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Our nanny has asked what her hours and pay will e once DD2 starts nursery next January. How do others handle this?

(25 Posts)
Asparaguses Fri 05-Aug-11 21:41:46

DD1 is at school, DD2 will get 3 hours in the morning at nursery. We can drop the firls off in the morning (we already do this for DD1 although the nanny takes DD2 from 8.30am at the moment).

We are pretty strapped for cash at the moment and so it feels odd to continue to pay the nanny £11 per hour for the three hours each day that she won't usually have any children and will most likely be in bed, at a cafe etc. On the other hand we need her on call in case they are sick and we need her there in the holidays. Do we therefore have no choice but to continue to pay her the full whack? Options I have considered include offering to let her look after another child in our house during the day on the understanding that we only pay her a retainer for the hours are girls are at school. I think she would like this as it would allow her to earn more money (if she charged the other family what she charges us and then got our retainer on top).

This mst be a very common issue, how have others handled it?

ivykaty44 Fri 05-Aug-11 21:44:40

I do know someone in similar type of situation and the nanny has to arrange the children's bedrooms at these times and sort their laundry and prepare meals for them in the kitchen. Not adults meals just the chidlren's meals, rooms and laundry.

RitaMorgan Fri 05-Aug-11 21:47:55

Can she not do jobs during those 3 hours? Presumably it's more like 2 hours after time taken getting there and back anyway.

Looking after another child sounds like it could be complex - would it just be during nursery time or all day? Would you synchronise holidays with the other family? What about illness? Would the other family be people you know well? I think a nannyshare with strangers would be difficult.

Bonsoir Fri 05-Aug-11 21:51:18

Obviously you cannot not pay your nanny if she is on call for your children. Is your nanny live out?

Asparaguses Fri 05-Aug-11 22:00:38

It would be three full hours because we would take the DDs in to school so the nanny would not have to arrive at our house until she had piked DD2 up at 12 noon. The school is 5 mins walk from the house.

Most nannies, including ours, clean the ids rooms, do their laundry and cook their meals while they are looking after the kids. So I could obviously ask her to concentrate on those tasks in the mornings but she does them any way and it seems pointless insisting she comes in at 9am when she will have very little to do. It does not take 15 hours a week (5x3) to clean a child's room and clothes.

I think Bonsoir is right, I have no choice as I need her on call. Its just hard to swallow as DH and I have just taken pay cuts and last year DD1 never had a day of school so the on calls would have all been for nothing. That is £165 quid a week for a service we are unlikely to use. In fact its a lot more than that because the £165 is her net pay, we pay another third to the tax man. Sigh.

nannynick Fri 05-Aug-11 22:46:05

I suppose in theory you could have a complete change of contract such that your nanny does not start work until 12 noon. However then you are stuck for days when DD2 does not go to nursery for whatever reason, plus your nanny may not take the job so leaving you to find someone else.

On the bright side, at the next pay review you will have reason for not giving an increase.

>we pay another third to the tax man.

Keep in mind that Employee Income Tax and Employee National Insurance are actually your employees money... you are deducting it on behalf of HMRC.
You pay your nanny a Gross wage - regardless of how you may have phrased it in a written statement/contract.

nannynick Fri 05-Aug-11 22:52:24

Why do you need a nanny? You don't say what hours they are working but it sounds like there isn't an early morning start, so are other childcare options (like a childminder) something to consider?

Earlybird Fri 05-Aug-11 22:52:30

ATM, what are her hours and how many hours per week does she work?

madwomanintheattic Fri 05-Aug-11 22:53:43

we just carried on paying full whack - it gave us the flexibility we needed for school holidays as well as sickness etc.

you could let her know you are happy to do this, but ask her if she had been thinking about any other options? she might be keen to have the hours in the morning for something else, and so be hoping for a salary cut/ fewer hours - it leaves you less flexibility, but might be worth discussing if you get that sort of vibe.

we kept in touch with one ex-nanny(we moved from the area) and she would flex her hours/ pay in accordance with her employers (and quite enjoyed the lull when the littlest started nursery!)

it's probably a discussion point, as long as you know what the various options for you are, and how you would ideally like to manage. we just needed the flexibility so had to cough up. grin

Asparaguses Fri 05-Aug-11 23:13:37

At the moment the nanny works 8.30am to 7pm. She starts at 8.30 so that she can look after DD2 and we take DD1 to school on our way to work. We need a nanny because we d not get home 'til 7pm and it seems hard on the kids to expect them to be in group childcare, or even our of their home, so late. We have had this nanny for two years and the girls adore her.

School holidays are not a big issue as I get most of them off and the nanny has a very generous leave arrangement whereby she is very rarely asked to work during school holidays (so about 10 weeks a year). However, again we need flexibility. I don't get the autumn half term off and my holidays sometimes differ by a few days from the holidays of my DD's school.

ManWoman - did you ask your nanny to do anything else in her "spare" hours?

Northernlurker Fri 05-Aug-11 23:30:31

I think you need to suck this up quite honestly. YOu've got a great nanny who you like and trust and who works v long days for you. Three hours a day she won't have a child to look after - is that worth losing what sounds like a really good employee over? I would keep the status quo as it is and rethink when she goes to school. Unless you can't afford her in which case let her go now and rethink.

Asparaguses Fri 05-Aug-11 23:39:56

I think you are right. I just have to live with it and stop thinking of it in terms of 15 hours of doing nothing. I was just interested to know how others had dealt with similar situations.

