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Daycare vs. Nanny – UGH

Daycare vs. Nanny – UGH

Ugh.  If you’re anything like me and you’re not fortunate enough to be a SAHM, you’ve possibly been plagued by this consideration already: while you and your partner work to provide for your family, who can you fully trust to care for your child in your absence?


Maybe one option over the other is clear to you.  Maybe you even have additional options like a friend with an in-home day service or a helpful grandparent.  I just can’t speak to those options.

I’m also not going to ramble on with a list as to why one is better than the other because honestly, I struggle with it still.  My son is 12-months-old and, if you haven’t already read my other posts, I’ll save letting you know what we’ve elected until the end.

Realistically, both have numerous pros and cons, and your decision may sway more heavily towards another side based on your working situation.  That being said, let’s talk reality:



  • Daycares, unlike nannies, can’t call out sick at the last minute
  • Tends to be more affordable than an hourly nanny rate
  • Some provide meals (could also be a con though)
  • Sociability
  • Gets child(ren) out of the house
  • Certain centers focus on increased activities and learning as opposed to just “babysitting”


  • Forced situations, such as a transition from 2 naps to 1
  • Germs –> increased likelihood of common cold, ear infections in child(ren)
  • The stories you’ve heard in the newssssssss… 🙁
  • Child(ren) cooped up daily in a daycare environment
  • Daycares do close for some occasions
  • High ratio of child to teacher/lack of focus on just your child(ren)
  • Drop-off/pick-up schedule



  • Ideal ratio of teacher to child(ren)
  • Ability to take children to museums, parks, pools, etc.
  • Can accommodate a sick child that needs to sleep in
  • If you work from home, you have close proximity to your child(ren) daily


  • Usually a pricier option, particularly for those with the most experience
  • Can call out sick, leaving you struggling for a back-up care method
  • Will request vacation time since you’re the employer
  • Legally need to be put on the books, which includes complex tax paperwork for you
  • If you work from home, your child(ren) have close proximity to YOU daily!

I know there are more, of course!

As for hubs and I, we went the nanny route, but only because I uniquely work full-time for my company from home.  She is a college student so the hours fit her nightly class schedule.  She’s able to take Declan up the street to the library for story time, hang out with him in our pool, take him to the park, go for a walk together around the neighborhood, and have lots of 1:1 reading and playing time together in the living room.

What pros and cons come to mind for you?  What are you considering or what form of care did you go with and why?

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