Who’s Doing the Most Housework in America?

Whether you’re building a bookshelf, attempting a DIY dishwasher repair, or embarking on a large landscaping project, any housework is hard work. Many things require home service professionals, but for those that don’t, you’re sure to invest significant time and energy. 

According to the most recent Bureau of Labor Statistics data, the average American spends 1.5 hours per day—when averaged over the course of a year—cleaning, maintaining, repairing and decorating their home.

In this analysis, we set out to determine where in America people are spending the most time on housework, and how different demographics stack up, including men, women, renters and owners.

Owning a home is typically the most significant investment a person will ever make, in many cases a lifelong investment. Therefore, it’s not surprising that people who own homes spend a lot more time on them than those who rent—1.7 hours per day, versus 1.2 hours per day, respectively.

While both men and women contribute significantly to housework, we found that overall, men spend more time than women. This is true for both interior work (men spend 25 percent more time) and exterior work (men spend 116 percent more time). 

With spring upon us, we also wanted to explore where in America people are spending the most time tending to their yards. Interestingly, the data shows homeowners’ commitment to their yards and outdoor spaces is relatively independent of climate.

Methodology

Data for this report was compiled from the 2018 American Time Use Survey, conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 

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