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Affordable nanny options in central London?(12 Posts)
A daily nanny perhaps on a nanny share sounds the best option. We had a nanny but not shared - 3 children under 3, cheapest best option. They don't need years of experience and nor lots of qualification and London is full of good people desperate for work. Advertise and see how it goes.
An au pair is not an appropriate carer for a young baby if they are going to be 'sole charge'. They don't have the experience or knowledge of all the stages your baby will be going through in the next year or two. And if they do have the experience and knowledge then they won't be calling themselves au pair and will be looking for a nanny's wage.
In a nanny share where the nanny is looking after 2 families children at the same time, the nanny usually expects to get approx £2 per hour more than she would get if she just worked for one family. So if she is earning £10 net per hour, she would want £12 net per hour to do a share. How the nanny's wage is split between the two families, is up to them, not the nanny. So if one family has 2 children (perhaps one at school/nursery some of the time and the other of similar age to your own), then often the share would be a 60/40 split rather than a 50/50 split. So you would only be having to find 40% of the gross salary. If one family hosts the share the whole time, it's usual to say that this balances the fact that the other family has the inconvenience of always having to drop off their child in the morning and pick up their child at the end of the day.
As for having a childminder, it certainly would be an idea to explore this further but be aware that it will not be easy finding a childminder who has a vacancy for an under 1yr old from when you need it. Once your child is over 1yr old, there should be more possibilities. But it is still worth exploring.
The above information is distilled from over 16 years experience helping parents find childcare and helping nannies, childminders and mother's helps find work.
@nannynick We are in Putney (SW15). And yes I totally agree that we need someone how is good with babies because I can imagine there would be moments when it would be hard to cope.
@Karoleann Thanks for the encouragement. I think we will advertise and see what happens. If we can't find someone good for that rate then we will either have to make some changes to other parts of our household budget or look at other options (e.g., childminders, etc)
Appreciate the advice from all!
I don't think 34k for a share in unreasonable at all, especially for 2 babies. Lots of nannies love looking after babies. Often with a full time post the hourly rate is a little lower anyway..I really don't think you'll struggle much to find someone nice.
I would certainly advertise at the rate you feel comfortable with, if you don't get the quality of applicants you want, you can always re advertise.
NB we did move out of central London (nw6) 6 months ago and I don't miss it at all!
Nanny shares I feel can be hard to cost predict. Generally I would say the nanny would expect a higher salary than if they were working for just one family, as they have two sets of parents to keep happy and negotiate holidays with - for nanny to take holiday both families will need to cover their own childcare.
Your title says central London but you say SW London in your opening post. Are you talking Chiswick type location or are you talking more Victoria Train Station? Worth looking at job ads to see what the job market is like in the area, are nannies expecting 12, 14 or more Gross per hour when just one family? a share may add 20%.
You will not know until you advertise the job. Between you and the other family look into all the costs involved, including best way to do the tax (I think that may be as two employers rather than joint employers as then it's less employers NI), likely activities, transport, equipment that may be needed including storage of that equipment (shed in garden?), cost of drawing up contract/agreement between the two families, plus between each employer and nanny, payroll admin cost, all those sorts of things.
Work out what Gross salary you are able to offer, then offer a bit below that and see if you get any applicants. With two babies you need someone who will cope with that, some people are good with babies others are not.
Thanks so much for all of the responses. I really appreciate it!
@iluvkids and strix- I don't think that a live in nanny is an option as we have a tiny 2 bedroom flat. I guess we could move further out (currently in SW15), but would look at other options first.
@nannynick- I was looking at a total cost of employment (salary plus employer's NI contribution) of ~£34K (of which I had assumed £17k would be mine) and I got the figure £450 net from nannytax. On top of the £34K I am guessing that the extras you mentioned would cost about £3500/ year, which is fine. I know £34K is on the low side, but is that at all reasonable for a nannyshare for 55 hrs/wk with 2 children under 1? My baby is 4 months and the person that I am considering sharing with has a 9 month old and we live only 5 minutes from each other. As I mentioned, I am not fussed about tons of experience. If that budget is not reasonable, then maybe I should look for another family to share with that could pay a bit more. We would be happy to take our child to their house as long as it was close by.
It seems I should also look at childminders then as well- this is not something I had given much thought to.
Have you considered nursery and an au pair. We did this when my first was born. It worked out brilliantly. If he was sick, au pair could mind him so I didn't have to take day off work. Also au pair could get him ready in morning so I didn't have to wake him from his sleep at 6a.m. I loved it and he loved it! Best of both world in my eyes. He got interaction with other kids and individual attention from the au pair, plus she would cook the dinner and do some laundry and generally tidy-up. It was great!
17k is not £450 net though, is it? If £16,000 gross salary, employers NI (2012/13 tax year) adds £1176. Net to nanny is around £257 a week.
Then there are the other costs of having a nanny that need to be accounted for, such as activities, travel (though maybe OP lives in an area where lots of things are in walking distance), payroll admin, employers liability insurance (if not already in contents insurance policy).
you could get a live in nanny for 400/450net
Have you got room for a live-in? If so, you might think about an au pair / nirsery combination? Or au pair / childminder?
Or, you might find a childminder to cover these hours. I don't think 55 is really that high. I use about 70 hours per week of childcare (although that includes hours in school).
Affordable surely depends on someone's salary and expenses.
In a nanny share you may not be paying HALF. it may be more like a 70/30 split, as the person whose home the care takes place can be said to be getting benefits which the other family are not - such as laundry, not having to get children dressed.
How old are your children? You may be better looking at childminders if you have one child, some childminders may offer 11 hour days.
I am a new parent and could use some advice on how to find affordable childcare options in SW London. I am looking to return to work in several months and given that my hours are quite long, nursery doesn't seem to be the best option. I have been exploring nannyshare possibilities, but the rates that nannies expect (£10/hr net plus) are really high if you are looking for someone for 55 hrs/wk.
I would only be able to pay £15-17K per year for my half of childcare costs (which would mean £400-450 net per week for the nanny). Is it reasonable that we could find someone at this rate? I don't think we need someone with 20 years of experience and would be happy to have someone with good instincts and a couple of years experience with babies (this could be in a nursery and doesn't need to be a sole charge position). This seems like a very good salary for a person in their twenties as many business jobs don't pay this and certainly require as many hours. It also seems that the tough job market would mean more good nannies looking for work, but I don't know what impact this has had on salaries.
If this is not reasonable, what might other options be? I am a little puzzled about how most families cope with such high childcare costs if they work long hours.
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