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Seasoned Nanny employers or Nannys am I right to be miffed.................( bit long sorry )

(113 Posts)
mummypoppins Tue 18-Sep-07 09:21:42

Just got to work and a bit pissed off!

Our Nanny has been with us for 9 months now. She is 38 and has 20 years experience. She is orginally from England but moved to Australia when she was 3 months old so all her nannying experience is there.

She has come to England because she wants to study Homeopathy and was attracted to our job because we have 2 school age children so she has time off during the day to study.

She is paid £270 n pw ( we live in the country in the midlands ). She has her own annexe with Kitchen , shower room , Tv dvd , free broad band etc and a completely paid for 3 yr old Scenic entirely at her disposal . She does not contribute to this in anyway apart from her own diesel ( althought tbh I dont keep too much in terms of tabs on her and if she paid for her private diesel out of the kitty I would never know ). I am very naughty too as I dont declare that she has the car for private use so neither we nor her have to pay tax on it.She takes it to College ( 35 miles away ) at least 4 times a month as well as trips to London and other places at the weekend.

She has had everything that she has asked for in terms of Kitchen stuff for her kitchen, brand new leather sofabed and pine table and chairs for her annexe and a £100 fancy screen that she wanted to make her space look nice ( DH would explode if he new ).

I lent her money ( £500 ) in the summer to pay for her college fees and pay her early if she is going away and asks ( twice in 9 months ). We took her to Centre Parcs for the weekend for free and she didnt lift a finger when we were there or pay even for a round of drinks and we didn't count it as 2 days holiday.

She went to Edinburgh for the week in May and we ferried her to and from the airport ( 240 miles ) for free.

I bought her Tiffany jewelrry for her birthday in August.

Her contracted hours at 7am to 11 and 3 to 7pm no babysitting at all except as overtime at £10 per hour with full time to cover the holidays . She is supposed to do all nursery duties, food shopping ( she has an unlimited budget for this and always buys the best as she loves expensive things...........I have never complained ). In actual fact she did a deal with my cleaner ( who does 12 hours a week ) and the Nanny now does washing and ironing and the cleaner does all the cleaning ( incl Kids stuff ).

She runs errands if I ask and feeds cats if we are away for the weekend. She does the dishwasher during the week and will put a meal in the slow cooker on a Friday for the whole family friday evening. Quite often she finishes early on a Friday as my DH doesnt work Friday pm and so he will do the school pick up and just leave her to finish off unpacking uniform and then she clocks off.

She will organise play dates but only if it suits her. In the holidays she spent an absolute fortune on going out and eating out with the children which again I never moaned about.

All in all I think ist a pretty easy job...........we live in a huge house with a lovely garden...........she has her own patio and garden furniture.............we have a swimming pool too.............if we go out for a meal en famille at the weekend or have a takeaway etc we always include her.

I have taken her shopping at the weekend never mind if she buys magazines to read for the house etc etc.


This week my husband is away on business and I am particularly stretched at work so I asked her if she would cover some etxra hours. It will be 4 hours over 3 till 8pm 2 nights and until 9pm on Friday night. She has said no problem and confirmed that she wants to discuss how she is going to be paid for all this time she is doing.

I AM REALLY PISSED OFF. We have 2 big holiadys coming up. She is entitled to 20 days plus Bank holidays but will have 27 plus Bh unless I ask her to work when we are not around. I feel that we should be counting the axtra hours as hours in lieu.

What is every ones view. Am I being fair to her. Is it a reasonable job ?

S88AHG Tue 18-Sep-07 09:27:10

I am not a nanny but it seems quite fair to me and I would not be offended to do what you say, and if she quits can I be your nanny please, you sound like a lovely employer. Some nannies will be along soon to help you

eleusis Tue 18-Sep-07 09:44:23

You are a very generous employer. I don't think she appreciates what she has to be honest.

