Over a month ago, I wrote about my search for a good kasambahay. Right after I posted that entry, I remembered that my college friend told me about being part of an agency that helps homemakers find their perfect match. I’ve always been wary of agencies because someone told me they secretly don’t want things to work out between you and your kasambahay so they can just keep their workers in rotation.
But my friend was a good person with very similar values to mine. Plus, I was frustrated about being jilted by Vanessa (read my blog post if you haven’t). Like a heartbroken dumpee, I decided to give MaidSource.ph a try the same day Vanessa left me.
I called their landline and I told them what I was looking for in a kasambahay: an all-around cleaning lady who does not hate dogs. “All-around” means somebody who knows the basics of cooking and has ample knowledge on doing the laundry and cleaning a home. I was also looking for somebody who doesn’t hate dogs because I needed her to get along with Joey, who she’d have to walk at least once a day. I was on the road so I said I would send a text as soon as I got home.
When I messaged them that I was home and ready to do the Skype interview, they responded very quickly via iMessage.
Hi ma’am! Yes we may. Will it be fine ma’am if we do it after dinner? Or the time of your liking ma’am since our maids are stay in here at our office. All our candidates have just started having dinner lang po. :)
It was 6:41PM and I was happy to know that they were treating their trainees very well. I obliged to doing the interview after dinner.
Finally, it was time to meet the 3 girls they deemed fit for our household. The first one was Mary Lyn, and she was very shy and soft-spoken. Jim and I asked her the basic questions and I will share those questions with you later on in this post. We interviewed two other girls after her and we were given time to think it through. After about 5 minutes, we called back and said we would like Mary Lyn to come work for us. I just had a good feeling about her. She reminded me so much of our yaya Gleza (whom I wish we could clone because she’s the best!!).
That same night, MaidSource sent us the sample contract between Mary Lyn and me. Take note, I have never had a kasambahay under my direct employment before so I was so happy that this was all written in black and white. No need to tiptoe and wonder if either one of us is asking for too much from each other. The contract is written in both English and Tagalog for better understanding between both parties. It’s clear that I am not the only one protected by the contract but it honors the Kasambahay Law very well, too.
MaidSource has a one-time fee of Php9,450 if you’d like to hire someone through their services. You might think this is a bit too steep but they’re still the most affordable among other top agencies. Also, here’s what you get with that one-time fee:
- Making sure your kasambahay is healthy by going beyond routine check-ups. They cover tests for psychological soundness, tuberculosis, pneumonia, hepatitis, leprosy, and infectious diseases.
- Authentic government clearances like NBI Clearance, Police Clearance, NSO-certified Birth Certificate, Character References, and their own background investigation from the maid’s micro-community.
- The convenience of transporting your kasambahay to your home, even on the same day you interview them.
- They are trained by a duly registered & board-certified nurse to ensure the quality of cleanliness and care, especially for nannies.
- MaidSource instills a sense of gratitude in their trainees. “With the right mindset, you can rest assured that the job you provide is cherished and not taken for granted.
- Their legal contract keeps both parties protected from abuse and this 26-page contract was worked on by a team of labor lawyers. Even if I’d like to post it here for all to use with your existing kasambahays, that would be unfair to MaidSource as it comes with their fee.
- They offer 3 FREE replacements just in case you are not satisfied with your hire. Highly unlikely from my own experience but it happens.
Before I go on, I have to divulge the fact that MaidSource waived their one-time fee in exchange for a review on my blog. I warned them that I had to be honest. I also said I would have to wait at least a month before writing a review so I could fully assess their service.
Mary Lyn has been with us for over a month and since day one, Jim and I have been obsessed with her. Not in a creepy way but in a WITH-ALL-I’VE-DONE-WRONG-I-MUST-HAVE-DONE-SOMETHING-RIGHT-TO-DESERVE-MARY-LYN. Okay, maybe we are creepy. Hahaha. But really, she’s been amazing.
She arrived in our condo the day after our interview and we both signed our contracts in the presence of an administrator from MaidSource. I was given all the clearances and her documents for my files. Jim and I really wanted this to go smoothly so we handed her some chocolates with a card that said “WELCOME TO OUR HOME.” In retrospect, we really must have seemed like a strange weird couple hahaha but hey, it’s our first time and we wanted to make a friend of someone who’d be staying under the same roof.
