|Article - The NZ
House unpacking with a touch of femininity
mature women to make family homes look like as tidy and appealing as something
out of a glossy lifestyle magazine.
Well-paid, casual, on-call work in friendly teams, bit of gentle exercise
required, easy to fit around tennis and golf.
Busy, two-income corporate families are providing the impetus for all sorts
of labour saving services - and house unpacking after a move is one increasingly
But one of the few companies in the country offering unpacking services says
that the workers it seeks are hard to find --- because they are not active
job seekers or regular scourers of the situations vacant columns. But they
often have plenty of practical experience in making houses into homes.
The 60 casual staff of The Finishing Touch Unpacking Services around New
Zealand tend to be fit women in their late 40s and early 50s with adult children
and maybe a sport or two.They may be saving for a holiday or financing a
hobby - the pay starts at $12 an hour - but don't need regular part-time
Their husbands are usually working, "and they're at a loose end," says Vanessa
Godbaz, who holds the New Zealand licence for the Australia-founded company
and runs it with her mother Julanne. The pair and their teams create some
order out of the chaos following the move from one house to another. "We're
the flipside to the big burly men," says Aucklander Godbaz. "We're the feminine
touch, putting things away." Example: Linen isn't just put away tidily in
cupboards, it's put away in colour-coordinated piles.
The service - which costs around $600 for a three-bedroom house for, say,
two adults and two kids - also includes putting goods in cupboards and display
cases, wiping kitchen surfaces down, filling fridges and pantries, hanging
clothing, making beds, filling book cases, and readying cartons for removal.
The very last touch is a distinctly female one: fresh flowers.
Clients come home to find the work all done by women who have had plenty
of experience in making houses homely. "A lot of the ladies get the satisfaction
out of making it look good," says Godbaz. "They've got a feeling for placement.
And they're people who like helping and who like to be around other people."
She seeks staff in these cities and towns: Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin,
Hamilton Napier, Nelson, New Plymouth, Palmerston North, Tauranga, and
NZ Herald March 25, 2002
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