Bizarre Nanny Requests of the Rich

PHOTO: Some families expect their nannies to perform tasks that go above and beyond the typical nanny job description. Heidi Yount/Getty Images
Some families expect their nannies to perform tasks that go above and beyond the typical nanny job description.

Rich people. They’re not like us, at least when it comes to hiring help to take care of their offspring.

Today’s reports of a sports agent who was trying to buy The Plaza hotel for billions but allegedly didn't pay his children's nanny minimum wage have drawn attention to the sometimes unfair ways domestic help are treated by the very rich.

And among the many posts on a New York City mom’s Facebook page about strollers, sleep training and organic baby wipes are the posts of families looking for the "perfect" nanny. But the "perfect" nanny often does much more than tend to the children.

Take the mom looking for someone to be "both a nanny at times and housekeeper." Or the mom who wants a nanny "fluent in both French and Spanish, but speaks perfect English." Another wants to know whether on the days when her child is at preschool should her nanny have to work late to make up for the hours she did not have to take care of the child?

And these are nothing compared to some of the requests that the Abigail Madison Nanny and Household Staffing Agency has received. The agency places high-end household help paying $60,000 a year and up.

Company owner Erin Maloney-Winder said while the vast majority of families she works with are "really nice people,” there are some she would "definitely call strange."

Some of the strangest requests? There was the Manhattan mom who wanted a 50-hour-per-week nanny who would also home-school six children. For $450 a week. For reference, most nannies the agency places make $800 per week for two children and no home-schooling required.

There was the Park Avenue family who requested a nanny for their 2-year-old child who would also be a professionally trained chef and work 75 per week over six days.

And there was a family who requested their nanny bring all her own food to work for her 12-hour-per-day shift. She was never permitted to eat the fancy leftovers of the food cooked for the child, even though it was going in the trash. Also, the food the nanny would bring could not be microwavable.

While Maloney-Winder said Abigail Madison didn't end up working with these families, the agency was able to fulfill one of the oddest requests it ever received.

A Greenwich, Connecticut, family wanted a nanny who was also a professionally trained beautician. The nanny would be responsible for "fancy hairstyles for the mom and 9-year-old girl every morning. She would also be required to shave the dad's beard."

And a tip for those moms looking for a nanny-housekeeper? Maloney-Winder said they're not an easy find. "Most won't do cleaning," she said.

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