How to Contract a Live in Housekeeper


Published on May 31, 2019

Hiring a live in housekeeper? Here's how to draw up a contract for your full time staff. Click To Tweet When you hire a full time live-in housekeeper, it’s a good idea to draw up an employment contract.  In fact UK government guidelines recommend that you should do so for any full time staff that you employ.  Having a contract for a live in housekeeper gives security to you and your housekeeper, and ensures the correct taxes are paid to the government.

Having a contract is especially important for a live in housekeeper. It gives you peace of mind that you and your family are safe, and that you have the backing of the law.

So why do you need a contract?

Why do you need a contract for a housekeeper?

If you’re hiring a full time or live in housekeeper, drawing up an employment contract is a wise move to protect both employer and employee. An employment contract eliminates grey areas and aspects of the job description which could be misinterpreted. This is equally important in domestic settings, which are often less formal, but where issues can crop up which need to be covered in a comprehensive contract.

A housekeeper contract should be drawn up by a solicitor or lawyer and follow appropriate local laws. Each country has its own employment laws and your contract should reflect this in detail. Just because the housekeeper is working in your home, the law still applies.

Ultimately your contract will protect you, your family, and your housekeeper. Whether you employ a live in or live out housekeeper, a contract gives you complete peace of mind.

What should you include in the housekeeper contract?

A contract should include:

  • All terms that have been agreed during the formal offer
  • Start date
  • Hours of work
  • Days of work
  • Salary (gross pay)
  • Overtime rate (if applicable)
  • When salary payments are made
  • Bonus arrangements (if any)
  • Holiday entitlement
  • Notice period
  • Any additional details including duties, house rules
  • Disciplinary Procedures

Remember that a contract is a legally binding document and should be adhered to by both parties. You can of course adjust the contract at any point with mutual agreement. Importantly, remember that labour laws can still overrule clauses in the contract. For example, as an employer, you are obligated to honour the minimum legal holiday entitlement for the housekeeper. If you don’t and there’s a legal dispute, the contract won’t stand up in court.

As an employer you will then be expected to setup and pay into a PAYE scheme and a pension scheme.  This is where income tax and National Insurance contributions are paid.  The pension scheme is now legally binding and you have to opt in as an employer. However, you can choose which pension scheme to use.

Let Polo & Tweed Help You Find a Houskeeper

Hiring a good full time or live in housekeeper is important. We are a professional recruitment agency with the expertise to guide you through the process of making a formal offer. We’ll help ensure that you are offering a legally acceptable role to a housekeeper. Although we cannot give specific legal advice, we can share with you sample contracts for you to adapt for your needs.

Remember, a good housekeeper will give you and your family the support you need. In turn, you should provide your employee with security and confidence that they have a long-term job with you.  Let us help you find a great new live in housekeeper or live out housekeeper, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.

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