Live in nanny

What to expect…

Live-in nannies usually work between 10 and 12 hours per day, five days a week. If you have school-age kids, this will likely vary as your requirements will differ for term-time and holidays, but be clear in terms of your expectations from the outset, and there’s no reason why a degree of flexibility can’t be included in your contract.

Most families will also expect two nights babysitting to be included as part of the salary, but be reasonable in your demands, and give as much notice as possible (where possible).

The requirement for babysitting (Monday-Thursday) should be agreed prior to commencement of the role, with any additional babysitting (such as at the weekend) paid for separately. The rate for weekends needs to be discussed and agreed before employment commences.

A live-in nanny is expected to undertake all duties that relate to the children, whether it’s bath-time, bed-time, getting dressed/undressed and/or preparing nutritious meals and helping with homework. Duties will very much depend on the age of the children, but this should be a useful guide.

Your live-in nanny will wash, iron and organise the children’s clothes and belongings, as well as ensure that toys are clean and tidied away at the end of the day.

It is your live-in nanny’s job to ensure that your children are active and social, by organising play dates and outings, as appropriate.

A live-in nanny will use their experience, knowledge and skills to further your child’s development, be it through play, activities or homework.

You can expect your live-in nanny to organise/provide/set up activities such as creative arts and crafts, singing, reading, outdoor pursuits, sports, games (indoor and out) as well as all sorts of other learning opportunities.

Your live-in nanny is not expected to take on heavy housework, family cooking or household chores that are not expressly related to the children, unless this is discussed and agreed upon before employment commences.

Accommodation requirements

  1. A live-in nanny needs to be provided their own bedroom (and, ideally, bathroom) and given privacy when “off-duty”.
  2. The nanny’s room should be fully furnished, with double-bed, chest of drawers, chair/sofa, full-length mirror, adequate storage space etc. Think carefully about what you provide – a comfortable, homey environment is a really attractive part of your offering (we’ve heard some real horror stories of the conditions live-in nannies have been expected to tolerate!)
  3. All house rules should be made clear from the start and be explicitly stated in the nanny’s contract.


  1. A live-in nanny is normally provided with all her meals by the employer.
  2. You should discuss the types of food your nanny likes to eat and find out if there are any special dietary requirements to consider.
  3. The nanny should be given the opportunity to request certain foods within reason (not caviar or lobster!), but – again – this is best discussed at the outset, so that everyone’s expectations are managed.

Holiday entitlement

  1. Live-in nannies are entitled to a minimum of four weeks’ paid holiday, with bank holidays (the extended Easter weekend, two bank holidays in May, Christmas and New Year’s Day etc) on top.
  2. Holiday time should be taken at a time that is mutually agreeable to all, but if you have specific requirements, especially relating to time off during term-time or taking ad hoc days perhaps – we strongly recommend that these are discussed before employment begins.
  3. If you require your nanny to come on holiday with you, this must be discussed and agreed prior to employment commencement. All travels expenses, food and the nanny’s weekly wage will need to be covered.

Employer’s responsibilities

As an employer, you must provide:

  • A valid contract of employment
  • Liability insurance
  • Nanny’s accommodation
  • Food
  • Weekly or monthly wage
  • Payment of the nanny’s tax and national insurance