Soon-to-be NYC Nanny

opinion 1
Hi! I'm going to be moving from Chicago to NYC around August and have started lightly searching for a nannying job. I nanny in Chicago and love it, working part time with 2 families to equal one full time job. I also babysit here & there for lots of other people. I have great references, am a college graduate (in art) and am ready to find the perfect family. Ideally they'd be artistic and very open, but generous would be a huge perk.

I'm on Sitter City & have a good profile there & scope out NYC families who are looking that far ahead. What else should I be doing? What's different about nannying in NYC rather than Chicago? Should I be going through an agency? And, of course, how do I make the big bucks I hear about on here? My partner is going to be in grad school so I'd like to be able to 'bring home the bacon' so to speak... gluten-free and vegan of course. Where do you find the 'big fish'???

That being said, when I should I tell my current employers? I know one family is very loyal & would keep me until the day I drive off, but the other I'm not so sure about. Mom is pregnant and due in October, so I kind of worry she'd fire me as soon as she found a suitable replacement. I'd really like to think she *wouldn't* do that, as I'm a big part of the babies life, but you never know. Thoughts?


a nyc mom said...

I don't know what kind of "big bucks" you are looking for but most moms I know pay about $750-800/wk for a 50hr week....and they are fine if it's on or off the books but they aren't going to pay your taxes on top of the $ most nannies I know opt for off the books because they don't want their hard earned pay going to taxes....not saying it's right, but it's reality. Keep in mind that for these families to be able to afford to pay this to nanny, their household income has to be close to 1 million a you will need to find families that meet this criteria first (remember that they will be taking home about 500K/yr after taxes and of their take home pay are going to budget around 10% of that on a nanny. Most families that meet this income threshold will look for a nanny through an agency - so you are probably just spinning your wheels on sitter city or craigslist. If you want to work for a really wealthy family as a professional nanny, you need to sign up with an agency like Frances Stuart. But a lot of these really wealthy families want live-ins or a nanny that has no personal life (you get paid really well but they want you at their beck and call 24/7)

melissa said...

I was working for a family and taking home $1000 per week, and I can assure you that they weren't millionaires. Just keep your rates high so if anyone tries to talk you down, they aren't going lower than you'd like. You'll have to be persistent about looking for a position. Good luck!

Susannah said...

You're leaving in 4 months.
Normally I'm not big on giving more than two weeks notice but in your case I would give no less than 4 weeks and save every penny that you are able while you are working.

I'd also suggest you keep your options as open as you can when looking for a family. Sure it's nice when families share all of our personal beliefs, but it isn't always the case. If you find a good enough fit take it.

Wendi said...

This is a tough call OP, but I would let my familie(s) know in July. You're right, if you tell them now they may start their new Nanny search and you may be left jobless until you leave. I would give a month's notice to them and see where the chips fall. Try to have a month's worth of money to live off of in $aving$ just in case they let you go early.

Good luck in your move. You may want to try an agency vs. a childcare website if you want a higher paying job. A lot of families on CL + these childcare websites are kinda cheap.

OP said...

Thanks for the advice thus far.I'm hoping for something near Williamsburg or the LES. Any agencies in particular I should be looking at? Maybe some that attract more artsy-type people? Any agencies that specialize in queer families?
Can you sign up with more than one agency? I have no idea how this works.
I currently make around $500 a week. If I could manage about $1000 in NYC, I'd be ecstatic.

ericsmom said...

Well remember the rents in NYC are high. I live in Bergen County, NJ. The rents are a little better. It may be worth looking to rent in towns with easy access to NY. Such as Fort Lee, or Edgewater, Jersey City and Hoboken. Jersey City and Hoboken are easy to access to go to NYC. Only thing the rent in Hoboken is kinda of high, but I think you would love it out there!! Check it out There are alot of families in Hoboken looking for nannies and willing to pay large amount of money. I would check out jobs in Hoboken as well. If you decide to work in Hoboken you can easily access the city. Theres a path train. The town is only 2 miles in length.

ericsmom said...

a good agency is

They will get in touch with you right away if they feel they have a match. Alot of the jobs are live-in.

nyc mom said...

