Thursday, June 9, 2011

Does the Age of Your Nanny Matter?

What are the Benefits and Disadvantages of Hiring a Nanny Over 50?
photo from rentagrandma.com

In the article Does Age Matter in a Nanny? posted by cafemom web site the author says she's lucky to have her their Grandma watch them when she works.

She says, "I understand that lots of moms feel better going with a seasoned vet, which explains the success of the new company Rent-a-Grandma." The web site says they place experienced, carefully screened caregivers 50-years old and up. The site boasts that their grandmas don't text or tweet while they are watching your kids!

According to Business News Daily, the company currently has 40 to 45 women working in the L.A. area working at rates that range between $16 and $23 an hour. The women pay the company an employment fee and/or a percentage of their hourly compensation.

What do you think? Are there benefits to hiring a nanny over 50? Or, are there more benefits to hiring a younger nanny? Or, is the fact the women pay the company a percentage of their compensation more controversial?

21 comments:

AuPairDebbie said...

isn't that age discrimination? shouldn't that be illegal? i haven't heard of agencies having their nannies pay them before.

Newsletter FB Page said...

Debbie:
isn't that age discrimination? shouldn't that be illegal? i haven't heard of agencies having their nannies pay them before

Pat:
In my experience, age does matter. We have placed women in their early 70's but it is unusual. A good majority of clients hire a nanny when they have their 2nd child, so in many cases there will be a toddler and a newborn/infant. Many of... the older nannies say they are not able to lift and carry a toddler of a certain weight and may have problems sitting on the floor or going up and down stairs carrying an infant. The older nannies are often best suited for children above a certain age. I do not support the idea of nannies paying any of their earnings to an agency.

Pat:
Age discrimination is when you discriminate AGAINST someone who is over 40 yrs old not when you are looking for people 50 and older. There are agencies that the employer pays and the agenciy payrolls the nanny. In that case the nanny is basically paying the agency because the agency takes a portion of what the employer is paying.

FB Page said...

Stephanie:
Obviously experience is key and worth paying more! I never heard of the arrangement of paying the agency! I think women of older age should def be considered and may make great nannies but I think most shocking is the photo on their web site (and above). The grandma looks lovely and like a great companion but doesn't look like she'll be running after toddlers at the pool or playground LOL Very matronly.

Pat:
Stephanie, I don't think the people that are offering this franchise know a whole lot about the business.

Kathie:
I am what you call a Mature Career Nanny..I am 54 years old and am perfectly able to lift infants,toddlers or in the case of the children I am now caring for preschoolers. I do not think age matters, attitude does. If you are healthy and have a good, positive attitude you can work as long as you want. I do expect to do what I love and care for children for a good many more years. And after I no longer am paid to rock babies I will do it on a volunteer basis. The families I have worked for love that I have practical experience as well as an Early Childhood Ed degree and that I have a good work ethic. All those things are important whether you are 18 or 70.

Sara:
My younger brothers had a nanny when they were little. She was 67 or 68 when my parents hired her. She was a very "young" 67-68 year old and my brothers loved her. I was much older so she didn't have near the impact on my life that she did theirs. Obviously, age had nothing to do with the quality of care she could provide.

Debby:
I'm a young 57 and a half - I still have a few more good active years in me. It's a parents loss, if they do not see our maturity as a plus.

Pam:
That would be discrimination! I am 60 yrs. old and my first nanny job started 7/5/10. I love it! I have over 35 years experience as a Montessori teacher, teaching ages 3 to 6 yrs. and 18 mos. to 3 yrs.; also a wealth of church nursery &baby...sitting experience. My lifelong vocation has been that of teaching and caring for children! As long as I am healthy enough, I will continue to be a nanny or some other type of work w/children. Older, more mature people make great nannies! :)

Pam:
I found the family I work for through a GREAT TOP NOTCH agency in the DFW area. The family pays me directly and deducts taxes each pay period. I feel that I AM able to be an excellent nanny! If I get to a place healthwise where I need to change jobs, I will do just that. But, for now, I am a nanny!

