But since I am coughing profusely, much of the chores have been left undone. Luckily, in the cooking department, my husband is an able cook. But in the cleaning and laundry I have not been of any help.
I guess if anything else, I can always bring the laundry to the nearby laundry shop which will do my 5 kg laundry for roughly a little more than P200 ($4). The problem sometimes is if you chanced upon a laundry shop that doesn't do their job well, you can lose a piece or two, or have small holes on t-shirts (like my husband had a couple of weeks ago). On the other hand, I am no goddess of laundry, and maybe somebody else can do better than me. :p
In the matter of cleaning our small living space, I have asked one janitor in the office before to clean our entire place (36 sq m) for P500 ($10). I can also do that when I am pretty busy.
But lately, I have been considering getting a maid. I can surely use the extra time off after work to myself. I do a lot of planning/thinking after work, and I need the luxury of time to do that.
On the other hand, I hate having a stranger in my home, and at 36 sq m, there is not much you can do about maintaining privacy and avoiding one another. I guess, we can always move some place else with a bigger living space but I like the security that a condominium can offer. Also, our condominium unit is in a complex which allows us just to go outside our unit and buy some essentials in the store nearby which is within the complex itself. We do not have to worry that just by going to the nearby store, a stranger can follow us around and plot to rob us. I guess that sounds a little phobic, but I just do not want to risk my husband's safety. Everyone thinks foreigners have so much money. They certainly have more than what the average filipino has, but they shouldn't be fair game to robbers because of that.
Also having a maid who is not a relative compromises ones security. You do not know the kind of people you are letting in your house and whether when you leave, they would let someone in. Again that sounds phobic, but better safe than sorry. I have two officemates in this year alone who had their houses robbed, and the suspects were workers they hired when they had repairs/renovations done in their houses. With every stranger you let in the house, and with them knowing you have a foreigner inside the house, you put each other at risk.
On the other hand, if I ever get one, I will get from an officemate of mine who gets from the women in her province. I know she would not risk people she knows by her referral, she herself being a lawyer.
So what is the average rate for maids here in Manila? I would say from P2,000 up ($43 up). And that doesn't count social security contributions. Of course alot of people don't necessarily follow the mandated social security benefits, but honestly, if your maid gets sick, that social security benefit can save you the money you will end up paying for their hospitalization.
I recall one time when my mother was hospitalized for heart attack, we were in a private hospital, and there was this maid who was suffering from high blood sugar -- 200 ++ I think. And the most unfortunate thing was her employer left her to fend for herself. It was her boardmates who took her to the hospital. It was sad and unfortunate, and what could have been resolved with a little less stinginess and a few pesos worth of contribution to SSS.
Here is some of the breakdown for employer's contribution to SSS:
P.S. the minimum wage for domestic helpers now is P1000. That is in the same law.
Salary Range Salary Employer Cont. Employee Cont. Total
1,000.00 - 1,249.99 1000 70.70 33.30 104.00
1,250.00 - 1,749.99 1500 106.00 50.00 156.00
1,750.00 - 2,249.99 2000 141.30 66.70 208.00
2,250.00 - 2,749.99 2500 176.70 83.30 260.00
2,750.00 - 3,249.99 3000 212.00 100.00 312.00
3,250.00 - 3,749.99 3500 247.30 116.70 364.00
3,750.00 - 4,249.99 4000 282.70 133.30 416.00
4,250.00 - 4,749.99 4500 318.00 150.00 468.00
4,750.00 - 5,249.99 5000 353.30 166.70 520.00
5,250.00 - 5,749.99 5500 388.70 183.70 572.40
5,750.00 - 6,249.99 6000 424.00 200.00 624.00
Likewise, those who are SSS (private employees)/GSIS (government employees) members are automatically enrolled to Philhealth under R.A. 7875. Otherwise coverage in Philhealth is compulsory.
The Philhealth employer and employee contributions can be found in the Philhealth website.