Most families in Singapore cannot do without maids who help with tasks such as cleaning, cooking and looking after the kids among other chores. Some people may also prefer having a maid on part time basis. No matter the case, the services that maids offer are important to every family. Majority of maids working in Singapore emanate from countries such as Philippines, Indonesia and many others. For the past few years, regulations have become tighter therefore making hiring of maids a costly affair. The Philippine government has introduced a quota with regard to how many maids go to Singapore every year and this is poised to see the number of maids that are available reduce by about 20 percent. Also, the government of Indonesia where many of the maids come from have also raised the minimum salary which their nationals working as maids in Singapore to five hundred dollars which is above to the previous figure of four hundred and fifty dollars.
The cost of hiring a maid in Singapore
There are several cost items which adds up to the total cost of hiring maid services in Singapore. To start with, there is the maid agency fee which can be anywhere from zero to 2000 dollars. You need to ascertain this by checking with your maid agency before you sign a contract. The amount charged as agency fees covers a number of things such as registration as well as foreign recruitment fees, air ticket for the maid, medical check up costs of the maid, administrative costs such as application for work permit and a wide range of other documentations, airport pickup, medical insurance, security bond and related costs. Here are breakdown of specific costs for hiring a domestic help in Singapore.
Security bond and personal accident insurance cost
Some recruitment agents include these costs in their fees, but if they are not included, the employer will have to find an insurance company and pay for these services. Every employer should pay for accident insurance cover of $40,000 for all foreign staff they employ. Employers of maids from overseas should obtain a work pass by depositing a security bond with Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower.
The conditions of the bond are that the employer will have to deposit $5000 in the form of insurance or bankers guarantee. Employers will forfeit this deposit if the foreign worker gets pregnant or disappears and they fail to repatriate them. However, there is a way out for employers who would like to minimize their risks without paying the $5000 required. One of these methods is purchasing insurance fro insurance companies such as NTUC Income. This will make you pay just $250 in the event that the maid runs away while the insurance company pays $4750.
Performance bond costs
This cost of hiring maid is only applicable to employers who hire Filipino maids. Employers will have to deposit $7000 at the Embassy of the Philippines in Singapore. However, there is an option of buying insurance to cover you against this at a cost of $71.69.
This may be equivalent to 2 months pay of the maid to several thousands of dollars depending on which agency you use when hiring the maid. Employers who pay a placement fee as part of maid agency fee are allowed to deduct it from the salary of the maid.
Settling in program costs
A one off payment of $75 is charged from employers of domestic workers who are coming to Singapore for the very first time. In some instances, this amount is included in the service fees charged by the agents.
Employer’s orientation costs
There is an orientation program for employers in Singapore who are hiring foreign maids from overseas for the first time. The amount is between $20 and $30 and this may at times be included in the agent’s fees.
Other upfront costs
You will need to spend money to acquire a bed, matters, blanket and pillows for the maid you are hiring. It’s mandatory that you provide your house help with these items.
Depending on the countries of origin, the amount which you will pay the house help as a monthly salary may vary slightly. The minimum you can pay a maid from Indonesia and Myanmar is $450 while a Filipino will require a minimum monthly salary of $450.
Foreign domestic workers levy
By working through an arrangement that is provided by GIRO, employers of foreign domestic workers should pay an amount of $265 per month. However, those who qualify for a concession could just pay an amount totalling $120 per month.
It’s the responsibility of the employer to cater for all medical costs of the domestic worker. This is why its essential having a personal accident covers in place. If you don’t take out medical and accident insurance, there is a possibility of you spending a lot of money in case something goes wrong.
Cost of air ticket
If the work permit or the contract of the maid is cancelled, it’s the duty of the employer to pay for the costs of repatriation of the domestic worker.
Working with a reputable maid agency in Singapore in 2015 will help you understand how much it will cost you to enlist the services of a house help. We all appreciate the importance which these domestic workers play on our part and itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s advisable to try harder towards making them comfortable while working. Moreover, things are changing pretty darn fast and a new generation of maids together with stringent regulations by government agencies is in place. Even in the wake of these regulatory changes, some employers in Singapore are still holding on to the past therefore putting them on a collision path with the maids who are asking for more freedom and better employment terms among others. These days, its common to find domestic workers terminating their contracts way in the middle of the duration which has been agreed upon in the past. By taking into account the above costs, you can know what is expected of you and how much you should budget for when seeking the services of a maid in Singapore in 2015.