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Nannies and cars...

(32 Posts)
MaryHughes Tue 11-Mar-14 20:36:29

I'm thinking of returning to work in September and will be looking for a nanny to look after my children (2.5yrs and 9 months). I live in a large house with a garden in the countryside with only a few other houses in walking distance. If I were to employ a nanny I would be very worried about the nanny driving the children anywhere because I would worry about car accidents. My mum has said I will struggle to keep a nanny if she is not allowed to drive the children anywhere because she will get bored stuck at home with no other adults to talk to all day. I would only be looking for a nanny three days a week and so it wouldn't matter to the children that they didn't go out on those three days - they are more than happy to hang around the house, play in the garden and go on the odd walk down the lane to feed the ducks.

Does anyone have any views on whether a nanny would find it unacceptable to have to stay around the house and garden rather than being able to take the children out and about?

Artandco Thu 13-Mar-14 19:07:35


Also in terms of safety, say if one of your children becomes ill during the day, or needs to be taken to a and e for stitches etc.. Surely it's better they can head straight there than wait for you to return.

Or they decide to make a birthday cake but have ran out of eggs

Or children get invited to parties during the day

Or 101 other reasons its best not to be isolated

HSMMaCM Thu 13-Mar-14 19:01:18

Do you think a nanny would be safer driving their own car or your strange car?

Crowen85 Thu 13-Mar-14 18:42:33

I think you will struggle to find someone willing to take a job like this. My current job was based in Central London And I was out and about everyday.

My bosses are American and In January were relocated back to the USA. I agreed to accompany them and help them find an American replacement.

Now they live in the Philadelphia suburbs and there are no sidewalks and I can't drive over here. So basically I can't go anywhere because it was only for three months I'm fine with this but no way would I take a job where this was the norm. BecAgsw I love the baby, but I'm bored and so is he! I have a driver actually takd v me places but without that freedome to drive or go somewhere it's aweful and it's only becagse my boss is so lovely I agreed to this.

Plus I grew up on a farm in the middle of the country and hell no if you get a nanny she needs to be able to drive!

Crosseyedcat Thu 13-Mar-14 13:00:18

sounds idyllic mrswishywashy!

slowcomputer Thu 13-Mar-14 10:41:33

You'd need to be a named driver on her insurance if you do the swap cars thing and her on yours.

Blondeshavemorefun Wed 12-Mar-14 18:05:18

I added one mb - they paid the extra of £37

Weirdly enough it was cheaper to add her to the end of my insurance 8mths then to put her on it for 3mths

nannynick Wed 12-Mar-14 17:25:38

How does insurance work when swaping cars? Named driver on each policy? What about difference in cover needed - nanny needs more than social/domestic.

nannynick Wed 12-Mar-14 17:22:44

How d

mrswishywashy Wed 12-Mar-14 16:17:52

I've done a position like this and it worked well and I think if you were honest when advertising that no driving allowed you might get some canditates although you would be cutting yourself out of top ones too. With the family I worked with the children were out in the fields, we had friends over, we did outdoor painting, lots of cooking/baking, made rugby fields and dug in the mud. Walked down and spent hours by the river, went and watched the farmer drive the tractor basically a very relaxed time. I grew up in the same small town where I nannied (it was my first nanny job 18 years ago) and it was a lot of freedom and as there wasn't all the extra curricular activities that city and town children have it was very relaxed. I stayed with the family for 18 months and after about nine months started driving the children so we could have further adventures such as fishing and walking in national parks.

Overall though I think you need to keep an open mind about the nanny driving get her to take a defensive driving course (you pay), make sure car is suitable or let her use yours and make sure they have business insurance on their car.

MaryHughes Wed 12-Mar-14 14:35:44

Of course, i'd be more than happy for them to have nanny friends over with their children too. The car thing is only a safety concern. In all other respects in pretty easy going.

Blondeshavemorefun Wed 12-Mar-14 14:28:05

Def a trust thing but also the fact being in someone else's house all day everyday would drive me insane (no pun intended lol)

Would you allow other mums nannies and cms over to play? Children need to learn to socialise and share their toys as well as having same exp at other houses /m&t

If it is only the fact the nanny may not have a safe car then swap cars - or if you take a train get a taxi/nanny drop/pick you up - I often do this as won't use my car for work and have always had a works car for working hours

MaryHughes Wed 12-Mar-14 14:22:43

Thanks for all your replies. Swapping cars makes a lot of sense. Takes out the hassle of swapping over the car seats all the time as well. And thanks drinkyourmilk for your suggestions, I think I'll follow those.

