FAQs About Hiring a Nanny

You are about to start looking for a nanny. But then you realize, when should I start looking for a nanny? And how? And where? PSP has the answers to your questions about getting started on the hiring process.


How far in advance should I start looking for a nanny?

Six weeks before you need one to start should be plenty of time, longer for a nanny who will be paid on the books.


Where should I look to find a nanny?

Check the Park Slope Parents Classifieds, ask friends/colleagues, and trusted nannies. (You must be a Brooklyn resident to join the PSP community. Go HERE to join.)


How do I post an ISO ad?

If you take the route of posting an ISO to Park Slope Parents (or another group), people will come to you. Be specific on exactly what you want, the more detailed the better. Here's how to post an ISO "In Search of Ad" to garner a great nanny candidate.


What should I expect my nanny to do?

Anything can be negotiated (with pay appropriate to responsibilities). The overwhelming majority of nannies do basic tidying and kid cleanup but don't do windows. 

The typical job duties are:

  • Fixing the kids meals
  • Taking kids to extracurricular activities
  • Light housework (picking up after the kids and cleaning the table)
  • Arranging playdates

Read more about what you can expect your nanny to do HERE.


What questions should I ask in an interview?

This is where you ask tough questions, become a detective, read through the lines, and trust your gut. Starting with the in-person interview, all the way through to the job offering, being mindful and diligent will help you sleep better knowing you made the right decision for your family. HERE are the questions and ground to cover when interviewing a nanny candidate.


Do I need a work agreement?

Absolutely. Most of the common problems PSP members have with their nanny could easily be resolved - and even avoided - if a written set of expectations were in place. HERE is all you need to know about work agreements. Your work agreement should spell out pay rates, paid time off/holidays, sick days, termination and severance, duties/responsibilities, and benefits. Include your policies about watching TV, using the computer, running personal errands or shopping, wearing headphones and inviting people into your home.


How do I make sure the nanny will work out?

Talk to at least 2 references (do NOT rely on written recommendations), review a work agreement together, have a trial period (we recommend a month), research the nanny and their references online (think Sherlock Holmes), observe the nanny with your kids, do spot checks during the trial period (and beyond) and do a home and safety orientation with the nanny. HERE are PSP member tips about how to make the relationship great.


How much should I pay?

According to 2015 survey data, the average hourly pay rate is:
1 child $15.93 (range: $14.00 - $20.00)
2 children $17.33 ** (range: $14.00 - $20.00)
3 children  $17.34/hr ($14.85 - $20.00)
**The two child rate is based on two children of the same family, not a nanny share.

Adjust these amounts based on experience, responsibilities (e.g., heavy housecleaning or second language) and tenure. By law overtime is 1.5 x hourly rate after 40 hours.  If they come super early or stay late expect to pay more.  Also add in to your budget a year end bonus (typically end of December, typically 1 week's pay), cab fare home if you're home after dark, and a raise after a year (or extra kids). If you're nanny gets sick days off, factor in pay for a replacement if you need it. Also decide whether you want to pay ancillaries such as a metrocard (about 1/3rd do and it will run you more than $1398/yr) and figure in some spending cash for the nanny. See more about nanny compensation HERE.


Should I pay my nanny “on the books”?

Yes. It’s ultimately better for all parties to pay your nanny on the books. Want to pay without using a service? Find out how to pay your nanny on the books HERE.  Otherwise, find a company to do it for you HERE.


Where can I find the rest of the nanny survey data?

You can read the full survey results HERE.


I've heard about nanny shares as a way to save money. Can you tell me more?

Yes! Be sure to read the PSP Guide to a Successful Nanny Share.


I've hired a nanny. How do I make sure it's a great relationship? HERE are FAQs about the nanny relationship.


Useful resources...

Did you know Park Slope Parents has a comprehensive guide to hiring a nanny? You can find out about all the resources available to you here.

Join Park Slope Parents to start looking for a nanny today.