Received Monday, February 9, 2009
Please I Need Advice!!! I am currently an unemployed full-time college student. I have been a part-time live-out nanny for 5 years now. Although I go to school on Mon, Wed, and Sat my schedule for work is quite flexible. I am still going on interviews for a permanent P/T nanny position. This is where my situation is getting ugly. Until today, I have always lived with my family, but I am now going through family issues. It’s why I now find myself in a situation where I have to move out of my house. I just turned 20 and my parents don’t pay my college whatsoever or support in anything. All they provide for me is shelter and food (which I am thankful for), but the rest I take care of on my own. This is where I need your advice please.
I work on an as-needed-basis for this nice cop single mom, whose baby I adore and is now 6 months old. She doesn’t make much and has her baby in a daycare, but when she needs me, she pays me a fair rate of 13/hr. I am her first babysitter. She trusts me and has left her apartment and cat under my care when she goes away. She lives by herself with her baby in a 3 bedroom apartment 15 minutes away from my house. She only occupies her bedroom and has the other 2 bedrooms pretty empty. I never have come across with the idea of becoming a live-in nanny because I was never in a need to. I feel uncomfortable doing it with a stranger family. I still don’t want to do it now, even though I am now in a need of it. This is why I am talking about this lady. I am thinking about talking to her about my situation and asking her if she would be interested in having me live with her. Since this would be similar to a live-in nanny situation, I don’t know what to really offer in exchange of a bedroom free of rent.
This is what I am thinking about: Every month, offer a certain amount of free babysitting during the week and maybe I can pick up the baby from daycare and bring him home and babysit a couple of hours at night during the week. I can offer 1 or 2 weekends of night babysitting. I can definitely cook, bake, run errands, and clean the apartment, make baby’s bottles etc. I am not sure about laundry because she does not have a washer and dyer at home and apparently just has the laundry services take care of that. I would do all these so that I can compensate the rent that I won’t pay. She lives in Brooklyn, NY, in a non-rich neighborhood, so it’s not that she lives in a luxury apartment. Rent for one bedroom in this area are about 400 per month and some do include utilities and some don’t. Actually, I can only afford around 300. She has cable and internet service, but I don’t know whether to pay for them or have it included within my services. This is where I am confused. I like her, but I don’t want to put myself in a situation where she can take advantage of me, or I won’t have enough time for school and my prospective 30 hours nanny position I might find. Please nannies, especially live-in nannies:
• How many weekly or monthly babysitting hours should I offer?
• What about the cleaning, cooking, errands? How many hours and how often?
• Should I expect utilities or food to be included? Actually, I think I can pay for my own food.
Thank you so much for reading this long story. I will appreciate anyone’s thoughts on this.