NannyK7H Wed 12-Mar-14 14:12:50

Just swap cars. So nanny drives to your house in her car, you take her car to drive to work and leave the safe car at home if the nanny wants to use it. Lots of people do this. Especially parents with 3+ kids as not many nannies would own a car bigger than a 5 seater.
It's definitely a trust thing. I hate it, I feel completely useless not being allowed to bundle into the car and go out somewhere. A devalued nanny is a non-inspired nanny, take it from me! I wake up and see the sun shining and think 'just another day in the garden' rather than 'oooo we could go to the zoo! Or the beach! I wonder what the kids want to do!'

cathpip Wed 12-Mar-14 13:56:33

When I did nanny if I was doing a long journey for a day trip with the kids my boss used to swap cars with me. She would drive my Peugeot 106, and I would use her Mercedes estate, is this an option? I must admit not being able to drive would put me right off applying for a position.

OutragedFromLeeds Wed 12-Mar-14 13:49:41

They'd probably be safer going in the car to playgroup, than playing with the tractors/animals at the farm tbh.

To answer your question, the problem is both lack of trust and needing to get out. The staying at home would be just about bearable in the summer, but awful in the winter (which if you live in the Uk is about 6 months...).

EasterHoliday Wed 12-Mar-14 13:20:53

you'll be lucky to find a good nanny who'll take those terms. Would you find it easier to have an older, mroe experienced nanny who's got 20 years' of driving experience? or would you pay for some driving lessons?
can you insure the nanny on your own robust, properly maintained car?
you know you can incorporate reasonable provisions in the contract about car maintenance particularly since the mileage allowance you'd be paying incorporates an element to cover such costs (you're in effect reimbursing her to have maintenance carried out so reasonable to request that it's done)

Daiso Wed 12-Mar-14 13:16:59

I am a nanny and would also not take a job like this.

It's really unfair on the nanny to be cut off from everything else - it may not bother you but no matter how much a nanny does with the children, we do need some adult interaction and conversation and also something other than the immediate area.

I am a neurotic mother, more so than I thought I would be, but even I realise that my DS has to be taken out and about without me at times.
You have to let go sometime.
Even the safest car/driver is at risk of accidents.

elastamum Wed 12-Mar-14 13:05:49

If you can afford it, buy a car for them to drive. We did this for years. Our nanny drove a very nice safe 4X4 (we also live in the countryside). By restricting the nanny from driving you are also restricting many social activities for your DC and probably wont get the pick of the best nannies as many wont want the job.

FWIW when I had au pairs, I used to send them out with a driving instructor to make sure they were considered safe.

MaryHughes Wed 12-Mar-14 12:51:27

Some cars are safer than others no matter how well maintained. If a discovery crashed into a golf the people in the golf would more than likely be worse off regardless of maintenance.

nannynick Wed 12-Mar-14 12:35:56

Both. You are not trusting the nanny to have a reasonably well maintained car.

If you can afford to provide a car, then that may be the soluition.

You may find a nanny who is happy to spend a lot of time on the farm or at your home. It will all depend on the individual.

MaryHughes Wed 12-Mar-14 12:05:53

It's not so much the nanny's driving ability that concerns me but the car that they would be driving. I can't afford to buy a third safe car for the nanny but maybe ought to look into getting a cheaper run around car for me to take to work and letting the nanny drive my car. I hadn't thought about asking them to drive as part of the interview but now you mention it I'd definitely do that.

For those who wouldn't take a job like this is it because you want to get out and about yourselves during the day and staying at home with kids would be too boring or is it more to do with feeling that you're not being fully trusted with the kids?

I'm not too worried about restricting their experiences. My dad is a farmer and lives down the road so we have acres of fields to play in and animals, tractors etc and they would be with me the other 4 days a week to go to mix with other children and do anything else I thought they needed.

McPheezingMyButtOff Wed 12-Mar-14 00:09:32

You are restricting your childrens experiences, and devaluing a professional nanny.

I too, would not want to be employed in such a position.

Blondeshavemorefun Wed 12-Mar-14 00:01:35

No wouldn't take this job as neither would many exp nannies - I have turned down jobs like this - it's too restricting

A younger nanny may agree

I would do the same as milk and go on a drive with you

Listen to your mum or else use a nursery

nbee84 Tue 11-Mar-14 21:42:44

Agree with the others - as a nanny I wouldn't take this position. Look for an older nanny that has a good few years driving experience.

Karoleann Tue 11-Mar-14 21:30:24

Could you imagine having to stay in for 3 days every week with someone else's children? Its best for your children to have continuity of care and your nanny will get bored very soon with nothing to do.

We live in a very large house with a large garden, shops within reach and a (irregular) bus service and I would never employ a nanny who couldn't drive.
Your 2.5 year old will want to go to playgroup or swimming lessons or gym sessions etc soon.

You need to check your nanny has held a full, clean driving licence for a few years and drives regularly and then as part of the interview ask her to drive you somewhere…(you need to forewarn interviewees first though).

I've turned someone down as they drove too fast.

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