Steep Cleaning Bills? Call It A Big Apple "Dirt Tax"

08/02/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

JAYNE MICHAELS, an interior designer who lives on East 57th Street in Manhattan, throws open her windows every chance she gets. "I need light and air in my life," said Ms. Michaels, who favors gauzy fabrics in pale colors.

But breezes carry dirt, especially in New York, so once every six months Ms. Michaels pays about $400 to have her sofas, chairs, chaises and rugs shampooed.

It's another price of living in New York: call it the dirt tax.

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