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The Nanny Guide Part 2

The days of getting a nanny to do full-scale house-cleaning and mind three small children and two dogs, all at minimum wage, are past.

“The family that wants that kind of help at that kind of wage is looking for a slave,” says Lissa Reimer, owner of Village Nannies, a nanny placement agency. What does nanny do? Child care is her top priority, followed by light housekeeping and meal preparation.

“Cooking for the children is one of the nanny’s duties,” says Reimer, “so often a nanny will fall into cooking for the whole family because it’s no more work to cook for the parents. A lot of nannies will do baking with the children, because that’s an activity kids enjoy.”

Nanny duties shift with the needs of the family. Small children require more hands-on care, so families should expect less housework from her. Older children require chauffeuring, schedule-juggling and homework supervision.

When it comes to all-out housework — scrubbing toilets, polishing hardwood floors and cleaning the oven — Sharon Foerster, mother of two children under seven years of age and employer of a live-in nanny, says, “You need to call a maid service. My nanny’s priority is with the kids, not how clean my house is.”

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