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Male au pair

(7 Posts)
DLCC Tue 25-Feb-14 11:39:05

Hi there

I'm new to all this so please bear with me.....

My partner and I have 4 boys between us, aged 10, 9, 8 and 4. The 10 and 8 yo are with us 50% of the time, the 9 and 4 yo all of the time apart from EOW when they are with their Dad. I work part time (19.5hrs a week) and my partner works full time. I have been speaking to a colleague at work who has been raving about her au pair.

Basically what I wanted to ask was would it be unreasonable to have an au pair (I was considering male as we have all boys and they are very sporty/outdoorsy) to do the school run during term time but to help out more in the holidays (ie the 19.5hrs a week I am at work) play football with the boys, take them out occasionally, generally entertain them when we're not around. They would have every weekend off (apart from maybe 1/2 evenings a month babysitting and also during the day in term time. I would expect a little help with keeping the boys rooms tidy. Is this unreasonable? are there au pairs willing to do this? are 4 boys too much to ask someone to look after? what sort of money would I expect to pay them? we are in West Sussex. As as I said I've absolutely no experience of this type of thing so please excuse my ignorance...

Many thanks

DLCC Tue 25-Feb-14 11:40:36

Sorry I missed a closed bracket!

Should read:

They would have every weekend off (apart from maybe 1/2 evenings a month babysitting) and also during the day in term time.

Mydelilah Tue 25-Feb-14 12:22:46

Not unreasonable at all! au pair looks like a good option for you indeed.

We have 2 DC aged 5 and 3.5 and an aupair because we both work FT. It's not meant to be a full time job, really only 4-5 hours a day.

Here is what our aupair does:
Pick up from nursery and school
Looks after children after school (includes play, outings to park, museums, play dates etc)
Cooks childrens meal each weeknight
Bathtime
Keeps house tidy during the week, esp kids rooms/ toys
laundry, bedding and ironing for the children only
2 nights baby sitting a week (includes one weekend night, every weekend)

In exchange we
Pay weekly salary
Provide place to live in our home, all food/basic toiletries
Pay all her Oyster card costs (we are Central London)
Pay her mobile phone package
Give her holiday whenever we are off work
For extra cash she sometimes cleans the house (if cleaner is off/doesn't show up), she also does full days occasionally during school hols/inset days and is paid an hourly rate extra to her salary for each extra hour)
We look after her in general, like a younger sister, occasionally worry about her too and have been known to pick her up after nights out etc!

She is very happy indeed with us, and us with her. It is like having another family member and we often eat together in the evenings and go out on weekends as a family - she is a great addition to our household really (appreciate we have been particularly lucky with current aupair on this front)

A few thoughts for you
- You must have a spare room and enough space not to be living on top of each other
- assuming you take on a continental European, you have to provide opportunity for English classes (this is key to the whole give and take side of the au pairing arrangement)
- I don't know about male au pairs but a quick search on here shows some very mixed experiences. Male au pairs are rare, you will be substantially cutting down your recruitment pool - suggest you also consider a sporty girl who will be able to take yor DC out also.

HTH

DLCC Tue 25-Feb-14 12:38:28

That's great Delilah, many thanks. Where did you find her?? how long are you expecting her to stay?

This is what we require (ish) is there anything else you think I need to add? they would have their own en suite double bedroom. Do we have to pay for the English classes? are 4 boys too much for one au pair?

During term time (39 weeks per year) - �65 per week � 23.5hrs per week approx.

Monday, Tuesday and Wednesdays � Make breakfast, take to school (bell goes at 0855), collect from school/or activities, make tea, play/entertain. Hours would be 0700-0930 then 1500-1800 � plus 1hr per day tidying the boys rooms/doing their laundry/clearing the kitchen of their meal things

Thursdays and Fridays � Light cleaning and ironing for 1/2 hrs per day � rest of house

All weekends off � we would MAYBE ask for 1-2 evenings a month babysitting

During school holidays (13 weeks a year) - �90 per week � 32hrs per week approx.

Mondays and Tuesdays (0800-1800), Wednesdays (0800-1400) looking after/taking out/entertaining the children, preparing their meals
Thursdays and Fridays (3hrs per day � could be looking after the children or assisting with household duties)
All weekends off

Mydelilah Tue 25-Feb-14 14:04:09

That all looks fine to me. We pay 80 a week for 4-5 hours a day plus the pre-agreed babysitting, then all extra hours paid at 4 an hour). And she has absolutely no outgoings (not even phone) so all her cash is spending money.

What you are asking for jobs-wise seems very standard I think. 4 kids is a lot, but they are older, and not there all the time so I wouldn't think it's an issue.

We use the Aupair World website to recruit, have done it twice now. You pay €40 for 6 weeks subscription, but we've found the right person within 10 days both times. (Actually being central london we get an avalanche of applications, more than I can read properly!) aupair World has a lot of guidance pages as well that you should look at. It's free for aupairs to sign up, only families have to pay. You post an online profile of your family (find a pic of the kids looking angelic!) and your requirements and any interested aupairs send you a message/their CV, you the. Choose who to interview on Skype.

Our current au pair will be staying 1 year (she started in Sep) which is pretty much the max. Most are doing it as a pre/post/sandwich year during uni to learn English and experience the UK so tends to run along the school year timetable. We only interview aupairs who are planning to spend a year as we don't want too much changing around for the DC.

Regarding paying for English classes, it's your choice really. Have a look at what is available and cost in your area. (If the only classes available are going to take up the full weekly salary, you would have to give this some thought). We have a language school almost next door that costs 25 a week for 3x3 hr sessions, and there is also a free class she attends on two evenings.

Final tip - we are always VERY clear during the interview stages on hours/activities so there are no misunderstandings. (Make sure they are ok with cleaning/baby sitting) We have a contract that we both sign listing everything to make sure.

DLCC Tue 25-Feb-14 14:15:16

Thanks so much for all of that, it's been really helpful, I will let you know how I get on...!

Mydelilah Tue 25-Feb-14 14:37:57

Good lucksmile

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