Understanding the types of Nanny Positions

You are looking for a challenging, hands-on job that will bring out your creative side and keep you on your toes. In other words, you have decided that you want to work as a nanny. Yet it's not as simple as just "becoming a nanny." There are many nanny positions out there with many different requirements, so you should spend some time thinking about your unique skills and goals if you want to find the nanny position that is right for you. By definition, nannies are versatile caregivers who are able to work with the family as a team player. Different parents will have expectations that differ from their nanny, so it is important to become familiar with the different types of duties that many nannies fulfill.

Here are some general categories for types of nanny positions:

  • Live-in Nanny Positions
    A live-in nanny lives in the home of the employing family and works there full-time, usually about 50 hours a week over 5 days. Downtime, such as when the children are napping or doing a quiet activity that does not require your intimate involvement, is paid as part of the weekly hours. Free time is designated and there is a set schedule per week, though parents may ask you to cover extra hours if there is an emergency, heavy traffic, or a time-consuming project going on at work.

    Your employing family provides you with living quarters, usually a furnished room and a private bath, and may provide you with a telephone and vehicle, or an allowance for your own vehicle. Your duties may include reading to and playing with the children, getting them dressed and ensuring their proper hygiene, providing them with loving support, preparing simple meals, doing their laundry, maintaining their play areas, and transporting them to and from school, activities, and play dates. Live-in nannies have regular interaction with their employing parents and are often expected to provide regular feedback on the children's behavior.
  • Full-Time Live-out Nanny Positions
    A full-time nanny has the same responsibilities as a live-in nanny, but does not live in the employer's home. Full-time nannies have a set schedule of generally 40-50 hours a week and will have to arrive at the employer's home in the morning and leave in the evening, usually when the parents return home from work. Since the parents' ability to work and be active outside the home depends on their nanny, full-time nannies need to be prompt and should have reliable transportation. Nannies that own their own cars will earn a higher salary if a car is needed for the job and be provided a mileage allowance. Full-time nannies may also be asked to travel with the family on vacation and for work and you should specify when applying for the job when and if you would be willing to travel. Since full-time nannies generally work when the parents are not at home, time must be set aside for regular communication concerning the children's behavior, and may be difficult to arrange.
  • Nanny Housekeeper
    A nanny housekeeper may have the same conditions and arrangements as either a live-out nanny or a live-in nanny, but will be expected to perform certain housekeeping duties while the children are at school or during naptime. Since many nannies are unwilling to also be housekeepers, you may be a more desirable candidate if you state that you are willing to do this type of work, and you can and should receive additional pay.
  • Part-Time Nanny
    Part-time nannies can have any number of different schedules. For example, they can be 1 to 4 full days a week, after school hours, morning hours, weekend days or evenings. The different schedules can be just about anything you could imagine, but the most popular are after school pick up of the kids and working until the parents arrive home, 2 or 3 full days a week and weekend work. A part-time nanny has the same duties as a full-time nanny, but for obvious reasons tends to have a more casual bond with the children. Part-time nannies usually receive a slightly higher pay per hour than nannies working full-time, but with less perks and less job security.
  • Summer Nanny
    Summer nannies are hired for a single summer at a time and may receive a flat rate for the entire summer. Summer positions may be full- or part-time, live-in or live-out, and may include traveling with the family for a set period of time. Many students prefer to nanny for a summer and save up money for the upcoming school year.

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