“I can’t be bothered to spring clean” – our spring cleaning statistics show women need more support from apathetic men at home

Female cleaning with spray

Men may need to step up and help the women of the UK make this year’s spring clean the best yet, after revealing new spring cleaning statistics showed British males aren’t pulling their weight at home.

According to our nationwide spring cleaning survey, 73% of the UK engages in a spring clean every year, with the May bank holiday being a particularly popular time to spruce up the home. However, when that figure is split into responses from men and women, we can see the first worrying signs of men not doing their bit. Some 76% of women say they spring clean every year, while just 67% of men say the same.

But that’s not the worst of it. 19% of men say they never spring clean, compared to 10% of women. According to the survey, the most popular reason given by men for never spring cleaning is that they “can’t be bothered” (33%). Other common responses from men were “I’m not very good at it” (21%) and “I don’t know what to do” (18%). The most popular reason for women not spring cleaning? “My house doesn’t need it” (39%).

And it’s not just the men who never spring clean who are letting the side down – it would appear even those who say they spring clean every year are seriously lacking in effort. When we asked women how long they spend on their annual spring clean, the most popular answer was 15+ hours (16%). That’s compared to… wait for it… a measly 3-4 hours for men (14%). So that’s more than 10 hours’ extra work each spring for women.

Perhaps the most illuminating insight from the survey came when women were asked what would allow them to spend longer spring cleaning. The most popular answer was “if I had some help” (33%).

Men, your time is now.

Pink jobs, blue jobs or purple jobs?

While it’s clear from our survey that men aren’t pulling their weight in the cleaning stakes, it doesn’t mean that they don’t have the best intentions.

We wanted to find out whether our respondents thought there were specific spring cleaning jobs that should only be carried out by women (pink jobs) or by men (blue jobs).

Although the statistics we have revealed so far might suggest that many of our respondents think there should be a split in the housework carried out by men and women (i.e. that men think they should do less!), our research actually found the opposite – 77% of our respondents said they don’t believe in pink or blue jobs.

What’s more, the 15% who believed in pink and blue jobs were actually more likely to state that men should be responsible for more chores than women.

Here are the most popular choices (where more than 50% of respondents selected the job as either blue, pink or purple) from the survey.

Blue jobs (for men only)

UKDN - blue job chart

Pink jobs (for women only)

UKDN - Pink jobs

Purple jobs (shared equally between men and women)

UKDN - Purple jobs

35-44 year olds spend almost 10 hours longer a year spring cleaning than they did a decade ago

Another interesting finding from our study was that those aged between 35 and 44 spend as many as 10 hours longer spring cleaning than 25 to 34 year olds.

Among respondents aged between 25 and 34, the most popular response when asked how long they spend spring cleaning was 3-6 hours (29%). However, the most popular answer among 35 to 44-year-olds was 15+ hours (14%).

What’s the most house-proud region of the UK?

UKDN - What's the most house-proud region of the UK?

Our research uncovered the regions in the UK that are most likely to spring clean every year. They are:

  • Northern Ireland
  • North East England

And the regions that spend longest (15+ hours) spring cleaning each year?

  • North West
  • Scotland
  • Wales

Which regions are least likely to spring clean?

The locations of the UK least likely to spring clean every year were revealed to be:

  • London
  • Yorkshire and the Humber

Meanwhile, the areas of the UK that spend the least time spring cleaning (between 0-2 hours) are:

  • North East England
  • London
  • Yorkshire and the Humber

What are the most popular spring cleaning chores?

When it comes to spring cleaning, it’s clear that different households have different ideas of the work required to get the home looking spick and span. However, according to our survey, these are the 10 activities that are most likely to make up a spring clean:

  • Vacuuming the bedroom floor
  • Cleaning the toilet
  • Cleaning the bathroom sink
  • Cleaning the fridge
  • Cleaning the bath
  • Cleaning the kitchen cupboards
  • Cleaning behind and beneath bedroom furniture
  • Vacuuming the living room floor
  • Cleaning the kitchen floor
  • Cleaning the kitchen sink

And the activities least likely to be included in a spring clean?

  • Repainting the house exterior
  • Resealing kitchen grout lines
  • Vacuuming bedroom curtains
  • Shampooing the carpets
  • Washing the walls
  • Resealing bathroom grout lines
  • Cleaning the blinds in the living room
  • Cleaning the gutters
  • Cleaning/unblocking drains
  • Shampooing the carpets

It’s particularly disappointing for us to see keeping drains and gutters in good nick is such a low priority for so many households. We obviously see first-hand the problems this can cause, so we want to make sure more people are aware of the importance of clean drains and gutters. Keep an eye out for some content over the next few weeks that will make it easier for you to keep your drains in gutters in tip-top shape, and what can happen if you don’t…