another cleaning mom.

Besides helping other busy moms, the Mothers say they find a certain fulfillment that comes from a job well done.

Said Parrott, “It’s almost more satisfying cleaning someone else’s home than your own. When it’s done, it’s done. And you’re not around to see it get messed up.”

Tips for picking a house-cleaning service

Hiring a cleaner is a very personal decision. You need to get to know – and trust – the individuals who are going to do the actual cleaning, as well as the company or cooperative they represent.

Angie’s List  


Mothers Cleaning Co-op went on to win the prestigise 2012 Super Service Award given  to  A rated Angies list companies and werefeatured in Angies List Magazine (date) Where our Moms told the Nation–  How to Hire A house Cleaner?

 

Also featured articles in In Style Magazine, Sacramento Magazine, Inside Arden Publications

 

 

 

Good Day Saramento and Fox40 Rolling out the red carpet for house wives.. (ad red carpet) and then thefox 40 icon and Channel 31 and F.M.
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