Monthly Archives: April 2011

Tips For Keeping Your Caregiver or Nanny Long-Term

Great advice on how to keep your caregiver or nanny long term

Be welcoming:
Working in another country can be daunting as it is, working and living in your employer’s home even more so. Take the cultural barriers for what they are and provide her with as much information which will be of benefit. Things such as showing her how to work the appliances in the kitchen, giving her a tour of the area, including nearest bus stops and likewise will help her become more independent and increase her confidence.

Respect privacy:
Hiring a live-in nanny
does not mean that she is available all hours of the day or night. Your nanny should have a room in the home which is hers alone, and both the family and the children should respect this. Appreciate that just like any other employee she is entitled to time off, even if she is in the home, and ensure that when she is not working; she is not working!

Establish boundaries:
Having a nanny become “one of the family” is great, but always be aware of the fact that you are her employer and she is an employee. Living and working in one place can mean there is always the risk of personal issues affecting her performance in the position; professionalism should always be maintained.

Fair pay system:
Be a good employer by paying your nanny in a suitable fashion. This means an appropriate wage, with a mandatory pay stub, and on time. A pay rise after the first year is recommended.You should also think about giving her the occasional bonus for good work; it doesn’t have to be money but a gift she might enjoy.

Show support:
You should never discuss your problems or concerns with the nanny in front of the children, nor do or say anything which could undermine her authority with the children. This will only make her job more difficult. And when your nanny is doing a good job, make sure you let her know; praise goes a long way to making an employee happy.

Be flexible:
Whilst reliability is important in a nanny, allowing her time off occasionally or with only short notice if need be can be a good thing. There will be times when you’ll need to call on her to work at the last minute.

Have reasonable expectations:
Providing guidance is a good thing, and breaking down tasks and structuring the day is essential when the nanny begins the employment if she is to become well suited with your family. However be aware that being a nanny is not like other jobs, sometimes it may be impossible for her to complete a daily schedule and care for the children.

If you would like to hire a nanny or caregiver for your family needs in Canada, Contact International Nannies and Homecare Ltd.

The Dos and Don’ts of a Professional Nanny

How to be a good nanny or caregiver for a Canadian family


  • Be flexible with your employer. Being a nanny is not like working in a factory or an office, it is not always possible to start and finish exactly on time. Be willing to give your employer a little bit of leeway and they will provide you the same courtesy.
  • Let your agency know if you are experiencing any difficulties with your employer, this is what they are there for. Chances are they will have heard of similar stories from other nannies and can provide great insight in how you can approach and fix the problem.
  • Be pro-active. It is your responsibility to ensure your work visa is renewed on time, that your employer provides you with a payslip every time you are paid etc.
  • Seek sensible advice from reliable sources. Canada Immigration, HRSDC, and all information regarding being a foreign worker in Canada can be found online. There are also many telephone lines dedicated to different departments who will be able to answer all questions and queries you may have.
  • Get into the habit of writing things down, especially when beginning a new job. It is always better to have instructions written down to refer back to at a later time.
  • Improve your skill set. Take the opportunity to learn new skills or strengthen and improve on the ones you already have. Canada has some great colleges and institutions where you can take courses and classes.


  • Take job advice from your friends. Being a good friend does not mean they will necessarily give good advice. If you are unsure about anything check with your agency who have experience in the matter.
  • Lie to your employer. If you make a mistake, admit to it and apologize.
  • Use your cell phone during working hours. You would not do this in another work setting such as an office so being a nanny should be no different. The same rule applies to watching TV or spending time on the computer; do it when you are not working.
  • Be shy about asking questions. It is much better to ask than to keep quiet and make repeated mistakes. Canadian employers will see this as a good sign of your wanting to perform your job correctly.

If you would like to be hired as a nanny or caregiver in Canada please fill out this online application.

Realistic Expectations When Hiring an Overseas Live-in Caregiver

What to expect when you hire a overseas live in caregiver or nanny

  • Acknowledge that your nanny has arrived in Canada for the first time. You will need to teach her everything she is required to do, from how to use the washing machine to what to feed the children.
  • Do not assume she will know what needs to be done. Just like in any other job where you are the supervisor you will need to delegate tasks.
  • Understand that the culture shock may be overwhelming; the weather, the food, the size of the home, the appliances, the cleaning products, the language, the relationship Canadian employers have with their nannies and the way they raise their children will all be different. This may leave her completely at odds when trying to deal with a Canadian family.
  • Be patient. It may take several months for the nanny to settle into her job and into your home.
  • Be reasonable. Do not expect your nanny to be able to do more than you could.
  • Create fair working conditions for your nanny. This will help your nanny feel settled and secure in the knowledge that she is with a “good employer”.
    You nanny may also have unrealistic expectations of the position. Canada is sometimes seen as an attractive place to work because it is “easier” than other places. It is your responsibility to set the ground rules for the position and ensure your nanny knows what is expected of her.

If you would like to hire a nanny or caregiver from overseas, please contact International Nannies and Homecare