I've had both individuals and agencies over 43 years. I am still in contact and friends with a cleaning lady I had in 1983 till about 1995 in CA and another who was with me 1998-2002 in TN. We still talk on the phone or remember each other's birthdays etc so I really appreciate a good individual who works hard. But now I use a very small local agency, get two ladies for an hour a week at $55 before tip, try not to expect too much, and have found the arrangement very simple and easy. NO they don't use any initiative. I have "set tasks" that get done every week. No it is never deep cleaning. No...they were clueless about a new task like cleaning out a fireplace and I had to "teach" that, but in general it works well. Just don't look too closely when you visit. One thing I learned, working briefly with a well-known agency they spray a lot of stuff to make it smell "clean", feeling in that way that the home owner psychologically will believe it IS clean! :(Good luck! And Robyn, I think financially you have a fantabulous deal...
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