When a family is considering hiring a nanny, one of the main issues that must be taken into consideration is the salary that the nanny will receive. The amount of a nanny salary can depend on a range of factors, from the nanny’s experience to the location in which the family lives. In addition, a nanny salary will depend on whether she lives in or out of the family’s home. And a nanny salary must always comply with the state’s minimum hourly requirements and federal regulations. Nanny salaries, in general, will range from $275 to $800 weekly, with the range of $400 to $500 per week being most common, and $7 to $18 per hour.
Figuring Out the Right Range for a Nanny Salary
There are several ways that a family can determine the appropriate nanny salary. First, the family can ask other families in the area what they are paying their nannies. Next, the family can talk to a nanny agency to see what the going rate is for nannies. The family can also do some online research to find out what nanny salaries are in the state – there are many parenting message boards and online nanny agencies that have informative articles and discussions that can help narrow the range. One can safely assume that a nanny salary will be higher in an urban area that has a higher cost of living and lower in a suburban or rural area that has a lower cost of living.
In addition, look for studies that have been done to see what an appropriate range might be for a nanny salary. For example, a recent study done by the International Nanny Association (INA) reports that nanny salaries across the country can range from $300 to $1000 a week and from $12 to $15 per hour (1). The survey also states that nannies who provide extra services get paid more – between $25 and $100 per night for overnight care (with some nannies receiving nothing extra for overnight care) and between $50 and $200 per day for travel (2).
Live-In vs. Live-Out Nannies
If one is hiring a live-in nanny, one should also take into consideration that the nanny will be getting room and board as well as her pay, and should adjust the salary accordingly. A higher nanny salary might also be considered if the nanny is offering services other than childcare, such as housekeeping or cleaning. For a live-out nanny, her salary will be higher if she has a car that she can use to pick up the children and take them to school or to activities. She also may be asked to do such tasks as cook a meal or two for the children, and her salary should also be adjusted for this.
The range for a nanny salary will also depend on a nanny’s level of experience. A person who has worked as a nanny for several families in the past will command a higher nanny salary than a person who is seeking her first nanny position. Nannies with previous experience will also, of course, want to make as much as or more than they had made with their other families.
Another factor that could raise a nanny salary is anything extra that she brings to the table. Does she speak English fluently? Does she know CPR and first aid? Is she a specialist in something that she could tutor children in (math, science, a foreign language)? All of these things can contribute to a higher salary – and are likely worth paying the extra fee.
What If You Can’t Afford the Nanny You Like Best?
So what does a family do if they find a nanny they love and want to hire but they find her salary range to be higher than they expected? In a case like this, the family could try to bargain with the nanny, offering her extra services in trade for a slightly lowered hourly or weekly rate. For example, a dentist could provide free dental work. In addition, some families share their nannies, splitting the cost of the nanny salary over several children. The family could also offer extra perks to the nanny, such as extra time off, use of the family car, or use of a second home. In this way, the nanny feels that she is still valued but may be willing to negotiate to a lower weekly or hourly rate.
It is very important to investigate nanny salaries before you begin interviewing candidates so that you know ahead of time what you can afford. Knowing about a nanny salary first also gives you the ability to bargain with your ideal candidate if you cannot afford the top of the range by offering additional perks or trades. If you base your salary offers on where you live, the nanny’s experience, and additional benefits the nanny can offer your family, you’re sure to find the perfect candidate.
About the Author
Steve Lampert is the president of eNannySource, an online nanny agency that brings together families and nannies. Lampert previously ran a successful, award-winning nanny agency in a major city for over 10 years, during which time he worked with thousands of families and nanny candidates. Through this experience, he became familiar with the important steps in a nanny search, which he continues to apply to his business today. To learn more, please visit www.enannysource.com.