Kim:
What an amazing group here!! I am also a seasoned Nanny with well over 25 years experience in caring for children. I too am able to sit on the floor, carry kids around, run around after them etc...

Debbie:
If parents want cheap care that can run around with a big family with an infant and toddlers younger might be better. But I find most best nannies are the older ones. More experienced nannies are better nannies. I think older nannies (that choose to be nannies) are better, calmer, wiser, appreciative nannies than super young adults who hate changing diapers, hate unloading dishwashers, etc. I hear a lot of older women who are stuck and have to be nannies hating their jobs, while older nannies who are working with kids for the love of it are the best nannies you can find. But some older nannies who are stuck with no other options are bitter aren't good nannies. Maybe I'm saying if you want to be a nanny you are more likely to be a good nanny no matter your age. If you don't want to be a nanny then you will be miserable at your job no matter your age.

lovebeingananny said...

REVERSE age discrimination maybe? I think it's illegal to not hire due to disability anyway so let's say the nanny has arthritis shouldn't she be allowed to do the job? A few age related physical issues shouldn't matter.

Anonymous said...

I think this topic is making us generalize which isn't great everone is an individual so I can't say with all certianty I wouldn't hire an older nanny. But, I think 30s and 40s are best. Some families (like mine) have very energetic children (2 boys who literally run around everywhere). I honestly don't think a 60 yr old woman could keep up with them for 9-10 hours/day five days/week. I think there would be a lot less outdoor time, which they love. The reality is that a 20 and 30 yr old nanny will have a lot more energy then a 60 year old one.

I also don't want a nanny second guessing my parenting beliefs and requests or thinks she knows better. We have interviewed many older nannies and they all came across as holier than thou...

Anonymous said...

So, I should add to my comment above, it's really depends on the individual and not the age of the nanny. :)

Dina said...

I would say that some nannies are more mature than others regardless of age - if you think she fits the bill, trust your instincts!

Best Nanny Newsletter said...

Generational issues are very important to consider! Parenting a child 30- or 40-years ago was different thatn it is today. Many factors such as social expectations, media influence, safety issues, discipline, and so much more are new difficulties beyond our control. Older individuals often have difficulties accepting these changes. When I tell my Grandmother a toddler bites she tells me to bite them back and they'll learn their lesson. ?? Can't do stuff like that today.

Rent-a-Grandma is a good sales pitch but when they boast the Grandma's won't text wouldn't you want a caregiver that knows how to handle safety issues of cell phones and texting?

My thinking actually is that most 50+ caregivers do have cell phones and today's real world safety concerns with the Internet and such. But, the web site isn't marketing their "Grandmas" that way.

Steph 6 said...

There are a lot of differences: corporal punishment, sleep on backs only, diet, BPA and chemicals, sunscreen usage, Internet, violent videos, scary movies, sex offenders and computers.

Even though my parents are in their 60's doesn't mean they couldn't be good babysitters of kids IF THEY WANTED TO DO IT. But, they always say that the work of raising kids is best for younger, more energetic people.

My parents could babysit if they had to but not only aren't they as physically capable they are cranky and set in their ways.

Age isn't the most important factor in hiring a caregiver. I don't think this company really understands the nanny/babysitter industry or they wouldn't market it this way.

Suzi said...

I think there is more turn over and less experience in younger nannies (especially au pairs). Younger nannies finish college, get married, go out partying at night and most notably many nannies watch tv and have friends over and haven't cleaned homes or changed diapers before and hate their nanny jobs. all reasons to hire a more mature nanny.

FB Page said...

Pat:
What these veteran nannies have said goes along with my original point, (our agency have placed people in their 70's), "granny nannies" is not a NEW concept. I also want to point out that the nannies have told us what their limitations are regarding lifting, carrying, agility, etc. it was not me making assumptions. Age matters if the person has physical limitations. Someone in their 50's and 60's should be quite active if they are healthy.