You could tell her that she can count the time for the evening you require as time in lieu if she doesn't want to work on the seven extra days you are away.

Or, you could stop letting her clock off early on Friday.

I do see your point that she is happy take the hand outs from you, but then when you need a favour she jumps up to submit her bill. However, I also think she has a right to ask to be paid for hours you ask her to work outside of her normal contract.

pol26 Tue 18-Sep-07 10:09:07

It's hard, as an ex-nanny with some generous employers too I can say that I did extra as a favour because we became more like friends and I respected her.

I think it's poor that she has asked for more pay, but it is outside her contracted hours so she is legally entitled. I would have a friendly word and suggest that you do let her go early on some days and have been kind to her.

If she still doesn't shift to your view, I would say then you were going to let the 7 days slip as paid but not working but in this case you will take the time in lieu of what she will be having and accrue hours that way to make up for the 7 days extra she would have.

And on a lighter note, PRETTY PLEASE do you want a new nanny...???

GroaningGameGirly Tue 18-Sep-07 10:14:39

Bloody hell. I want to come and work for you - her life sounds much nicer than mine at the moment!

Sorry, nothing remotely useful to say but I think she's darned lucky to have such easy-going employers and should be willing to do the odd favour.

michymama Tue 18-Sep-07 10:24:03

I think she is having her cake and eating it !!! You sound like a very generous employer and if I was your nanny would be returning the favour, its only and extra 4 hours, staggered !!! Yes its in her contract but you are being very generous with the extras she receives. Maybe stop being so generous ??

Pickie Tue 18-Sep-07 10:35:49

we had a similar situation were we basically were to accomodating. We paid her 5 days (paid £125 a day!) she only worked 4 days. We then asked for her to work on the 5th day as a one off, she didnt like it and she also wanted travel expenses (she didnt live with us) and a few more perks.

I sat down with her and explained that she was much better off then most nannies and that she should see all this in perspective and not wanting more every time as she was paid very generous. She agreed and all was fine.Not a nice thing to do but same as with everybody give them one finger and they want the whole hand!

My lesson was never be too nice as however nice she is an employee and when too generous people take it for granted and want more!

Tricey Tue 18-Sep-07 11:12:16

Sounds very reasonable. She said she wants to 'discuss' how she'll be paid; so I guess while 'discussing' you can just be light about it and say that you''ll count the hours in lieu for the extra hours/days off she'll have. Since you see that this might pop up again, start tallying up the extra time you're giving her so that if you need to you can use the hours elsewhere and if you don't need to, it'll be a nice bonus for her as opposed to something she is expecting. Fridays too; if it's in her contract to work on fridays til 7, then she should expect that and see the times she's off early as a bonus. smile

mummypoppins Tue 18-Sep-07 11:19:48

Pickie you are right. I am too generous. I think that the wages we pay with all the perks are pretty good for someone who had preschoolers all day and thats why I get cross.

Yes its a long way to school so that takes at least 3 hours a day but she combines it with trips to the supermarket and she does all the washing and ironing but that was her choice and if the weather is good I do 3 or 4 loads at the weekend to get it all dry.

I have decided to do it as you all say...discuss holidays for the rest of the year and suggest that she takes it off the extra days she will have off when we are away. Also I have arranged for my Mum to cover Friday night now so it will actually only be 2 hours extra hours max. She will get the message one way or another.

The thing is I dont want her to go as the children are very happy and settled with her but I object to being taken for a ride when I feel we treat her very well. Its a lovely stress or hassle ( children are 8 and 6 ; on the whole well behaved....make thier own beds, clean their own shoes and eat everything put in front of them ) and £1200 per month spending money ( no essentials ) plus a free car...........any takers???

