67 Reasons to Hire a Nanny
The cost of a nanny may seem like more than other child care options, but learn why it might be worth the additional expense.
When you're looking at child care costs, nannies can seem like a pricier option compared to day care or family child care. But there are lots of intangible benefits to think about.
We asked Becky Kavanagh, former co-president of the International Nanny Association, and Cindy Hamilton, a mom of two in Chicago, Ill., to explain the real value a nanny will bring to your family.
A nanny offers convenience, but having a trusted and trained professional to care for your children in your home keeps everyone working for the same goal. “The nanny is part of the team with the parents to ensure the total well-being of the children,” says Kavanagh.
Many families say the bond with their nanny is something they cherish, even long after their children have grown. “With our nanny, we quickly discovered how wonderful it was for us to have someone become part of our family,” says Hamilton. “It’s like having a third parent.”
[READ MORE: "How to Hire a Nanny -- From Start to Finish"]
Here are 67 reasons hiring a nanny may make sense for your family:
- Your nanny works from your home, so it’s very convenient.
- Your kids get to nap in their own beds.
- Your nanny can plan the day’s schedule around your kids’ needs and current temperament.
- You don’t have to worry about making the strict pickup or drop off times.
- Your kids eat familiar foods.
- You don’t have to make and pack lunches.
- When you hire a nanny, you make the schedule and benefit from the flexibility.
- If you hire a live-in nanny, you have even more flexibility.
- Nannies make their careers out of caring for children and will seek out developmentally appropriate and stimulating activities tailored to the individual needs of your children.
- Your kids can play outside for as long as you want them to be.
- If you have several kids, it can be cheaper to hire a nanny than to send them all to day care.
- Your children’s day is tailored to their energy levels, moods and specific needs.
- You have a child with special needs who could use more personal attention.
- You might have to drive to work in bad weather, but at least you know your kids are home safe and don’t have to leave.
- When you have an early meeting, you don’t have to scramble to find a babysitter.
- If you’re sick in bed with the flu, someone else is there to watch your kids.
- Your kids play with their own toys.
- Someone else can pick up and organize your kids’ toys -- while teaching them to do it themselves, of course!
- Your child gets regular, consistent one-on-one attention.
- You can focus on work with the peace of mind knowing more about the day that was planned and that an ear infection won't cause you to run home.
- If you only need child care while your kids are on summer vacation, a summer nanny can be a great alternative to camp.
- Morning chaos is (mostly) eliminated.
- Your after-school nanny can help your kids with their homework, so you can focus on spending quality time with them when you get home.
- If you work nights, you can hire a nanny to watch your kids.
- You won’t get a call to come pick up your child from day care when he doesn’t feel well.
- Your kids will get social interaction, but it can be better organized and planned based on their needs.
- If your son is mildly sick, he can stay home in his own bed under the watchful and observant eye of someone you trust and you can go to work.
- Your kids get out of school at 3, but your workday doesn't end until 5. An after-school nanny can help cover the extra time.
- If your children have any kind of chronic condition that makes them more sensitive to catching a virus, your home offers more protection than daily day care.
- A day care or preschool may close for a snow day, but you still have to work. A nanny may still be able to care for your kids.
- If your son doesn’t get along with another child, he won’t have to spend each and every day in the same environment.
- Your nanny can clean your house while the kids nap (though you should pay her extra). See Do You Have a Nanny Housekeeper?
- If your daughter wants to take guitar or language lessons, a nanny can set that up and take her to lessons.
- Naps are more peaceful when other kids aren't crying around you.
- Your commute home can be a time to decompress, not a beat-the-clock to day care roller coaster ride.
- When your child is sick for a couple of days, you won’t be stuck paying day care fees, while also taking time off from work to stay home with your child.
- If your newborn doesn't sleep through the night and it's impacting your quality of life, you can hire a night nanny to help.
- Your nanny gives each child in your family individual attention.
- If you only work a few hours per week, hiring a part-time nanny can be the most economical option.
- You have a built-in date night sitter.
- If your child develops something new -- whether it's a new talent or a new proficiency -- your nanny will notice and be able to tailor her care and activities to nurture that.
- Your kids build a close relationship with another adult who loves them.
- If your kids get really messy at lunch, they can have an unscheduled bath to wash the mac and cheese out of their hair.
- Your home is under control when you walk in the door.
- You can work with your nanny to achieve your family goals.
- Families set the tone for how the nanny works with the kids, not the other way around.
- Your children will have less exposure to the common viruses that spread.
- You can find a nanny who is fluent in a certain language you want your children to learn.
- A nanny doesn’t mind making crafts with glitter glue and cotton balls.
- You can get regular texts and pictures sent of daily highlights.
- When your child says something embarrassing, only your nanny will hear it.
- Your nanny knows your kids almost as well as you do because she’s with them all day.
- She can take them to places you don’t like, such as the zoo or that really loud kids' game place you try not to think about.
- You can bring your nanny on vacation with you.
- A nanny could help plan and prepare dinner.
- Your nanny can keep all the grandparents up-to-date on new milestones, so they don’t have to wait for you to let them know.
- Nannies typically stay with one family for years, so there’s less turnover for your kids to adapt to.
- She will get to know you and learn the types of decisions you would make for the kids, creating less inconsistencies.
- If you travel for work, a nanny can help fill in the care-gaps while you're away.
- The trusting relationship a family and nanny build over the years is priceless.
- She’ll not only notice when you’re running low on essentials like toilet paper or Goldfish, but can pick them up for you at the grocery store.
- Because she’s so tuned into your child, your nanny will quickly notice unusual behaviors, like a new anxiety or sleep troubles, that could indicate something needs attention.
- Your nanny becomes one more trusted adult in your child’s corner.
- She can handle doing your kids' laundry -- one less chore for you.
- A nanny who has worked with other families brings with her a wealth of experience and know-how for raising with children.
- Your nanny has likely been through potty training more times than you have and knows all the tricks to make it successful.
- Your nanny loves your kids as fiercely as you do and will do everything in her power to make them happy, healthy and secure.
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Julia Quinn-Szcesuil is an award-winning freelance writer and a mom to two girls. She lives in Massachusetts and has written for local and national publications.