I’ve been pretty vocal over the years about how cash is dead. For me, it was the rise of Monzo and the way they and Google Pay forced all the banks to normalize on showing people their card transactions in real time. And these days, you can use Open Banking to get all that data into a useful format in a hands-off manner too. With all that sorted, the card has a massive advantage over cash in that most of the record-keeping and budgeting can be done automatically.

Things have now shifted to the point where many of the cafes, pubs and restaurants in southern England simply don’t take cash since the pandemic. I haven’t routinely carried any (well, maybe an emergency tenner) since the end of the lockdowns.

I have however recently started using cash for one thing: paying my cleaners.

I’ve had a few different people on the job since relocating in 2021, and it’s been a patchy experience. Unfortunately the previous firm I used had some staffing problems, and kept rescheduling visits or failing to turn up for them. And therein lies a downside of paying for such services by standing order: once they’ve got your money, there’s less you can do about it if the scheduled visit doesn’t take place.

Anyway, fingers crossed I have now found a good pair of cleaners. Initially I was annoyed that they insist on being paid cash (there’s no rule against it, and what they do with the money is between them and the chancellor…).

However, I’ve realized that it’s a good thing: if the only way they get paid is to turn up, that makes it much harder for rearrangements or last minute faffing to take place without the downside being equally split.

Here’s hoping the new team keep doing a good and timely job.