She was obviously so pleasantly surprised about the chocolates and card so she gave us a big smile and thanked us. It was the start of a good relationship and I hope things continue to be this way.
Mary Lyn cleans our condo very well and asks questions when she’s unsure of something. When I give her directions (“if you find any cables or small gadgets lying around, you can just put them away in this drawer”), I never have to repeat them (I always know where to look when I’m searching for something). I really like Mary Lyn because she always makes sure I have a full glass of water beside me, and I didn’t even ask her to do that.
She asked me if she could move stuff around in our kitchen and I said yes. SHE CATEGORIZED ALL OUR MEDICINES SO WE COULD FIND WHAT WE NEEDED RIGHT AWAY.
During our interview, she said she was just okay with dogs. Joey, in classic fashion, used to bark at her every time she’d go near me or Jim. Mary Lyn asked me why Joey didn’t seem to like her. I explained that Joey’s very smart and she thinks people need to ring the doorbell and I need to allow people to come in. She doesn’t like it when people (except Jim or myself) open the door themselves. Of course this is just a theory but it seems to check out because Joey was also like this with our previous stay-out cleaning lady. I told her that she just needs to bond with Joey and make her feel like she is part of the household so Joey stops barking at her. Now she and Joey have become best friends because Mary Lyn takes the time to sit on the floor to pet Joey and they walk three times a day! I’ve caught her many times singing to Joey, too. Now Joey only barks at her when she sees Mary Lyn holding the vacuum — Joey’s mortal enemy. Haha.
I recommended MaidSource to my mom who ended up hiring 2 girls — one for our home and one for my lola’s home. I just checked in with my mom last night and she said she needed to ask for a replacement for her first choice after two weeks because she was not satisfied with her work. MaidSource, true to their word, sent a replacement for free and now my mom is very happy with her new kasambahay.
TL;DR*: Overall, I’m very grateful that MaidSource helped me find our perfect match and we’re lucky to have found her on the first try! If you are looking to hire a kasambahay as well, here are 5 questions I suggest you ask during your interview:
Is she okay with the scope of work?
Be ready to explain exactly what you are looking for. Cooking, cleaning, laundry, taking care of your kids, etc. Be specific so you both know what to expect from each other. Ask if she’s had experience in the past and feel free to inquire about her length of stay with each household and why she is no longer with her previous employer.
Why does she want to work?
Is it to be able to send her children to school? Is it so she can send money home to her family? Is it because she wants to finish her studies? Talk about it now so you can learn more about the person you are hiring and so you understand how important it is for both of you to make this work.
Is she eager to learn?
In our interview, we told the candidates that we did not like it when people take things personally. Kapag mapagsabihan, sana pakinggan yung sinasabi. Again, it’s important to say that you’re not just looking for somebody to order around. You are looking for somebody to help you maintain peace and order in your home.
How long does she plan on doing this?
This is so you can manage expectations. With MaidSource the standard contract is 6 months but if you both want to keep working with each other, you are free to extend your contract after that without involving the agency anymore.
Is she okay with your proposed salary?
With MaidSource, it’s up to you and your candidate to agree on a monthly rate. To give you an idea, some employers start with Php4,000/month as a starting salary. But MaidSource explained to me that if you start with at least Php5,000/month salary, you no longer have to worry about paying for your employee’s SSS and PhilHealth. It will be their own responsibility. Of course you will have to provide your kasambahay with a room and 3 meals a day aside from their monthly salary. All of this information is on the legal packet that MaidSource provides with each deployment.
Employers will eventually find the right fit for their household. I keep talking to my friends who also recently got married and they’ve told me how difficult it is to find a good kasambahay. I keep telling them to try out MaidSource.
Do you have any personal “horror stories,” perfect matches or other tips on finding a kasambahay? Please share away!:)
Visit MaidSource.ph or call (02) 654-7338 / (0998) 996-MAID(6243) for more info! You can also reach them by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Their office is located at 29 Delgado St., Ortigas, Pasig City.
*Too Long; Didn’t Read — a.k.a. in a nutshell