If you need to hire a nanny for your child, you know you have to find the right person to look after your child – it is not an easy decision to make.
What to look for when hiring a nanny
You may need to hire a nanny for your child if you are working full-time and find it difficult to look after your child at the same time. Juggling an important job and looking after a small kid are two full time responsibilities. If you are running your own business, if you are single parent, if you are in a high profile job or profession, or whatever your reasons, you know very well that you need to have your child looked after by the right person, who will take care of your child preferably the way you would; and you and your child must also be able to relate well to the care-giver.
What You Expect Your Nanny To Do
It is very important to have your expectations very clear in your mind (as well as on paper) when you are interviewing nannies, particularly if it is first time that you are keeping a nanny. If you have already been through nannies, then you will have a better idea of what you want and what you expect the nanny to do. A good nanny should provide a safe, nurturing and stimulating environment for your child.
You may want your nanny to be living-in, if you have a large house and have to go out of town for work, perhaps. Or you may want a nanny to be in the house when you are at work and leave by evening. You may or may not want her around on week-ends. There are nannies who do other housework as well as looking after the kid/s and there are people who don’t want the nannies to do anything else but look after the kids. You have to be very clear about your requirements before you start looking for a nanny.
What Kind of Nanny Should You Look For
You may be looking for a professional nanny. A person who is young and active and loves children, preferably one who has training and/or experience would be ideal in this case. Or you may want somebody older, in which case, if she has her own family, she may not be able to live in. Obviously you will want some amount of flexibility – somebody who will be able to work late if required or work on weekends if you are otherwise busy. Oh, and you can get male nannies as well, not just female ones.
The Educational Background
Whether your nanny is going to work with infants or small kids, you have to check out the educational background. If your nanny is not fluent in English, you may have a problem because if your child is going to learn to speak, you don’t want his first words to be in a foreign tongue. Plus if you talk English and your nanny does not, the child will be confused and you may have a communication problem with the nanny as well.
Finding a Nanny
There are many employment and nanny agencies. If you find them too impersonal, ask around – your doctor, your gym, your church, your social group and friends may be able to help you find a nanny. You can also find them via the internet. Always check out references physically if possible. Get background checks done if required. After all, you are going to leave your house and your child with the person, who must be trustworthy and reliable.
Be Clear With Your Instructions
You must be very clear with what you want your nanny to do. If your child is still a baby, you will have to explain the feeding schedules, diapering, sleeping and waking times and other such minutiae. If you want your baby to be taken out for a stroll in a pram or to a garden at a fixed time; or if you have a toddler who needs to be played with or taken to meet other toddlers, you have to tell the nanny exactly what you expect from him/her.
What Will the Nanny Cost
Nannies are not cheap. Depending on where you live, what the qualifications of the nanny and what is the kind of work you expect from her, you may be paying between $350 and $1000 a week. You may also have to pay or contribute to her medical insurance, social security and taxes. If you are offering room and board, the cost may come down somewhat.
If you are paying your nanny an hourly rate, remember that the minimum hourly wage differs from state to state and in spite of that you may be paying as much as $20 an hour.