Giving raises to nannies, cleaners, etc.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998
Giving raises to nannies, cleaners, etc.
6
Sat, 09-13-2008 - 6:44pm

I'm posting this here because I know many people on this board have nannies, housecleaners or other household employees and service providers. For those

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-20-2003
Sun, 09-14-2008 - 4:00pm

I don't use a set formula, and I will say that I see the cleaning lady as a service provider - responsible for setting her own rates - vice how I would treat a nanny, who I would see as an employee.

Our previous cleaning lady only raised rates once in 6 years - I remember feeling 'guilt' that we weren't paying her more, but was unwilling to go out there and pay more. I wouldn't ask my plumber to charge me more because I thought he was low, for example.

In that case, though, we chose to increase that year the amount of end of year 'gift' we give. That has never been negotiated, nor has anyone ever been told to expect it, but I try to give an extra 'paycheck's' worth at the end of the year. I raised it to 1.5 times that year. The next year she did raise her rates, and that year I gave her 1 times her check as teh end of year bonus.

My current cleaning lady is much more business like in her manner. She has raised rates once already in the year since she started, cited fuel costs, and left us a formal notice of the new rate.

As an aside, I'll ask the rest of you about this one.

My cleaning lady also left a little note about her vacation - she left a form letter that she obviously prepared for all her clients informing us of her scheduled vacations, and that, as a result, our scheduled days would change. (Fill in blank with specifics to my schedule). She then went on to write that she and her family only took one 'unpaid' vacation a year and that, in the past, some clients have chosen to 'support' that vacation. She thanked any of us in advance if we were to choose to do that, and helpfully included a self-addressed envelope should we choose to send her a little vacation money.

I have to say I found that amazing. Again, as I see her as a service provider, I see no reason to finance her vacation any more than to throw a little extra in to the plumber's bill for his. I expect her rates to cover her 'expenses', including covering her loss of income when she takes off.

What do you all think?


iVillage Member
Registered: 05-14-2006
Sun, 09-14-2008 - 5:31pm

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998
Mon, 09-15-2008 - 11:11am

Okay, I'll admit I'm really conflicted and quite possibly hypocritical about this whole thing. On the one hand, I really don't mind paying bonuses, tipping well, giving generously to family members and others...who do not ask for it. But the minute that envelope, tipping jar, plea for money that sounds like an entitlement comes out, then I feel a lot less generous. That's where my hypocrisy comes in: if you don't think you deserve it, then I'll give you money, but the minute you think you do, I think 'well, aren't you entitled!'


And that's how your cleaning lady's plea struck me. If you don't give, you look cheap, but if you do, you can't even feel generous about it because she asked for it. It's very confusing.


My cleaning lady owns her own service and now only cleans the houses of her longtime customers. She's very honest and has never asked for any kind of raise. But I think that if I don't give her one that at least compensates for COL increases, I will actually be paying her less each year even if the amount I give her stays the same. So I do bump her up a little. For me, it's good business, since I want to keep her.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-22-2005
Wed, 09-17-2008 - 9:01am
I don't know, but maybe you could adjust for inflation rates each year?
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iVillage Member
Registered: 07-23-1998
Sun, 10-12-2008 - 11:22am

Wende, I would be appalled. I don't think she should be asking for donations so she can go on vacation. That would turn me off.


I have paid my cleaning lady the same thing for 3 years but I give her extra money at Christmas. I feel the same as you. I don't offer to pay her more but I like to give her some extra at Xmas to show my appreciation to her.


iVillage Member
Registered: 09-21-2008
Tue, 11-11-2008 - 2:02pm

I just want a cleaning lady. =)