If you’re taking the plunge to hire a housekeeper, getting started can be a daunting first step.

What should you be looking for? How urgently would you like your housekeeper to start? What will be your responsibilities as an employer?

Luckily, Hummingbird Home Staff is here to clear things up for you. As a housekeeping staffing agency with over 25 years of experience, we have ample experience placing housekeepers all over the country.

So, read on to discover how to get the ball rolling when hiring a housekeeper!

How to get started finding a housekeeper

There are a few steps you should take before starting the process of hiring a housekeeper:

Define why you want a housekeeper

Why are you deciding to hire a housekeeper? Do you want to save time, or do you want to take an extra chore off your plate? If you have children, would you prefer a nanny-housekeeper to take on some of the childcare duties? Asking these questions will help you determine what responsibilities you would like your housekeeper to take on, as they can do much more than just clean.

Housekeepers can run errands for your household, prep and cook meals, and do the laundry. Define why you would like a housekeeper and what duties you want them to take over, and whether you would like them to be part-time, full-time, or live-in. Which leads us to our next point...

Outline your budget

Would you prefer to pay your housekeeper an hourly rate, weekly rate, or an annual salary? This will vary depending on whether you’d like a part-time or full-time housekeeper, and defining your budget will help when you begin your search.

Enlist professional help

Finding a housekeeper can be a lot of work, especially if this is your first time! With so many candidates out there, it’s a challenge to find the right candidate for you, which is why enlisting the help of a housekeeping staffing agency like Hummingbird Home Staff can be a huge help.

We save you hours combing through CVs and applications, helping to source home staff from our pool of talented candidates and taking care of the interview process.

The interview process

As part of the interview process that we carry out with all housekeeping staff who register with Hummingbird Home Staff, we check that they have a current Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check, their qualifications, and their references. It’s one way that we help to simplify the process so there are fewer things for you to deal with.

We also carry out face-to-face interviews with housekeeping candidates to understand them better, as well as arranging in-person interviews with you to ensure that your housekeeper is the right fit. We will then get in touch for your feedback, and to see if you would like to progress any candidates to a second interview or make them a job offer.

When you decide to make an offer to a housekeeper, you will have to have a contract of employment in place within 12 weeks of them starting work for you. You will need to think about holiday entitlement, restrictions on when your housekeeper can take holiday, and whether to pay sick pay over any statutory sick pay you would be obliged to pay, amongst many other things.

Tax and payroll

You will need to run a payroll for your housekeeper when you start employing them. Whilst you will be paying your housekeeper a net amount each week, if they earn more than £149 per week you will also have to pay their employee and your employer NI contributions. If their pay exceeds £189 per week, you will also have to pay their tax.

You will need to register yourself as an employer with HM Revenue and Customs for PAYE purposes. You must also register if your housekeeper has another job, even if you are paying them below the threshold. You should still consider registering as this will enable your housekeeper to receive a state pension and other benefits.

Don’t be tempted to try and avoid paying the tax and NI contributions, as HMRC has stated that they will be looking hard at the status of any Housekeeper's employment. If you are found to be in breach of the law, you will have to pay the tax and NI that you should have paid as well as penalties and interest.

This all may seem daunting, but help is readily to hand. Hummingbird Home Staff recommends that families use Stafftax, a staff payroll service that will ensure that everything is in place and you have nothing to worry about. They can also help with contracts of employment and have a legal department available to you should the need arise.

How Hummingbird Home Staff can help

As a dedicated housekeeping staffing agency, Hummingbird Home Staff is here to help you every step of the way when finding your ideal housekeeper. We have a wealth of experience placing dedicated home staff to make your life easier and will be on hand to answer any queries you have along the way. No two homes are the same, so we take a bespoke approach to every placement we work on, tailoring each approach to your families needs and desires.

Get in touch with our team today to learn more!