The different types of childcare
Babysitter, Nanny, Childminder, Au pair, drop-in daycare, crèche, shared care, housekeeper... So many terms to understand to find the perfect care! Don't panic, I'll start all over again!
Before choosing a childcare option, you must first define your needs. Do you need someone in your home all the time? Just a few hours a day? For an outing with friends from time to time? It is also and above all necessary to take your budget into account! The goal is not to identify the types of care available, but rather to find the best for each.
Enough talk, let's start!
► The Nanny:
A nanny travels to your home to care for your children. It is often full-time, but you can also find a nanny who prefers a part-time job for personal reasons. She often has to do housework, even if it is not really part of her job, and this will require extra pay. Nannies and housekeepers are two very different roles, it's up to you to choose if you prefer your little one to stay in a chair alone while his nanny does the cleaning, or if you prefer that he goes for a walk in the parks and plays with her. Perhaps it is better to free up your nanny for a baby nap (which will be short, believe me) by employing a housekeeper for a few hours per week who will do it much faster. In any case, she will take care of everything concerning the child at home: activities, meals, bath, storage and cleaning of the child's living spaces... You can go home and put your feet under the table (or almost...)
Hiring a nanny has tax benefits, which will considerably reduce your costs. No diploma or training is required to practice, so it is important to carefully check their CV and references. Feel free to do an in-depth interview with your children to see their behaviour. References often provide reassurance, but trust your instincts, and when you find the rare gem, you may have to pay more than the minimum wage to keep them around! Their salary will increase according to experience and qualifications.
Be careful, even if this type of care has many advantages for parents, it is better to check that you have enough money to cover it, because it is one of the most expensive! To carry out your interview successfully, Yoopies provides you with an essential tool: the practical 'interview' sheet, so that you do not forget any questions, note the nanny's answers, and quickly find the perfect candidate!
► Shared Care:
Shared care is part employing a nanny with another family. The fees will therefore be divided equally according to the number of children between you. Care alternates between the two households.
Even if it is a good solution financially, the number of problems has increased considerably: disagreement between families, childcare schedules that change for one of them, deferred leave... All these problems mean that not all nannies will accept this type of care!
Make sure you find a second family with whom you get along with well, with whom you share a similar educational venture, who doesn't live too far from home, and with the same budget... When you have found the ideal second family, all you need to do is to find the perfect nanny. (And here we go again...)
A childminder is a person who looks after your children at the childminder's home. Moreover, your children will not be the only children cared for since the childminder will be able to care for up to four children at the same time (six with exceptional permission). A childminder chooses the family of the children she will welcome, according to the hours proposed, and your particular requests (washable nappies, too strict or not enough method of education...). Each family has an individual contract with the childminder.
In case of partial care or irregular hours, it can often be difficult for you to find a childminder (depending on the region). Indeed, it is not attractive for her to need to change her schedule to fit you in, or to find another family who has similar requirements.
To exercise her profession legally, the childminder must have received an approval from OFSTED which allows her to care for the number of children specified.
She will be in charge of the development and education of your child (s), and may even continue part-time when your child returns to school.
The Childminder cares for children at a very reasonable price as childcare costs are shared with other parents!
A babysitter is a somebody who travels to your home to occasionally babysit your children when you go out. This can be during the day, in the evening, or at night. It is often an irregular and short period of time, but it can be for example a daily school outing during a school year!
Most of the time babysitters are not registered due to the insufficient number of hours, however it is still essential to setup PAYE with an accountant. If working hours are regular or if working hours exceed 8 hours per week, or 4 consecutive weeks per year, then you will not escape the employment contract. This is necessary to define the terms of the care, hours of attendance etc.... Be careful, because in case of problems with your babysitter, you will not get anything if you have not declared it! It also covers accidents from the simplest (breaking a vase) to the most significant (injured child or babysitter).
Before employing a babysitter, there's nothing better than arranging an interview with your children present! Their motivation, enthusiasm and common sense will be the key to successful childcare, in all confidence.