Nanny bringing own kid to work? Different rate of pay?

What is the norm  when a nanny brings her own child to work on occasional days?  We are trying to hire a nanny for our 6 month old at a rate of $20 per hour.  The nanny we are talking to says she would charge $28 per hour when one of my other kids is home (occasionally) which would be a stretch for us, but ok.. But then she says that she will bring her own child from time to time when he is not in preschool and that the rate should still be $20 when her child is there.  I think the rate should be less for those days - maybe not the same as a nanny share (typically $13 or so per kid around here) but maybe split the difference at say $17.  My rationale for this is that she will have less time and attention for my baby on those days, that I am paying for one on one care and she will have more to do, that in an emergency situation she would naturally likely help out her own kid before mine, and also that if her child is sick etc mine is more likely to catch it.  Also that if the rate goes up when one of my other kids is there, it should by that logic, go down when her child is there.  She thinks this is unreasonable and "as a mom" I should understand this.    Would appreciate hearing others' perspectives.  Thanks!

Parent Replies

New responses are no longer being accepted.

I would probably start talking to someone else. She is asking for a high rate and high accommodations.  One of you is not going to be happy in this situation, which means it's not likely to work out well long term.

Nannyshare rates are the norm in this situation, so $12-15/hour when she brings her kid. We paid ours $15. I have a friend who paid their's $13, which I actually think is more reasonable than what we paid. $17-20 is a little unreasonable on her part. Their kids do demand their mom's attention from time to time, which is find because no harm is done by a little crying. On the other hand, my baby loved having an older kid around.

I agree with you--there should be a one-child and two-child rate, and when it's your two kids, you pay the two-child rate; when it's your child and the nanny's child, you pay half of the two-child rate. For $20 per hour you can get one-on-one care without this complication (and it's concerning that she is planning to bring her own child when he/she is sick--??) I'd move on; this isn't a great starting point for a child care relationship, and there are lots of other wonderful nannies looking for work. 

Wow - I think this is your big red flag that you should find a different nanny. 

Our nanny cared for our child and hers together. We initially paid her the nanny share rate (she suggested this) but after some time we felt uncomfortable with paying her such a low rate and we raised it to be in between the share and solo rates (like your $17 suggestion). It was a little different as her child was a baby so he needed significant care (vs a preschooler who needs attention but not as much immediate hands-on care as a newborn). I agree with your first two rationales for paying less (it means her attention will be split and you are not paying for 1:1 care) but I disagree about the concern that "she will naturally put her child first." Our experience was that our nanny actually put our child's needs ahead of her own child, because our child was her paying job.

I would find a different nanny asap. Any person making demands like this in the beginning will be difficult to work with in the long term. Of course it's unreasonable to bring her kid along and charge you the same amount of money, for all of the reasons that you mention. I frankly think that it's unreasonable to just announce that she'll be bringing her kid when she feels like it even if she did offer a discount. Don't let yourself be bullied into working with this person. Every time I've ignored red flags like these I've regretted it. I know that you don't want to start your search over but I can guarantee that this one is not going to work out and you'll never be comfortable leaving your baby with her. I bet that she also wants to be paid cash under the table and would demand extra pay if you want to pay her legally. Don't do it.