Your au pair’s weekly salary is a complex subject which requires its own blog posting, but it’s not the only expense you can expect when hiring an au pair (we’ve covered au pair wages already in a post we published earlier this year, you can read our guide to au pair wages here).
After their basic wage the other expenses tend to be household expenses, and they will increase proportionally with the arrival of another adult in your home.
These expenses and costs include:
- Groceries – this will probably be your biggest expense, you’ll need to consider the costs of another adult eating up to three meals a day in your home. This cost may be reduced by employing a live-out au pair, but live-out au pairs do tend to be paid a higher wage than live-in.
- Petrol – will you be providing your au pair with access to a car? Consider the extra costs for petrol, especially if the au pair is using the car on her days off.
- Car Insurance – find out in advance if your au pair has a full license and the number of years of no-claims they have and get a quote from your insurance agency, organise all paperwork before your au pair arrives, as not doing so can lead to expensive surprises.
- Leisure – part of the au pair experience is the cultural exchange, your au pair should share in your family’s leisure time as well as day-to-day living. How often does your family eat out, go to the cinema, take holidays? While you’re in no way obliged to involve your au pair in any of these activities, spending leisure time with them is always a good way of helping them bond with your family, so bear in mind you would be expected to pay your au pairs costs on these excursions.
- Electricity/Gas – your electricity and gas bill will also increase when there’s an extra person living in your house, more-so if your au pair has just come from a hot country and is running your heating, or takes frequent showers/baths, while this may sound like a trivial expense, it does all add up.
- Phone – some host families offer their au pair, as an employment benefit, a mobile phone allowance. You should consider this if you plan on getting regular updates on your children over the phone or by text.
- Medical/Dental – while less frequently offered, some host families do offer their au pairs medical and dental cover while in their employment.
Other costs worth considering include au pair travel costs, internet access (if you still use dial-up) , television (if you intend on adding a SKY Box to your au pair’s room,) and the cost of their language class.