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Hi there, I need advice on what sorts of questions to ask a parent who has offered the following gig (below). They live in NYC and my standard rate for childcare is $25/hour. How do I determine how much to charge for the added needs (shopping/meal-prep)?

"My family is looking for an energetic and patient caregiver who is experienced in caring for toddlers and is comfortable working in a home with a sweet, elderly dog. Our caregiver will be expected to organize our child's schedule to include activities, playdates, playgroups, classes, museums, parks/playgrounds to foster his social-emotional, cognitive and physical development. Experience with potty-training boys is a must! Responsibilities also include shopping/meal-prep, laundry, and light housekeeping. I am a school teacher, so we will need full-time care for 10 months (Sept-June), with part-time care in the summer (July/Aug). Occasional Fri & Sat nights is helpful! We are open to offering hourly pay or a yearly salary to guarantee consistent income each week."

Answers

After reading the listing, there are few things I suggest you bring up when/if you meet the family to help you determine how much-absolute minimum after knowing all the details- will make the job worth it for you? It goes without saying, do make sure that your professional experience, credentials, skills, etc. match your expectations.

1. LIGHT HOUSEKEEPING: The family mentioned ‘light’ housekeeping in their listing. Ask them what that entails? This is important because a lot of families have different definition of what light housekeeping means. I’ve come across families who state the basics such as- emptying the dishwasher, tidying up after the kids, etc., and families who mention things like vacuuming the house to maintain it, mopping kitchen and (or) bathroom floors, etc. The latter is anything but ‘light’, so remember to ask for more details! If it’s tidying up after the child and things of that nature, extra fee is not necessary unless otherwise…

2. MEAL PREP & LAUNDRY: Is this for the whole family or just the child? If meal prep is for the whole family, are you expected to cook for them daily/almost daily? To be frank, doing laundry and cooking for the family are NOT part of a nanny’s responsibilities but it can be done if they are willing to pay you extra to take on those responsibilities. However, if it’s meal prep (basic cooking that is) and laundry for the child, extra fee is not necessary because those are child related responsibilities.

3. PET CARE: Since they have a dog, ask if caring for the dog (feeding, walking, cleaning up, etc.) would be part of your responsibilities? If yes, extra fee is necessary. That being said, be sure to present those questions with the tone of “I’m eager to learn the details of the job” and not “I want to know what I will do and won’t do.” The tone makes a big difference. Lest I forget, I didn’t mention an exact figure is because I don’t know what you’re bringing to the table i.e. your skills, experience, credentials, but please feel free to reach out if you have any other questions :D

All the best,
Uchechukwu

PS: If you get to the point of salary negotiation, its worth noting that sometimes certain benefits outweigh dollar amount. For example, is a dollar more per hour worth it to you or would it be more meaningful for you to have flexibility with your hours? So, find out what they are offering in terms of benefits to ensure that the total package (salary, benefits, etc.) makes sense. Good luck!

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Your care and time are valuable. Charge what you think is the right rate for this position. More work, more money. A toddler is a lot of work. I would charge more. Meal prep is a lot work also. Charge your worth and value. Good luck!

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the meal you look how much cost in the store and give the receive for her.

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Ameerah in Seattle, WA
Sept. 11, 2018

I am uncomfortable with pet

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pay rate depend the states, each states have a perceptual pay rate.

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Ayana in Brooklyn, NY
Sept. 15, 2018

family and nanny has to negoatiate what they think is fair for the work that has to be done

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If you're using your car, you could ask that they pay a rate for mileage. As for the cleaning and meal-prep, which I find often comes standard with nannying, you could talk about a higher standard rate. If this is more demanding than the usual childcare that you charge $25/hr for, ask for something higher, like $35. It's also important to understand what sort of tasks you will be doing. You could always ask for a trial week and decide whether or not it's worth the pay.

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