Comment: House-proud? That’s a matter of opinion

Wiping the kitchen surface is one thing, but hoovering the curtains is another entirely

Wiping the kitchen surface is one thing, but hoovering the curtains is another entirely - Credit: Getty Images/Wavebreak Media

Okay, so who here thinks they’re house-proud? And what does being house-proud actually even mean?

The Oxford dictionary says ‘attentive to, or preoccupied with, the care and appearance of one’s home’. But one man – or woman’s – idea of caring about one’s home may be another’s total shambles.

According to a recent survey by Anglian Home Improvements, there are 20 key signs that you’re house-proud, number one being that you buy flowers every week. Hmm. Seems a touch subjective to me – after all, what of those who keep a spotless home, but aren’t fans of flowers?

Second on the list is putting out brand new towels when guests arrived. Doesn’t it depend on whether they’re just popping in (might not bother) or staying over (fresh towels galore!)?

I can certainly relate to the third sign, however: you hide things away in the garage or shed. Not being blessed with a garage and finding the shed too full of bikes, I instead tend to shove things in drawers. Is this the same? Does it therefore mean I’m house-proud? I love that this lazy approach to household tidying might give me an in to the world of the ultra-orderly.

Other sure signs of being house-proud are so far beyond my remit they’re not even worth considering: hoovering the curtains, anyone? Or ironing the bedsheets? Who can be bothered with that! I’m sure someone must. My mum was a stickler for bedsheet ironing back in the day, but even she can’t be bothered now she’s a retired lady of leisure with important coffee dates taking up more time than work ever did.

She’s still seriously house-proud, however, keeping a spotless home despite the presence of my dad and his slovenly ways. Not sure even she’s ever polished the door knocker (no.12), though, and she’s certainly never pretended she doesn’t have a cleaner (no.19 on the list) – she is the cleaner. Even she, who I’ve no doubt despairs of my cluttered home – agrees that being house-proud is a very subjective thing. She’s said she’d prefer not to have a bedside table made of my NME mountain next time she comes to visit, however. Piles of nineties music papers aren’t on the house-proud list, no, however neat that pile may be. Subjective, see.