Rather than relying on day cares to provide childcare that is affordable, many parents are now choosing to go the nanny share route. As many parents know, childcare is one of the most significant expenses a family endures with their children. A nanny share is an incredible solution for childcare considering it provides convenient, specialized, low ratio childcare from a nanny at a much more affordable cost. Nanny shares are hard work. I know tons of nannies who refuse to do a share, however, I know tons of nannies who love doing shares and have made it their specialty.
You may be asking what exactly is a nanny share and what does it entail? A nanny share is a childcare arrangement where two families come together and split the cost of having one nanny. The nanny is typically paid 2/3 of her normal rate when doing a nanny share, sometimes more. The nanny is responsible for caring for all the children together. Families love doing shares due to the convenience, affordability, and socialization for their kids, without the exposure to any illness they would frequently get from daycare. It can definitely be complicated to manage a nanny share solution without proper planning and commitment.
Let’s talk about successfully managing a nanny share. Are you ready to dive in?
Choosing the right family is just as important as choosing the right nanny for your family. It is important to know that you will not find a family who shares the exact parenting style but you must choose a family who has similar views on nutrition, discipline, and screen time, etc. Many parents find that nanny shares work best when you find another family that has similar ages as your children because they will most likely be on somewhat of the same schedule and enjoy the same activities. Once you find the right family, it’s time to start looking for the right nanny. Compatibility is extremely important for all parties involved. The same way you look for the right family is the same way you look for the right nanny. If the nanny feels they are pretty compatible with each family individually, then they are on the right track to managing a successful share.
A nanny share can be an ideal child care solution for families who commit to open communication, flexibility, and a mutual respect for each other and the nanny who cares for their kids. When doing a nanny share, all parties involved receive a lot of benefits but they are also faced with just as much compromise. Flexibility is a must to the needs of both nannies and the nanny. This is what will be extremely helpful to making the share last long-term. Some examples of situations that may come up is when the host family has family in town, maybe you may need to switch houses and let the other family host or if the nanny’s car breaks down, offer her to use your car or maybe you just don’t go anywhere that day. It is important in these situations to just go with the flow. Things will eventually settle back into place. Being flexible to compromise for the good of the share is crucial, for both nanny and families.
A contract between the nanny and both families should be put in place before the nanny begins work. A contract is important because it can be referred back to throughout the relationship of the employment to keep the arrangement on track. The contract should include the nanny’s pay, schedule, hours each family agrees to, PTO, as well as termination by either family or nanny. The contract should also state the household duties and expectations. Guaranteed pay is a hot topic in the nanny industry. It means each family agrees to pay the nanny $X for X amount of hours, regardless of whether they worked all of those hours that week. It’s a guarantee that they will not earn less than $X a week/month. If one family goes on holiday while the other stays, the nanny will still be paid. If only the family calls out sick, the nanny will still be paid by both families. Nannies can not afford to live without guaranteed pay/hours. Guaranteed hours mean security and financial reliability for all parties. It is a non-negotiable agreement. In a nanny share, a nanny should charge each family 2/3 to 3/4 their rate per family; the nanny typically earns more than the going rate and the family pays less than the going rate, it’s a win-win solution for all parties involved.
Do you want to have a successful nanny share? A successful nanny share requires consistent, open communication between families and their nanny. You can keep a little nanny journal that highlights what your day consisted of. You can commit to weekly, monthly or quarterly meetings. You can make suggestions or adjustments to schedules or changes that may help to make the nanny share smoother. There may be times when both families will work together to solve issues, but many times it is important for the nanny to bring everyone together and onto the same page. It is important that the nanny feels comfortable keeping the lines of communication open and honest. Nothing is worse than being presented with an issue that could’ve been avoided had it been talked through.
Nanny shares are not for everyone! It takes passion and dedication to regularly care for multiple children crying, double the runny noses, double the dirty diapers. However, it’s 100% worth it because you receive double the snuggles and all love. Nanny shares are a beautiful arrangement that benefits all parties involved. Nannies earn a higher wage. Families are drawn to the cost-savings. And the children gain a best friend. Nanny shares involve more compromise, but the benefits far outweigh any downsides.