Latest Review -

US Aupair
Overall Rating - 1 out of 10 - Avoid this company

 

User review:

We chose US Aupair because of the small company feel and the attractive pricing - needless to say you get what you pay for. 

We signed up over 6 months before we needed our AuPair.  Our experience started well enough - the local counselor was very nice in our initial meetings, but over the course of the next several months we saw very few qualified applicants.  After three months we started inquiring regularly as to when we could expect more applications for review and we were always told more would be on the way - but we saw a total of only 7 applications over 4 months - most of which were girls who were not qualified (in comparison, we saw 7 applications the first day-before we even finished our application process with AuPair in America).  In several cases, the company owner Helene Young sent application of girls who had checked that they did not want to take care of an infant and then told us to call them because sometimes they could be convinced to change their minds.

We finally did see an application of a girl that seemed to be adequate, and since our baby was due in the next week or two made a decision to hire her.  She went through the training provided by USAupair which seemed fairly inadequate (3 days of watching videos in San Francisco according to the girl) and arrived at our home in September. 

Within two weeks we began having problems and had to have our first meeting with the counselor.  We ended up having sit downs every two months because of attitude problems with the AuPair.  Over the course of our time with her we came to find that she had come from a broken home in which there was domestic violence, she had been bulimic, and suffered from depression - little of which was uncovered by USAupair in their interview process with her. (We have since created our own interview to try and catch these types of issues on our own when interviewing AuPairs.)

After 5 months we had a final sit down and asked Amandine to make a decision as to whether she wanted to stay and continue the job and live by our rules.  After she chose to stay, and we felt comfortable with her answers as to why, her performace turned around dramatically and we thought things would be ok.

Three weeks later the AuPair informed us that she decided she wanted to leave and find a new family.  This sent us into scramble mode.

Helen the owner of US Aupair was unable to deliver any qualified applicants for a replacement.  She sent us an app from a girl in the states already, whose family turned out not to be ready to part with her, and indicated her english was so poor they did not trust her to be alone with their boys (this was someone we were supposed to trust with our 9 month old????).  She also sent an app of another girl who indicated on several of the questions that she did not consider herself trustworthy, hard working or nurturing - qualities we demanded.  Those were the only application Helen was able to provide over two weeks, she said she had some new ones coming in, but we had played that game before and got burned...

We informed her that we were withdrawing from the program because no suitable application were available and we did not foresee this would change.  We asked Helen to return half of our program fee as we only participated in the program for 6 months and in view of the hardships we endured with the AuPair and her decision to quit (including scrambling for day care and property damage caused by the AuPair.  So far she has returned only what she was contractually obligated to do, and we are out over $6,000 in lost program fee, increased day care cost and property damage. 

In the meantime Helene from USAupair has placed this girl - whom she knows has emotional and mental issues and a poor work ethic - with another family (and likely collected another program fee).  We never did here from her new family despite Helen's assurance she would pass along our number so they could call for a reference - we feel bed that because of Helen's desire for profit over customer service and delivering a quality service, another family will likely end up suffering as we did. 

As such we would recommend avoiding US Aupair like the plague.