You’ve hired a live-in nanny and you’re excited to have her join your family. Now it is time to address the details - outlining some important parts of what the living arrangements will look like. Here are some helpful tips for you to consider when it comes to considering the impacts of another adult in the house and how you should go about setting boundaries.
Beyond The Basics
Once you hire a live-in nanny, the dynamic of your family will change a bit. You will need to consider that another adult will be living in the home and you may adjust certain routines that you and the family have. You may have less privacy and you will need to be sure that you and your kids are okay with that. Have a family meeting and clearly define what adjustments will need to happen and be sure to allow your kids to ask any questions they might have about the transition.
Once you hire your live-in nanny, make sure you are on the same page about everything. Write a contract with expected duties and expectations you have for her living and working with you. Be sure to outline any non-childcare duties that you may want to include in the job and if the nanny has never been a live-in nanny before, be sure to articulate your expectations well in person and carefully question her about what her expectations are. Outline any boundaries between the professional and personal working relationship.
Your contract should discuss not only the basics like all job responsibilities, payment schedule and benefits, but it should also include a policy about guests, smoking, and alcohol use. Will these things be allowed in your home and if so, what is the policy that surrounds their use? In addition, include a tenancy clause in the work agreement so you can be sure you are covered in this area.
Once you’ve found the right person and have organized the details of the working relationship, arrange a trial period that allows the nanny to live with you for a few days or a week to ease the transition. This will also allow you to see how the nanny interacts with your children and how she adapts to the household routines and the home in general.
Having an extra set of hands in your home to help with the kids can be an incredible addition to your life, especially if you take the time to get to know her and understand how she will fit into the daily routine of your home and lifestyle.
Starla Smith of HouseholdStaffing.com, Inc. adds:
Hiring a live in nanny can be a big adjustment to a current family dynamic. What most people may not take into account before considering a live in nanny is that there will be another adult living in the household alongside you and your family. If possible, speak to another family who has had experience with a live in nanny and ask them about their experiences with this person.
During the actual hiring process, make sure you conduct a thorough background check on this person. Speak with potential candidates, and bring the most important prospects to your home to meet for a face to face interview. Make sure to arrange a trial period for the chosen candidate to test out if this person will be a good match for you and your children, and most importantly living alongside your family.
A live-in nanny requires his or her own living space with privacy. Also, keep in mind that live-in nannies are not on call all the time, and must be paid for the time worked. Make sure to write up a contract of what is included while this person is living in your household. Will you be paying for their food, cable, internet? What time is curfew? Is this person allowed to drink alcohol in your home? All of these questions and more are extremely important to consider when hiring live in staff.
Lastly, make sure to have strong communication with your live in nanny. It is important to speak regularly with your help about the expectations and tasks you expect them to complete daily. As the employer, you need to be on top of what is going on in your household.