With October comes the autumn school break, and parents will either be awaiting their offspring’s holiday time at home with some trepidation, or already heaving a sigh of relief.
Either way, it seems that the mums and dads will be responsible with clearing up the chaos caused by their youngsters’ home time, as a new survey from Mintel shows that 76 per cent of the nation’s parents with children aged 6-17 say that their kids have no cleaning responsibilities.
For the parents that do delegate tasks, polishing, dusting and vacuuming are the duties kids in the UK are most likely to be entrusted with.
One in eight (12 per cent) children aged 6-17 are responsible for polishing or dusting surfaces, while 11% vacuum the floors.
However, when it comes to the toilet, just 5 per cent of kids are asked to lend a hand, while the stove proves to be the least popular household task, with a slim 2 per cent of kids cleaning the oven.
Mintel research suggests that it could be safety that it is keeping kids away from the cleaning cloths. Indeed, over half (53 per cent) of parents with children under the age of 18 agree that chemicals can be more damaging to health than germs.
Despite this, parents are still prepared to put in the leg work. Just over half (53 per cent) of those with no children spend more than two hours cleaning a week, compared to seven in 10 (69 per cent) parents with children under the age of 18 who clean for this duration. Furthermore, a dirt-busting 29% of parents clean for more than 5 hours a week.
Hera Crossan, Personal Care Analyst at Mintel, said: “The fact that so few parents are allowing their children to help out with the cleaning is potentially storing up problems for when these children fly the family nest.
“In general, parents appear more comfortable assigning ‘softer’ tasks that shy away from the use of cleaning products, such as dusting and vacuuming.
“This suggests that parents lack confidence in assigning tasks that could have a more direct impact on the health of household residents, such as removing invisible germs, and that parents are looking to avoid their child’s direct exposure to chemical cleaning agents.”