the cost of avoiding chores

👤By Anthony Ebere 📅May 3 ,2023🏷Lifestyle


Four out of six Nigerians I spoke to agreed that chores were the worst part of growing up. They had to be done with clinical precision, and if your parents, they had to be done in a way that puts professional janitors to shame.

Four Nigerians spoke to us about dealing with chores they hated as kids and the price they are willing to pay to avoid these tasks as an adults.

What’s chores they hated as a kid that you caN afford to outsource ?

AdeLeke: Laundry. I started washing clothes in primary four, when my mom realized I was always coming back from school covered in dirt from playing football. She told the housekeepers to stop washing my uniform, and from there, I graduated to washing every item of clothing under the sun. As I got older, I became the family washing machine. It didn’t help that I was good at it.

SADE: Market errands. My mother would send me to the market, and there would be men harassing me to buy their wares: (Fine girl, come and buy jeans jacket here). No, bro, i want to buy Egusi; leave me alone. Markets were my personal hell. When my siblings got older, I started paying them N500 to go to the market for me.

IMELDA: Cooking, I’m the first and only girl our of four children, so you know i was raised by the stove. It didn’t help that two of my brothers were picky eaters. I could make porridge for everyone and still have to make noodles and toast bread for them. I cooked so much to the extent my father sent me to the culinary school at some point in time.

PRECIOUSE: Cleaning something about bending to sweep doesn’t sit right with me. I was called lazy as a child because I used to cry when I’m been asked to wash the dishes. Washing pots used to stress me out. It felt like a waste of time ton me.

when did you started outsourcing it ?

ADELEKE: I went to a boarding school, so I had school sons who washed my clothes. It was epic! When I got into the university, I paid one of the cleaners N200 for each shirt he washed for me. It was going great until he started stealing my cloths and telling me stories. That was when I started using my drying cleaning services, so when I rented an apartment, I bought washing machines before I when on later to get a fridge.

SADE: I started with my siblings, when I got married , I employed a house keeper whose primary task was to go the market and sort out the items when she returned. It took me about few months into my married to realize that becoming an adult didn’t mean I could avoid these errands. I was now accountable to myself, and somehow that was how I made it worse by hiring house help.

IMELDA: When i got into the university, I was living on campus. That was when I expected the joys of mama-put (Canteen). I didn’t have to cook, someone else was doing it in exchange of my N500-N1000. When I rented my place, I found a neat cook in Amen Estate Phase 2, and she makes my soups and stews in liters. I just pay and get a new batch every week, it was so convenient. I haven’t looked back since then.

PRECIOUS: When I moved into my place. i was doing the dishes after a bad breakup when I found myself crying at the sink. Here I was, doing something I hated while dealing with emotional baggage, I started looking for a housekeeper the very next day.


ADELEKE: My washing machine cost N86,000 in the late 2021.It has a washer and dryer, so it’s very efficient, last year, I realized that I didn’t want to do laundry at all, so i hired a boy who comes in twice a week. For N4,000per week, he does the laundry and irons. Except for that one time he burnt my one of my native outfit, the arrangement has been great.

SADE: Thankfully, my husband understand how stressful market errands of N40,000 for the housekeeper. this includes light clearing of the apartment, but the main koko is the once in a once-a-week shopping for the household.

IMELDA: Depending on the soup, a liter costs about N8,500 while stew cost N5,000-N6,000, depending on the protein. Turkey and chicken stew are more expensive than beef stew, also I have an agreement with the cook. I pay an additional N5,000 (Per week), and that gives me access to four meals per meal at her restaurant. So, if I’m craving for jollof rice or anything else, I can go there to eat. On average, I spend N55,000 on food and roughly N28,000-N30,000 on snacks and drinks.

PRCIOUSE: I pay my housekeeper N37,000 per month to clean my apartment. When i first hired her, i was afraid the money was too small until she admitted that she used to clean eight rooms everyday in a hotel for N2,000 per month. This job was an upgrade for her, i sometimes add to her salary at the end of the month. I am very aware that without her services, i won’t function optimally. My apartment is clean, she gets paid, and i don’t have to deal with the stress


ADELEKE: If there was a new machine that can launder and iron, I don’t mind taking a loan from the bank to get it.

SADE: Maybe N6,000, anything higher isn’t sustainable for my family.

IMELDA: It’s food, I like to eat, I can pay up to N100,000, if I have to.

PRECIOUSE: I’m giving my house keeper a N15,000 raise next year, and I plan to keep increasing it as I earn more.

Now you can see how these beautiful ladies and gentle man spend on house chores, imagine the situation in a general review.

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