Childcare - nanny

Advice on the advantages and disadvantages of choosing a registered nanny to provide childcare, plus information on employing occasional and permanent nannies and using nanny agencies.
A nanny works in your home (perhaps living in), and will be caring only for your baby, unless you are sharing with another family. You are the nanny's employer. She could be quite young (although the age of the person you choose to employ is entirely up to you) but should have a qualification such as NNEB/DCE (though not necessary, it is advisable). Nannies are not registered (though agencies are), but various organisations are trying to rectify this glaring problem. A nanny is also more expensive but, if your working hours are very awkward, she could be the best solution.

If you decide to have a nanny, contact an agency. Even if you don't use it (though this is usually advisable), you will learn all about employing nannies and how to find one. Make sure that any agency you use is a member of the Recruitment and Employment Confederation.

Advantages

One-to-one attention. Nannies are usually trained in babycare, child development and first-aid. The childcare takes place in your own home, possibly living in and so you set the rules and have more control than with other forms of care.

Disadvantages

Nannies can be expensive and you may worry about leaving your baby with one person. Problems could arise when your nanny is ill.

Cost

Though rates will vary, in London full-time live-in nannies earn around £250 per week net. A full-time live-out nanny earns around £350 per week net. Outside of London salaries are about 10% less. Part-time nannies cost between £70 and £80 net for a 10-hour day. If you are a nanny's sole employer you will be responsible for paying her tax and contributions, and if you find her through an agency you will also have to pay a finding fee.

Advice
  • Use an agency or personal recommendation.
  • Ask the agency what checks they have made and whether they have seen the girl's police check.
  • Speak to a previous employer.
  • Observe her reactions to your baby.
  • Follow your instincts.

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