Choosing an Agency


Woman note-taking. Image represents questions being asked when choosing a nanny or housekeeper agency.

✔ How long has the agency been in business? Experience is invaluable.

✔ How does the agency find its personnel? Does the agency have to advertise for personnel? Better agencies generally obtain their personnel through referrals from people they know or have placed before, and do not have to rely on advertisements to pull in unknowns from “off the street.”

✔ Is the agency a member of the Better Business Bureau? An agency’s qualification for membership in the BBB, willingness to adhere to the BBB’s standards, and track record as revealed by the BBB is strong evidence of the agency’s commitment to serving its clients properly.

✔ Is the agency licensed? Is it bonded?

✔ Does they agency provide you a confirmation letter concerning the terms of engagement?

✔ Does the agency charge a retainer or application fee? You should not have to pay a fee if no placement is made.

✔ Does the agency provide a guarantee? In writing? For how long? Is the guarantee 100% for the full term of the guarantee?

✔ Does the agency personally interview each nanny face-to-face?

✔ How effective is the agency at checking references? Does the agency speak with each reference personally? Is the person checking the reference experienced and astute enough to (i) ask the questions that will elicit the true nature of the applicant’s ability, (ii) analyze the answers in a manner that would reveal the applicant’s genuine character, and (iii) detect a false reference? A reference is no better than the person analyzing it, and a good agency will probe references in a manner that will accurately derive the truth about a candidate. Moreover, a good agency is willing to share all reference information. As a double check, ask to also contact the references yourself.

✔ Does the agency request a criminal background check on the applicant?

✔ Is the agency a member of nanny and other professional associations? This may be good evidence of the agency’s dedication to serving its personnel appropriately.

✔ Does the agency charge the applicant a fee to be placed? Applicants are often not in a position to pay.

✔ Is the agency willing to bring the applicant to your home for the interview? You should be able to meet the agency personnel face to face.

✔ Does the agency copy the applicant’s identification papers? Does the agency photograph the applicant? Does the agency maintain a background file on the applicant?

✔ Is the agency available for after-hours consultation after the placement has been made? Better agencies are available for consultation after-hours at no charge. They can share their expertise to help handle post-hiring problems that may arise.

✔ Does the agency provide an I-9 Form? I-9 Forms are designed to provide you with protection from Immigration problems.

✔ What do the agency’s clients say about the agency? You should be able to hear excitement and enthusiasm about the agency’s service.  Return to top of page.

Domestically Yours is a nanny, housekeeper, and other domestic help placement agency based in the Dallas, Texas Metroplex (also covering surrounding cities). Learn more on the “About” page.