7 Tips for Setting Reasonable Expectations for a Nanny

As parents, we truly want what’s best for our children, which is why choosing the most appropriate form of childcare is so important. For families looking for a more personal experience that can be tailored to their family’s specific needs, hiring a nanny is the way to go. However, families that are new to employing a nanny often have many questions such as:


  • What qualities make a good nanny?
  • How much should I pay my nanny?
  • What are reasonable expectations for a nanny?
  • What should a nanny not do?
  • How long should a nanny commit to a family?
  • How do I find a nanny?


What qualities make a good nanny?


1 – Qualities that Count

The best way to decide which nanny is right for your family, is by looking for someone that aligns with your personal values. Hiring a nanny based solely on their level of education or experience is going to mean nothing if you aren’t compatible with one another. Of course, the nanny should have a genuine passion for caring for children, but that’s not always enough. The nanny should understand the importance of their role within your family, and approach it with professionalism and consideration. A good nanny understands that they must meet the expectations set by the parents through implementing their style of parenting, and being a strong communicator. It is the nanny’s job to respect all boundaries set by the family, while working to achieve the agreed upon goals leading to a successful outcome and enjoyable experience for all.

2 – Experience and Education

When it comes to finding a nanny that is the right fit for your family, you have final say in the amount of experience the nanny has, as well as their required level of education. Many nanny agencies have a minimum amount of years of experience required by the nanny to be represented by their agency. At Kindred Families, we represent nannies that have a minimum of 3 years professional childcare experience that occurred over the age of 18. Although, the family can set that limit to whatever they feel most comfortable with.


How much should I pay my nanny?


3 – Determining Compensation

It is important to keep in mind that increased nanny expectations require appropriate compensation for the position. The nanny’s wage depends on the location the position is being offered, the amount of professional experience the nanny has, as well as their level of education. Many families value additional spoken languages, which also increases the hourly rate or salary the nanny should be offered. The only time a family can offer a nanny a lesser wage, regardless of experience and qualifications, is if they are offering a live-in position. The cost of living is calculated along with the nanny’s overall earnings, and deducted accordingly. There is a lot that goes into calculating a nanny’s projected salary, which is why working with an experienced nanny agency is extremely beneficial for families, as the agency can offer guidance and advice according to industry standards.


What are Reasonable Expectations for a Nanny?


4 – Job Duties and Responsibilities

Nannies are expected to help with all child related tasks. This includes but is not limited to meal prep, laundry, upkeep of common areas, meeting the children’s physical and emotional needs in accordance with their age and stage of development, and aiding the children in meeting milestones. Some nannies are also expected to provide transportation to and from school and activities, as well as offer homework help for school-aged children. It is acceptable to require the nanny to take on a family assistant role in addition to their role as a nanny. Types of family assistant tasks can include meal prep and laundry for the whole family, upkeep of kitchen and trash, household organization, errand running, calendar planning, pet care, etc. The only inappropriate tasks would be those that are required of a house cleaner or housekeeper. These are separate roles which would not be considered reasonable expectations for a nanny. Families seeking help with deep cleaning should consider hiring a house cleaner if they do not have one already.


What should a nanny not do?


5 – Family Privacy

It is understandable that the nanny is going to be exposed to many personal details of the family’s life, and potentially even work matters as most parents are now working remotely. It is for this reason that the family has every right to instruct the nanny not to share any personal information that is learned while working in their home. At Kindred Families, we require our nannies to sign an agreement that states that they will not share any of the family’s personal details in any form, including sharing their location or daily outings on social media. Some families even require their nanny to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement to ensure extra safety concerning their privacy. Kindred Families is happy to accommodate families requiring an NDA.


How long should a nanny commit to a family?


6 – Length of Commitment

In the nanny industry, it is standard practice to set the length of commitment required by the nanny at a minimum of 1 year. Yet many families prefer to find a nanny that is looking to grow with them, preventing them from having to take on another nanny search after such a short length of time. Life happens and sometimes things are unavoidable, but it is reasonable to request a minimum commitment of 2 years from the nanny. Career nannies prefer job stability and often grow with families by staying with them for multiple years, maximizing the entire experience for everyone involved. Keep in mind that families who have consideration for the nanny’s wellbeing, will likely be rewarded by loyalty and a longer commitment from the nanny, which is why it is so important to set reasonable expectations for a nanny.


How Do I Find a Nanny?


7 – Kindred Families Agency

Whether you are new to hiring a nanny and need help deciding which kind of job specifications are right for your family, or you have previous experience employing a nanny, working with an experienced nanny agency is going to benefit you greatly in achieving a successful outcome. As parents and former nannies, we at Kindred Families understand the importance of meeting each family’s individual needs and offer complete assistance with the nanny hiring process, including compensation guidance, and setting reasonable expectations for a nanny. Additionally, our support continues long after the nanny’s official start date as we are reachable at any time, in any capacity the family may need. Please contact us today for a no-obligation consultation to see how you can benefit from our services.