Lisa:
I am going to be 46 soon, and actually may go the motherhood route like Diane Keaton (who adopted at 50). And that's there in portfolio, and one dad said gee, if you still think you want to be a mom to a young child, surely you must feel you can keep up with our's. (uh huh)
Rent-a-Grandma is a good sales pitch but when they boast the Grandma's won't be textin or using their cell phones wouldn't you want a caregiver that knows how to handle safety issues of cell phones and texting?

Lisa:
A big safety issue that comes to mind is "back to sleep". I grew up with a mom who would speak of allowing babies to sleep on their tummies so that soft spots wouldn't cause flat head. And really early in my career that is what parents woul...d speak of too, and then the mindset on all that changed. Hence the reason I think nannies should get continuing training too, because if you go with what you learned (and I bear in mind my mom was a nurse too) or told by bosses who were told by their parents, you could end up accidently harming a child physically or emotionally. My former bosses said how they had to advise their parents on "back to sleep" and we are talking a retired doctor and ECE professional.

Pat:
It comes down to the person not the age. I am in my early 60's but keep abreast of the latest childcare philosophies and recommendations because it is my business to know. I have friends my age who would disagree with the new methods beca...use in their experience they would say "it worked fine for me." When Lisa was born it was recommended that babies slept on their tummies, we were also encouraged to feed cereal as early as 2-3 wks., Mom's may have had a cocktail or two before dinner, and quite possibly smoked cigarettes. (see Mad Men for life in the 60's) Their adult children are healthy, happy, well adjusted, productive adults so a closed minded individual could very well be stuck in their ways. We have had senior nannies that have diabetes or high blood pressure that may be a risk to hire, if they had an attack and couldn't get to a phone and the baby or toddler was left unattended it could be disaster. One diabetic nanny became very ill and was able to reach Mom and when the parents arrived the nanny was very ill...Mom was a doctor and got an ambulance, took the incident very well, baby was in a playyard and was fine, but she did want a replacement.

Reyna said...

Everyone is an individual and must be based as that. I am offended that they are marketing nannies as grandmas. What about the great over 50 nannies that aren't grandparents? Can they apply and work for this agency?

Ana Santos said...

If an au-pair can do the job of a mature nanny or nanny-housekepeer (over 35) why the host families to not hire a child to a childcare job? After all it seems they understand each other more than adults or even their fathers. Well, all we know what the children or young baby sitters or nannies can do with children. Experience and knowledge is no more needed, isn´t it?

Ana Santos said...

FB Page: you comment it seems a speech of some gestapo theoretical members. Goebels?
Of course course age do not matters on the subject. A child can´t do the same as a young lady, and a young lady can´t do the same as an experienced old lady. When young ladies exceed the mature ladies it is only a matter of biological romance or sex, not the experience.
If age does matter, when you are older than now (50+), you would face with your own observations. Age matters? And people young than you, have the right to ask you: Do you deserve to live? Do you deserve that job if you are an older woman and we have thousands of youngest and children requesting the same job as you?
In the western countries (sadly) the mature and old woman are suffering from dementia or other memory illness. And the youngest really feel the same when they go to a bar and drink a dozen of shots?

rumplesilt said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rumplesilt said...

Am I missing something here? There are twenty years between a woman of 50 and a woman of 70. Please don't refer to a fifty year old woman as a "granny". I turn 50 in a few months. I run marathons, climb mountains and have just sold my business to look for something more meaningful to do in my life. I actually love babies and young children and would love to be a nanny to help out a young woman establishing her career by taking care of her children. However, I am quite unsettled at being referred to as a "Rent-a-grandma".

What I wouldn't have given to have had a similar person to help me with my four children instead of 18-23 year old Au Pairs who let them run wild or day care centers who exposed them to copious germs and other sick children...

Unknown said...

I'm 9 years old I'm going to help people with there babies

Jordyn Thomas said...