Tarenath Sat 06-Aug-11 07:26:33

Very interesting to read the responses here. I'm a nanny in the same position as the OPs nanny with my youngest charge starting nursery in September. I've not been quite sure how to bring up the subject of a retainer with my employers. I'd be quite happy to do housekeeping during those hours but as OP says, that wont take me 15 hours a week!
Obviously it needs sorting out and soonish, I'm just not sure how to approach it.

sybilfaulty Sat 06-Aug-11 07:52:49

You have a while to think about what you really want and to give your nanny reasonable notice if you want to make a change / let her go.

IME, odd hours childcare is hard to find. You will struggle to find a nanny who wants to start at 12 and work til 7, as they are unlikely to earn enough. In addition, if you want her to be available to cover sickness, INSET days etc, you do need to pay her for the mornings even if she is not looking after the girls as otherwise she is not obliged to help.

I agree with everyone who says that it is not worth losing a good nanny for the sake of 15 hours a week. HOWEVER, thinking back to Festivalgate and also her naughty behaviour when you went to your pals' wedding in Sweden last year, I know you have had your doubts about her anyway.

Sorry, I am not trying to put a spanner in the works and I know the girls adore her. I am just aware of some of the incidents you have had with her over the years and want you to be sure that you want to carry on with her in the future. I think you will need to pay anyone who works for you from 8.30 every day, whehter they are working or not, to provide cover for you when you can't take time off for illness etc. Just be really sure you want it to be her in the light of your working relationship as a whole.


eeyore12 Sat 06-Aug-11 09:21:34

Could you offer her half pay for those hours, and say she doesn't need to start to 12, but if little ones are ill, on hols etc then she needs to be free to start at 8.30 and those hours you will make up the pay to full pay, that way she does have time to her self in the mornings but knows you are still paying her to be on call so she must be able to cancel plans at short notice. Just an idea. I am a nanny and would happily agree to those terms.

nannynick Sat 06-Aug-11 10:00:22

Why would you accept a contract on that basis Eeyore12? If you had been working 8.30-7pm and now it's 8.30-12 at 1/2 rate, then normal for 12-7 that's a drop in salary.

3.5 hours x 5 days = 17.5 hours
@ £11 per hour = £192.50 a week
@ £5.50 per hour = £96.25

What would also happen during school holidays - sounds as though the nanny takes their own holiday then but would that be paid at the old rate, or the new rate?

If nanny is doing 8.30-7 five days per week, at £11 net, then I make that £14.91 gross per hour / £157 gross per day. Net annual £30,113
If changing to 1/2 pay for 8.30-12 then deducting £96.25 a week, I make the new annual Net figure £26712 a difference of £3401.
If the nanny were to agree to such a contract, it would depend if they could afford to take a paycut of £3400 a year.

xmyboys Sat 06-Aug-11 13:27:35

Might be the wrong response but why can't you ask her to take on more housekeeping in those hours?
Keeping overall house clean, laundry (ironing!) and cooking some meals. Not just things related to children.
and if she is not interested in this role and decides to leave then could you not advertise this job description.
I would not be too concerned if she left and knowing that your children adore her - they will quickly adapt.
Obviously you will have children in school soon and will always have this lull time in the middle of the day to fill - so a change in job description now might make things smoother down the track.

If i was a nanny I would not feel comfortable about having 15 hours a week paid and not doing anything for it, actually regardless of what my job was.
I do understand that if you want her to be available then yes you would have to pay her but if you are paying then I think you should be getting something for it! even if it's only 2 hours housekeeping each day, you don't have to flog her!

Earlybird Sat 06-Aug-11 14:07:37

In a similar situation, our nanny 'made up' extra hours by babysitting one evening a week. She was willing to do it, and it worked out well for all of us.

Fwiw, dd seemed to catch every illness going during her first few years at nursery (until her immunity had been built up), so it was invaluable to have our nanny 'on call' to cover the days when dd was home feeling unwell.

Stars22 Sat 06-Aug-11 19:58:59

wow your nanny gets over £14 an hour that is double what i get as a nanny. My charges go to pre school one day a week 8.50-2.50, im paid normally and do my normal child related chores and then the time is my own, obviously i have my phone on so if one of them is ill etc i have to get them.

Nicadooby Sat 06-Aug-11 20:21:44

As a nanny I have always been paid my full wage when the children went to nursery, all of my friends have too. I even got full pay in my last two jobs when the children started full time school.

xmyboys Sun 07-Aug-11 08:43:31

I am so in the wrong job! I only get paid the hours I work and boy do I work smile

eurycantha Sun 07-Aug-11 10:33:29

I agree with Nicadoody that I have always been paid the same when the children were at nursery and my current charges are at full time school ,I do not expect to be paid less when they go to school.I do now do all the family ironing and have more time to do many of the things that I often have no time for when keeping three under sixes occupied .

sunnydelight Mon 08-Aug-11 01:38:13

The bottom line is flexibility costs, so if that is what you want/need to make your family work then you have to pay. Maybe she would be willing to do some evening babysitting or take on a few non child-related chores around the house, but I don't think you can totally expect that tbh. I guess you need to think about how much you want to keep her as if you are openly resentful you might find yourself without a nanny at all.

biscuitmad Mon 08-Aug-11 01:47:14

I would ask the nanny what she would like to do and see what she says.

I would then make a suggestion and ask her to do cleaning jobs, hoovering, cleaning the bathroom. Put washing on/out on the line. That way at least your money is going somewere and you wont have to worry about housework.

sunshinenanny Fri 12-Aug-11 18:49:46

I would expect to be paid in these circumstances, you need your nanny on call so she can't do another job and she still has living cost to cover. It's as simple as thatsmile

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