Seriously if she leaves I will be on the look out!!

pol26 Tue 18-Sep-07 12:05:35

Mummypoppins ~ I can honestly say that when I nannied lots of girls expected to have lots of perks, time off etc... they were often shocked when they had to work, lol! I must admit sometimes I felt peeved but then you do remember it's your job and all the stuff you can do in work time while you nanny for school aged children.
You can stroll around the supermarket, have a coffee and generally take your time. There are no restrictions at home on tv ~ you can watch jeremy kyle (lol) while you do the ironing where as when you have a toddler/little one you just can't do that. I think she has it pretty easy. And if your children make their own beds too!!! (And no cleaning)
If you'd take me and my two little ones i'd jump at the chance STRAIGHT away. grin You sound like a delightful boss!

MatNanPlus Tue 18-Sep-07 12:15:57


She is a fool, your are more than generous.

I hate that it is so 1 sided, when i had employers like yourself i would do extra little things like leave a meal of pasta/stew in the fridge, buy flowers for the house, things like that.

I would amend the contract next time to cover this sort of situation to be honest.

hertsnessex Tue 18-Sep-07 12:22:24

i think she is taking the p!ss. you need to discuss it with her so the air is clear.

JennaJ Tue 18-Sep-07 12:25:25

Blimey I would work for you!! Sounds way better than any of my nanny jobs!

I would ask her in a nice way if she wants to 'work to rule' or if she wants to allow for a bit of give and take here and there. Explain that you often let her go early on a friday and that she will be having so many extra days holiday and that it would be nice if she could be a little flexible ocassionally to cover for the odd extra hours. Explain that if she would prefer being paid for the additional hours that you have no problem with that but that you will then offer her no flexibility in her working life working while you are away and on Friday pms etc.
Im sure you can word it better than me...don't let her walk all over you!


Squiffy Tue 18-Sep-07 14:10:01

Mummypoppins you are living my life all over again. Almost the same thing happened to me - my DH and I were so caught up in not wanting the kids to be affected by another change in childcare arrangements that we allowed a nanny to more or less walk all over us. It got to the point that I was putting the children into nursery so the nanny could have more spare time and she was then offering out her services to other families during these extra mornings off..... and there was lots of other stuff I won't go into. This nanny was an aussie too, and similar in age to yours. We also live in the country so know it isn't easy to find replacements though.

I would just swallow pride and replace now. don't just hope it will get better because it won't it will just get worse. Far better to do it quickly and to not go over the 12mth threshold in terms of length of employment. I would call a solicitor and discuss.

All the time I was going through this I was very stressed - I knew she was taking the p but hated the idea of (a) finding someone else and (b) having the kids go through another change. In truth when it all came to a head it was such a relief and it is only in hindsight I realise how I should have tackled it so much earlier. Our new nanny is so easy-going and chilled that she makes me feel guilty for not doing it sooner - and the children are happier as well. This friday we are off to a wedding overnight and the nanny is doing from end of shift Friday right through till Saturday lunchtime quite happily and hasn't even asked me if I will be paying her overtime for it (I will, but am frankly amazed that she just said 'no probs' when I asked her to do it, instead of making it some kind of huge deal - which is what aussie nanny would have done)..

I'll not go on and on about what happened to me but you can cat me if you want to know all the gory details and why I suggest you don't go over the 12 mth threshold..

mummypoppins Tue 18-Sep-07 15:49:21

thanks all...........squiffy embarrasingly I am a solicitor so know all about the employment bits.

Just out of interest how much do you pay your nanny and do you expect babysitting as well ?

Also she is due a pay rise at Christmas..........How much would be usual ?

I am worried about losing her because it is difficult to recruit in the country so i wonder whether she is likely to jump. She once told me that at her age she doesnt do being told what to do because she is way too experienced and she has been there and done that.

I am sure there are days when she works from 7am until beyond 11am because by the time she is back form the school run its 9.15 and then she has a few things to do but on the otherhand she goes to Yoga for an hour and a half at 9.30am on a wedsnesday am and it is her choice to do the shopping. We always managed with online shopping before its just that she told me she likes to shop and cook fresh everyday.

