Are Nannies Making Less Now?

The Wall Street Journal Says Now is the Time to Hire Bargain Nannies

The Wall Street Journal published the article, Soft Economy Eases Cost of Hiring a Nanny by Pui-Wing Tam last week. The newspaper reports the best place to find a bargain nanny is in California.

The article says that nannies in California used to charge up to $25 an hour to watch the children and now can hire nannies for $17 an hour.

“Whenever I called the nanny agencies before, right away they’d give me some families who wanted to interview me,” Natasha Ivanov, a Silicon Valley nanny for the past 15-years, tells the newspaper.

Not anymore. Nanny agencies, such as Stanford Park Nannies in Menlo Park, CA and Aunt Ann’s Agency in San Francisco, CA tell The Wall Street Journal the demand for nannies has dropped because more parents are staying home with their children because of layoffs.

Meanwhile, the article states the number of nannies seeking employment has grown. Laid off teachers and other childcare professionals are turning to the nanny business to make ends meet.

So, when the demand goes down and supply is up, wages are going down.

Daryl Camarillo, the owner of Stanford Park Nannies, tells the paper her agency’s profits dropped 30 percent from 2008’s revenue. “There has been a slowdown as people move out of the area and cut back any way they can,” Camarillo tells the newspaper.

What do you think? Have you noticed this trend? Are parents offering less than before the reciession in 2008?


  1. The laws of supply and demand are happening in every job sector out there. And, even if a family can afford to pay pre-recession wages, they still may try to get the most bang for their buck because the option is there.I left an area where the economy went downhill and the opportunities for a nanny to make a fair wage dried up. I came to an area where I have choices on who I want to work for, benefits I want to receive, hours, etc. I still have my profile on some sites for sitting jobs, and I still get contacted by people who attempt to poach me.The reason I am in this position though is because of the experience and more importantly the education I have on my resume. A nanny with these two things along with drive, determination, and work ethic is more marketable. Plus the ability to relocate helps a lot too.I noticed some time ago that as the daycare centers closed and teachers were losing jobs because of budget cuts they were going to turn to this field. The advantage they have though is that training and experience of educating children. What they will learn if they get a nanny job, is what I did when I left the childcare center arena long ago. It's a lot easier in most cases to work for one family, and the pay and perks are better too.Minority students are going to school too for early childhood education associate degrees. Think about situations where legal nannies are losing out to immigrant ones and au pairs. American nannies can no longer rely on just their high school diplomas and babysitting experience to make them the top candidates for nanny jobs.

  2. It is definitely happening in my neighborhood. I am so lucky to have my job even with the kids in school full time. Used to be everyone could keep a job even with kids in school full time by filling time with errands for the family. Now it's completely different. 4 nanny agencies in my area have closed in the past two years leaving none in my area. I have to use nanny websites instead.One friend was with family 6 years they cut back hours at first but then announced changing rate from $18 per hour to $12 per hour take it or leave it they can hire someone at $10 per hour now.Two nanny friends have changed to nanny shares when each had a parent lose their job. So now they both work for two families each part-time each family.Another nanny friend had hours cut drastically cutting salary in half to $400 per week. When she left the job the nanny agency told her she shouldn't have left until she had another job.Best advice: don't leave a job no matter how low the pay or you hate the job until you have another one lined up. Get paid on the books. That way if the parents get laid off and you get laid off you can collect unemployment benefits.I am not leaving my name to protect parents and nannies.

  3. I have friends that lost their awesome nanny on the misconception they could find good care for cheaper. Articles like these posted in the WSJ give parents the wrong perception. Just like always you get what you pay for and if parents cut a nanny's pay they lose the nanny.Here in NJ now that Gov Christie is cutting millions in education teachers are being forced into retirement and losing their jobs. They will enter the nanny work force (I make $65K+ her in Jersey)and the competition is higher. So there is more competition for the good nanny jobs!When parents have a special needs child or homeschool they will chose the experienced and educated teacher over a less educated caregiver. Household Manager & NannyFelicia Taylor Moorestown NJ