I am impressed that you pulled in 1K a week...but I think it's doing a disservice to people looking for a nanny job by implying that this is the norm. I have never met a mom in NYC who pays over $800 a week for a 50 hr week....and you may think that a family that can pay 1K a week are not millionaires but they are probably awfully close. You can't live in NYC and make $250K and pay a nanny 52K a year out of your take home pay which is probably about 150. It ain't happening. That would leave 100K for your avg familiy of 4 (or 25K per person in that family). Anyone with any common sense would never let on to their nanny how much money they had, and it sound like your employers were no exception. I'm not saying 1K/wk nanny jobs don't exist...but they aren't as common as the handful of nannies that come here would lead one to believe

Not_in_Kansas_Anymore said...

Anonymous OP said...

Thanks for the advice thus far.I'm hoping for something near Williamsburg or the LES. Any agencies in particular I should be looking at? Maybe some that attract more artsy-type people? Any agencies that specialize in queer families?
Can you sign up with more than one agency? I have no idea how this works.
I currently make around $500 a week. If I could manage about $1000 in NYC, I'd be ecstatic.

OH DEAR GOD. Honey, that's where the poor artists live. You either work for assholes on the UES or suck it up and make less money on the LES. As to Brooklyn? Put down the Time Out New work and get a clue. Please.

Annoyed said...

I hate it when nannies are just in it for "the big bucks". I wouldn't take higher pay to leave the job I have now because I have a great fit with the family and I love my job. You're not going to make 1000 a week looking on craigslist. Do some research and as the person before me said, get a clue.

Jacinta said...

I'm glad to see a nanny actually admit she needs money to live.

$1000 a week without taxes isn't really a ton of money.

Maybe if nannies& childcare workers stopped acting like martyrs that just have so much love for their charges that they don't need to pay for housing, food, clothing etc they rest of society would get a clue and stop offering low wages.

OP said...

I'm human, of course I'd ~like~ to make more money, but I did clearly state that finding the perfect family comes first. I'm not going to work for some abusive jerks no matter what neighborhood they're in.

Have you seen the property values in Williamsburg or the lower east side lately??? This isn't the NY of 'sex & the city' anymore, 'honey'.

a nyc mom said... really need to listen to people who live in NY now....nannies working for families on the LES and in brooklyn aren't getting paid 1K a week free of taxes. Yes, the property values have gone up, but that's just a paper gain for people who bought a long time ago when prices were still cheap. The 1K a week nannies are working for families on Park Ave on the Upper East Side, the one-percenters of the world who work in finance and law. Those hipsters on the LES are there because they shun the 'rich' lifestyle - which includes a 1K week on the books salaried with benefits nanny

OP said...

nycmom, Thanks so much for your advice & respect. I understand that the UES is where the major money is, and I'm not averse to working up there, as long as it's the right family.

People seem to think that "I'm hoping for the LES" and "if I made $1000 a week I'd be ecstatic!" translates to "OMGZ I'M FROM THE CORNFIELDZ AND IMMA WORK IN THE BIG CITY! DA STREETZ R PAVED W/ GOLD!"

I'm from Boston. I've lived in plenty of big cities and am very familiar with New York. I'm not some midwestern bumpkin who's gonna get squashed like a bug over there. Just looking for some advice on how to start getting a lead on this job search so I have time to choose who I work with.

If anyone knows any other great agencies for the NY area that may attract more unconventional clientele (queer families, artists, et al) it'd be very appreciated!

N is for Nanny said...

OP - While there are NYC people here, you might get better feedback on NYC nanny agencies from an NYC-centric site. I've heard that Park Slope Parents is a lot like NPN or you could try Urban Baby.

Please note that my personal agency knowledge is from Boston and Chicago, not NYC.

I would maintain your accounts at sittercity and as some agencies have accounts on those sites as well and use them to find potential candidates for either their agency or a specific position. My understanding is that unless an agency requires sole representation of you as a candidate, you are free to register with other agencies and online sites. Definitely a question to ask though! If they do require you not to accept a position from another source, I would have a lot of questions about the quality and quantity of positions they are seeking to fill, that match what you are seeking.

As far as notice to your current families, I would keep in mind that you are likely going to need to use them as references and some agencies will want to check your references before adding you to their candidate pool. I would consider giving notice to both families in mid-May and then ask for a commitment until your move date. If they are unable to do so, that will allow you some time to take on a summer position.

