Time-strapped Brits opt for home help

New research from Barclays reveals that almost one in 10 households currently employ at least one person and 27% have or are considering employing staff to help out with domestic work or chores.

Of those who employ staff a massive 82% employ cleaners, followed by 30% gardeners, 17% nannies and 16% to do the ironing.

Time pressures are the main cause of the boom in domestic staff – 70% claim that they do not have the time to do the duties themselves whilst 36% prefer to spend their time doing other things.

Overall a third state that they dislike doing chores.

Unsurprisingly, wealthier households are more likely to employ staff – 17% of those earning more than £50,000 currently have at least one domestic helper and a further 25% of this sector are considering hiring help or have done so previously.

The majority of those who do not employ domestic staff (49%) cite affordability as the main reason.

But the Barclays research also indicates that many other British households obviously have a penchant for housework as 41% claim that they prefer to do chores themselves.

Despite this, a cleaner would still be the first choice for domestic help (52%) followed by someone to do the ironing (11%) or a personal trainer (10%).

Jane Parry, director of marketing at Barclays Premier Banking, says: “Long gone are the ‘upstairs downstairs’ days of domestic staff which were the preserve of the nobility.

“In the 21st century we are all trying to cram as much into our lives as possible and will think nothing of taking on the help we need to do this.

“Employing someone to help with the house, the garden or the kids is viewed as a necessity rather than a luxury.

“Prioritising our time by letting someone else handle our finances, training regime or shopping is fundamental to our hectic modern lifestyles.”