Outsource your way to more family time with this tip!

Are Laundry Services Worth It?

A study published by Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (which I read about in an article in Working Mother and wrote about in Thrive Momma Weekly Round Up (002)) says that working adults are happier when they dish out a little cash for services that free up their time, allowing them to have more time with their kids and have more time for themselves.

I wanted to test this theory and did so by outsourcing doing laundry for four weeks.

I’ll caveat this post in a couple of ways:
  1. I’ve never been a person that’s necessarily “hated” laundry.  I would rather do laundry over a great deal of other chorse.
  2. That being said, in my single days (approximately a lifetime ago), I WAS the person that would do laundry every 2-3 weeks give or take.  The trigger? No more underwear left. For whatever reason I could never convince ThriveDaddy, even when he was just ThriveHusband, to buy three weeks of underwear and join me in this avoidance strategy.  But hey, marriage is all about compromise right?
  3. Through ThriveDaddy’s influence or not, this 2-3 week strategy NEVER would have worked after ThriveBaby, now ThriveToddler, entered the picture.  I really don’t need to expand on why. You’re shirt is not a napkin! Did you actually roll around IN the dirt?
  4. I am a HUGE proponent of automating or outsourcing anything that detracts from time spent on my primary priorities:  Career, Quality Family Time and Sleep. Luckily, in this technology backed world we live in, there are more ways than ever to automate and outsource.  I will, at some point, do a post on all the things I automate or outsource but: grocery shopping, house cleaning, gardening, electric toothbrush refills (yes, that’s a thing), bill pay and don’t get my started on Amazon’s Subscribe and Save.

So enter the world of laundry services.  I used a laundry service a handful of times back in my single days specifically when in the thick of a deadline and that 2-3 weeks of laundry became too overwhelming.  It was a PRETTY basic, no-frills operation. Bag up the cloths, lug them down to car, hope the bag doesn’t bust on the way, drive to the cleaners, find parking, drop off at the cleaners, pick up 48 hours later.  I was an unenthusiastic fan of the laundry service until I had a couple of instances where my clothes came back with holes in them at which point I just sort of dropped it.

In the thick of another deadline at work, I found Freshly Folded, a (full service) laundry pickup and delivery service in San Diego and decided to give it a whirl.  

There are a couple of things I like straight off the bat with Freshly Folded:
  1. Freshly Folded is FULL SERVICE.  They pick up the clothes from your house and drop off the clothes to your house.  No lugging a 35 pound bag of dirty clothes around.
  2. It was really really easy to start.  I simply entered my zip code and out popped all my options for pick up.  
  3. After I selected my pick up day, I entered this wonderful world of PREFERENCES!  There were 7 different detergent options to pick from — from Gain to Ecos to Thieves.  The options just keep going from there providing a truly tailored experience: water temperature, fabric softener, bleach or no bleach, dryer sheets or no dryer sheets, etc.  You can even pick how you prefer your socks to be folded. I honestly didn’t even know there were multiple ways to fold socks.
  4. The day before my scheduled pickup I received this lovely reminder text.  Note:  You can opt to receive this reminder via email — preferences = endless.  I received another text after my laundry had been picked up (9am on a Tuesday morning) and another a mere 24 hours later when my laundry was dropped off (9am on a Wednesday morning).    
  5. This sounds ridiculous, I know, but I was so excited to come home on Wednesday evening and see my laundry!  I wasn’t disappointed. It arrived in pristine folded bundles and it was even separated by family member making it SUPER simple to put away.  Dresses and pants were hung up and pressed like they had just been from the dry cleaners.
  6. Let’s talk pricing.  $1.75 per pound of laundry.  Don’t ever stand on a scale with your weekly lot of laundry?  The average family of 4 generates between 20 and 35 pounds of laundry a week.  It’s worth noting that a family of 4 averages 6-10 hours a week doing laundry.
    1. On pricing, I FULLY appreciate that this might not be something that can fit in everyone’s budget 52 weeks out of the year.  However, if you think about the next few months (holiday season!), I bet you can pinpoint weeks that are going to be busier than average.  I know I can. I know that from Mid October to Mid November, I will be in the thick of a work deadline and that family time will be precious and rare.  It’s these weeks that allocating some budget to take the laundry chore off my plate is SO WORTH IT.
    2. Know any Momma’s that are expecting?  Shop off registry and buy them a month of Freshly Folded!  Think back on your first month with a newborn and what it would have meant to you to take that laundry chore off your plate.  In that first month, it really is the little things that make all the difference.
    3. Christmas — I would NOT be sad if I found a Freshly Folded gift certificate in my stocking.  Just saying.

I’ve had a GREAT experience with Freshly Folded.  From the optionality offered, to the speed of the service, I was impressed with every step.  I’ve been using the service for 3 weeks and it’s been pretty awesome unloading this chore.

When I mentioned to the folks at Freshly Folded that I wanted to write about their service they generously offered ThriveMomma readers $25 off their first service with code MOMMY!  

More questions?  Find FAQs here.

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