  4. I agree Felicia. Every profession has less jobs so more people giving nannying a try. If i were a teacher being laid of or forced to part time in NJ I might try nannying.Teachers are getting laid off in NJ and if I were a parent and had two nanny candidates one with an education degree and teaching experience vs. just nanny experience for same rate I'll hire the educated teacher.But, when all qualifications are the same parents will obviously hire the nanny asking for the lower salary. Just common sense.I now nannies get all insulted but who spends more than they need to? Sad how bad some people pay so little for childchare and sad how they disrespect and treat their childcare providers.Susie W12 Yrs Nanny ExperienceMadison NJ

  5. Full-time nannies are taking what they can get which often are part-time childcare positions in daycares or homes. Not only are they accepting less wages but less benefits including not paying taxes because they want the job, any job. Biggest mistake nannies make is accepting jobs "off the books" unemployment benefits protect us in a bad economy. Parents with jobs who value good child care still pay good salaries, like my employers.Professional NannyShoshanna Levy Greenwich CT

  6. This is why there is a boom in the au pair industry.

  7. Parents made my nanny friend an offer she couldn't accept cutting $300 from $850 per week pay rate. So, they have grandparents and neighbors helping them out with child care and getting resentful in the meantime. In fact they were sending their kids to other people's houses for extra long playdates and my nanny friends have told their bosses they don't want to be caring for these kids for free.

  8. I was a nanny who was searching for a job in late 2008 and 2009.I found many who were offering $8 to $12 per hour. I was used to earning $15 to $17 per hour, but knew I had to be competitive if I wanted to find a job. So I was willing to take a few dollars less per hour. It was difficult because many who lost their jobs and were unable to find a new one in their field- so they turned to nannying.They were asking for less- and of course many parents are looking for a bargin. (Just wondering how many of those types of "nannies" are still around?).It took me about a year to find a family who wanted a professional career nanny and were willing to pay me a fair salary. I am glad I was able to hold my ground- because no matter what- I just can't justify accepting less per week than what I am worth. I will never be a $8 to $12 per hour nanny.To the "true nannies" out there-don't sell yourself short! The nanny profession will come back strong again- hopefully sooner than later!

  9. I personally do not know any nanny who has lost their job or have had a cut in salary or hours. But I guess no one living in my area works on Wall Street. By Tammy Slater, Juneau, Alaska

  10. We switched to an au pair after having a nanny and it didn't us all that much money. After paying the agency fees and plane fare, room and board, and so on for the au pair we didn't save money. I would suggest parents only hire an au pair for the cultural experience because it's a lot of work hosting someone from another country. We took on another child. Then they have to leave in a few months and we have to start the emotional journey all over again. We didn't save much so we went back to hiring a nanny who has been with us nearly 3 years now. I prefer consistency in care for many years. I don't feel like a babysitter or parent for my nanny like I did for the au pair.Parent, Palm Beach, Florida

  11. Really good comments by everyone. I think just like always some parents are more concerned with saving money. They are looking at dollars because they work hard for their money too. Of course they want the best care at the lowest price they can find. That's how they negotiate everything, I do too. Also the parents that worry most about hiring the one of the top caregivers at any price are still doing so. Those looking for the bargain are just going to get cheaper in this economic environment. None of my friends have lost jobs.Alicia GalloNanny 3 YearsHillsborough, CA

  12. I'm the owner of and we've seen the number of nanny jobs drop substantially over the past two years. We've also seen a very large increase in the number of part-time nanny positions. It makes sense that families that are financially stretched would look for part-time nanny work. On the positivive side, things seem to be improving some. Steve

  13. I made $400 per week with $1,000 Christmas bonus and $1 raise per hour as a live in in 1990. I know nannies make less than that now.

  14. You get what you pay for. There are still parents out there that value their nannies and will pay for their service. I won't accept less and I make $60K. For Parents: You have to make the job attractive to the nanny or they will keep looking for something better! At least if you pay them well they won't leave because you are cheap!!From Educated Nanny

  15. I would also agree with many of the comments posted above. Nanny wages and salaries have significantly decreased in Texas over the past 3 years. It is important to find a reputable agency that specializes in long-term Nanny placements. They have clients that are willing to pay more in Nanny wages. Due to their contract negotations with the agency, it is specified ahead of time how much they are required to pay a Nanny.

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