Nairobi - Post Report Question and Answers

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

answer - Mar 2024

Availability is huge, and cost is cheap. Most people have full-time housekeepers; most people with young kids also have nannies. Many have chefs, drivers (which can be really helpful for those who aren't comfortable driving here), and gardeners as well. - Mar 2024

Great household help and inexpensive when compared to the US. Most people employ nannies and housekeepers; some also have gardeners and drivers. - Aug 2023

Super cheap and plentiful. - Mar 2022

Household help (labor in general) is cheap. You can find nannies, housekeepers, cooks, gardeners, and people who do a combination of those roles. You can also get a driver. When we left, we were paying our housekeeper 22,000 KSH (220 USD) per month. You are also required to pay into NSSF, the Kenyan social securty system. Many people don't (and get away with it). We did as it was the law and also the right thing to do. - Aug 2021

We employed someone to clean our apartment 3x a week for the entire time we lived there. We also employed a cook to come once a week (there are just two of us). There are unfortunately too many people looking for work, so the average cost of these services is very cheap. - Apr 2021

Plentiful and cheap. - Nov 2020

Very affordable. Most expats have full-time housekeeper or nanny and a gardener and some have drivers. - Dec 2018

Household help is plentiful and inexpensive. The quality of service can vary greatly, so make sure you take plenty of interviews and speak to their references when possible.

We've been very happy with our household help. We have a maid/cook who comes three days a week. She cooks, cleans, does laundry, changes the bedsheets, etc. We pay her US $185 a month.

We also have a fantastic gardener who works for us on Tuesdays and Thursdays. We pay him US $100 a month for his services. - Dec 2018

This is one of the perks of living here! For a nanny/housekeeper salary you will pay US$230-350. For a gardener or driver you are also expected to pay around the same. - Jun 2018

House staff is very affordable and most people hire a daily housekeeper, a gardener, and a driver. Kenyan nannies are wonderfully caring and competent. - Jul 2016

Low. - Sep 2015

We have a full-time person clean our house and be available for our older children five days a week for about US$300 a month. A gardener/carwasher comes once a week for about US$10 a week. - Aug 2015

CLO does an annual survey. Here are 2015 results (in shillings, which is @ 100=US$1. Unfortunately these are only highs and lows, not broken down by most common salaries. Most are proportional to the complexity of the particular household. Low 2015 High 2015 Average Housekeeper: 15,000 32,000 23,000 Cook: 13,000 27,000 19,000 Cook/Housekeeper: 14,000 37,000 23,000 Nanny: 13,000 28,000 21,000 Nanny/Housekeeper: 16,000 36,000 25,000 Driver: 16,000 35,000 25,000 Driver/Gardener: 12,000 34,000 22,000 Gardener: 12,000 24,000 19,000 - Jul 2015

Part time help: US$120 - Full Time: US$220. - May 2015

Easily available, US$250-$300/month. - Dec 2014

Good and relatively inexpensive. - Jun 2014

The going rate is 10-12000 ksh for house help. (Approx $120-150 per month full time six days a week) However, most Americans at the embassy pay around 20000-25000 ksh because they don't realize that and by the time you've worked that out you have usually hired someone! Gardeners, housegirls, cooks, etc are everywhere. - Jun 2014

A full-time nanny costs about US$250-300/month. You will likely go through several. There are a lot of stories of people paying a salary for a nanny to "save" her before they arrive, only to get swindled. Don't do this. There are always Kenyans looking for jobs and Americans pay more and honor holidays, so it is easy to find help. - Mar 2014

Gardeners are around US$150-200 per month. Ayahs are between US$200-250. It depends. Interview before hiring and expect to be asked for loans. There is no shortage of people looking for work. - Jul 2013

Super cheap. We hired someone who wasn't part of the "embassy mafia". We paid her much less. She worked much harder and she didn't get into the gossip group like the others. - Jun 2013

Very reasonable. We pay about US$150/month for a housekeeper who comes 3x/week. We pay $50/month for a gardener/car washer who comes 2x/week. - Dec 2012

Plentiful and cheap. US$250 per month gets you a full-time housekeeper who may or may not cook. A full-time driver costs about the same, gardeners cost about half of that (depending on skill level). - Aug 2012

Readily available and affordable. Average salaries for a nanny or a housekeeper are $16KSH-20KSH.Be wary of someone that asks for more than that unless they have a ton of experience. - Dec 2011

I really love having affordable household help. I feel like I can do all the good-mom things I want to do, because someone else is keeping up with the laundry and kitchen. Housekeepers and ayahs are paid from US$120-$200/mos. Gardeners from US$100-$150/mos. Experienced drivers from US$150 - $300/mos. Roughly. It changes. It's easy to find good helpers -- but you should still have plenty of recommendations and be cautious. - Dec 2011

Domestic help is easily available and quite affordable. However, be aware of thievery, remember you are fabulously wealthy compared to most Kenyans. - Sep 2011

Super available; they make between 125 and 250 USD per month. - Dec 2010

Easy to find, but not easy to find a maid who will actually work. Costs start at $100-250 per month. - Dec 2009

Good. We pay our maid about $180 a month. She lives in. All the houses in our Rosslyn Ridge compound have separate live-in (BR, bath and tiny patio) quarters, and this is common. - Jul 2009

Cheap. Prices vary and inflation from those expats who pay too much affect you but US$100-$150/month for a live in who'll work six days a week is common. - Jun 2008

More expensive than Asia, but fairly reasonable. Figure US$150-$200/month for an experienced driver and maybe $100-$150/month for a maid. - Feb 2008

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