How to Find a Yaya or Kasambahay: A Comprehensive Guide on Hiring, Costs, and Other Expenses (2024)

hiring a yaya or kasambahay in 2023

Finding a reliable and trustworthy kasambahay and yaya is no small feat. Juggling a career, children’s needs, and household responsibilities can sap all your energy and patience. So, where do you start?

Whether you’re hiring for the first time or looking to change existing arrangements, make sure you’re prepared, too. Remember that having an extra mouth to feed is a major financial decision that affects your budget, lifestyle, and expenses.

In this comprehensive guide, you’ll discover a few tips on how to hire a kasambahay or yaya—from understanding all the legal obligations to managing arrangements and how much it costs. Let’s get started.


Can a yaya or kasambahay be an all-around helper?

It depends on the individual’s skillsets and willingness to work full-time in an all-around setup. But remember, a nanny (yaya) and helper (kasambahay) are two distinct roles that can have many different duties in a home.

A yaya handles direct care of children. Usually, the tasks include:

  • ✅ Helping with homework
  • ✅ Preparing meals and snacks
  • ✅ Playing and engaging in recreational activities

Yayas may also be responsible for light housekeeping related to the children’s needs or laundry.

On the other hand, a kasambahay has broader responsibilities than a yaya. They are skillful in most house chores like:

  • ✅ Cleaning bathrooms
  • ✅ Dusting furniture
  • ✅ Vacuuming carpets and floors
  • ✅ Washing dishes
  • ✅ Shopping for groceries
  • ✅ Cooking family meals
  • ✅ Doing the laundry

Depending on your needs at home, you should know the difference between a yaya and kasambahay’s tasks. It will help you create clear job descriptions when you’re ready to hire one. You can confidently lay out the expectations and responsibilities. In return, they know how to manage your home environment.

Having an all-around yaya or kasambahay is possible. But it depends on their skills beyond those intended for childcare or general household chores.

For example, if your yaya can cook delicious meals, you could hire them for meal preparation (and possibly grocery shopping). If your kasambahay knows gardening, you could hire them to do that task on top of the regular household chores.

Should your yaya or kasambhay stay in your house?

Deciding whether a yaya should stay in or out is one of the most crucial childcare decisions a family can make. Moreover, it will also significantly affect your finances and emotional well-being. Both options have pros and cons.

Let’s take a look at each one.

Pros of Hiring a Stay-in Yaya or Helper Cons of Hiring a Stay-in Yaya or Helper
Reliable childcare provider on hand at all times Limited or restricted on space if you have a small house
Expect around-the-clock care and attention for the child and household chores Need to have a separate room for their privacy
Create consistency in the environment as they become an integral part of the family Other family members might not be comfortable living with a stranger due to privacy concerns
Save money and time since the costs associated with transportation, hiring, and training are reduced Need to allot budget for meals, lodging, internet, mobile prepaid, and toiletries
Kasambahays and yayas may meddle in your parenting style and family culture

Of course, if you think having a stay-out yaya or kasambay is a better option, then make sure you also weigh the advantages and disadvantages.

Hiring a stay-out means you don’t need to worry about housing extra people in your home. You also won’t be dealing with any potential privacy issues that come along with it.

There isn’t as much emotional cost associated with parting because they aren’t permanently living in your home but visiting on occasion as needed.

When all is said and done, hiring a stay-in would likely be best if you’re looking for an all-around yaya who can handle multiple tasks such as cleaning, cooking, and childcare all at once. They will always be available whenever required, giving you more flexibility whether you work from home, work full-time in the office, or run a business.

How much is the salary of a kasambahay in the Philippines?

Location Minimum wage for yaya/kasambahay Potential earnings based on skills & experience
Metro Manila ₱6,500/month ₱6,500 – ₱12,000/month or more with complete benefits
Cebu ₱4,500 – ₱5,500/month Negotiable, based on skills and experience
Davao ₱4,500/month

The minimum wage in Metro Manila is ₱6,500 per month, whereas Cebu’s ₱5,500 per month (first-class municipalities), and Davao is ₱4,500 per month. The salary varies depending on the region where you are located, the tasks, working hours, and location.

A yaya may earn a higher wage, which is negotiable based on her skills and experience caring for newborns and babies.

For example, a stay-in yaya or a kasambahay based in Metro Manila may earn anywhere from ₱6,500 to ₱12,000 monthly or more with complete benefits. Someone living further away from the metro may receive lesser amounts due to the lower cost of living in these areas.

You should strive to provide your hired yaya or kasambahay with appropriate and just compensation for their efforts. Make sure you’re also updated to the Kasambahay Law to know your rights and obligations as an employer. More on this in the next section.

An overview of the Kasambahay Law

The Kasambay law, otherwise known as Republic Act No. 10361, provides support and protection for informal workers like yayas, kasambahays, cooks, gardeners, and all-around help.

