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Live-in maids - Safe or not?

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spaul
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Live-in maids - Safe or not?

Post by spaul » Sun, 10 Sep 2006 8:31 am

Hi All,

My wife and I are planning to relocate to Singapore at the end of this year. She is Japanese and I'm American. We have discussed the idea of getting a live-in maid but are not sure if this is a good idea. We have an 8 y/o son so we would sometimes like to have a baby sitter for when we want to go out. My wife has been reading forums for Japanese people living in SG and there are a lot of "horror" stories. Maids bringing BFs around when the family isn't home, theft, trying to steal the husbands etc. I also have a friend who went over as an expat with a major bank on a full epat package and he found it to be no problem. He liked the idea of having a maid. I'm wondering if it because they are Japanese and are more prone to being taken advantage of like it sometimes happens when they travel to foreign countries on holidays. Does anyone have any first hand experience with this? What is it really like?

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Strong Eagle
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Post by Strong Eagle » Sun, 10 Sep 2006 8:34 am

You cannot just broadbrush the whole issue. For the most part, most maids are hardworking honest people, and there are a few that are lazy thieves.

The key is to find someone with references that you can check... much better to hire a maid who has already worked here. When you go to employment agencies you may be hiring a maid who is coming over for the first time and it is much harder to tell what the maid is like... just like any other type of hire.

spaul
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Post by spaul » Sun, 10 Sep 2006 8:44 am

I tend to agree with you. I'm not trying to broadbrush the issue actually. I just want to hear what others have experienced. I wasn't aware that you can check references etc because isn't it government regulated in a way? Are there any websites where we can get more information about how this all works?

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Post by spookie » Thu, 14 Sep 2006 4:35 pm

Hi spaul,

just to share my experience with you... We've been employing a live-in maid 4 times. Both me & husband works full day.

1st one. Young. Single. Smart. Very clean. She was very 'royal' to my daughter. She bought my daughter snacks, or sweet, whenever she went home from a day off. Turned out she stole my perfume, body lotion, some cash. She also dated some security guard from our condo. I terminated her after 1 year (about 2 weeks after I found out the truth). After she left, I found out that she actually borrowed some money from her maid friends.

2nd. Young. Single. Not so smart. Not so clean. She was quite honest. But she couldn't get along well with my daughter. I said bye-bye to her after also, a year.

3rd. Not so young. Married with one daughter. Not so clean. But VERY good with my daughter & son. A good cook as well. Honest (she did not steal anything). She decided to go back home after 2 year contract. She did not give me too much problem during her stay with me.

4th. Older a little bit that the 3rd. Married with 2 daughters. Clean, but not a very good cook. She's been with us for about 6 months now, and it seems ok...

I would say, this all depends on individual, and how you treat your maid. If your wife stays at home most of the time, then I would say it's not a big problem...

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Post by hillview2006 » Thu, 14 Sep 2006 4:57 pm

The best way is like what Strong Eagle said, hire someone with references or ‘Transfer maid’ they call it here.

As for us we purposely hire matured maid – 35 and above married and have kids. So far all them been very well – honest, never steal, caring for my baby, can take good care of my dog , and the most important thing is we treat her just like one of our family.

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Post by spookie » Thu, 14 Sep 2006 5:31 pm

hillview2006 wrote:The best way is like what Strong Eagle said, hire someone with references or ‘Transfer maid’ they call it here.
Hillview2006, I thought "Transfer Maid" was a name given to those who have come to Singapore (after the employer choose them), but somehow after few weeks or a month, the employer decided not to continue with them due to some reason?

Because my 2nd maid was labelled by the maid agency as "transfer maid" and she had been in SIngapore for a month (2 weeks with the previous employer), before I took her...

spaul
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Post by spaul » Sun, 17 Sep 2006 2:33 pm

Thanks spookie et all. The information is very helpful.

hillview2006
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Post by hillview2006 » Mon, 18 Sep 2006 10:32 am

Yes they label them like that. My 2nd maid is taken from 'transfer maid' new (6 month) in Singapore but her 1st Employer doesn’t like her. I took her and groom her. After 6 months working with me, she became very capable maid. Not all transfer maid are bad, if we give them a chance to learn and if they themselves willing to learn and by giving them the opportunity to grow certainly they can become a fabulous maid.

When we move to KL, she prefers to work in Singapore and got hired immediately by an American couple. They are very happy with her.


The good part of getting transfer maid is – you don’t need to wait long, as the maid can start immediately as long as you FWP application is approved.

What I mean getting a maid with references - maid currently working with someone or expat in singapore.( e.g expat leaving the country or the local employer don’t need the maid service anymore)

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