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What does a nanny do?

Being A Nanny

Vanessa Cook (Managing Director) gives expert video advice on: What are the best parts about being a nanny?; What are the worst parts about being a nanny?; How do I advertise my services as a nanny? and more...

What does a nanny do?

A nanny is in charge of a child's full schedule. They will cook and clean for the children, and make sure their clothes are washed and tidy, and that their rooms are tidy. She will prepare all their meals; bathe them; get them ready for bed. A nanny is a very integral part of a child's life. If you are wanting to be a nanny for a family, you should try and stay there for a long time, because you are going to have a big impact on that child's life.

How much does a nanny earn?

A nanny earns between 8 and 10 pounds after taxes per hour if she's not living with the family. If you're a full-time, live-in nanny you'll earn from 250 pounds per week to 500 pounds per week, depending on what the family needs, how many hours per week they need, and also, most importantly, what experience you have.

What are the best parts about being a nanny?

The best part about being a nanny is that you are an important part of a child's life. They look forward to seeing you, they are happy to see you in the morning, and you have a very close bond with the children that you nanny for. You are not just passing through, so you can be with a family for five years, or even ten years some nannies stay for. It can be very rewarding when you teach a child to ride a bike and the happy look on their face. Or if they say their first word, and you are the person there to see it, or they take their first steps. All these things are very rewarding when you're a nanny.

What are the worst parts about being a nanny?

The worst part about being a nanny would probably be when you leave a job, and have to say goodbye to the children, because as much as you would like to, you probably aren't going to see them much anymore. Either they don't need a nanny anymore, the family's moving away, or you're moving away so it's not convenient for you to be the child's nanny anymore. Also what can be quite difficult is if you have some conflict with the parents and you have to leave the family, but you're still happy with the children and you and the child are getting on very well, but it's just not working out with the parents. These can be difficulties that you experience as a nanny and you need to be prepared for them. One of the bad points about being a nanny is you often don't have much of a life outside of being a nanny because you do work very long hours. That's why nannies who have been in the profession for 10-15 years choose part time positions. That was so their able to have a partner and maybe have their own children.

Do I need qualifications to be a nanny?

You don't really need qualifications to be a nanny. The most important thing is to have experience. I know it can be sometimes difficult to gain that experience, but if you get a job in a nursery, that can be a good avenue to getting your first nanny job.

Do I get extra money for babysitting in the evening?

Nannies get paid extra to babysit in the evening, so you can supplement your income by getting babysitting jobs as well, and you'll often earn the normal hourly rate that you get as a nanny if you're babysitting as well.

Is there much travel involved as a nanny?

As a nanny you should try to find a job that's close to where you live so you don't have to travel too far, because you will be working longer hours than most people do. This is because you need to arrive before the person goes to work, and stay at the family's home until the parents come home from work.

Will I be required to travel with a family?

It's quite common for live-in nannies to need to travel with the family. That's going to be quite fun, because the families you work for will probably go to lots of exotic places and you can see and do things you normally wouldn't get to do.

If I travel with a family, will they pay for everything?

If you're going to be required to travel with a family, they will pay for everything. I went on a ski trip with a family that I worked for and I got my ski hire, the hotel was paid for and the children all went off on ski school the whole day. I skied all day in France and it was great.

Am I expected to do household chores as well?

Some families may have a full-time housekeeper, if you're lucky. Otherwise, you'll probably be asked to do extra chores, so you should be sure that you know about these things before you start a job. It's actually not such a bad thing to do chores, because looking after a child all day and not doing anything else can sometimes be a little bit boring. So having extra things to do, like the family's shopping, or the parent's cooking can give you something to do; a bit of a change from just playing with a toddler, which is fun, too.

Do I have to live in if I am a nanny?

A lot of people think that a nanny is someone who lives with the family, this isn't true at all. Really only about 30% of all nanny jobs are live-in.