Choosing a Nanny

Childcare is becoming an increasingly necessary requirement for parents. With more and more of us needing to work we often require the services of childcare experts.

In this article we will look at selecting a nanny and offer guidance on how to ensure they are the right one for you.

A Nanny is an individual to whom you will trust your children (the most precious people in the world) whilst you are out working. For this reason it is essential for you to ensure you are confident your children will be safe, stimulated and happy with the nanny. This will enable you to concentrate on work knowing that your child is happy. A nanny is a more appropriate from of childcare for parents requiring flexible hours care within their own home.

Considerations when choosing your nanny

.Are they loving and caring?

.Are they experienced?

.Are they pleasant to deal with?

.Are they reliable?

.Do they have good references?

.Are they flexible?

.Can they drive?

.Do they have a CRB? (A Criminal Record Bureau check of criminal registers).

.Do they have up to date life saving and first aid certifications?

.Do they have childcare qualifications?

.Will the nanny be living with you?

.Will the nanny require your car?

.Will the nanny drive their own car and is it safe enough?

.If the nanny drives their own car you will need to pay a mileage allowance in addition to salary.

A trial period should be arranged with your chosen nanny to ensure that your children are happy. Try and ascertain from your children if they are happy with the nanny by asking them to talk about the day, what they did, did they have fun, were they ever upset? What happened when they were upset etc.

It is also important to set aside time to talk to the nanny to ensure they are happy and can talk freely with you about any concerns - do not assume everything is ok.

There are many nanny agencies around who will help with the selection process by trying to find a nanny that suits you. These agencies will do many of the checks that you require e.g. CV verifications, reference collection and CRB checks. Ensure any agency you choose offers these services. By employing a nanny you become an Employer and as such will need to be registered with HMRC (HM Revenue & Customs) and file a tax return for the nanny. Many agencies will help with the nanny payments by taking care of the nanny's tax and National Insurance

If possible try and speak to families that have used the nanny before to see of they were satisfied with them. I would also advise you to visit the nanny agency if possible to ensure they are a professional and established company.

Ensure you have Employer and public liability insurance added to your house contents insurance.

What should you provide as a parent?

.You should provide your nanny with a written contract and a clear set of details explaining their hours and the duties expected of them.

.The nanny will be in your home so you should provide them with a clean safe working environment (this should be the case for your children anyway).

.Inform the nanny of any of your children's allergies and medical requirements.

.The nanny should have yours and your partner's emergency contact details and numbers for your local GP. Also provide detailed directions to the doctor and hospital in case of emergency.

.Investigate places of local interest for your nanny to take the children.

.Supply educational games and facilities for the nanny to entertain and stimulate your children.

What should your nanny provide to your family?

.A caring structured environment for your children to develop.

.A plan of the coming week activities.

.A structured plan for each day including ideas for fun, learning and relaxation

.Regular feedback about your children's progress together with any problems being encountered.

.The nanny should feel at ease with you and able to discuss any problems (however small).

What would you expect to pay for a Nanny?

Nannies can cost £150 - £400 per week depending on location, duties and whether they live-in or not.

What do You Think?

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