Some nannies draw a hard line when it comes to housework, while others consider to be the bulk of their job. While I strongly believe that quality care for your child is far more important than having a spotless house, I also believe that good nannies are there to help the entire family. Overburdening a nanny with too many chores can certainly lead to problems, but it is perfectly reasonable to ask for some additional assistance around the house. The key is to define what you need early on so that it is a non-negotiable part of your job description from the start. For example, “Our child’s care is obviously our top priority, but I’m a working mother and I’m gone fifty hours a week. I really need someone to make the beds every day, unload the dishwasher, and use the Swiffer after mealtimes.”

Some parents are overly cautious about asking for help with housework. To those parents, I always advise being realistic about their needs. The truth is that being a working parent is tough. It’s exhausting to put in a full day at the office and then come home and be “on” for the most challenging part of the day. When parents walk through the front door, they will probably not want to see a sink are not sink full of dirty dishes, cat hair all over the couch, and a week’s worth of laundry piled up. Since parents create the job and pay the salary, it is up to them to consider what will be most helpful, and put those needs on paper as ‘must haves’ and ‘extras’.

The next best thing is to think about a list of possible household duties. Identify which ones , if any, you would like your nanny to take on. Some of the tasks that involve heavier cleaning (such as bathrooms, windows, and mopping) are really only doable if you have an Executor or Partner nanny who isn’t devoting most of her time to childcare. Peruse the the list, check which ones you want, and write down any additional duties that are specific to your home. If you already have a housekeeper, it may not be necessary to ask for additional help from your nanny at all.

Here are some housecleaning tasks that we often see clients ask their nannies to do

  1. Family Laundry
  2. Family dishes
  3. Make all beds
  4. Fold & put away clothes
  5. Tidy main living areas
  6. Change sheets
  7. Windows
  8. Bathrooms
  9. Vacuuming
  10. Mopping
  11. Sweeping
  12. Empty wastebaskets
  13. Dust
  14. Maintain grocery list
  15. Grocery shopping
  16. Bring in mail
  17. Bring in newspaper
  18. Recycling
  19. Take out trash
  20. Wipe down counters
  21. Errands
  22. Clean out refrigerator
  23. Organize pantry
  24. Organize entry areas
  25. Organize all closets
  26. Organize mail
  27. Dry cleaning
  28. Be at home to meet and manage housekeeper, plumber, electrician etc.
  29. If Live-In, clean and maintain own living area