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KEY FINDINGS
1

47% of couples say their homes are more messy and/or cluttered now as compared to before the pandemic.

2

40% admit they’ve gotten into more arguments about housework with their significant other now as compared to before the pandemic.

3

1 in 5 people in a relationship report always doing their partner’s chores while only 9% say their partner always completes their share of household responsibilities.

4

53% of couples say a balanced division of household responsibilities is just as important to the health of their relationship as their sex life.

5

1 in 2 couples think not helping out with household chores is just as bad as cheating on their significant other, or worse.

6

60% of couples say a more balanced division of household chores would improve their loyalty.

7

34% of couples believe their significant other has purposefully done chores poorly to avoid doing them in the future.

8

35% of couples say they’ve gone as far as exchanging sexual favors to encourage their significant other to complete household chores.

Homes are Messier Than Prior to the Pandemic, Taking a Toll on Relationship Health

The pandemic has proven to make a significant impact on the cleanliness of many American households, which has led to an increase in arguments for many couples

47%

Of respondents agree that their home is more cluttered and/or messy now as compared to prior to the pandemic

52%

Of respondents agree that their home requires more clean-up and/or maintenance now as compared to prior to the pandemic

40%

Of respondents say they’ve gotten into more arguments with their partner about housework now as compared to prior to the pandemic

For Most Couples, Housework Isn’t Equally Balanced

The majority of couples say that either themselves or their partner are primarily responsible for household work with less than a third of couples reporting a relationship with an equal contribution to household responsibilities. There’s clearly a disagreement when it comes to who is doing the most work around the home and considering

72%

Of respondents say household responsibilities aren’t equally divided, with either them or their partner bearing the brunt of the responsibilities

28%

Of respondents say they contribute to household work equally

2.6

more hours

The average person in a relationship believes they spend 2.6 more hours than their partner each month completing household chores

35%

exchanging sexual favors

To encourage their significant other to complete household chores, couples are getting creative. 35% say they’ve gone as far as exchanging sexual favors to incentivize their partner to complete their share of the household responsibilities

The Gender Gap of Satisfaction In The Home

While 73% of those in a relationship are satisfied with their partner’s efforts to maintain the home, women are 45% more likely than men to report dissatisfaction with their partner’s household’s contributions.

19%

of women are unsatisfied with the efforts of their significant other around the home compared to 12% of men who are unsatisfied.

78%

of men are satisfied with the efforts of their significant other around the home compared to 67% of women who are satisfied.

How Do The Most Satisfied Couples Divvy Up Household Chores?

When it comes to deciding how to divide household labor, 95% of respondents that have no approach to distributing household work report dissatisfaction with their partner's efforts to maintain the home. On the flip side, 75% who discuss, plan and define responsibilities with their partner beforehand report being satisfied with their partner’s home contributions. Surprisingly, satisfaction is a hit or miss for those couples who complete household chores together, as just about 1 in 2 (51%) who use chore time as bonding time report feeling satisfied with their partner.

Method used to divide household labor
Percentage satisfied with partner
We discuss, plan and define responsibilities beforehand
75%
We complete our household responsibilities together
51%
We don’t have an approach to distributing household work
44%
We decide on the spot who should handle which household chore or responsibility
31%

When delving deeper into specific pre-planning methods for divvying up household responsibilities, the more the conversation is rooted in empathy (for example, taking into account a partner’s abilities and preferences), the higher the reported satisfaction. On the other hand, when the distribution of work is based on financial contribution, there are lower rates of satisfaction.

Strategies couples use to plan chore division, ranked by satisfaction level

A conversation based on what is fair (43%)

Based on ability to perform the chore (33%)

Divide via a task list (32%)

Based on preference and comfort level of chore (31%)

Based on who has the most free time (29%)

Alternate days (13%)

Based on financial contribution (13%)

Strategic Incompetence is Real, But Surprisingly, Men are More Suspicious of their Partners than Women

Surprisingly, men were more likely to suspect their significant other of ‘strategic incompetence’ than women, claiming their partner was better at a certain task or intentionally doing chores poorly to avoid the task in future

53% of men vs 40% of women

say their significant other has requested their partner do chores by claiming they’re “better at it” than him or her

37% of men vs 31% of women

believe their significant other has purposefully done chores poorly to avoid doing them in the future

