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I started out as a nanny, now I seem to be a house keeper

(15 Posts)
NoEscapeFromReality Tue 15-Mar-16 10:48:26

I have been in my first role as a nanny for a few months. I look after a toddler year old and her older brother.

When I first started, I was just doing childcare (it was summer holidays so had both children full time). The job advert had said light housekeeping and at the interview was told this meant vacuuming a couple of times a week, cleaning up after the children etc.

I devised my own routine of vacuuming upstairs on Mondays and Thursdays and downstairs on Tuesdays and Fridays. I then started (without being told) to do a couple of loads of washing a week.

Once the older one was back at school, I had more time on my hands so started to do the whole households washing (two adults, two children) which is 2-3 loads a day including putting the dry stuff away (I don't iron, there isn't an ironing board and I wouldn't iron anyway)

It now seems to have become expected of me to do the housework, though without this actually being voiced. A couple of times I've not done as much housework as normal and the dad (I rarely see mum) has asked, in a friendly way, if I would be able to hoover/clean the kitchen floor/tidy up as it's not been done for a few days. This will be because I've put the children first.

A few days ago I asked if I would be able to take the toddler out on the bus (I don't drive) to places now the weather is getting nicer. Just to larger playgrounds (we have a tiny pretty crap one within walking distance), soft play etc.

Dad said yes but as long as the housework is done as well as apparently the whole point in having me is so mum and dad don't have to do any. Erm. I thought the whole point is I'm a nanny and look after the children?? Sometimes the toddler ends up watching TV whilst I'm doing the housework.

Our daily routine has recently ended up like this:
From the minute oldest leaves for school:

TV goes on for toddler, I empty dishwasher, fill dishwasher, put it on, do first load of washing, take yesterdays clothes off the airers/put back on what is still damp, put away the dry clothes, take toddler out (library, feed the ducks, toddler groups), get home about 12, feed toddler, put washing on airers, put second load on, empty dishwasher, clean kitchen, vacuum downstairs, put washing on airers, play with toddler.

Then 3:30 older one is home so it's snack, homework, third load of washing (I wait for him to come home before 3rd load goes on so I can do his school clothes), bathtime, get into pyjamas, at 5pm the toddler has evening meal (older one eats with parents about 6:30), clean kitchen, fill dishwasher...

Oh and all this for minimum wage.

gruffaloshmuffalo Tue 15-Mar-16 10:51:49

I'd bring it up with them both. Explain that you did things to be helpful but you aren't their housekeeper or cleaner. If they want that then your wage will need to reflect the new job title and expectations

NoEscapeFromReality Tue 15-Mar-16 10:58:00

I worry that I will lose the job though. I live in a small rural village and there are no jobs. Buses are awful (four a day) to the bigger towns. As I don't drive I rely on public transport. So if I lost this job, I would struggle to find anything else.

Dad is self employed and can work whatever hours he wants. At the moment he stays at home after bringing the older one home but I stay til 6 as I do the baths etc whilst dad does dinner/works in the garden.

Dad has said a few times if they didn't have me the toddler would go to nursery.

I'm basically being paid to be the mum. Their mum gets home and does fuck all. Even dad says she's lazy.

My wage is increasing in April due to the living wage.

TinyTear Tue 15-Mar-16 11:00:09

how on earth is there that much washing? i do 2 to 4 loads a week for 2 adults and 2 children...

NoEscapeFromReality Tue 15-Mar-16 11:06:53

I really have no idea. It drives me mad. Dad seems to wear 3 pairs of boxers every day (mum appears to rarely wear any underwear!!!), dad wears 3 tshirts (he works outside so wears two outside and then comes home and changes into a clean tshirt), I put older one into pyjamas when he comes home as it's pointless him putting clean clothes on for a couple of hours before bath. Four towels every day. I have told them I will wash what is in laundry baskets so if its in the baskets I wash it. If it's on the floor I won't.

Yerazig Tue 15-Mar-16 11:09:27

After years and years nannying I've realised that once you start doing the housework jobs you have taken on parents start to expect it. That's why I make it clear from the beginning yes I don't mind if you need help with the odd load of washing or you need to a package picked up on the way to a playgroup. So from being clear from the start luckily no families have taken advantage. I would just talk to the parents and make it clear what your issues are. If not confident write it in an email and just expand what the problems are.

TreadSoftlyOnMyDreams Tue 15-Mar-16 12:13:21

Do you actually have a written contract that states your responsibilities?

