09 Nov 4 Things to Consider Before Seeking Maid Services
An extra pair of hands to help out at home goes a long way, especially for families with the elderly, children, or pets. But hiring a maid is a big decision as you’ll be inviting a complete stranger to live in your home with your family members. Whether you’re looking for transfer maids or new maids in Singapore, it’s crucial to consider the following factors before committing to a domestic helper.
1. List of duties you need help with
Writing down a list of duties you need help with will ascertain if you need a helper. Once you are certain you do need one, this list is helpful in letting the helper know her scope of duties.
If you have pressing needs, transfer maids are generally more experienced than new maids who have never worked in Singapore before. Typically, they will be able to orientate themselves and get up to speed quickly.
Some agencies also give extra training to maids to provide additional needs you may require. The helpers are trained and equipped to handle basic housekeeping chores, child care, elder care, preparing meals, and pet care.
It is compulsory to give your domestic helper one day off every week. Make arrangements to ensure you have sufficient support during the off-days, especially for caregivers to the elderly, young children, or pets.
Alternatively, you can pay your maid to give up her rest day. Remember to factor this cost in your monthly recurring expenses, which will be covered later.
2. Family members’ approval
Hiring a domestic helper is not a solo decision you make yourself. You also have to consider your family members who are living with you. Are they comfortable with living under the same roof as a stranger?
For families with elderly folks, they also need to be prepared to put up with language barriers while communicating with the maid. Though temporary, this may last up to six months or more for both parties to fully familiarise themselves.
If language is an important factor in the selection criteria, the maid’s country of origin can play a part in simplifying the process. Transfer maids are recommended as they typically can already understand simple English, Mandarin, or other dialects. Indonesian maids are more fluent in Bahasa Indonesia, similar to the Malay language in Singapore. Filipino Maids (also known as Pinay Maids), on the other hand, understand English instructions well.
3. Provision of necessities
Hiring a full-time domestic helper means your maid will be living under the same roof as you. Remember to account for the provision of necessities like a room for the helper to sleep and store her belongings, as well as her dietary requirements. Indonesian maids are typically Muslims and cannot consume pork.
4. Costs of hiring a maid
Hiring a maid in Singapore goes beyond just the salary that you need to pay her. You also need to factor in recurring monthly costs and one-time costs into your budget. The following are additional costs you have to consider when hiring a domestic helper.
|Monthly Recurring Costs|
|1. Maid Salary: $480-$750|
|2. Living Expenses: $350|
|3. Foreign Domestic Worker Levy: $60 (With Levy Concession) or $300 (Without Levy Concession)|
|1. Air Ticket: $300-$400|
|2. Agency Fees: $1,600-$2,000|
|3. Mandatory Settling-In Programme (for first-time helpers in Singapore): $75|
|4. Mandatory Course For First-Time Employers: $28-$45|
|5. Work Permit Application: $35|
|6. Security Bond: Up to $5,000|
|7. Maid Insurance: $292-$373|
Assuming you’re a first-time employer who qualifies for the levy concession, the monthly recurring costs range from $890 to $1,160 while the one-time costs range from $7,330 to $7,928.
For families on a budget, the cost of hiring transfer maids is generally lower as expenses like plane tickets and work permit fees are already excluded.
When hiring a maid, it’s best to stick with the professionals. Look for a maid agency that is dedicated to quality service and held to the highest standards. Certain costs are also excluded depending on which maid agency you choose. Femme5 does not charge the mandatory settling-in programme fees, security bond, maid insurance, air ticket fees and work permit application fees.
With all the hassle, logistics, and paperwork saved, we think the extra costs of paying for a maid agency is well-spent and well-justified.
Check out this article about the cost to hire a maid in Singapore.