Good luck with your move!

AMom said...

To the person who put down Brooklyn.

People in Park Slope and Brooklyn Heights have lots of money and pay their nannies high rates. We have 1 million apartments here, so, obviously, the people who buy them have bucks. I took it to mean that she wanted to live in Williamsburgh or the LES, not work there.

If that is the case, then look for nanny jobs in Park Slope and Brooklyn heights or, the UES.

AMom said...

That should say, "we have 1 million dollar apartments here", not "one million apartments". And, it is not ust a paper gain, people buy and sell apartments in Park Slope all the time, so, someone is actually paying those prices!

Now, no, you won't make $1k a week in Park Slope, but, you could make $700 to $800 a week and a lot of families provide lunch and carfare along with that.

but, for $1k per week? Yeah, UES.

hmmm said...

agree, especially new to new york, 800 will be awesome. i've made more than that, 1000+, but it comes with some negatives, weird or long work hours. people pay more for someone who is familiar with where they live in the city.

but good luck OP! it's a fun city to work in and you'll find good families and nutso ones, just like anywhere else.

4 Years in NYC said...

I've worked in NYC for 4 years and there are definitely jobs out there paying more than $1K/week on the books, with full benefits. However, you do have to use an agency. The requirements for many of these high end jobs require a 4 year child development degree, the ability to speak foreign languages and other such skills.

Take a look at this agency's jobs and see if you meet the requirements:

I currently make close to $140K. I work about 60 hours a week and travel 5 or 6 times a year, but I do have the weekends off, so I'm not at my family's beck and call 24/7 as some people would have you imagine.

Manhattan Nanny said...

First of all, you need to go through an agency. Use the time you have now to get your resume together, and collect letters of reference, which the agency will want in your file. Check with any previous families you have worked for that you haven't kept in touch with and make sure the contact information you have for them is current.
Here are some web sites to look at.
Professional Nannies Institute Inc.

You are at a slight disadvantage if you don't have NYC experience/references. You may get a very good job, but probably not in the top salary range.
Good Luck!

op said...

hey anon, make a post about the family! i know a woman who helps set up au pairs with hosts, i'm sure she'd love to hear about these deadbeats!

NanaDarling said...

I prefer over SitterCity. You could always give that a shot. If you scroll down to the bottom of the home page and click on childcare, you don't need to register to scope out potential jobs. I think the format is way easier to use and it just seems...friendlier somehow. :)

As for the parents, unfortunately you can't control their actions. If you're really concerned about the one mother, try giving her adequate, but not necessarily generous, notice. Maybe one month? As much as you can while still being sure you can make a living if she drops you ASAP.

Good luck!

NYNanny said...


I also moved her from Illinois, so know how the transition is. Manhattan Nanny gives good advice about getting your resume together and collecting references before you move. A good professional resume will get you off on the right foot here. I interviewed for a LOT of jobs in the city and never even considered a job taking home less than $1000/week. I ended up accepting a position taking home $1100 a week with all taxes being taken out, plus health insurance, vacation, etc. for a very nice and normal family. That being said, be ready to meet some very interesting and crazy families in NYC :)

I always tell people that it doesn't hurt to look on online sites, but most people looking to hire a nanny in that salary range will be working with an agency. Some of the agencies I've worked with and liked are-

Niche Placements
The Right Staff
The Help Company

Best of luck to you OP!

NYNanny said...

Just to add-

I interviewed for a lot of positions because I had saved up and could really take my time finding the right family. While most of the jobs I interviewed for were on the Upper East Side or Upper West Side, I have interviewed with families that have lived all over (including Brooklyn!) paying the kind of salary that I was asking for.

Sarah House said...

All the agencies mentioned I would recommend.
I just looked at moving to NYC recently. I wrote an article on it.

Rebecca said...

Hey OP - I don't know if you're still checking this thread, but I wanted to leave a note just in case! I'm also moving to NYC later in the year (moving BACK to NYC), and will be looking for a part-time nanny job to supplement my massage therapy career. If you do end up finding any agency or community of queer and/or artsy parents, I'd love to hear about it! And if you and your partner want to meet up and possibly make a new friend, let me know - my email address is