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Chore skills cost a pretty penny

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Around half of all households in the UK employ some sort of domestic help, research from insurer Direct Line has shown, and the annual bill is £4.5bn or £182 for every home.

The strongest trend to employ cleaners is found amongst busy middle class professionals, but there is an increasing tendency for young couples and even single people to recruit help with chores like flat cleaning and ironing work shirts.

“I’m not the best chap in the world to run a tight ship on the old domestic front and wouldn’t know a duster from a Dyson if it came up to me in the club and bought me a G&T,” said Bertie Pilkington, a City merchant banker who lives in Kensington, West London.

“When I came up to town from our family farm in Stow-on-the-Wold, mater wouldn’t let me bring one of our servants so I’ve engaged a jolly Lithuanian girl who works for next to nothing, cash in hand. She’s a wizard at dusting and buffing up and all that sort of spit and polish caper.”

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