New Wave of Personal Helpers

You hear the words personal assistant, you probably think of someone bustling around a celebrity as they strut down the red carpet.

It turns out, an increasing number of everyday folks are turning to professional helpers to get their busy lives under control.

The ads are everywhere, help for your frazzled life, someone to pick up your dry cleaning or take your pet to the vet.

Erica Walter, a busy mother of three, wanted someone to handle her least favorite chore.

"Honestly, I don't enjoy cooking and the fact is I’m not really good at it," says Erica.

Whipping up a nutritious, tasty meal is exactly what personal Chef Denise Benoit specializes in.

She does it all, menu planning, grocery shopping, cooking and packaging leftovers.

"There's a real need in this area to get healthy, regular food on the table. It's not gourmet food, just good healthy food" explains Benoit.

It does come at a price, but Erica says her family was spending just as much eating out and ordering in to keep up with round the clock commitments.

Recent studies show many Americans are growing tired of balancing all the demands.

About 36 percent say they are completely used up at the end of the workday and 64 percent struggle with juggling work and family.

Approximately 70 percent say they do not have enough time with their kids.

"I do organizing of home, offices and pretty much your life," explains Lisa McCants, personal concierge.

After 15 years in accounting, McCants decided to capitalize on her strength as a so-called born organizer.

Her clientele is made up mostly of budget conscious people burning the candle at both ends.

"I have the regular everyday people who try to fit 36 hours into 24. They just don't have the time. They work late, you know, even if it's a two parent home. They both have careers. They don't have time to go to the pharmacy or the grocery store, or to pick up an anniversary gift," says McCants.

A professional helper can run you anywhere from 15 to 45 dollars an hour.

People, like Erica say it is worth every penny.

"It's great, it's great a psychological relief," says Erica.

This time of year many professional helpers are being asked to plan and execute a big Thanksgiving meal and gathering for families.


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