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5 Reasons Why a Nanny Might Be the Solution to Your Childcare Problem

When I switched career, a few years back, and took on a public service role with a 24-hour shift pattern, I wasn’t worried about the night shifts or finding a decent cup of coffee at 4am. No, my concerns were focussed squarely on my two little humans (boys, aged 18 months and 9 years) and how on earth I was going to find childcare to cover unsociable hours and weekends.

Traditionally, my husband and I had always stuck to mainstream providers for our childcare needs, but there were no options to cater for my husband’s 6am starts, or my late finishes, when we enquired with our local out-of-school and nursery services.

We’d always considered nannies to occupy the realm of ‘budgets far greater than ours’ but, a chance conversation with a colleague led me to Care.com . Here I was able to avoid the astronomical nanny finding agency fees and recruit an experienced, qualified and well vetted nanny who was a perfect fit for our household.

Wendy was looking for a live-out position and was happy to start early and work unsociable hours. The boys adored her and before long, it felt like she was part of our family.

Here are 5 reasons why hiring a nanny is a great idea:

1. It can be cheaper

There are many ways that hiring a nanny can work out cheaper than mainstream childcare. A nanny caring for siblings is one, nanny sharing is another. For us, paying for Wendy’s services, only when we needed them, worked out much cheaper than combining, several childcare services (some of which we’d only need for an hour or two) and taking time off work to manage our needs.

2. It makes life easier

Oh how it makes life easier! I cannot stress how life transforming having somebody to help get your children ready and do the morning school run is. I didn’t even have to worry about catching up on sleep after a night shift as I had somebody there to take care of my youngest as soon as he woke up. This left me recharged and ready to play with him after a few zeds of my own.

When you’re a busy working parent, having a nanny can take care of those daily struggles and miniature battles. Freeing you up to spend quality time with your little humans.

3. Nannies often provide better quality childcare

Mainstream childcare ratios can be as high as 1 professional per 16 children. Having a nanny at home greatly increases the quality of childcare and the attention your child receives. It also introduces lots of variety to your child’s routine, as nannies aren’t tied down to concrete childcare structures in the ways that mainstream carers are. Enabling them to take children out for fun filled adventures.

Wendy planned a variety of activities for our youngest, out in the big wide world, and they were always things he loved because she knew him so well.

4. It’s more flexible than Mainstream childcare

Due to the nature of mainstream childcare, there isn’t much wiggle room for change. Children’s attendance days and hours must be agreed well in advance and very little can be changed at short notice. Nannies are often much more flexible with their schedules.

 When work emergencies cropped up for my husband and I, it was a relief that Wendy was happy to accommodate changes to her working schedule. It really helped take the pressure off and avoided us calling in babysitting favours from relatives.

5. Nannies can save you from having to take ‘time-off’ work

I’ve lost count of the amount of family day’s and unpaid leave I had to take from work due to the gatekeepers at my son’s nursery refusing him entry because he sneezed or - heaven forbid - was only 47 hours in to the required 48-hour quarantine period for any child on antibiotics. Thankfully, these policies magically disappear when they reach school age, where they adopt a much healthier ‘bring them in even if their legs falling off’ attitude. I jest, of course, but there are times when children are refused entry into mainstream childcare without anything being wrong with them.

Nannies tend to take an altogether more realistic approach (providing there are not actual legs falling off) and will happily take care of a little one who needs nothing more than a dose of Calpol and a cuddle. 

Thanks to Wendy, I was able to save my time off for genuine emergencies and precious family time with my guys.


Chantelle is a mum of two and her work can be found at Family Wellness Mama.


Read Next: 7 Ways to Help Your Child Cope When Saying Goodbye to A Nanny 

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