This law doesn’t cover family drivers, service providers, and other informal workers who provide only occasional or sporadic work.

Here’s an overview of the law:

  • The law permits those 15 years old or older to work as employed yayas or kasambahays.
  • Workers under 18 years old must have consent from parents and guardians before employment and will have different work hours from those of legal age.
  • Employers must create a contract in a language the worker understands, such as Tagalog or Taglish.
  • The yaya or kasambahay must have a copy of the contract, and another copy must be submitted to the municipality where she works.
  • If hired via a private recruitment agency or a third party, the finder’s fee must not be charged to the employee.
  • All kasambahays should receive their monthly wages in cash and be issued pay slips.
  • The minimum wage must be by the amount assigned to each region.
  • Metro Manila-based kasambahays have a minimum of₱6,500. No deductions must be made unless there is a written agreement between the employer and the kasambahay.
  • All kasambahays are entitled to receive 13th-month pay, the equivalent of the monthly wage or depending on the length of service.
  • Kasambahays are entitled to have a weekly leave or day off. The rest day can be scheduled according to the agreement of the employer and domestic worker in the contract.
  • Kasambahays are also entitled to have eight hours rest period every day.
  • Employers are obligated to register their kasambahay as members of SSS, Philhealth and Pag-IBIG. They should shoulder the premium payments. If the kasambahay earns more than the minimum wage and above per month, it’s required to pay the appropriate share in the premium payments or contributions as the law mandates.
  • If the kasambahay has rendered at least one year of service, they are entitled to have leave with pay of five days. The unused portion can’t be carried over to the succeeding years and is not convertible into cash.

Other rights and privileges of kasambahays

Aside from the privileges mentioned above, kasambahay are also entitled to:

  • Enjoy the monthly wage and have the liberty to spend however they wish
  • Proper treatment and a conducive and humane room to stay in
  • Receive necessities such as food, toiletries, and safe sleeping arrangements
  • Rest in case of sickness or injuries
  • Right to have private communication, use of telephone, post office, or the internet in case of emergency
  • Receive a certificate of employment

You can read all the provisions for more information and comprehensive details.

How can you manage arrangements for hiring a yaya or kasambahay?

There are two ways you hire a kasambahay: direct or agency hiring.

Let’s unpack each and look at the advantages and disadvantages to help you decide which approach to take.

Hiring yaya or kasambahay through PEA

Employers can hire a kasambahay directly or through a licensed Private Employment Agency (PEA). This refers to any individual, partnership, corporation, or entity that has been officially licensed by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to engage in the recruitment and placement of domestic workers, known locally as “kasambahay,” for local employment.

Hiring through a PEA might involve additional costs but can provide a layer of pre-screening and ensure that the kasambahay meets all legal requirements.

Here’s a breakdown of the pros and cons when hiring through a licensed Private Employment Agency (PEA)

Pros Cons
Pre-screening and compliance: Agencies ensure candidates meet all legal requirements. Higher costs: Agencies charge significant fees for their services.
Convenience: Reduces the time and effort you must spend on the recruitment process. Less personal control: You may feel you have less control over the selection process.
Expertise and support: Agencies offer advice and experience in matching workers with families. Potential for less personal connection: Initial interactions are managed by the agency, which might delay bonding.
Replacement and support services: Agencies provide replacements if the arrangement fails.

Hiring yaya and kasambahay directly

If you go for direct hire via referrals or posting job ads on social media:

Pros Cons
Cost savings: Avoids agency fees, including placement fees and ongoing commissions. Legal and administrative responsibilities: You are responsible for all legal requirements, which can be complicated.
Control and personal involvement: You can vet candidates for a better fit personally. Screening and verification: You must conduct thorough background checks by yourself or through the person who referred the yaya or kasambahay.
Direct relationship: Enhances communication and understanding, potentially leading to a harmonious environment. Risk of non-compliance: Higher risk of not following labor laws, which can lead to complaints and penalties.

Direct hiring puts you in control and can save costs but requires dealing with legal and administrative tasks.

On the other hand, hiring through an agency brings expertise, convenience, and compliance at a higher cost and with potentially less personal control.

The best choice depends on what the employer values: control and cost-saving or convenience and expertise.

What are the other costs associated when you hire a yaya or kasambahay?

Expense category Details Cost estimate only
Health/Diagnostic Tests
  • – CBC, urinalysis, 2-panel drug test, chest X-ray, physical exam
  • – STD Screening (if required)
₱1,300 for basic package

₱2,500 for STD screening

Toiletries Monthly supply of soap, shampoo, toothpaste, sanitary products ₱300 — ₱500
Meals Three meals per day for live-in kasambahays ₱150 — ₱300 per day or ₱4,500 — ₱9,000 per month
Prepaid load Monthly prepaid load for communication ₱100 — ₱300
Other costs Transportation allowance

Uniforms and training

₱300 to ₱1,000 for transportation

₱1,000 to ₱3,000 annually for uniforms and training

Hiring a yaya or kasambahay in the Philippines involves more than just the base salary. You need to budget for several key extras, ensuring your newly hired helper is fit for work and well-cared for.

