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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Housekeepers Clean Up

If you would rather not do the scrubbing yourself, there are plenty of housekeepers willing to work for valuta in Moscow. For regular service, prices run anywhere from $3 to $9 per hour. Agreements are often by the month.

Costs seems to vary not only with the type and frequency of work, but also the housekeeper's personal situation. One expat said her housekeeper is trained as an architect, but was making so little she began cleaning apartments instead. Now, for $150 a month, she works 12 hours a week straightening, dusting, buying vegetables and doing light cooking. She washes clothes, some by machine and some by hand, and will go to the post office to pay her employer's long-distance phone bill.

Occasionally, housekeepers come with the apartment. One such woman, a friend of the apartment owners, had worked for residents who moved home unexpectedly. When new tenants arrived, the housekeeper offered her services. She sweeps, mops and vacuums a four-room apartment once a week for $50 per month, and will do ironing or cooking at her employers' request.

Many people find housekeepers through friends, but newspaper classifieds offer some options. Section 310 of Iz Ruk V Ruki, a Russian language paper on sale at most newsstands, carries ads for nannies and housekeepers seeking work. One woman who advertised there says her rate is $250 per month. She will come every day to clean, shop and cook -- apartment size does not matter. Another woman charges $25 per visit for a one-room apartment and $45 for four rooms. Most ads specify tasks -- not everyone offers to shop and cook -- and a phone number to call for a price.

If you do not need a regular maid, but want a thorough one-time scrub and you have money to burn, AM-Service may be able to help. A subdivision of Penny Lane Realty, this cleaning service is geared toward Westerners, using all western-made cleaning machines and chemicals. Carpet cleaning is $2 to $4 per square meter, depending on how dirty it is. Window washing costs $1 per square meter, but the company will not agree to cleaning the outside panes until a representative has seen the space.

One employee said the so-called Stalin skyscrapers are notoriously difficult and not all workers are good mountaineers. AM-Service can be reached at 238-7479.