Rising costs of childcare and rising unemployment rates have changed the face of the everyday nanny. Sure there is still the Mary Poppins type woman who lives in your home and cares for every aspect of a child’s raising. More and more, a nanny is either someone in the child development field wanting to care one-on-one for children or a stay at home mom wanting to earn some income. While there are many stories in the media regarding rogue nannies the use of one, should you find a suitable match can be very rewarding. There are several pro’s and con’s involved when considering the option of in-home care. So is hiring a nanny an option for you and your family?
Cost of Care: When considering a nanny for in-home care, cost can be a very big factor. Someone with experience and education will, in general, cost more than someone looking for extra cash. There are a variety of payment methods people use with a nanny including hourly, daily and weekly rates. Just make sure your policies are well communicated regarding pay. Often you can find someone that either has their own children or watch other children as well, which can reduce your overall cost. You can still use your child care costs as a tax deduction you will also want to keep in mind any tax liabilities.
PRO: Can keep the cost of care within your budget
CON: Must be aware of Nanny Tax liabilities.
Quality of care: When you are talking about bringing someone into your home for childcare, you are looking at more focused one-on-one for your child. You can be more in control of what your child is exposed to on a daily basis. It’s easy to take the children out on field trips such as local museums or just the beach in the summer as well as individualize the meals they receive. Nannies are also more flexible in the hours they work providing alternative care options.
PRO’s: Your child gets individual attention, great field trip possibilities
CON’s: Must make sure to do background checks and check references
Convenience: Nanny care is in YOUR home or at the least the nanny is responsible for picking up and taking the children elsewhere. Being with a nanny, I can allow the children to be in their own environment with their own toys. On those days when a little one just needs a little extra sleep, they can stay in their own bed – no need to hustle them around in the morning in order to whisk them off to daycare. In addition to the care of your children you may opt to have your nanny do light housekeeping for you as well. Now the down side is you are at the whim of a person, meaning any appointments and or sick days will require alternate arrangements.
PRO’s: Less morning stress, children in their own environment
CON’s: Requires flexibility for nanny’s needed times off
One last thing to keep in mind is that nannies will come into your life for a reason. It could be that your situation changes in times you need someone, which calls for a change. Or your nanny’s circumstances could change as well. We have had very good luck in hiring wonderful nannies for our kids and in our situation, this has been the best choice for us. We are able to control our costs, keep our children in their own environment for most of the time and there is a ton less stress when it comes to getting out of the house. Our nannies have become like part of the family and I love to see how much my guys enjoy when their nanny arrives in the morning.