Blondeshavemorefun Tue 15-Mar-16 12:19:09

you need to sit down and talk about this, sadly you started doing more unasked and now they expect and demand it

you agreed to the wage/minimum for the job you are doing, how old are you? tho ob didnt expect to do housework etc

what does your contract say, please tell me you have one with duties etc in it and you can sit down with them and say this is what i agreed to

if you want to stay, do you want more money to do the housekeeping?

seem a lot of washing

you can either leave by your own choice, stay and things change, go but they sack you

Iguessyourestuckwithme Tue 15-Mar-16 12:54:43

While yes it sounds like you are doing a lot of housework some of those duties I'd expect from being a nanny. I work 12 hours a day with 2 children under 2.5 when I get in I unload the dishwasher do breakfast clean up the kitchen etc of dad has left a mess I leave it but generally I give the kitchen a quick once over, take out washing hang it up and maybe throw on another load (sometimes I will put on some bits of the parents if I need to make up a load but generally I don't) aT lunch time I do a quick tidy up and should probably put a hoover round but generally I sweep the kitchen floor and fold kids clothes/iron them, I load dishwasher and then may take some time to myself while they nap. In the afternoon I tidy the kitchen from the mess of cooKing and serving tea and sweep up, load the dishwasher or wash up and maybe sort some more laundry. We don't have lots buT we don't have a tumble drier so it's generally on the airer. I don't hoover but I do sweep the laminate and antibacterial spray the table/high chairs.

Cindy34 Tue 15-Mar-16 13:39:14

I agree that the jobs you describe are often part of a nanny role. The children come first though, so on days you do large outings (so out for many hours, not just a toddler group) then some household things will be done less.

Washing machine here is on it's 3rd load of the day... washing can pile up for a while then be done on mass, especially if there is room to dry it (a washing line is very handy).

mylife123 Tue 15-Mar-16 17:26:32

I was nanny as well before and face the same problem as you had i think almost of parents has the same principe mostly if you are live in cause almost of them they don't tell you directly do this or do that but they expect you to do all of household at home because you are there already to look after kids , so for this case i think the only option is either you find a new job or talk to them nicely to deal with your problem. If you don't dare to talk with them cause you are scared they will kick you out then take it easy do as much as you can but not doing all of the jobs.

bibbitybobbityyhat Tue 15-Mar-16 17:31:08

You shouldn't be being paid minimum wage either! Do you live in? What are your qualifications (sorry if I've missed it).

Fwiw I think this family are completely and utterly taking advantage.

prettywhiteguitar Tue 15-Mar-16 17:31:48

I wouldn't be putting the toddler in front of the tv, I would gradually do less and less and just tell them what you've been doing with the toddler.

Too much housework not enough nannying here

expatinscotland Tue 15-Mar-16 17:47:52

I would find another job. Can you move? These people are taking the piss.

TreadSoftlyOnMyDreams Wed 16-Mar-16 11:31:30

I worry that I will lose the job though

I'm not so sure. Minimum wage with FT hours. I'm not up to speed on childcare costs outside London but I would be highly surprised to find that they would get FT childcare, and housekeeping for the same money.

Keep track of the time spent on housekeeping v actual childcare for a week and then tackle them about it.
Benchmark your salary - what does a nanny/housekeeper get paid in your region. Data available on Nannytax. I don't think you are doing that role though?

It's completely normal for a nanny to clean up after the children leaving the house tidy at the end of the day. Sometimes that involves a bit of hoovering and sweeping. It's also normal to clean their rooms and to do all their laundry. In practice its often just as easy to sweep in all the family laundry bar delicates but the volume sounds excessive here so that's an issue. Can they afford to buy and run a tumble drier so you are not spending half the day arranging clothing on a drier?

Otherwise, you are not scrubbing toilets, ovens, fridges, windows etc or making meals for the adults so you are certainly not doing full housekeeper duties? The PM school run is done by the father so you don't have the disruption of leaving the house for an hour in the afternoon.

I think that you are pissed off about the sheer volume of the laundry because you feel it's excessive and taking up too much time. Then say so or at least point out how much time it is taking to the detriment of their children and ask for a steer on what they want to be your priority?

I think you are also pissed off that it's minimum wage. Granted I would be too but you are not pointing to years of experience or childcare qualifications in your OP? If you were a nursery nurse it would be min wage too.

Under the circs though, I would see what I could do with my daily routine to make life a little easier and get enough experience under my belt to look for a new job. First nanny position of only a few months experience is not going to secure you a great nanny job in a more lucrative region?

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