I'm 9 years old I'm going to help people with there babies

Janie Fernandez said...

Hi, I have been a nanny/mother's helper for the last 6 years. I am 73 years old but look and feel like a 55 year old. I have college level Education and retired from a 25 year position teaching the ends and out of Child Development/Nutrition from infancy to 5 years. I tried retirement fortwo years and was bored to death, it was not for me. I felt useless and if I didn't have to be anywheres, I would just staying my pj all day which was fun for a while. I work on projects I had always wanted to do but never had time after a while that got old so here we are back to square one. So I answered an ad on a nanny site to take care of a baby 4 month old what a joy, I loved it and his parents only wanted me to take care of him and nothing else but while he nap I would do light housework pick up and clean area where the baby and I were for most of the day.I kept a diary for the first year for him making notes of everything he did I stayed with that family four years and help them with their second baby. I found it kept me active walking the baby in his stroller to the park playing talking and playing games I have since help out other patents 6 children altogether I would like to think I know my limatation and I would never put a child in danger I have been advertising myself as an infant nanny, that specialit. In the six years I have worked I have not call in for any reason. I request two weeks ahead of time for an appointment and a month ahead of time for one week vacation and always work with parents so that we all have a win win for everyone involve. My work ethics are very strict and I always make myself flexible because I know things happen. I never interfere with parents parenting and will do as they ask after all it is their child.

Janie Fernandez said...

Hi, I have been a nanny/mother's helper for the last 6 years. I am 73 years old but look and feel like a 55 year old. I have college level Education and retired from a 25 year position teaching the ends and out of Child Development/Nutrition from infancy to 5 years. I tried retirement fortwo years and was bored to death, it was not for me. I felt useless and if I didn't have to be anywheres, I would just staying my pj all day which was fun for a while. I work on projects I had always wanted to do but never had time after a while that got old so here we are back to square one. So I answered an ad on a nanny site to take care of a baby 4 month old what a joy, I loved it and his parents only wanted me to take care of him and nothing else but while he nap I would do light housework pick up and clean area where the baby and I were for most of the day.I kept a diary for the first year for him making notes of everything he did I stayed with that family four years and help them with their second baby. I found it kept me active walking the baby in his stroller to the park playing talking and playing games I have since help out other patents 6 children altogether I would like to think I know my limatation and I would never put a child in danger I have been advertising myself as an infant nanny, that specialit. In the six years I have worked I have not call in for any reason. I request two weeks ahead of time for an appointment and a month ahead of time for one week vacation and always work with parents so that we all have a win win for everyone involve. My work ethics are very strict and I always make myself flexible because I know things happen. I never interfere with parents parenting and will do as they ask after all it is their child.

Janie Fernandez said...

Hi, I have been a nanny/mother's helper for the last 6 years. I am 73 years old but look and feel like a 55 year old. I have college level Education and retired from a 25 year position teaching the ends and out of Child Development/Nutrition from infancy to 5 years. I tried retirement fortwo years and was bored to death, it was not for me. I felt useless and if I didn't have to be anywheres, I would just staying my pj all day which was fun for a while. I work on projects I had always wanted to do but never had time after a while that got old so here we are back to square one. So I answered an ad on a nanny site to take care of a baby 4 month old what a joy, I loved it and his parents only wanted me to take care of him and nothing else but while he nap I would do light housework pick up and clean area where the baby and I were for most of the day.I kept a diary for the first year for him making notes of everything he did I stayed with that family four years and help them with their second baby. I found it kept me active walking the baby in his stroller to the park playing talking and playing games I have since help out other patents 6 children altogether I would like to think I know my limatation and I would never put a child in danger I have been advertising myself as an infant nanny, that specialit. In the six years I have worked I have not call in for any reason. I request two weeks ahead of time for an appointment and a month ahead of time for one week vacation and always work with parents so that we all have a win win for everyone involve. My work ethics are very strict and I always make myself flexible because I know things happen. I never interfere with parents parenting and will do as they ask after all it is their child.