Avoiding a State of Confusion

I hope this isn’t too confusing. I’m a little confused as I write it but I need help drafting a temporary nanny share contract. I currently work for Family A caring for 9 month old twin boys. I work for them Monday-Friday from 9am to 5pm. I have been with them 6 months and the position will end in 6 months when they are old enough to attend daycare. I have started to look for my next position now, as last time it took me several months to find a full time position. I was contacted by Family B looking for part time care for their 6 week old son to start now and become full time in 6 months. Right now they need care Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 8:00am to 6:00pm.

The plan right now is to have a share with Family A and B until March. I would go to Family B’s house first in the morning and bring Baby B with me to Family A's house 3 days a week and care for all 3 babies and end at Baby B’s house. We will be keeping some gear at Family A’s house for the days Baby B is with us. Right now I take home $600 a week caring for the twins. How much would you charge for the additional baby? Would you keep a separate contract with each family? Should I split the total cost between families? How would I handle vacations? Thanks in advance. - Anonymous


nycmom said...

This just seems like it has so many potential problems that I was hesitant to reply until seeing no one was!

The reality is Family B is your future and if you enter this share, you need to do so with the entire goal of preserving your long-term salary, benefits and relationship with B. My hesitation is that nanny shares usually involve a discount for both families and an upside for the nanny. Say Family A pays you $450 and B $350 so you net $800. That *might* make it worth caring for THREE infants for six months. But it is a really, really tough job and would normally command a much higher salary.

My concern is that Family B is going to balk at the concept of paying $350/week x 6 months, then increasing to $600/week. They will perceive your job just got a lot easier next March since you go from 3 dc to 1 dc. They may also believe they should pay less than Family A since you were then caring for infant twins and they have a singleton.

It could work, but this is going to require a great deal of written communication and a very detailed Work Agreement. I would absolutely have separate agreements with each family so they don't collude to negotiate against you. For the 6 month overlap, I would insist on one week of your choosing. I would insist on 2.5 paid sick/personal days and the 6-8 paid Federal Holidays that fall during those months.

Do these families know each other? If not, I would insist on meeting each alone to discuss discipline and how to handle various share issues (one sick child; one late family; discipline; open fridge; overtime). Then I would personally determine if they were compatible and present your needs on these issues to them both in an identical written agreement. Finally, I would do a joint meeting and ensure they agree in person and get along, at least superficially. But, honestly, this sounds really challenging. Good Luck!

MissMannah said...

Keep separate contracts. I'm assuming you already have one with Family A, so you need to write one up for Family B. DO NOT give them a typical nanny share discount because in 6 months they'll be your only income and they will be unlikely to want to give you a raise. (Like nycmom said, they'll see your job as getting easier, so no need for a raise.) Write in the contract every single detail, especially the part that you'll be caring for Baby B at A's house but that you'll start working at B's house on X date. Make it specific, do not say "in six months." That way, everyone's on the same page. As for vacations, put it in your contract with Family B that you'll start accruing vacation time after the 6 months, when they become your only employer. (or, you can just say they'll give it to you instead of accruing)

Melanie Raye Castor said...

I also agree that you should keep separate contracts.

Not worth it said...

These logistics are exactly why I really hate doing shares, even in the short term, I was always worried about losing money while working twice as hard. I just decided to charge $20 an hour regardless of number of children, free playdates for friends means those families owe MB one, not me. Two years ago had to charge $12 a family for two (2 yr olds), I made $24 an hour, which was sweet, but it was temporary. It would have been more issues than I was looking for and much more work! I really wish nannies would pass on infant shares so more parents in my area would be willing to pay $20 an hour taxed to hire a nanny for infant care, instead of 10 each. Two babies and two schedules and parents is a to work out! I'm just not sure it's worth it.

looking for a nanny share said...

I agree not worth it. But I'm just trying to pay my bills. I got a job recently. Shitty pay. $10 an hour with a 3.5 hr NON PAID gap in the middle of the day. I'm looking for a second family so I can make more than the shitty $300 per week I'm getting for four days 6:30am-5PM. :( Two kids also. This is the only job I've found in months. My bills are pilling up. We barely paid our mortgage this week. Its getting scary.

caring mom all day said...

I like the idea of a nanny share as a parent. But for the nanny, I think she would be getting a bad deal. Less money & more work. I don't see the appeal. But "looking for a nanny share" makes a good point. You have to sometimes do things you don't want when family is relying on you. It is better than not working.

RBTC said...

lyn(et al) - i would like to ask your permission not to personally give advice on this thread as i feel you and the others are much more quslified - thank you!