Knowledgeable Negotiations Needed
First time Nanny needs suggestions.... First of all, some background info about me - I am a full time nanny for a family living in the Washington DC metro area. This is my first full time job as a nanny, but had been a part time (nights/weekends) nanny in NYC area for a few families for 7yrs. I have been working for the DC family for 6 months now and they are also first time parents. I am grateful to them for willing to hire someone who has never been a full time nanny, though I do have loads of experience with children along with great references too.
Initially, I asked for a contract to be drawn up by the parents before I started my first day at work, the parents are lawyers as a lot of DC professionals are. After weeks of them saying 'We're working on it.. it will come this day...", no contract ever surfaced. And I was willing to let the matter rest as I was eager to start work. Now, after 6 months of working for the family, I have met several other nannies whom I speak to regularly. From gathering information from these nannies, I have realized that a contract will help me set certain boundaries with this DC family as there are particular issues that come up time and again that I have problems with. To be clear - I have no problem with what they pay me hourly and for my overtime rate. But I need opinions from parents and nannies about some parts of the contract:
1) Since there are no official rules/laws about raises, when is the right time for me to ask about a raise? And what percent raise is reasonable?
2) I currently have NO paid days/hours off. I do NOT get paid on government holidays /personal days /sick days /vacation days, etc. I only get paid for the EXACT hours I work. **What is a reasonable amount of paid days off I can ask for? I was thinking 5 paid days off every 6 months, is this reasonable? My daily hours varies, it ranges from 9.5hrs - 11.5hrs, so what amount of hours should I ask for that is equivalent to 1 paid day off?
3) And is it also reasonable for me to include in my contract to give me at least 3 or 4 or 5 days notice for any period they expect me NOT to work, and otherwise if there's no advance notice, to pay me a full standard day? (Sometimes I am given little or only hours notice as to when I am not required to work that same day).
4) As we just had Hurricane Sandy come thru our area, there was another issue that came up as well. Is it reasonable for me to include a "Due to extreme weather..." clause in my contract? Such as if they want me to report to work, but the public transportation is shut down due to extreme weather, is it reasonable for me to ask them to compensate me for a taxi cab?
5) There was a dilemma that surfaced previously regarding overnight rate. The parents and I could not agree on a rate therefore, at that time, I did not work for that one night they asked. In this instance, I was again given little notice of when they needed me to stay overnight. They offered to pay me an overnight rate equivalent to a babysitter's rate, whereas I was asking for a reasonable rate according to a typical full time nanny's overnight rate. I asked my other nanny friends what they were charging, and based on that, the rate that I offered was on the low side. **My question is, being a full time nanny, should my overnight rate be more or less than your average babysitter? After talking to other nannies that I've met, I deduce that I perform more duties than the average nanny, without ANY benefits and on an average wage. I feel like having a contract will be beneficial and I need any helpful suggestions to my questions above from parents and nannies. Thank you! - Anonymous
at 11:42 PM