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Au pair with lazy-itis(18 Posts)
So I have an au au pair from Spain again. She is meant to do 25 hours a week but is 6 hours under. She has a daily timetable of jobs to do daily and in addition one room to clean a day. I live in a small terraced house and daily cleaning will take 45 - 60 minutes max. No weekend work. Alternate Friday school pick ups and Monday morning drop offs at school free as kids are at their father's. Evening babysitting - twice since September. £65 per week cash (am out of London, mobile phone, gym membership and language course)
She doesn't do it.
I have asked her if she understands. I have told her to ask if there is anything she doesn't understand.
I have shown her where stuff is.
I have shown her what to do.
I have asked her to make sure she does it.
She still doesn't.
As a single mum I am between a rock and a hard place. I can't get rid or I can't go to work. No work, no income = crisis.
Advice from anyone please?
Even for out of London, £65 is extremely low seeing as bapaa's reccomendations are minimum £70
Regardless of the wage structure, she isn't actually doing any work! You warn her, and then failing that, you hire a replacement.
Free board and lodgings, pocket money and the cultural experience and an ability to pick up a foreign language? Yes please! Anybody in a non English speaking country looking for a 35yo teacher as home help? Sign me up!
In seriousness, it's a two way deal and she is not meeting her side of it.
What specifically do you want her to do?
Is she not doing tasks at all or not doing them to your standard?
Some au pairs a remote into the childcare part of the job than the cleaning!
£65 was stated by the agency I used. She has a language course paid for in addition as well as the private gym membership and the mobile phone and she did agree to this on interview. If you include all these she is on £120 per week but only 65 of it is in cash. I think that is quite good for 16 hours a week with board and lodging?
She's taking the kids to school, but nothing else apart from going to the gym every day. She was meant to make the kids packed lunch but sent my 8 year old to school with two sticks of cucumber and 5 cherry tomatoes so now I get my kids dressed and ready and make the lunches before I leave for work at 7.30. ( and that's cutting it fine for me to get to my school)
I have asked her if she is happy and she says yes she is. So I am kind of stumped. She had been unemployed in Spain for a while before she got this job with me, maybe that has an impact. I have also suggested she gets work at the kids primary school as an assistant as that is what the last au pair did - fitted in with school hours helped them with their MFL curriculum and boosted their income but she wont.
She has to do the usual stuff - clear the breakfast stuff, empty bin if necessary, load/unload dishwasher, put any washing in tumble, make kids beds, hoover downstairs. Pick up and put away
Daily room clean is hoover more carefully - ie skirtings, fling a duster around, wipe down any grubby marks. Mop kitchen or bathroom floor on the timetabled day. No ironing, no cooking.
I'm in a three bed terrace - my kids share. She never has to go in my room
Have you actually sat her down and said "I have asked you to do these things, you've not done them, if you don't do them I will have to let you go and recruit someone who will". Call the agency to warn them that you may need a new au pair. Give her one more week to pull her socks up then pull the plug. It's coming up to Christmas so if you're a teacher you should be able to get someone new by January. Can you work round this?
Many thanks for for all the advice - I have sat herre down but haven't actually given her a timeframe for when she has to improve by - doh! No brain! This is my next step!!
Get the agency involved, they should be replacing her free of charge if she's repeatedly not doing as you as ask.
Although in the meantime, just get her to carry out the unfinished tasks when you get in from work. If she's having to waste her own time in the evening then she may be more inclined to do the housework during the day.
I suspect though you're fighting a losing battle, if someone is intrinsically lazy they are not going to change.
I found having an actual rota pinned up in the kitchen helped, it gave a job for each day - with explicit instructions on what was required and how.
Again with the lunch boxes I would provide written instructions on what was to be made. You could even do this with photographs of what goes into the box if you think it might be a comprehension issue.
This may sound very prescriptive and patronising but sometimes people genuinely don't understand what is being asked or have a totally different idea from you.
Initially with our au pair I gave an itinerary that was very detailed down to how long to walk to school and snack rota for each week. Ap stayed with us for three and a half years in total and she was fab!!
IMO your pocket money, and extras looks about right. Hth.
Thank you to everyone for all your help. I have been off work for two days as my daughter and I have both had a bad chest infection. I have shown her physically what needs to be done (and she hasn't) My other half hovered around her and she just got up and walked out to her room. I have physically walked her through her daily jobs and when I contacted the agency they said it is not their problem they are just the supppliers.
So she has had Friday, Monday and Tuesday with no child care and watched someone clean around her but has offered no help and just slunk off back to her room
Am I unreasonable? 15 hours a week including cleaning? Language course, gym and phone?
I should have said my other half didn't have work and hovered around her as she still didn't get the hint and offer to help
Get rid, you've made the point quite clearly and she hasn't improved. get somebody lined up for New year and tell her she has to go at Christmas?
Agency sounds rubbish - use Au Pair World instead?
You are wasting your time with this aupair. She is taking the piss and possibly just waiting until Xmas to not come back
I had 7 au pairs in all, so fairly experienced with expectations and rules. I wouldn't be standing for this at all.
Lovely, how are you getting on?
I found this thread after looking for "lazy au pair"! We also have a very lazy au pair. Sits in her room every day. Has asked "how are you?" a handful of times in 3 months. Has never once said thank you for the dinners or cups of tea I've made her. Has not cleaned her bedroom, en suite or bed sheets! We spoke with her about it a few weeks after her arriving and she became the dream au pair... then stopped contributing after a few weeks. She says she's happy and likes living here, she has lots of friends... we've asked her to leave before Cheistmas and found a replacement. It will never work with her, we're very different people.
Listen to your gut feeling with your next au pair when you Skype them. My gut feeling said no with this one but I ignored it.
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