Family information

At House o Orange Au Pairs we feel that it’s essential that families as well as au pairs, understand the concept of the au pair program. In order to accomplish that, we work with international organizations, other au pair agencies, politicians, local municipalities, immigration and police departments as well as with families and au pairs to further develop our au pair program so that it keeps meeting the needs of families as well as au pairs.

An au pair program is always, first and foremost one of cultural exchange. Although flexible childcare is usually the main reason why families are interested in hiring an au pair, it is important that families realize that hosting an au pair also involves a cultural aspect. Children will grow up learning a second language, will learn to appreciate other types of foods, stories, as well as customs and habits. The au pair will be given the opportunity to grasp another language, to join in on family outings and to share in the history and culture of The Netherlands. An excellent au pair year will provide both the au pair and host family with a unique and valuable experience that will last them a life time.

Interested in finding an amazing House-o-Orange Au Pair? Please feel free to send us an email via info@house-o-orange.nl and a Program Manager will be in touch shortly! 

 

What type of families have au pairs?

We find that the majority of our families are young, active, lead busy lives, are professionals and have one or more children. Most of our families are international in their orientation or background. They are interested in raising their children in the comfort of their homes and are eager to find a form of childcare that is more flexible than the traditional daycare center or creche. Families that use au pairs have children ranging from new-born babies to teenagers. They usually have homes that are large enough to accomodate another person or are able to provide a separate apartment or other form of accomodation for their childminder.

What are the advantages of having an au pair?

A good au pair is a flexible, enthousiastic individual who can be a pleasant addition to your household. Children do not have to spend long days at a daycare center. Parents do not have to rush and scramble in order to get their child to a center on time. Picking up a child after work before a certain time is rarely an issue. A rush meeting can be scheduled and traffic jams are no longer a childcare problem. After school daycare is a thing of the past; a child can go home and do activities with his friends under the watchful eye of his au pair. If the child is sick he can stay home easily and be with a person who is familiar with his needs and moods. Doctor’s appointments can be kept and errands and groceries can be done with the help of the au pair. A busy family that would like to take a night off to go out to dinner can often arrange to do so because there’s a live-in babysitter available. All in all, our clients find that having an au pair makes their lives a lot less complicated.

What about disadvantages, loss of privacy for instance and the annual change-over of au pairs?

Interestingly enough, although privacy is always one of the first aspects that is mentioned by families who are first considering hiring an au pair, it is rarely an issue once the au pair has settled into a family. We’ve found that once the au pair arrives, he/she quickly becomes part of the family and joins in like a favorite cousin or younger brother/sister. Families do need to make sure that their au pair has the type of accomodations that would make them feel comfortable. Certain things must be discussed with the au pair upon arrival and privacy is definitely one of them. House o Orange Au Pairs will help families provide their au pairs with the type of guidelines necessary to ensure privacy for both parties. With regard to the second issue, i.e. the yearly change-over of au pairs, we feel that it is actually an advantage and not so much a disadvantage. Children are adaptable and once they are used to the concept of an au pair, they have no trouble accepting the fact that the au pair is with them for a maximum of 12 months. Every year the arrival of a new au pair creates a lot of excitement and positive commotion. A new au pair brings with her/him a new bag of talents, ideas, enthousiasm as well as gifts for the children and a new love. With a great au pair, the situation usually settles back to normal within a week or two and the children are generally at ease with their new treasure, within a couple of days. One issue that we feel families must consider before hiring an au pair is the fact that it is more than just childcare. A family must be happy and willing to make a positive contribution to the au pair’s life. The au pair is not hired help, is not a cleaning lady or a servant, the au pair is family and should be treated as such. Families that are not interested in treating their au pair as an equal are urged to consider another form of childcare.

Having an au pair sounds like a very expensive and elite form of childcare...

