What is the availability and cost of household help, and what types of help are typically employed by expatriates?

Families with young kids usually hire full-time empleadas who do housekeeping and childcare. Minimum is $400/month plus overtime, other benefits such as social security, and bonuses of 13th and 14th month salaries. When you leave post, you also have to pay them out a hefty sum around $2-3K. Folks with older kids or no kids will go the part-time route or simply hire a maid service, both those costs are very low as you're not locked into a contract in the same way. - Jul 2019


Help is abundant. For a full time nanny/housekeeper, expect to pay around $400. - Jul 2018


There was recently an issue with the Ministry of Labor and now it is virtually impossible for diplomats to register a contract. The employee association used to assist with this, apparently the government won't let them anymore. So now they are pushing people to use a service, where you have little to no say in who you get or how much they are paid. Haven't heard any horror stories yet, but seems like a disaster waiting to happen. Minimum wage is $350 a month. - Mar 2017


Many hire part-time help and I have hear various comments. If you are coming from Asia you might be surprised by the difference in quality of work here. Helpers (empleadas) are usually hired to help with household chores and/or childcare. It is nice to have someone if your Spanish is too weak to help with weekly tasks like ordering gas/water/etc. or even making appointments. Any time I have to use the phone in Spanish my stress level rises. - Sep 2016


We paid our 1/2 time maid $220 a month plus all the other bonuses (13th, 14th, and 15th month bonuses, vacation, local health insurance (IESS), and severance). Make sure to have a written contract. - Aug 2015


Fairly cheap, about US$200/month for a day a week, US$350/month for two days a week. The law here makes it expensive though through bonuses, insurance, vacation, etc. - Aug 2014


Available and reasonably priced. It's not a bargain, but much more affordable than in the U.S. - Jul 2012


We have a maid that comes once a week and we pay her $3 an hour. - Jan 2011


Live-in or live-out housekeepers and nannies are available. Cost is about $220-$280/month for fulltime live-out housekeeper, but additional required social security and other taxes adds a lot on to the cost. Current labor law makes it difficult to employ a person part-time, but some people do share an employee. Most housekeepers are Spanish speaking, so it helps to know a little bit of the language. - May 2010


Domestic help is easy to find. I pay $290/month for a day maid who works 8 hrs/day, 5 days a week. - Oct 2009


Domestics are available and relatively cheap (price negotiated), although be careful they don't set you up for a break-in. - Jan 2009


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