Using a nanny

Nannies provide childcare in your own home and can look after children of any age. They often work flexible hours so can be a good option if you work shifts or unsociable hours. Your child will also have the advantage of being cared for in familiar surroundings with access to their own toys, books and games.

What types of nanny are there?

  • Live in nannies - This type of nanny lives with the family they are working for, who will provide them with food and a private bedroom in addition to their salary.
  • Daily nannies - This type of nanny comes to the family home each day. Babysitting in the evenings might be arranged as part of the terms of employment, or in exchange for extra pay.
  • Nanny share - An arrangement whereby a nanny is shared by two families. If a nanny is shared by more than two families, they may be required to register as a childminder.

What checks are made on nannies?

Nannies do not have to be registered with Ofsted but can chose to go on the Voluntary part of the Ofsted Childcare Register as a home child carer.

If your nanny is registered with Ofsted you may be eligible to claim the childcare element of Working Tax Credit or Universal Credit or use childcare vouchers or Tax-Free Childcare to help with childcare costs.

You will also have the assurance that your nanny has undergone an enhanced check by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and holds an appropriate first aid qualification.

Do they have any training?

Registered nannies must have successfully completed a qualification at a minimum of level 2 in an area of work relevant to childcare, or training in the core skills as set out in the document 'common core skills and knowledge for the children's workforce'. They must also have a paediatric first aid certificate and public liability insurance. Unregistered nannies may have basic training but they aren't required to have public liability insurance.

How do I find a nanny?

Employing a nanny is an important responsibility. It is up to you, as a parent and employer, to make sure that you are employing a nanny who will look after your children well. It is important to interview thoroughly and make sure that you check all references.

There are several ways to find a nanny:

  • word of mouth
  • advertising in a local paper
  • advertising in a publication aimed at childcarers
  • notice boards where nannies might look for jobs such as your local newsagents or school
  • contacting local colleges that offer childcare courses
  • registering on a nanny share website (details of these can be found on our Family Information Directory)
  • through a nanny agency (details of local agencies can be found on

Agencies will usually charge you a fee for finding you a list of suitable nannies. However, a good agency will usually have carried out their own checks before they add a nanny's details to their lists including an enhanced DBS check.

What is the average fee?

The average fee for a nanny is between £250 to £400 per week, plus you will be responsible for paying their tax and National Insurance.

If your nanny is aged between 22 and state pension age and earns above £10,000 you will also be responsible for their pension under the automatic enrolment scheme.

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