Here’s the big question – do you want to live with the family?
While traditionally au pairs have their own room in the family’s house, there are many families in Paris who rent out small rooms or apartments for their au pair rather than having them live in the same apartment. These rooms can be “chambres de bonne” (old servants quartiers which have a shower and small hob in the same room as the bed), or slightly bigger apartments.
The bigger apartments are more recommended, but harder to come by. If you need help deciding, you can always ask for live in or live out au pair advice from others in forums or on Facebook. Rather than debating all the pros and cons, here’s a few things to think about:
- How big is the living space provided?
- Are you able to have some space from the family on your days off?
- Do you have separate access to your accommodation? (i.e. your own entrance for when you come home from a night out)
- Is there enough privacy?
- Does living alone bother you?
- Are you a big ‘family person’?
Once you have made your decision
When you think you have decided on a family (and whether to live in or out), make sure to ask for pictures of the accommodation or, even better, for a little tour on skype. Additionally, it is a good idea to know exactly what is expected of you in terms of caring for the accommodation – cleaning, keys, coming home late. When the decision is made, you should also find out if you will need to bring your own plates, cups etc. Normally, all furniture, bedding and towels should be provided for you and if they do not offer this then maybe you should think twice about accepting the position.
Why not take a look at some of out other practical advice posts for more info!
– Photo by JKleeman (Flickr)