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Is this reasonable for an Au Pair to do?

23 replies

fuzzoff · 29/07/2017 16:35

We have a DC who is 7, both work and for the last few years have had a childminder for some mornings and afternoons either side of school, who has done some before school care, dropped to school and later on, collected from school. I have just found out our childminder will not be able to do this from September and the same thing happened the year before. We are now considering an Au Pair from September. Would the following be reasonable?-

  1. Look after one 7 year old from about 7.45am when we leave for work, then walk to the school bus stop at the end of our estate and wait with DC until they get on the bus. School is in a rural area so walking to school is not possible.
  2. I would do all pick ups from school from September as my work hours are changing but there may be an occasional day when they would need to collect from bus stop.
  3. About three hours of cleaning per week (hoover living rooms, bedrooms, clean bathrooms and kitchen floor).

We would still do all cooking, laundry etc.
I understand in my area there are live in our live out options for an Au Pair and I don't know rates yet but I just wondered does the above sound reasonable to ask?
Thank you all.
OP posts:
NotLachsAgainMother · 29/07/2017 16:38

I'm not being fighty but how on earth can an au pair live out? The whole idea is that they experience family life as one of the family. Otherwise it's just a babysitter/cleaner.

AndNowItIsSeven · 29/07/2017 16:40

No, the cleaning isnit ok , all they should do is tidy up after themselves and your dd (while they are minding her) .
There is no such thing as a live out aupair.
Is it a supervised school bus?

Phosphorus · 29/07/2017 16:42

I can't see a live out au pair arrangement working.

Au pairs live with you so that their accommodation costs, food etc. are covered, and they have spare time for studying/language learning. They are meant to be treated as family.

The money you pay them is never going to cover accommodation/living costs.

Crunchymum · 29/07/2017 16:42

3 hours cleaning per week? Watch child for an hour a day and drop off for school bus?

Definitely doesn't seem enough to warrant a live-in au pair but I don't know how a live out one would work?

MandateMandy · 29/07/2017 16:47

I think you could advertise for a "family helper" and offer an hourly rate.

MandateMandy · 29/07/2017 16:50

8 hours a week at £10ph. Might suit a student or retiree.

NoCapes · 29/07/2017 16:51

Does your school have a breakfast/after school club? Then just hire a cleaner

Mumof56 · 29/07/2017 16:56

If you live in a rural area will the au pair have transport to do something with the rest of her day. An au pair isolated in a rural area is not fair.

brasty · 29/07/2017 17:00

Au Pairs get bed and board and live as part of a family. It is supposed to be a cheap way to see another country. That is why they are paid very little.
Legally I thought a mothers help was only with children when a parent was present, which is why there is little legislation governing them.

LockedOutOfMN · 29/07/2017 17:02

I think you could advertise for a "family helper" and offer an hourly rate.
Agree. Where we live (Spain), this is really common.

brasty · 29/07/2017 17:03

I know there are posts called live out au pairs. But these are really less regulated and cheaper child minders, not proper au pairs. But if your children are well behaved, your job is easy, so yes would suit. But they need to be working elsewhere to earn enough money to live, and that might be difficult in a very rural area.

It is not legal, but I would be tempted to see if there is an older retired woman I could pay to do this, if my children were easy to look after.

brasty · 29/07/2017 17:03

Spain do not have the strict legislation we have around childcare.

SummerMummy88 · 29/07/2017 17:04

You need 'mothers helper' not au pair.

BeepBeepMOVE · 29/07/2017 17:04

I have heard of live out au pairs. They tend to come from a company/agency that provides an apartment that a few share.

I think 3 hours cleaning is absolutely fine, sounds like a very basic once a week whizz round clean. Then an hours childcare in the morning- absolute dream job.

Don't really think there is enough to warrant an au pair. You might be able to find someone to do drops offs in the morning for a bit of extra cash.

Chewbecca · 29/07/2017 17:14

this summary on au pair world is quite handy. Light housework is fine, but best to be clear at the outset exactly what you're looking for.
Assuming your morning pick up would be an hour a day, you're only looking at 8 hours work pw currently, it is usually 20-25. What about evening babysitting, do you need that once or twice a week too?

I've never heard of a live out au pair and can't see how it would work financially but a live in one would normally receive 'pocket money' of around £100-£120 pw, usually plus language lessons & a bus pass (as well as board and lodgin obviously).

QuiteLikely5 · 29/07/2017 17:25


Folk in MN get very defensive about au pairs so beware!!Smile

nannynick · 29/07/2017 17:27

The duties sound fine. Live-out would not be an option unless you paid more than an au-pair would usually get... as with them not living with you, National Minimum Wage will apply - so calculate the hours per week and what you would be paying and compare that to how much you must pay to meet NMW.

brasty · 29/07/2017 17:29

Its not the fact she wants an au pair quitelikely that is the issue. Its that it is probably going to cost too much for the number of hours work she wants done.

Goingtobeawesome · 29/07/2017 17:35

When I was an au pair I had to clean the whole house every week.

fuzzoff · 29/07/2017 20:37

Apologies, I had issues with my internet and tried to post several times but couldn't. I appear to be a bit clueless about the whole au pair thing so your responses are actually really helpful. It is too much to have an au pair all week for what we need, I realise that. I think I got confused with the live out thing... a friend of mine in the neighbouring city has some sort of live out au pair so I thought that was a thing. I think I am going to have to source some kind of other childminder for drop offs or see if any of the local nurseries to drop offs to the school, I think a few do. I'm just feeling a bit thrown and a bit disappointed as for the second year running, we are facing into September and having to find a solution. Childcare seems to get more complicated in the school years, not less so. The school is small and traditional and they have no breakfast club or after school care at all. The childminder we had in the previous school year quit on us the day before the first day back as she had got a new job as an LSA in a school at short notice. And last year's one is not doing any childminding from September as she has some health issues. So its back to the drawing board. But reflecting on it further and reading your replies, I can see an au pair is probably not the way to go.

OP posts:
GinAndToast · 29/07/2017 20:45

As you say, childcare gets more complicated as they get bigger. If whatever cost of the alternative to a live in au pair costs more than £70/80 a week though, it'll be worth it.

I have had au pairs and they became (and still are) like big sisters. You can go out one or two nights a week for that, which is helpful.

Any cleaning is definitely unacceptable though, and they will frankly be utterly useless at it anyway 😂

£70 a week aupair and get a cleaner extra if you can.

But if you never go out on an evening and don't think you'll ever want to, plus you can get a different childminder for less, then do that.

If you do want an aupair, look at aupair world online: they explain everything. It costs about 50 euros to advertise and take care reading everyone else's profiles and then write your own, plus look for a girl you want too on their profiles.

It's very easy really, but I'd do it right now even if you are not sure as most girls set themselves up by the spring before. They'll be some good ones though who have made a last minute decision or their placement has fallen theoughz

frustratedmom1 · 27/08/2017 12:06

Why are people saying cleaning is unacceptable for an aupair? Look up all the aupair agency sites and there is nothing that says they can not do "light housework". At the end of the day, the schedule and lists of responsibilities is totally between you and the aupair as long as you are within the UKBA guidelines for an aupair. Even the agencies only have recommendations, not actually legal guidelines. I've had aupairs for years and all have done housework because my kids are in school all day and they don't cook AT ALL for my kids. The key is to send the a complete schedule with everything well in advance before even having the skype interview. My two cents!

grandOlejukeofYork · 27/08/2017 12:09

You can't have a live out au pair by definition.

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