Do you like having an au pair?

I’m moving into a house with an extra bedroom and bathroom and am considering the possibility of getting an au pair. They’re much less expensive than a nanny but the downside is they are living with you 24/7. If you’ve had one, what are the pros and cons? I’m concerned that the au pair might be looking to me to provide them with a social life and frankly I’m pretty boring and don’t get out much besides work and weekend activities with the kids.

  • Tiana
    Jul 26

    We had an au pair when we lived overseas. The pros you already know, the majority of them are English language learners, and you’d need to provide them with time off to go to school. There are also limits on how many hours they’re allowed to work. I’m sure you could negotiate under the table for bumping their salary, if needed. Knowing the au pair that we had, and the au pair friends that she made, don’t worry about her social life. Most likely she’s going to be a go-getter who puts herself out there, if she’s moving from her home country to work for you. Most likely she’d have weekends off, so don’t worry about what YOU do, just ensure she was a way of getting around, a bus pass, BART clipper card. You’re in a major metropolitan city, that girl is going to have the time of her life. If she needs a nudge, set her up with a meetup account. There are literally meetup groups for aupairs. I don’t know anyone whose had a negative experience apart from the inevitable goodbye when her contract ends.

  • Sebastian
    Jul 27

    I'm friends with a couple who are on their second au pair. Both their current au pair and their previous one took weekends off, so there was no pressure at all re: providing them a social life. I wouldn't fret about entertaining an au pair.

  • Mrs. HHH
    Jul 28

    I grew up with several au pairs taking care of me and I loved them all! They were all from Austria and were young and had that cool girl energy. I know you weren’t looking for a kids POV but that’s my 2 cents. And yes like another said very hard to say good bye at the end

  • Sara
    Jul 28

    Awesome to get the kids perspective! Yeah I imagine the goodbye will be tough but it would mostly be to help with my baby (she’s currently 14 months) bc my older one is in preschool most of the day so I’m hoping she won’t care/notice the goodbye as much.

  • Katie
    Aug 01

    What are the costs for an aupair? Is the salary in addition to room and board and food. I’ve considered it numerous times but can’t wrap my head around the true cost.

  • Jenny
    Aug 01

    It cost about $20,000 for the first year. You need to pay the agency around $8,000 You pay the au pair $200/week ($10,400/yr) You cover up to $500 of educational costs This is not required but it's assumed you will want your au pair to have a cell phone so you need to pay for that. You need to pay to put her on your car insurance if she'll need to drive. Basically the only thing you do not pay for is the au pairs time off entertainment costs. The Au pair can work up to 45 hours a week, and not more than 10 hours per day. (So if you and your spouse travel frequently for work, you can’t have your au pair watch the kids for 24 hours while you’re gone.) You also need to afford at least one and a half days off per week, one full weekend off per month, and two weeks of paid vacation.