Written by Brooke Strickland for Nannies Plus

As a household employer, it is, of course, important to ensure you pay your nanny or family assistant a fair wage–but what about benefits?

While not required by law, benefits like guaranteed hours, healthcare reimbursements, and paid vacation can be considered an industry standard and are a great way to show your nanny or family assistant that you truly value them and the work they do for your family. Doing so helps you attract and retain the best nannies and family assistants for your family team, not to mention, it also makes time available to your employee to recharge so they can continue giving their best to your children and your family. So, while you are considering the details of your new nanny or family assistant’s employment, make sure you understand the importance of creating a good benefits package with the right amount of paid time off included.

Vacation Days and Paid Time Off (PTO)

Offering two work week’s worth of vacation pay per year is the industry standard for domestic employment positions. You can determine if you want to allow your employee to save their accumulated vacation time to roll over into the next year or if they need to use it within a certain calendar year. If they don’t want to use the vacation time that year, make sure that when you write your employment contract with your employee, you include information about paying out any unused vacation pay.
According to the California Department of Labor, vacation pay accrues as it is earned and cannot be forfeited, even upon termination of employment, regardless of the reason for the termination. Keep in mind that a vacation day policy that says that an employee must ‘use it or lose it’ by a specific date, is illegal under California law.

Paid Holidays

Paid holidays that we suggest include: New Year’s Day, New Year’s Eve,
Martin Luther King Jr., Day, President’s Day, Memorial Day, Juneteenth, Independence Day
Labor Day, Columbus Day or Indigenous People’s Day, Veteran’s Day, Thanksgiving and the day following it, Christmas Eve, and Christmas.

Like all employees, professional nannies and family assistants have bills to pay, and taking unpaid time off can be a hardship. It is crucial for a healthy working relationship that you consider how you can give your household employee the opportunity to have a break to relax, recharge, and connect with family and friends. Treating your nanny or family assistant with respect avoids burn-out and resentment. By building a positive working relationship, you reduce the chances of your employee quitting or letting unhappiness affect their performance. In other words, you’ll ensure that your nanny or family assistant won’t have one foot out the door looking for a job that meets their needs and respects their time.

Once you have your nanny or family assistant’s wages and benefits outlined, establish a written work agreement before your employee begins work. The document should outline each part of your employee’s wages, payment schedule, and benefits. Both of you should go over it in detail and sign it, so there is no confusion later down the road.

Contact us today to start the search for your professional nanny or family assistant in San Francisco, the East Bay, Marin or Sonoma! We look forward to helping you to create a thriving family team.