Switching Maids Too Frequently in Singapore

This article will highlight the obligations that you should keep in mind when you switch your maids too often.

Curated by vivien

November 14, 2022


Finding the ideal foreign maid for your family can be challenging, and it may be tempting to tryout a few maids  before settling on the correct one. However, there may be drawbacks if you regularly switch your foreign maid. In the section below, we look at what can go wrong if you change your maid frequently, why it occurs and what you can do to increase your maid retention rates.

What Happens If You Switch Maids Too Frequently?

Having Issues with the Ministry of Manpower (MOM)

Consequences of changing helper too often

The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) is concerned when your maids are changed more than three times each year. If you intend to engage a fourth maid within a year, you will be deemed a “Frequent Change Employer” and must either meet with the Ministry of Manpower in person or go through the Employer’s Orientation Programme, which costs an average S$32.25, before you can do so.

Possible Financial Loss

Consequences of changing helper too often

It should come as no surprise that adding more maids will increase the cost since hiring one is already pricey. Not only will you have to pay termination fess, but also repatriation costs (if you are sending the maid home), replacement or rehiring costs, maid agency costs and the cost of a new insurance policy. The termination of your maid far outweigh the costs if they are causing damage to your house; but if you are doing it because of unreasonable expectations or minor quirks, the fees might not be justified. The costs involved with hiring and onboarding one maid are listed in the table below. If you hire three maids in a year, you might anticipate paying up to S$4,200.00 simply in fees.

One-Time Fees of Hiring a Maid Average Cost (S$)
Maid Agency Fee 1,100.00
Work Permit Application 30.00
Work Permit 30.00
Settling-in Programme 75.00
Employer’s Orientation Programme 32.25
Initial Medical Examination 80.00
Inoculation (optional) 73.87
Total 1,421.12

Loss of Quality of Life

Consequences of changing helper too often

Along with financial and legal repercussions, a loss of quality of life may occur from a frequent change of maids. Up to a few months may be required to train your new maid, which requires your time from work to help with her duties and help her to adjust to your home and Singapore. This means that if you hire three new maids in a year, you may wind up having to spend practically a year training them, devoting time away from the tasks you would want to be working on.

What Happens if Your Maid Decides to Leave Early?

If you frequently lose maids each year, you either have extremely bad luck or you might be acting in ways that are unappealing to your maid. If all of your maids have given the same justification for wanting to quit, it could be wise for you as an employer to reexamine your policies. This is particularly crucial when you are asked about issues like rest days, suitable housing, salary and safety precautions because the MOM has specific regulations for these aspects. If a worker you like wants to quit for any of these reasons, try to revise your original contract and come to an agreement that will persuade her to stay.

Additionally, if you want to lessen the likelihood that your maid will wish to leave before her contract ends, you should do some research on her most recent employment trends (salary, perks, rest days etc.). If you can afford it, you may offer her a salary that is competitive or more rest days. Maintaining a line of communication to ensure you are upholding your end of the employment bargain. It may help you to avoid jealous or resentful behavior because maids may discuss their living and working situations with one another. One thing to bear in mind, though, is that it would be beneficial to check her employment history to see if she has tendency to switch jobs frequently – in this case, you should avoid hiring her.

How to Avoid Changing Maid Frequently?

If you plan to hire a maid through an employment agency, only use one with high retention rate as this indicates that maids typically stick with their employers. Talk to your agency to find out more information on your potential maid and whether you can interview her or not.

In addition, you should confirm that your helper has agreed and understood the terms of the employment worker contract before you draft it. There can be misunderstandings and arguments in the future if she doesn’t actually comprehend some of the clauses in the contract. Additionally, you must ensure that your contract is fair to both her and your expectations. You will become discouraged easily and decide you want to find someone better if you have too high of expectations on her.

Final Thoughts

Although you may be eager about finding the ideal maid, often changing maids raises a concern to the MOM and makes future hiring much more challenging. Additionally, it is expensive and the ongoing training consumes time that could be spent on other priorities. However, it is reasonable that occasionally you can experience a run of bad luck with your maid, making it necessary to rehire a new maid. You can rely on us, Help is Here agency. We’ll do our best to find a maid that best suit your needs or else provide you a free replacement within certain timeline.


Every family deserves the best help and we’re here to help find you the perfect maid!

We offer full placement, direct hire and contract renewal services. See which option is right for you. Or get in touch.

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