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|The examples and perspective in this article deal primarily with the United States and do not represent a worldwide view of the subject. (December 2010)|
Maid service, cleaning service, apartment cleaning and janitorial service are terms more modernly describing a specialized outside service, providing a specific service to individuals, businesses, fraternal clubs and associations as well a home.
These services may be different from what is generally thought to be the historically prevalent services performed by a maid, and these services may be provided by both male and/or female individuals.
In current descriptive, "maid" is a female employed in domestic service.  Once part of an elaborate hierarchy in affluent homes and profitable businesses, today a maid may be the only domestic worker that upper and even middle-income households can afford, as a household domestic-help employee. Maids perform typical domestic chores such as cooking, ironing, washing, cleaning, grocery shopping, walking the family dog, and tending to the household children.
In the Western world, comparatively few households can afford live-in domestic help employees, in lieu of live-in staff, a maid service is utilized as a periodic cleaner. In developing nations, differences found within income and social status between different socio-economic classes, lesser educated women, with less opportunity are believed to provide a labor source for domestic work.
Maids, per se, perform typical domestic chores such as cooking, ironing, washing, cleaning the house, grocery shopping, walking the family dog and taking care of children. In many places in some poor countries, maids often take on the role of a nurse in taking care of the elderly and people with disabilities. It is believed that many employers of maids require the individual to wear a uniform, of the traditional style.
Socio-economic opportunities, not being confined to any specific global location, may allow cleaning services to perform 'cleaning' as their source of business as a service.
Utilizing a maid service may be considered due to a number of personal factors, including but not limited to geographical location, social standing, lack of personal time, lack of experience.
Historically, utilizing a maid service was thought to be affordable only to the affluent, these services though, have become increasingly common in many developed cultures, partly because of the rise in dual-income families.
A maid service may be more expensive than simply hiring a part-time maid, but it offers a number of advantages. Usually the service will provide not only someone to do the cleaning, but also all of the necessary cleaning supplies. Also, as a bona fide employer, the service is responsible for withholding Social Security and other income taxes. Third, a service is insured and often bonded, so it can be held accountable if something is stolen or missing.
Janitorial service often refers to the use of a cleaning service for businesses rather than just residential. The advantages to using a janitorial service are the same as using a maid service for residential above. Janitorial services in the United States employe thousands of workers from all parts of the world.
There are thousands of residential cleaning businesses throughout the United States, United Kingdom and Canada. Maid services are becoming more popular in cities in particular; perhaps a sign of a relatively well-off population. Historically and traditionally, cleaning was considered a woman's role, but as more and more women have joined the workforce, the time pressure on families with children has grown, so paying a service for cleaning makes sense to persons who can afford it. Additionally, many modern homeowners lack the proper knowledge to use the safest and most effective cleaning products.