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Nanny/AuPair 101

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10 years 7 months ago #47085 by AnnaM
Agree with Lisa. I think I mentioned this in another post, or maybe somewhere in this thread. When my husband took ajob out of state that was supposed to last 6 weeks and ended up lasting 18 months, I kept my daytime in-home nanny and found a young woman to move in with us who had a regular day job and needed a place to stay for several months until her wedding. She lived and ate with us in exchange for coming straight home from work to relieve the daytime sitter and make dinner for the kids. Once I got home her time was her own, except she carried a pager if she went out (I did my own OB back then) and had to be immediately available if I was on call. If she had something important going on that couldn't be interrupted (Like tickets to a big concert or a family wedding) she told me in advance and I arranged other backup. We did that for over a year and it worked well. She got free room and board in exchange for about 10 hours of work a week.

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10 years 7 months ago #47086 by merri
Thanks for the ideas -

It's really worrying me. I'm supposed to go back to third year in July - and I'm just not sure how we are going to do it... plus this is going to be a continual issue through residency and once I start to practice. How can we afford this?! It makes me think that I can't afford to finish my training (but how can I afford not to - with the disgusting amount of debt we are in... hmmm wish I could get a bailout...)

Does anyone have experience with a full time nanny? If yes, how did you find her/him, what was the pay range? WHat about healthcare, does the family have to provide it?

I'll let you know if I make any progress...

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10 years 7 months ago #47087 by Emily2651

Originally posted by merri:
Does anyone have experience with a full time nanny? If yes, how did you find her/him? What was the pay range? What about healthcare, does the family have to provide it?

I briefly considered a live-out nanny when I thought we weren't going to be able to find daycare. Here in my area (SF Bay Area), legal, experienced nannies run $18-20/hour plus taxes and benefits (definitely health insurance and paid vacation). The other day I met a nanny at the park who confided to me that she's "underpaid" at $18/hour, although she did have two kids to care for. Not sure about live-in, since we don't have space for that arrangement.

I've also been looking into the Boston nanny market. Looks like the going rate there is similar to here, $15-20/hour for a legal live-out nanny, with the expectation that you'll pay taxes and benefits. Live-in (again, legal) nannies appear to be more like $400-600/week. (Thus the appeal of the au pairs! Half the price!)

The nanny I met in the park said she found her current employers through Craig's List, although she's also worked with agencies in the past. I am astonished by how expensive the agencies are ... 1-3 months salary! Yikes. Also expensive in Boston; I found one agency that charges > $3K for placement of a full-time person.

Depending on how you feel about it, undocumented/under the table is cheaper, for sure. (Skip if you're ever planning to be Surgeon General!) I have friends who employ a fabulous woman to care for their son. She's not documented and they pay her under the table, obviously. I think she started at $12/hour, but she's so great that they now pay her more like $15 or $17. But they also save on the payroll taxes. I don't think they pay for her health insurance, but I'm not sure. I do know that their relationship with her is somewhat complicated and they compensate her additionally with needed favors (as in, extra cash) from time to time. But that may happen with any nanny, I don't really know.

I can only assume there's a broad range of prices across the country. Hopefully you live in a moderate COLA. I really feel for you. Any chance your husband can switch jobs or pull back from all the travel for awhile?

The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears, or the sea. -- Isak Dinesen

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10 years 5 months ago #47088 by merri
I may have found a live out nanny :crossfingers:
She's a lovely Polish retired woman - who is totally sweet, loving - with great references.
Have to finish discussing pay... she was asking for vacation and sick... not sure I can do that... but really want to keep a good person. :crossfingers:

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10 years 5 months ago #47089 by merri
Hi Emily -

I realized I never replied to your post! I wish my husband could change jobs... but he can't. He job is to travel (pilot) - so kind of out of the question ;) . Trust me to marry someone with a worse schedule than a surgeon...

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10 years 5 months ago #47090 by mom2noah
My husband and I are both physicians and had our first baby during residency. We had a FT live-out nanny who stay overnight occasionally if we were both working nights. She was older, retired but needed the supplemental income. It was perfect for our son the first two years. We went through an agency, which was expensive, but we felt we needed an agency since we weren't experienced in interviewing or hiring nannies. We gave her paid vacations but no health coverage.

For our most recent nannies, we have used nanny websites. My favorites are www.gonannies.com and www.enannysource.com You can browse for free to see if there are people in your area you'd be interested in. You pay to post a job listing and get full access to the nannies' profiles (ie, their contact information). You have to run your own background and reference checks, but it's a fraction of the price of a conventional agency. And I felt a little better using the nanny websites than Craig's list (although I did find my most recent after school baby sitter on Craig's list and she is awesome). Good luck! You'll figure it out. There are lots of moms in medicine who have found creative solutions to the issues.

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