Cleaning House as Relaxation

Betty Friedan would likely turn in her grave to hear it, but just 7 percent of women polled by ShopSmart magazine said they hate housecleaning, while 25 percent said they love it or find it relaxing. And a good thing, too, since they report spending a weekly average of five hours at such toil.

Among the tasks many women take on at least once a week are cleaning the toilets (88 percent), vacuuming (79 percent), mopping the floors (70 percent) and dusting the furniture (64 percent). Just 7 percent wash the windows that often. The polling was conducted in December for the magazine’s May issue.

Saturday is the most popular day for housecleaning; Monday and Friday are the most popular weekdays for it. Vacuuming is the task respondents said they mind least; cleaning toilets and scrubbing showers/tubs are the ones they dislike most.

While time-use studies have found a sharp decline over the years in the amount of effort devoted to housework, 75 percent of the women said their house “is as clean or cleaner than the one they grew up in.”