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How Much Does a Nanny Cost?

Michelle Wilson - January 20, 2024

How Much Does a Nanny Cost

A nanny is one of the most convenient options for childcare within the United States, but it often comes with a steep price tag for many families. On average, a nanny will cost between $17 and $27 per hour. The rates of a nanny will vary significantly, depending on a few factors. These factors may include:

  • Geographic location
  • Education level
  • Years of experience working with children
  • Current certifications like first aid and CPR
  • Specialties like lactation consultant or newborn care specialist
  • The number of children in care
  • Extra services outside of the childcare

For parents living within an area with a higher cost of living, the price of a nanny will be higher. The standard price will also depend on any additional perks offered to the individual when hiring. These perks may include overtime, annual raises, health insurance and taxes, transportation, and paid time off.

How to Determine the Rate for a Nanny

If you’re not sure of the current rate within your area, start by asking friends and other parents what they pay for nanny services. Additionally, nannies are covered under the Fair Labor Standards Act, meaning they must receive minimum wage and overtime for hours worked over 40. Families must confirm the current minimum wage for their state before hiring.

A full-time nanny living within the residence may receive lower salaries since you also provide room and board. Generally, this perk will translate into a lower hourly rate, as most live-in nannies work more hours a day.

What About Part-Time Nannies?

A part-time nanny would receive the same hourly rate as full-time nannies, depending on their experience and qualifications. Part-time employment is 35 hours or less per week.

What If There Is More than One Child?

Families hiring a nanny with more than one child should expect to pay between $1-3 more per hour than what they’d pay for an individual child.

What is a Nanny Share?

A nanny share is when two families split the cost of a full-time nanny to keep the individual cost per family lower. The hourly rate for this type of nanny is higher than a full-time one, as they’ll care for more than one child. However, it works out cheaper per family. Both families are responsible for taxes associated with hiring the nanny in these arrangements.

What is Included in the Nanny’s Payroll?

The total costs associated with a nanny don’t just end with an hourly wage. Here are other costs often associated with having a nanny.

Taxes

As a nanny is considered a household employee, the hiring individual must deduct taxes from their salary. You must withhold Social Security, Medicare, and state and federal taxes. You’ll also need to pay an employer’s matching portion of Social Security and Medicare and unemployment insurance taxes. These tax requirements will vary according to the residential state.

Paid Holidays

Nannies will receive paid holidays yearly, including a few federal holidays. These dates are New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas Day.

Paid Vacation

Families frequently offer the nanny two weeks of paid vacation throughout the year, often coinciding with other school vacations. For example, a family may include paid time off during Christmas vacation or a week during the summer holidays.

Health Insurance

These costs will vary according to the type of insurance and how much coverage is offered. The average cost is typically between $200-300 a month, depending on the location.

Paid Sick Days

Although this perk is less common, offering your nanny a few paid sick days throughout the year is always nice. After all, you don’t want someone sick watching children throughout the day.

Transportation Reimbursement or Supplements

The transportation costs will largely depend on where you live and the common commute requirements. Individuals living with expansive transit may consider an unlimited MetroCard for commuting to work. If you require the nanny to drive children (in your car or a personal vehicle), most families will reimburse gas, tolls, and wear on the car.

An Annual Raise

Having a nanny is an essential service. Always consider offering your nanny an annual raise for a job well done. Typically, a raise is between 3-10% of the hourly wage, factoring in the cost-of-living increases.

What Does a Nanny Do within a Family?

The role of a nanny will include taking care of all children for an extended period. Nannies will often work independently or with an agency to secure clients. The duties will vary according to parent needs but usually include the following responsibilities:

  • Changing and dressing children
  • Bathe children and help them brush their teeth
  • Assist all children with any schoolwork or tutoring
  • Prepare healthy meals for all children, including snacks
  • Arrange drop-off and pick-up from school
  • Transport children to extra-curricular activities
  • Create a daily schedule including educational content to keep children engaged
  • Follow parent’s instructions for care and routine
  • Update parents on any development or learning progress

Occasionally, duties and responsibilities may fall outside the caregiver role, including light housekeeping, dishes, and tidying the child’s room throughout the day. Hiring parents may negotiate additional tasks throughout the week, like grocery shopping and laundry, although this is extra.

What is the Difference Between a Babysitter and a Nanny?

While both individuals will play a key role in supervising children while parents are absent, a nanny is a continuous support for the family. Nannies often offer housework and remain actively involved in the children’s lives. A babysitter is a short-term caregiver who watches children for a set period. Typically, the babysitter will stay with the children for a few hours while the parents go on a date or attend a last-minute meeting.

A nanny will often charge more for their services, regularly holding more certifications and qualifications than a babysitter.

Do Nannies Require Formal Education?

There are no formal education requirements to become a nanny, although several individuals will complete a bachelor’s degree in early childcare education or development. Teachers looking for extra income may also apply for summer nanny positions. A nanny position may include specific qualifications, background checks, basic CPR, first aid courses, and any disability requirements to work with the children.

Conclusion

Although the standard rate for a nanny is approximately $17 per hour, many factors may increase the rate throughout the country. Depending on the skillset, geographic location, hours, and living arrangements, nannies may cost between $17-27 per hour. Nannies are protected by the Fair Labor Standards Act, requiring all individuals to receive minimum wage for the position.

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