As a family member for a defined period of time, the au pair has a right to their own room. It should be at least 9m² and have a window. Furthermore, just like the rooms of all other family members, the au pair accommodation should be furnished and equipped with heating. To ensure that the au pair's privacy is protected, the room has to have a lock and key. Obviously, the family makes the room available for use free of charge. In fact the word "au pair" means "in mutuality". This means that the au pair helps with childcare and light housework and in return receives free board and lodging as well as pocket money.
Some host families also make a private bathroom available to their au pair. However, this is not compulsory. In fact the au pair can use the communal bathroom along with all of the other members of the family. As the objective is for the au pair to be intergrated into the family as a big brother or sister, the room should be within the family home. In exceptional cases it is sometimes possible to accommodate the au pair outside of the family home. It is the au pair's responsibility to clean their own private space.
Our tip to families:
Make the room of the au pair as welcoming as possible. A welcome card, a picture drawn by the children or a small bunch of flowers would make the au pair feel really welcome in your home.
Accomodation - FAQ
Our home is too small. There isn't any extra room for the au pair. Would it still be possible for us to host an au pair? We would naturally offer him or her a room outside our home.
Accommodating an au pair outside the family's home is not really conventional within the context of the au pair programmes. The au pair and host family should really both live together as one family.
We cannot provide a specific suggestion, however, we can give you our personal opinion. This situation is not very ideal, however, it is acceptable when it is the only possibility due to space limitations. But even in such cases, the following applies: an au pair should have his/her own heatable and sufficiently furnished room, at least eight square meters in size. It should have a lockable door and at least one window allowing sunlight into the room. Clean sanitary facilities are also important.
The personal connection to the host family is a very important point. You need to make sure that you and your au pair spend as much time together as possible. The au pair must be integrated into family life and learn more about the culture of the host country. This is all part of the basic concept of au pairing.