When it comes to hiring a live-in nanny, there are a number of things to consider. First and foremost, you need to decide if having a live-in nanny is right for your family. After that (and after finding the right person), you need to determine an acceptable live-in nanny salary. But spoiler alert: The latter decision shouldn’t be all that difficult, as the cost of a live-in nanny doesn’t differ much from the cost of a live-out nanny.
“Whatever the market rate is for live-out nannies in your area, you can expect to pay the same, or a few dollars more per hour, for a live-in nanny,” says Michelle LaRowe Conover, lead educator at Global Nanny Training. “And like live-out nannies, live-in nannies must be paid an hourly rate at or above minimum wage, though most nannies expect far more.”
From taxes to overtime, here’s everything you need to know about live-in nanny costs.
How much should you pay a live-in nanny?
The cost of a live-in nanny is on par with the cost of a live-out nanny — or, as LaRowe Conover says, a few dollars more per hour. While a number of factors will influence a live-in or live-out nanny’s rate (more on this shortly), Olivia Fountain, operations manager at the domestic staffing agency, Household Staffing, notes that the live-in nannies who are placed through their company generally make between $25-$30 an hour, with their working hours generally being from around 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. or 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The company places nannies nationally, but it’s worth noting they generally work with higher-income families.
To get a better idea of what a nanny will cost in your area, use our babysitting rates calculator. As a quick example, a nanny in Brooklyn, New York currently will earn about $20 an hour, while a nanny in San Antonio, Texas will earn about $14.75.
Here are some basic examples of typical live-in nanny rates based on location, according to recent Care.com data.
Current live-in nanny rates for top cities*
|CITY||HOURLY NANNY RATE|
|Brooklyn, New York||$20.00/hr|
|San Diego, California||$19.00/hr|
|Charlotte, North Carolina||$16.50/hr|
|San Antonio, Texas||$14.75/hr|
Other factors that can influence a nanny’s rate (live-in or live-out) are:
- Years of experience.
- Number of kids.
- Ages of kids.
- Expected duties.
How does the cost of a live-in nanny compare to a live-out nanny?
A live-in nanny salary may be on par with a live-out’s, but there are a few differences to keep in mind. For one, in addition to their salary, you’re including “room and board” (which means you need a clean, safe, suitable place for them to live). While, technically, you can deduct a small amount for this, LaRowe notes that “most nannies will not look favorably on essentially paying a family for employment” — and in some places and instances, it’s illegal.
In Massachusetts, for example, employers are not allowed to deduct room and board from a household employee if the job requires them to live in your home. If the nanny wants to live in your home, but is not required, you can deduct $35 a week.
“Many people are under the impression that live-in nannies earn less than their live-out counterparts — this simply is not true,” explains LaRowe Conover. “Live-in nannies are typically paid a premium because of the flexibility and reliability they bring to the table. While it is often assumed that by deducting room and board, parents can save by hiring a live-in nanny, in practice, that just isn’t the case.”
Each situation is different, but other expenses that may accompany a live-in nanny are:
- Cell phone.
- Higher utility bills.
- Worker’s compensation insurance coverage.
Are live-in nannies paid overtime?
Live-in nannies must be paid for every hour worked — “including times they are not allowed to leave the home or are on call,” according to LaRowe Conover — but in most states, due to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), live-in nannies are not entitled to overtime pay.
“However,” LaRowe Conover adds, “in some states, live-in nannies are entitled to overtime if they exceed a set number of hours per day or week.”
For instance, in Hawaii and Maryland, live-in employees are to be paid overtime for anything over 40 hours a week, whereas in New York, live-in nannies are to be paid overtime if they work over 44 hours in a week.
Other states have their own live-in nanny overtime rules, as well. To find the most up-to-date information, check out our list of nanny tax and payroll requirements by state.
What are live-in nanny work hours?
Live-in nanny hours are generally the same as live-out nanny hours. While a live-in nanny undoubtedly offers more convenience than a live-out, they’re not “on 24 hours a day,” notes Fountain. Each family and live-in nanny need to decide what works best for them and put it in their nanny contract.
Fountain also notes that, generally, live-in nannies don’t get up with babies during the night, as their tasks are more aligned with a live-out nanny than a night nanny.
Do you pay live-in nanny taxes?
Yes! Families are required to withhold taxes from household employees that earn over $2,400 in a year, in addition to paying household employment taxes of their own. If taking care of taxes and payroll feels like a daunting task to you, consider having Care.com HomePay take care of everything for you.