As Safe As Houses

Keeping the smallest members of our household safe can be a real challenge, but one client had a simple solution…

private padlock imageAs we offer bespoke housekeeping solutions, the only real way to ensure the service we offer reflects the needs of a potential client is to visit them at home. I really enjoy this part of my job as I love to meet new people, (and often) their family and pets too. Needless to say, you never quite know what you will encounter when you are invited to tour a home, as we are invariably shown the rooms that other guests do not see.
A few weeks ago I had been invited to quote a family home, around tea time, not very far from where I live. I was greeted at the door by a lovely man who let me know that everyone was out except him, and invited me in. It was a modern new build property on a lovely quiet estate, tastefully decorated and clearly a family orientated home. We began our tour around the neat and tidy home, and he showed me every nook and cranny. (By the way, I don’t really need to see the cupboard you keep your cleaning supplies in although most people like to show off their collection as proof that they do actually clean!)
There were quite a few rooms, and I was making notes on my clipboard as we go round so that I could provide a structured quote for the client. We were chatting away and I had mentioned a few things about the way we work. After the family bathroom, we reached a regular interior door which was bolted shut and my tour guide paused, raises his eyebrows and said ‘Oh you don’t need to see in there’, blushed and moved on. Hang on….. you have shown me the interior of your wardrobe (very neat!), the inside of your fridge (clean and methodical), yet this seemingly normal white door that has a huge silver bolt at the top corner, is out of bounds? The architrave had been chiselled out to make way for such a big bolt at the top, and my 5ft tall best friend would have struggled to reach the bolt as it was positioned at the very top of the door. I am feeling a little uneasy now, almost as uneasy as when I had my toes nibbled by someones pet ferret whilst quoting last year. Are the contents of this room suggestive of 50 shades of grey? Does he have a stalkers picture wall dedicated to a single celebrity female? Maybe he is into time-travel? We continue but I have to say, my mind keeps flicking back to that room, and the reason for such a big bolt.
We finish the tour and as we are headed back down stairs, and I am just recapping which rooms the client wants included in the deep clean and which will also be included on the regular cleaning schedule. To check, I say, as we approach ‘THE’ door, ‘So we are leaving that room completely for now?’ The owner turns to look at me, with a very sheepish look on his face and dramatically reaches up to the bolt. ‘Well you could give it a deep clean I guess’ he says, throwing open the door, to reveal his Ironing room.  ‘I am so embarrassed’ he goes on to explain, ‘its so messy in here, there are clothes everywhere and our ironing isn’t very good. We just keep it bolted because we are so worried that the toddler will hurt himself in here as you hear such horror stories about accidents in the home. We probably go a little OTT as we worry about safety a lot.’ And just like that, I gained myself a new ironing contract and dissipated the mystery of the bolted room.

As national child safety week comes to an end, remembering this encounter made me consider how many different obstacles the small people in our lives have to navigate in our homes and the masses of products on the market that we have available to help us safe guard them. Some of which are impractical, expensive and not necessarily as effective as a nice big silver bolt on the top corner of a door.

Top Tips

They say that the best form of prevention is to remove the danger, but if we think about household cleaning products often this isn’t practical. If you can’t eliminate, then substituting for something less harmful is the next best thing.
When your next in the supermarket, consider picking up an Eco-friendly alternative. Bright & Beautiful pride ourselves on achieving perfect results with eco-friendly products without the use of bleach or other nasties. Eco-friendly doesn’t mean reduced cleaning power. Think about where you store your cleaning products – are little hands able to open the cupboards? What about paws and jaws? Family pets are often as inquisitive as children. There are lots of different types of cupboard safety locks available to help if you are unable to store your cleaning products out of arms reach.

Children often copy us through imaginative play, a toy vacuum may be a better alternative if your little person likes to help with the household chores so that they can feel involved without encouraging them to reach for the something that they may hurt themselves with.
If you would like to see the results that we can achieve with our Eco-friendly cleaning products in your home, or even if you have an ironing room you would like to show us, feel free to contact Bright & Beautiful (Chorley) for a no-obligation quote visit or take a look at our Bright & Beautiful website.

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