A domestic couple is made up of two individuals, often married, who work together as a team providing domestic and personal service for a household. The responsibilities of the domestic couple are based on the employer’s property and service needs. It is often useful to align the responsibilities of the couple with traditional job descriptions. Typically, domestic couples function in the following positions: property manager, caretaker, housekeeper, household or estate manager, chef and personal assistant. Depending on their skills, the actual responsibilities performed by the two individuals can be combined in any way that meets the needs of the employer. Domestic couple positions are almost always live-in positions.
A household or estate manager will make your home or estate operate flawlessly. They are responsible for the management of your estate(s). Services that an estate manager can provide include managing household staff, scheduling contractors and designers, organizing the home, grocery shopping, clothing shopping, driving family members, planning parties, managing family schedules, travel arrangements, meal planning, handling finances, and so much more.
A butler typically oversees the household staff, usually of one residence. They understand concepts like being anticipatory, friendly not familiar, privacy and confidentiality, invisible and available. Butlers answer the residence phone, receive guests at the door and supervise the reception of visitors. A butler role can be very similar to a house manager. A butler can be male or female depending on the family preferences.
An executive or personal assistant will work between 20-40 hours per week. Services that personal assistants can provide include scheduling appointments and reservations, organizing the home, grocery shopping, clothing shopping, driving family members, planning parties, managing family schedules, travel arrangements, packing for vacations, meal planning, handling finances, and so much more.
A private chef may perform work in a home, yacht or even on a plane. They are responsible for preparing and cooking meals catered to your family’s dietary needs. They will coordinate cooking and serving times with family, keep the kitchen clean and maintain all things kitchen related (food storage, kitchen equipment, shopping). Chef may prepare as many as three meals per day for the family, and may be of assistance at specific events, including dinner parties and birthday celebrations. However, in order to present meals well, a private chef requires a kitchen that is clean and has high standards of hygiene. Private chefs must have knowledge of ingredients, nutrition, recipes, cooking styles and more. A full-time chef will usually work 40-45 hours per week or five days per week, however needs will vary depending on the family schedule. If required by the family, a private chef will travel with the family.
A full-time housekeeper works more than 30 hours per week. They generally come to your home fix or six days per week. The schedule of the housekeeper will vary depending on the schedule of the family. If required, a housekeeper will travel with the family to other homes. A housekeeper is essential for maintenance of the home. Duties may include: performing inventory, stocking laundry room with all needed equipment, and performing necessary cleaning duties – laundry, ironing, caring for pets, and more. Housekeepers may also be asked to perform some outdoor chores, such as window washing or sweeping doormats. Tasks vary depending on needs of the family. Housekeepers are expected to communicate daily with family and maintain a professional appearance.
A part-time housekeeper works less than 30 hours per week. They generally come to your home two or three days per week. A housekeeper is essential for maintenance of the home. Duties may include: performing inventory, stocking laundry room with all needed equipment, and performing necessary cleaning duties – laundry, ironing, caring for pets, and more. Housekeepers may also be asked to perform some outdoor chores, such as window washing or sweeping doormats. Tasks vary depending on needs of the family. Housekeepers are expected to communicate daily with family and maintain a professional appearance.
Houseman could be on staff in a part-time or full-time position. A houseman may be responsible for duties of chauffeur/driver, cook and valet. Houseman may also fill in for the housekeeper if sick or assist the chef in preparation and serving for a formal dinner party. Houseman responsibilities may require them to care for the core grounds of a residence, including the main entry area of the house and the walkways. In a household in which there is only a houseman (i.e., not additional domestic staff), the houseman also typically does what a housekeeper would be required to do. In residences that have broader domestic staff, the houseman may also serve as a "right-hand man" to an estate/household manager or to another domestic staff leader.
An elder caregiver typically works between 40-60 hours per week. These positions can be live in our live out. A live in elder caregiver lives in a separate part of the house (coach house) or is provided a condo. A live in has a set schedule, but also understands that flexibility comes along with the job description. Many elder caregivers will also assist with house management and personal assistant responsibilities. They are responsible for traveling with the family and providing care based on an agreed schedule.
A full-time live-in nanny is a nanny that works about 30-50 hours per week and lives in your home. Typically a full-time, live-in will work their hourly schedule and one weekday night or weekend night. A live-in nanny lives in a separate part of the house (coach house) or is provided a condo. A live-in nanny has a set schedule; they are not a 24-hour caregiver. Some families prefer a live-in if they have the extra space, or may need a nanny odd hours or have multiple children.
A full-time live out nanny works 30-50 hours a week. Your nanny would come in the morning and leave in the evening. A live out nanny is responsible for all child-related responsibilities. They are nearly always required to travel internationally and domestically with the family.
A full-time live-out nanny/house manager works 30-50 hours per week. Your candidate would come in the morning and leave in the evening. This person is responsible for everything relating to your child, home and personal assistance type tasks. They are nearly always required to travel internationally and domestically with the family.
A part-time nanny works less than 30 hours a week. This is an excellent choice for families who have a flexible work schedule and need regular and consistent childcare on a more limited basis. Another common part-time nanny is an after-school nanny who retrieves students from school, assists with dinner preparation, homework help, and bedtime routines.
A tutor is an educator who comes to your home to work with your child on specified subject areas and/or homework. A tutor usually has set weekly hours, but would be someone who is also willing to work on an as-needed/available basis.
A baby nurse is typically available to your family 24/7 and lives in for the few months following birth of child. A night nurse generally arrives to your home around 9:00/10:00pm and leaves in the morning around 6:00/7:00am. Night nurses work between 5-7 nights a week. A baby nurse or night nurse is wonderful to have if you are a first time parent and need someone to show you the ropes of taking care of your child and also allows you to sleep. A baby nurse or night nurse will bath your newborn, cut nails, sleep train, and give you a hand with nursing. This is also a great option if you have older children and need to be rested. With this placement you will get a full night's sleep.
A temporary or summer nanny candidate is usually a college student, teacher, or someone who is only available during the summer. This could be a position from June-August or may be just one month. A temporary candidate is contracted to work for a predetermined amount of time, three months or less.
An occasional babysitter is for families who are looking for a consistent occasional sitter on date nights or weekends. A babysitter usually has set weekly hours, but should also be willing to work on an as-needed basis.