That’s a common misconception, although prices for airfare, insurance, and visa’s have recently gone up, the cost of having an au pair is still a lot less than a fulltime unsubsidized creche. Please note though, an au pair is not a nanny and is not expected to take full responsibility for the whole family and housekeeping duties for more than 30 hrs a week. The au pair is in Holland on a cultural exchange program and is given room and board as well as an allowance (commonly known as stipend). The au pair does not earn a salary and taxes and such do not have to be paid within the au pair program. By law the host family is required to pay for the au pair’s medical and liability insurance, a language course should be provided and paid for by the host family if the au pair stays with the family for 6 months or more. Our au pairs will be asked to pay for a portion of their own airfare (between 500-700 Euro’s) but the host family will be required to pay the remainder as well as changing fee that is always necessary to change the au pair’s return flight (generally €150). Roughly speaking, the monthly expense for a 12 month au pair who provides a famly with 30 hrs of childcare per week and also does some light housework is:

Au pair stipend € 300- € 340
Au pair insurance € 40
Agency fees  € 180-200
Language course € 30
Airfare € 66-100 (if applicable)
Visa € 85  (if applicable)
Phone allowance € 10
Total per month (excl. room and board) approx. € 750-800
How much will it cost to hire an au pair or nanny through House o Orange or to become one?

Our families pay our agency a flat fee, depending on the number of months and type of placement that is required. Fees for nannies are higher than fees for au pairs vary and there are no introductory, interview or membership fees. All fees are non-refundable, a portion of our 12 month fee is due after registration and the remaining fees are due upon acceptance of an au pair/nanny file.

Family fees for placement of an au pair/nanny as of Feb. 1st 2020 

Regular au pair (11-12 months) € 1200
Au pair STAR ( 11-12 months) € 1300
Au pair PLUS ( 1-12 months) € 1400
Summer au pair 1-3 months (May-Sept. only) € 400
6 months au pair, 4-6 months € 700
Short-term au pair, 1-3 months € 450
School year au pair (7-10 months) € 950
External agency fee for all countries (compulsary surcharge) € 750-1000
Rematch visa service € 700
Visa service (compulsary for all au pairs from all over the world including EU and USA) € 1000
Junior nanny (36 hours) 6-12 months € 2400
Full time nanny  6-12 months € 3000

All fees are inclusive of 21 % BTW (VAT). A discount is given on the full fare to repeat customers. Please request our full terms and conditions for more information. These can be obtained by sending an e-mail to our office and are are handed out at our interviews. We have surcharges for placements for candidates from the EU, Canada, New Zealand and Australia. Please contact our office for a full pricelist.

Au Pair PLUS v.s. Au Pair STAR v.s. Au Pair

 

Au Pair Plus Au Pair Star Au Pair
Aged between 20-30 Aged between 18-30 Aged  between 18-30
Has been an au pair before Has done an au pair course (RSA) or has 1 yr or more of college or training Has not been au pair before and has not had formal training
Generally drives, cycles Sometimes drives, cycles Generally does not drive, might not cycle 
Au pair plus excellent language skills in either English or Dutch or Spanish/German Au pair star speaks good English and/or Afrikaans fluently Au pair has sufficient language skills but English is poor and no Afrikaans 

 

Difference in costs per month: Au Pair Plus Au Pair Star Au Pair
Weekly hrs 30 30 30
Allowance/Stipend € 340 € 340 € 300
Travel/Ticket  € 120 € 40 varies
Orange AP Club optional optional optional
Visa  €100 € 100 € 100
Insurance € 45 € 45 € 45
Phone € 20 € 10 € 10
Language € 29 € 29 € 29
Agency fees € 200 € 190 € 155
Monthly cost on average € 854 € 754 € 690

 

What does the PLUS in au pair PLUS entail? What does the STAR in the au pair STAR entail?