43% of men vs 32% of women

Believe their significant other purposefully chooses the more desirable and/or less time-consuming chores  

45% of men vs 32% of women

say they frequently find themselves doing the chores their partner is supposed to be responsible for

While 42% of male respondents claimed they bear most of the responsibilities when it comes to household work, just 16% of women considered their significant other as the one primarily responsible for household chores

The Division of Labor and Satisfaction Gap In Same Sex and Opposite Sex Relationships

Those in same sex relationships are more likely to take on the burden of their partner’s chores, which is likely why same sex couples report arguing more, feeling less appreciated and are less satisfied with their partner’s efforts to maintain the home compared to their opposite sex counterparts.

31% of same sex couples vs 28% of
opposite sex couples

report an equal contribution of household
chores in their relationship

28% of same sex couples vs 17% of
opposite sex couples

always find themselves doing the household chores
their partner is responsible for

13% of same sex couples vs 23% of
opposite sex couples

report never arguing with their significant other
about household chores

54% of same sex couples vs 77% of
opposite sex couples

are satisfied with their partners efforts to maintain
the home

58% of same sex couples vs 73% of
opposite sex couples

are satisfied with their partners attentiveness to
household needs

35% of same sex couples vs 48% of
opposite sex couples

say their significant other appreciates their
contributions to household chores and maintenance

13% of same sex couples vs. 2% of
opposite sex couples

let their partner's unfinished chores pile up rather
than do their chores for them

The Least Desirable Chores and How Couples Are Splitting Them

Not every chore is rated equally and surprisingly, men and women are reporting an even 50-50 split on who is taking on responsibility for the “least desirable” chores in the home.

Cleaning bathrooms/showers
Cleaning bathrooms
/showers
Taking out the trash
Dishes
Mopping
Organizing
Laundry
Vacuuming

However, even in 2022 the gendered division of household labor still exists. 51% of women claim responsibility for interior chores (i.e. cooking, cleaning, laundry) and 62% of men report their core responsibilities are exterior household chores (i.e. lawn maintenance, pool, etc.).

When it comes to the types of chores most likely to be shared equally in relationships, interior chores take the lead. 36% of couples report sharing household tasks such as cooking, cleaning and laundry equally with their partner compared to 32% who report equal shares of responsibility for home management and maintenance and 28% who report sharing exterior household chores equally.

The Longer Couples Have Been Together, The More Satisfied They Are With Their Partner’s Household Contributions

Despite the general assumption that relationships decline over time, there is a direct correlation between relationship longevity and satisfaction in the home with arguments about household chores increasingly becoming nonexistent as couples age with one another.

Relationship Length
Percent Never Arguing About Chores
Under 6 months
7%
6 - 12 months
8%
1 - 2 years
10%
2 - 4 years
17%
5 - 10 years
22%
10+ years
28%
Relationship Length
Percent Satisfied With Partner’s Efforts To Maintain The Home
Under 6 months
56%
6 - 12 months
59%
1 - 2 years
68%
2 - 4 years
74%
5 - 10 years
74%
10+ years
76%

Couples Likely to Improve Relationship Health with a More Balanced Division of Household Work

With couples spending an average of 1 hour and 15 minutes per month arguing over household chores, 48% say a more balanced division of household chores would reduce the frequency of arguments and 53% say a balanced division of household responsibilities is just as important to the health of their relationship as their sex life.

Factors of a relationship that would improve if there was a balanced division of household chores:

Communication 67%
Happiness 66%
Respect 65%
Loyalty 60%
Commitment 61%
Trust 58%
Sex Life 56%

FINAL TAKEAWAYS

Based on the results of the survey, relationships have a significant impact on relationship health, to the extent that it’s just as important as a couple’s sex life for many. Given the rise in couples reporting an increase in their homes being more cluttered and/or messy than prior to the pandemic, it’s essential that couples make an active effort to maintain a balanced division of household responsibilities. Equally important is ensuring that couples are on the same page when it comes to how chores in the home are divided given the significant disconnect between couples when it comes to who is putting in the most time and effort into the maintenance of their homes. Creating a more balanced division of responsibilities is likely to improve everything from a couple’s sex life to their communication.

METHODOLOGY: This survey was commissioned by Roborock in collaboration with poll provider, PollFish, to a sample size of 2,000 U.S. adults who live with their significant other or spouse.