Teach your kids to share, even their… nanny?!?

I get this question often- exactly what are nanny shares? A nanny share is usually one of the two options: 1) Two families sharing the cost and the time of one nanny. The nanny usually stays at one family’s home but can alternate between both families’ home. 2) Multiple families utilizing the same nanny at different times. For example family A has the nanny Monday, Wednesday and Friday and family B has the nanny Tuesday and Thursday. These two options are the most common although there are definitely some creative ways to share a nanny!

Nanny shares are beneficial for a couple of reasons. First, and foremost, a nanny share is economical. Especially if the nanny is caring for two families at the same time, the hourly rate can be divided between families. Although the hourly rate is higher, each family pays their portion of nanny’s salary and the cost can be similar to the cost of daycare. For instance two families have one child each; they hire a qualified, professional nanny for $20 per hour- each family only pays $10 per hour.

Social interaction is the second reason nanny shares are advantageous. Children a part of a nanny share have the opportunity to socialize while the nanny is still able to accommodate their schedules and activities.

Here are few disadvantages of having a nanny share:

* Because you are sharing a nanny, you are sharing their time and attention. It’s important to have a nanny whom has experience with multiples and capable of multi-tasking. It’s also important to be aware the nanny has to meet the needs of another family as well, therefore additional responsibilities like errands, or laundry might not possible.

* Nannies can be cautious of nanny shares. Of course the salary is a huge benefit for a nanny; however nannies can be weary of nanny shares because it is twice the work. And I’m not just talking about the kids! Essentially nannies are now working for 4 adults, 2 sets of parents! That is a lot of people to make happy!

* You are dependent on not only a nanny but another family too. A successful nanny share depends a lot on the other family. It’s important both families share similar views, values, morals, parenting styles, and discipline styles.

* If a child is sick, they can’t be around the other children. Make sure you communicate common policies about illnesses.

There is a great deal that goes into a nanny share. It is important to be fully aware of exactly what you are getting into. When looking for another family to share a nanny with, consider these points: