What Is a Nanny Share? Everything You Need to Know

Three children and an adult standing in rainboots

Learn about the types of shares, how to set up a nanny share, how to find a family and a nanny, and the cost of a nanny share.

What is a nanny share?

A nanny share is when two families share the time of a single nanny.

A nanny share is an agreement between two or more families to either have their child cared for simultaneously by a single nanny, or to split different hours of a nanny’s work week. Often, both will occur, as parents often have different work schedules, and so need different amounts of support and flexibility.

It’s most common to see two families hire a nanny to care for their children together, thus splitting the cost, sharing the employee management and giving your little one a friend to learn with. This would be considered a “full nanny share,” even if it’s not full-time care (40+ hours/week).

The other type of nanny share is called a partial-share, in which families only need a part-time nanny, but the nanny needs full-time work. This results in the family finding another family with whom they can share the 40+ hour schedule. They don’t need to manage the nanny together but might work together on things like vacation time and schedules.

What are the benefits of a nanny share?

Affordable Child Care

If you’re sharing a nanny with another family, you should save a third of the salary you would, if the nanny was supporting your family alone. This option is often far less expensive than high-end daycares, and also allows a nanny to earn a slightly higher salary and offers job security! For many parents, these savings are a blessing. If you’re interested in more on savings, keep reading! We’ll dig more into the savings below.

Meaningful Socializing

Having your child spend a lot of time with another child can really create some valuable socialization time. Your child can learn how to behave and react around others and receive some of the benefits of daycare, from the comfort of an at-home environment. Learn more about how nanny shares compare to daycares and nursery schools.

Flexible Schedules

Child care centers often have rigid policies on hours, statutory holidays, and sickness. With a nanny share, you can plan ahead, navigate around exceptions, and ensure that the unique needs of your families are met. This is especially true if both families are open to using their home as a location for care.

Active Support From An Adult

While daycares can provide a great opportunity for children to connect with each other, the staff often have their attention spread between a large number of kids. With a nanny share, you are able to ensure each child receives regular support from an adult. You even have the same ability to shape programming or request specific activities as you would in a standard nanny arrangement.

What are the cost savings of nanny share?

When entering a nanny share, each family is expected to pay the nanny ⅔ of what they would pay the nanny on their own. This means each family is saving ⅓ of the cost and the nanny is offered a more competitive salary.

According to the INA 2017 Survey, the average hourly rate of a nanny is $19.14. You can find the average hourly rate in your area here. Via a nanny share, families each pay 2/3 of this cost-saving family over $13000 per year. That number alone can change the entire means of a family or make that dream vacation come true.

It’s a win-win situation for all parties, but the trick is to set up your nanny share with a nanny share family you’re compatible with, and a nanny you both appreciate.

How do you start a nanny share?

Starting a nanny share depends on if you already have a nanny or family in mind. If you have neither, then there’s really no wrong way to go. Some people will find a family first so they can interview nannies together. If you’re joining a family/nanny duo, you'll want to interview both the family and the nanny. Either way, start by creating your profile

A nanny share site like Nanny Lane provides a matching platform to help you find both a local family and a nanny!

You can also post in local Facebook groups, or let parents in your social circles know that you're looking for a nanny share and rely on word of mouth.

Learn more about how to set up a nanny share.

How do I interview a nanny share family?

A nanny share match is more than your location and work schedule. It’s about finding the right fit based on parenting style and how people care for a household employee. There are many families on Nanny Lane also looking for a family to share a nanny with! Then, once you start meeting families face-to-face, use this list of questions to ask them (or yourselves) to see if they’re the best family to partner with.

Family Logistics:

  • Do you live near each other?
  • Are your children’s ages compatible? Most people think they need the kids in a Nanny Share to be the same age, but this simply isn't true.
  • Do you agree on where the care will be given? In one house consistently, or alternating between family homes?
  • Is the family comfortable splitting expenses like food, activities, and any gear that may have to be purchased for your nanny?
  • Do you agree on how to pay your nanny?
  • How long would they like this share set up to last?

Parent Personalities:

  • Do you get along with the other family? (See if you have any mutual friends who can provide any insight, and check out their social media presence).
  • Does anyone seem like a micro-manager who might get in the way of your parenting style or your nanny’s independence with the children?

Family Philosophies:

  • Do you like each other’s kids?
  • What is the family’s discipline style?
  • What are their rules for technology?
  • Is everyone vaccinated?

Additional Questions to Ask Each Other:

  • If my child misbehaves (hitting, biting, etc) with your child, how would you want me to handle it?
  • Say you're upset about an issue with the nanny. How would you like me to support you?

You’ve found your family/nanny, what's next?

Once you've got your perfect fit, you’ll want to create and sign a nanny contract to cover issues such as payment, vacation time, overtime, holidays off, etc.

You’ll also want to draft a family contract that lays out similar time-off issues as well as how you agree to handle a sick kid, house assignments, baby proofing, food expenses, tardiness, etc.

Once all the logistics are in place, you can just relax and let your professional nanny handle the rest. Let the kids have fun together, while you all reap the benefits of your nanny share!

What are some other aspects to figure out with a nanny share?

There are some aspects that are easily overlooked but should be discussed from the beginning. These include vacation planning, dealing with one sick child, and payment when only one family is using the nanny. Here are some ways you might handle each of these:

  • Vacation Time: Assuming you give two weeks off, start by letting your nanny choose one week of vacation, then see if you and the other family can decide on the same second week to take off. If you can’t, your nanny will likely need to care for the non-vacationing family and won’t get her second week of vacation time. This means you and your share-family will need to find another week you can give her off when you can arrange backup care.
  • Sick-Kid Time: How sick is too sick to be around another child? This is what you’ll want to decide, as kids are bound to get sick. Families tend to decide on daycare rules (as long as there’s no fever or puking), or they approach it as if these kids were siblings and decide that whatever one was exposed to, the other is bound to have been exposed to it as well.
  • Solo-Nanny Time: What happens when one family comes home early, but their house is the host house for the nanny that week? Or, if one family needs to work late/go in early, and they’re not the host-house that week? If this is likely to pop up in your nanny share, aim to find a nanny who will travel with the child back to the other family’s house. This way, the parents who are at home don’t have to babysit for another family.

How to Setup Payroll for a Nanny Share?

A nanny payroll service will take care of your weekly or bi-weekly nanny paychecks, even when working with another family in a nanny share. The service will pull from your separate bank accounts, and when filing taxes, you will all be filing separately. Nanny Lane has a payroll service that has been developed to specifically handle nanny share payroll logistics.

For you, the employer, you'll need:

  • Contact information
  • Social Security number
  • Federal and state tax information
  • Info on your nanny’s compensation
  • Bank account information
  • The personal information above for your spouse, if you file “married, filing jointly”

From your nanny, you'll need:

  • Contact information
  • Social Security information
  • Bank account info for direct deposit
  • State income tax withholding selections
  • Federal income tax withholding selections

Once you have all this information, you'll be able to set up your nanny's payroll today.

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