Health and diagnostic tests 

Before they start, your new kasambahay needs a thorough medical check-up. This not only includes basic tests like a Complete Blood Count (CBC), urinalysis, and drug testing but might also cover tuberculosis screening and other essential health checks, depending on their specific duties and health status.

  • Basic Pre-Employment Medical Exam: This package typically costs around ₱1,300. It’s a comprehensive check-up that includes CBC, urinalysis, a 2-panel drug test, chest X-ray, and a physical examination.
  • STD Screening: For broader health safety, an STD screening could be necessary, especially for the well-being of all household members. This more extensive screening comes at around ₱2,500.


For live-in yayas and kasambahays, a monthly hygiene kit is more than a courtesy—it’s a necessity. This kit typically includes essentials like soap, shampoo, toothpaste, and sanitary products to ensure they feel at home.

Budgeting between ₱300 to ₱500 can cover the basics per month, though costs might flex based on brand preferences and product sizes.


A well-fed kasambahay is a happy kasambahay. Providing at least three square meals daily is not just about sustenance but also about respect and care.

With a modest diet, expect daily meal expenses to range from ₱150 to ₱300. That totals to about₱4,500 to₱9,000 each month, varying by what’s on the menu and whether food expenses are shared.

Prepaid load for communication

Staying connected is crucial. Whether it’s for family contacts or emergencies, ensuring your kasambahay has enough load for calls and texts is essential.

A reasonable budget of ₱100 to ₱300 per month should suffice for moderate communication needs. 

Other essential expenses

Beyond the bare necessities, there are a few more considerations to ensure your kasambahay’s needs are fully met. These include transportation allowances for days off, uniforms for a professional appearance, and any necessary training or certifications that enhance their skills and value in your home.

  • Transportation allowance. Life outside work is important. A monthly allowance of ₱300 to ₱1,000 can cover travel expenses on days off, ensuring they can recharge and return refreshed.
  • Uniforms and training. If your household requires specific attire or additional skills, budgeting ₱1,000 to ₱3,000 annually should cover these bases, keeping your kasambahay at their best.

These considerations go beyond the paycheck, fostering a supportive and respectful work environment for your kasambahay. Remember that these costs are just estimates, it’s still up to you how much are you willing to set aside for these additional expenses.

5 Practical tips for a smooth hiring process

Bringing someone into your family is an exciting but nerve-wracking experience. But it doesn’t have to be complicated.

1. Check references and credentials

If the candidate has worked for other families before, ask those families about their experience with the applicant. It is also essential to ask for recommendations from friends and family.

Ask for proof of qualifications such as diplomas or certifications. Don’t forget to ask for copies of identification documents like NBI clearance or police clearance.

2. Interview multiple candidates

It’s better to interview many applicants so you can shortlist the qualified ones. It allows you to compare different applicants’ skills, experience, and personalities.

After interviewing each candidate, take detailed notes to have a reference. You may also ask each candidate the same set of questions to compare the responses and make better decisions.

3. Verify background history

This includes checking for criminal records, verifying employment history and educational background, and even doing drug testing if necessary.

Doing this will help ensure that the person hired is suitable for the position. It must be someone whom you can trust to take care of your home and children.

4. Discuss job expectations

Make sure you are clear about what duties are expected of them.

Lay out the tasks like taking care of children’s needs like:

  • Taking care of children’s needs like meals
  • Tidying up after use of common spaces like kitchen and bathrooms
  • Light housework like dusting windowsills
  • Carpool duties like picking up/dropping off kids at school, etc.

Ensure they understand how many hours they will be working every day/week/month etc., You should also discuss salary expectations like how many days’ notice will have to be given in case either party wants out of the agreement.

5. Consider offering incentives to attract quality candidates

Offering incentives can be a great way to attract top-notch candidates that matches your profile of a kasambahay or yaya.

You may want to offer:

  • Additional vacation days
  • Paid sick or personal days
  • Commuting allowance
  • Health benefits to sweeten the deal
  • All expenses paid on accommodations and plane tickets when you travel with the yaya or kasambahay

If you’re aiming for a long-term relationship, you can offer a bonus system that rewards longevity and reliability.

Final thoughts

It’s not easy to find the perfect yaya or kasambahay. But with a bit of help, you can narrow your options and eventually find someone who fits right into your household.

Just remember to follow the kasambahay law and always be on the lookout for red flags during the hiring process.

Do you have any other advice for hiring a yaya or kasambahay?