I guess I haven't managed it very well. We always had Au pairs before and treated them as well ( apart form the pay ). In most cases they were happy to help out as they saw that we were generous in so many ways and I guess I thought she would too.

I will sit down and calculate what holiday she has left for the rest of the year and sort with her that way. I will also ask her if she wanst to take as holiday the Monday at the beginning of September when we were at Centre Parcs and I got home to a note fro the cleaner to say that she had done all the washing and ironing so that the nanny had plenty of time to get the children read for school the next day. Clearly the nanny hadnt been in our house to do any work at all!!

I dont pay my cleaner to do what my Nanny is alraedy paid to do. Thats why I am miffed!!

I will be inetersted tonight to see what some of the nanny's on here think!

eleusis Tue 18-Sep-07 16:46:04

I know a fab nanny who needs a job and would love to return to the UK. She would be over the moon with what you offer. But, she's Canadian and her working holiday visa has expried. So you'd need to know another avenue to get her into the country to work legally. She is my old nanny. She went to a job in Turkey and they were mean old bats. So she resigned and she'll be staying with me next week as she passes back through the UK for one last time. sad sniff sniff

There might not be any such visa that could get her in the country... but if there was I'm sure she'd be thrilled to come back.

NAB3 Tue 18-Sep-07 17:01:10

I think you spoil her.

I think she should be paid overtime but £10/hour is too much

She should be organising play dates to suit the children, not her. It is her job!

omega2 Tue 18-Sep-07 17:43:18

sounds like a great job and would love to work for you - wondering where abouts in the midlands you are?

mummypoppins Tue 18-Sep-07 17:44:29


Squiffy Tue 18-Sep-07 17:53:17

MP - I now have a live-out nanny and pay her £7 an hour net which is the average here (I am in deepest Kent), but low compared to London salaries I think. The auusie was a live-in and we paid her the same as you are paying. Plus car and flights home (£700) and own annexe and so on. The salary you are paying is spot in if you look here, and the average hours for live in are anywhere between 50-60 hours according to most websites: this is what says "A standard workday for a full-time, live-out nanny is about 10 hours, but it is not unheard of to have your nanny work 11. The standard workweek for this type of nanny is 50 hours. All live-out nannies are usually paid an hourly rate, and any evening babysitting your nanny does is paid in addition. Live-in nannies, on the other hand, can expect to work longer hours as they are granted the convenience of not having to commute. A full workweek for a live-in nanny is 60 hours, plus 1-2 nights of babysitting, which are included in her salary (not paid additionally)"

Squiffy Tue 18-Sep-07 17:58:20

....Oh and if you want to know how I have all this stuff to hand, it is because this dearest beloved departed nanny has seen fit to try to blackmail me into giving her a pay-off to stop her reporting me to HMRC for ignoring EU 48 hour per week maximum hours regulations.... she really was a work of art, that one.

yogimum Tue 18-Sep-07 18:04:29

I had a position with lots of perks but any extra hours I did I wasn't paid for. Its a two way street and frankly I think she is taking advantage of your generosity.

eleusis Tue 18-Sep-07 18:14:26

Squiffy.... She doing what?!?!?! OH no! Tell us more (if you can). And if you can't cat me.

mummypoppins Tue 18-Sep-07 18:58:01

squiffy I am amazed.............I kinda got the impression from her that she had taken a reduced salary for her age and experience because she wanted a load of time off during the day.

Its interesting because I was talking with a friend a few weeks back who is in Wandsworth and pays her live in nanny the same as mine and she looks after a 3 yr old full time and whats more this friend ( and appparently half of London too ) only declares half of this to HMRC to save money!

I reckon in term time my nanny works about an 9 hour day and in holidays its 11 hours.( 8 to 7 ) so that is an average 47 hour week..............not excessive for a live in nanny .

NAB3 Tue 18-Sep-07 19:03:04

Nannies are exempt from the 48 hour rule....

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