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I hired a cleaning company through Bark. poor performance.

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I would like to have some learned opinion please. I am 80 now and physically disabled since 1987, My brain is working well, I am not mentally afflicted as well, but my neurological condition affects my speech sometimes. I cannot stand up long enough to wash up now, I have GBS/CIDP. I need splints for walking, sleeping, neck brace, and hand/wrist splints. I have lasted this long by the grace of God.
I put an ad on Bark for a cleaner. A firm of cleaners responded and on Tuesday she came and saw the house and quoted me for a deep clean, two afternoons, Wednesday and Thursday at a quote of £390. That is for three people each afternoon, about three hours each it seems. It is not the rate. I am not paying it anyway, because the lot which came on Wednesday did not clean. I arranged with the boss to have all the furniture dusted and polished (there is a lot and it has not been polished for a great many years), the glass in the display cupboards cleaned, the kitchen to be cleaned and the study, and the upstairs, where I no longer live to be done on Thursday.
They did not clean. They emptied all the cupboards and drawers and just put them in different places. The things I need regularly were put on the top shelf out of reach. The draining rack and tray I could not even see. No cleaning was done. The cobwebs are still hanging down from the top of cupboards. The curtains were tied up to give the impression of cleaning the windows, which still had smears, and the tiled window sill was still mucky with grease. The tiles above the hob are still covered in grease. The cooker hood was not cleaned by the lot who came in 2016 and is thick with yellow fat. They did not even clean the fridge doors, let alone the insides, or the oven doors, or the light switches. The windows are filthy. The lounge was even worse. I had a lovely lounge. It is full of dolls in cabinets, doll houses on bookcases, bears and dolls on chairs and shelves, and some dubious characters spending nights (and days) out on the tiles of the big doll house in the corner. It is all such a mess, and believe me, when you have lived on your own for 11 years, having cheerful things and smiling faces around is so necessary, and if I am in my second childhood: good.
On Wednesday, I just went to check the wheelie bins, because I find that when I have someone in to clean, they put things in black plastic and the bin men won't empty them if they do not have the right stuff in each. It is the same this time. There was a black plastic sack and it was as much as I could do to start sorting it. What I found inside was not rubbish. I won't bore you with that now. There are still some very valuable things missing.
I took photos before, but I did not print them all off. The only display cupboard which had printed photos of the antique dolls inside was untouched. I should have spread the photos round. I took some of the after state of play. 73 I uploaded, and I started to print them, because when I complained and said I did not want them back on Thursday, she said she would come and see, and she did. I showed her everything, I pointed out that only part of the floor was vacuumed and nothing dusted or polished. She saw the cobwebs hanging down. All those workers had done was to look in all the drawers and cupboards to see what was in them. I know, I know what you are thinking, and you are right, I should have sat in the room as they worked, and I was wrong to trust that they would do what the contract said: a deep clean.
She did not like my complaint. I told her I was not going to pay because they did no cleaning and I cannot find anything.
The boss and her male employee, were doing the walk round. They are from Brazil. She can speak a little English and seemed to understand. He was not so good. The girls she sent on Wednesday did not have a word of English between them: nada. When we were going round, I asked her if her employees were UK citizens or immigrants with visas and work permits, and were they registered with the police to go into the homes of vulnerable people if they could not speak English. She wore a mask, but there was no mistaking her reaction. If those people had come into the country before the pandemic they would have at least some English. I think they have come very recently. How did they get here? If they are EU they would have to have applied by now for visas to stay. If like the boss they are from Brazil, how did they arrive in UK, seeing as there are strict rules?
She left the house in the middle of the walkthrough without another word.
If I had asked them if they were vaccinated, or had tested negative for coronavirus, or the now virulent Brazil strain, would they have had to show me the papers? Would they have had to show me their work permits and visas, seeing as I am the client and not employing them directly? Now I worry about catching the new strain. I have had my first vaccine, but do not think I should have a second for various reasons, and they wore masks, but they handled all my possessions, most of my antique dolls, taking everything out of cupboards and they did not have gloves all the time. Everything has been moved, even the sofas and armchairs. My hoover was taken from it's usual place and put in the cloakroom, and there is already one in there too heavy for me. They handled everything.
I had a big white laundry basket - the usual plastic ones, about 2/3rd the size of a wheelie bin. It was full of brand new fabrics of Laurel Burch - five different ranges in complete sets which I use for patchwork. I have photos on facebook going back years. With the fabrics was an unfinished quilt - fabulous if I say so myself, you can see similar on my page photos. I also had a quilt I had finished and signed from her ''feline'' range. It is so heavy I cannot attempt to move it, and living alone, why should I want to? it is tall, holds the fabrics. I have not been well enough to sit at the machine, so have been photographing them and listing them on ebay, or would have done, but my camera became uninstalled last year and only installed itself again after Christmas, so I have some photos still.
The big tall basket with £500 at least worth of fabrics and the work I cannot put a price on, are all gone. We looked everywhere, my carer and I. You could not miss it, and I cannot understand why they would want to move it anyway, because that room gets hoovered. It is a sort of utility/dressing room. It is not the only thing. I found a perfectly good, almost new pair of expensive shoes in the bin, along with other things, including a tiny antique doll house doll.
The boss insists they took nothing out of the house, I told her putting things in the bins was taking them outside. The basket in the lounge in which I kept reading books - a few new Simon's Cat books to raise a smile when down, was emptied, and were NOT in the bin. Instead of a clean, they did a 'clear', but not entirely, because they put things in different places.
Now I not only need a cleaner, but someone to help me find everything. The boss refuses to accept responsibility. If she brings them back, it is as good as admitting the employees took them. I can prove they were there, because my carer knows, and the gardener who helps inside sometimes, though that isn't his real job, actually put them in that place in 2016 after the new floor was put in.
I know you all understand. What can I do? Elderly people are very vulnerable. People who steal say the person never had the things in the first place (That happened to me when the removal people who carried the furniture out when the floor was replaced, took all my jewellery out of the boxes to make me think it was still there. No one believes the elderly any more, not even vicar's widows.
One more thing though is that when she came to see me on Tuesday, she showed me video on her phone of a disabled client and that should be confidential, so no doubt she is rubbishing me to justify herself.
very single one of them was put away, stuffed into bookcases with the books, stuffed on top of seriously antique dolls in the glass cabinets, dusty on top, and needing polishing. 
I have completed the Crimestoppers online form and waiting a reply.  I completed the Police form, asking if I was entitled to ask about work permits and visas.  I asked if I was entitled to ask these people for negative test for virus or vaccination.  I am still waiting for answers from the police.  I have been told that the virus stays on items for 3-5 days.  They were only supposed to clean and polish.  They did not.  They were told not to remove anything.  Now I still need a cleaner and the house is turned over.
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Hello and welcome to CAG. I'm sorry to hear about your problem.


People shoud be along to advise later, please bear with us until they're able to get here. :)


Best, HB

Illegitimi non carborundum




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I am sorry to hear of your situation with this cleaning company that you hired.


Bark is actually a marketplace so it wasn't them that you employeed to do the cleaning in your property do you know the actual company name of the cleaners you employed?


Do Not let these people into your property without someone else that you trust being present nor even talk to them on your doorstep.


As for the cleaning company you hired via Bark ask them for a copy of there Public Liability Insurance, have they carried out Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks on their employees that were in your property, what Identity Checks have they carried out on there employees i.e. visa/work permit right ot work in UK.

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  • dx100uk changed the title to I hired a cleaning company through Bark. poor performance.

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