What are the benefits?
How does it work?
As a host family, you will be required to provide your au pair with a private bedroom in your home.
$195.75 is the minimum weekly stipend for Regular Program participants. You may pay your au pair more than this amount but under no circumstance can your au pair receive a stipend of less than $195.75 per week, unless you are participating in the EduCare Program. $146.81 is the minimum weekly stipend for EduCare Program participants. The weekly stipends for the Regular Program and EduCare Program are directly connected to the federal minimum wage. The au pair stipend is based on a US Department of Labor’s formula that includes credit for the room and board that host families provide for their au pairs. The room and board credit currently is 40% of an au pair’s credited compensation.
One of the many benefits of hosting an au pair is that you will set her schedule each week based on your family’s needs. However, Regular Program au pairs are limited to working no more than 45 hours per week and 10 hours per day and EduCare Program au pairs are limited to working no more than 30 hours per week and 10 hours per day. Another important thing to note is that your au pair receive at least 36 consecutive hours off each week, and one full weekend off each month. You must also provide your au pair with at least two weeks of paid vacation during her program year.
Your au pair will be in your home for the duration of her year-long program, with the option to extend for an additional year. This means, that your au pair’s immigration status will allow her to work for and provide childcare services only to you.
If you no longer wish to continue with your au pair, you can end your placement at any time by providing two weeks written notice. Through the transition, both your Local Representative and your Regional Representative will provide you with guidance and support in either searching for a replacement au pair, or processing a refund based on the amount of time remaining in your placement.
Establish a clear understanding of expectations
Cultural differences as well as personality differences often lead to misunderstandings unless discussed and clarified. The orientation with your Local Representative will help to cover some important questions to establish a solid foundation for the rest of your year!
Be prepared to help your au pair with homesickness
Symptoms of homesickness in your au pair can vary from general sadness to wishing to stay in her room alone. It is perfectly normal for au pairs to have bad days and experience homesickness- try to be sensitive to this so that you can help to reassure her that feeling homesick is normal. Help her to keep busy and invite her to be involved with your family.
Encourage your au pair to get involved
Extra-curricular activities, such as sports, church groups, family activities, etc., are a good way for your au pair to meet people with similar interests and will keep her busy! Keep your Local Representative informed so that they can help your au pair to find activities in your area.
Understand culture shock
Remember that your au pair is adjusting to a new culture. She will be communicating primarily in English, which is likely her second language, so there is a chance that she will feel overwhelmed. Even if your au pair speaks English well, there are many non-verbal social cues that she will have to learn. The more time you can spend helping her to adjust, the better!
How do I become a host?
Families who are hoping to host au pairs must go through an application process. Each of the following are required to participate in the au pair program as a host family with Expert AuPair:
It has helped us find childcare we can trust and we've gotten to meet and get to know someone from another country and learn about their lives and cultures. We were very lucky to have matched with such an amazing person.
She is kind and patient. Knowing her helps our boys understand there is a big world out there and, despite our differences, we all share many things.
Having our au pair at home as part of our family has been a great experience. We implemented "Thai Friday" in our house. During Thai Friday we eat Thai food and we try to learn Thai. Both of our kids have learned the Thai alphabet.
My au pair is a part of my family. She has introduced my children to the language and food of her home country. I can tell she loves my children.
We love hosting an au pair! The children get exposed to a new culture and enjoy sharing our customs and traditions.
I think the girls have benefitted from learning a second language and from having an extended family. We hear regularly from our former au pairs, and having a group of women who love our girls so much is pretty amazing. I think the language and the extended family are gifts for a lifetime.
She has made our lives easier. She is truly a member of the family and has been so helpful. We couldn't do it without her!
We are very happy with our au pair and so grateful for this program. Our baby is so very loved and we have a wonderful companion in our home.