Does the au pair PLUS work more hours for instance? No, an au pair in Holland, whether part of the PLUS program or not, will only work 30 hrs a week max  including babysitting. An au pair PLUS is more experienced and older than a regular au pair. The PLUS symbolizes the experience of the applicant as an au pair in another country.  Only about 5 % of all of our candidates are au pair PLUS and they are often from Brazil and other South American Countries, but we occasionally have AP+ candidates from South Africa or Asia as well.  Please enquire if you are interested in the Au Pair Plus program. 

The au pair STAR program is a progam that we developed initially exclusively for our South African au pairs but have now expanded to other more qualified candidates. The vast majority of our applicants can be classified as au pair STAR.  In South African the Star programs includes a weekend training with first aid, culture and communication as described by Caela Bennett, one of our recent South African Au Pair STAR candidates:

 House-O-Orange is an incredible au pair agency who have adopted a hands-on approach in ensuring that their au pairs have the most amazing year abroad. My application process was a seamless exercise because the agency goes out of their way to guide you step by step throughout what is expected of you in order to get your journey started, while the rest is left in their hands. They aim to secure you with a family who fits you like a glove and is guaranteed to take the very best care of you! To further commend the agency, they encourage all their au pairs to partake in a training, fully designed by them, that is framed to better equip you as an au pair abroad. They cover topics dealing with homesickness, culture-shock, the Dutch lifestyle, addressing problems in the household, as well as being the very best au pair to your host family, to name a few. Additionally, one gets to meet other au pairs during the training which means having friends to embark on adventures with once arriving abroad. House-O-Orange is not just an agency that goes about matching au pairs with families but is a safe haven that takes the well-being of their au pairs to heart throughout their entire journey. 

If you want an au pair from South Africa or Namibia, you will have to agree to hiring an au pair STAR.  If you have found your own au pair from South Africa she/he will have to partake in our Cape Town weekend training in order to be placed by us. Candidates from other countries qualify for the Au Pair STAR program if they are native English speaking (our Americans for instance) or for non-native English speakers,  if they are 20 and older, speak good English, can cycle or drive and have at least a year of college. 

 What is the difference between an au pair and a nanny?

An au pair is a young person who comes to The Netherlands as part of a cultural exchange program and wants to learn more about Dutch culture and our language and is not paid a salary but a stipend. The au pair program is governed by a very specific law and closely regulated. A Nanny is someone who is part of a working program and comes to Holland in order to work with children.  We are only able to place Nannies from the EU and all of our nannies are live-in. We often place South African candidates with dual nationalities. A sofi-number is required and taxes and premiums and such may have to be paid both by the employer and by the nanny. We only place a few nannies a year and we generally need up to 3-4 months in order to find the right candidate for a family. Nannies are a good solution for families that have a baby or toddler at home who needs more than 8 hrs or care per day.  The nanny generally works 3 full days but lives with the family for 7 days and must be given full board during that time.  The nanny earns minimum wage and the cost depends on her age, experience and the number of hours she is needed.    

What must I do to hire an au pair or nanny through House o Orange Au Pairs and what if I have found my own au pair?

Families can fill in a form, call us on 070-3245903 during office hours or contact us by e-mail via info@house-o-orange.nl. As soon as we hear from you a Program Manager from our agency will contact you and get you started.  If you have found your own au pair and would like us to help you with the visa procedure, please note that we only accept au pairs  from certain countries and are a full service agency. This means that the au pair will have to be fully screened by our partner agency in her home country and we will have to make sure both of you qualify within the extremely stringent laws of the au pair program, before being able to proceed further.  We offer a 10 % discount on self-matches but only on our fee and the external agency fee. If we do not have a partner agency in your au pair’s homecountry, or if you are unwilling to pay our different fees, we will unfortunately not be able to assist. 


House-o-Orange Au Pairs

Jan Van Nassaustraat 88

2596 BW The Hague

The Netherlands

Phone: (31)-(0)-70-3245903
e-mail: info@house-o-orange.nl
e-mail Cape Town: manager@house-o-orange.co.za