Some families rely on nanny agencies to help them find a nanny, but it's important to weigh your options, as agencies can be extremely expensive.
Here are some considerations before signing with a nanny agency to help you find a nanny or Nanny Share.
Nanny Agencies Don’t Specialize in Nanny Shares
This doesn’t mean they won’t work with you, but you would want to make sure you have your share-family already before you start with the agency. Often nanny agencies work with nannies they know, time and again. So when looking for a nanny for a Nanny Share, the agency worker may be looking in the same online resources you would (usually for free).
Nanny Agencies Can be Pricey
The work agencies put into interviewing and vetting your top nanny candidates will come at a cost. Typically nanny agencies charge between $1,000 to $5,000 in fees. There would be additional fees for a Nanny Share as well.
You have free access to the same quality nannies on a reputable site like Nanny Lane as any of the agencies would! You can save yourself a few thousand dollars by spending a few hours doing a search yourself.
There Will Still Be Work on Your Part
This is not a “set it and forget it” situation. You will likely fill out a good amount of paperwork, and be in touch with your agency rep daily. You may need to designate one share-family as the main point of contact if you're doing a Nanny Share, and call each other regularly to discuss your options.
In terms of interviewing, ask how the agency interviews and screens your candidates, especially any nannies who might be new to the agency. Be sure to call your top candidates’ references yourself (here are some questions you might want to ask), and review a copy of their background checks.
Check the Refund Policy
If your nanny doesn’t work out, and you’ve already paid your fee, you will want to know your options. Will the agency assist in finding another nanny, free of charge, within six months? It’s also a good idea to read online reviews of this agency and talk to any families you know who have used the agency before.
It is worth your time to at least start your search without an agency to see whether you can find a quality nanny on your own. It's easier than you might think.