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$100,000 nannies and 4 other highly paid employees of the super-rich
It turns out that plenty of "downstairs" employees are living the good life
In 2013, Mary Poppins would be raking in the Benjamins.
In 2013, Mary Poppins would be raking in the Benjamins. (Facebook/Mary Poppins)
N

ot everyone has come out of the great recession with their finances bruised.

The super-rich lost the most when the economy crashed in 2008, but quickly bounced back. Now, as Peter Weber notes at The Week, the top one percent of American earners sit on their biggest share of the nation's wealth since the Roaring '20s.

And many of the people who work for business tycoons, celebrities, and high-earning professionals appear to be doing quite nicely, too. Here are 5 domestic careers that reportedly offer six-figure salaries — as long as you're in the upper echelon of workers employed by the upper crust:

1. Nannies
College graduates make up the fastest-growing segment of the nannying industry, household staffing specialists tell NBC News. The median salary is $16 an hour, but a well-educated and experienced nanny — or "modern-day Mary Poppins," as American University graduate Elyse Barletta calls herself — can make as much tending a toddler as they would have in an entry-level finance career, which in some big cities might mean $100,000 a year or more.

Experts say the trend has picked up in recent years as more moms enter the workforce as high-earning professionals, and look for ways to give their kids an educational leg-up in a competitive world. Cliff Greenhouse, president of the Pavilion Agency in New York, says these moms "aren’t going to work full-time unless they can leave their children in the care of someone they consider a peer."

The numbers are giving some parenting bloggers sticker shock. "College-educated nannies aren't a post-recession phenomenon," says Katie J.M. Baker at Jezebel, but the latest trends are "kinda whoa."

2. Butlers
Butlers might seem like a relic from the Downton Abbey era, but in some parts of the world, including the oil-rich Persian Gulf region, they are still in high demand, according to Sophie Robehmed at BBC News. "They may live downstairs rather than upstairs, but some are on stratospheric salaries," she says.

In fact, London's Bespoke Bureau British Butler and Housekeeper Academy this year placed a newly trained butler in the United Arab Emirates in a position that pays 582,000 Emirati Dirhams — or $158,000 — per year.

One butler in the U.A.E. tells BBC News that, after leaving the military, he got a job in a wealthy household at $55,000 a year, and that he now makes twice that. That doesn't even include perks, such as a luxury apartment, bonuses, private jet travel, and two months off in the summer to visit his family in the U.K. "I travel bi-weekly and I am expected to be on call 24/7, caring for my principal's personal things like clothes, travel bookings, reservations and shopping," says the 37-year-old butler. "I also have to make sure he's always looking good and that he stays hydrated in the heat."

3. Private chef
Private chefs — not to be confused with personal chefs, who might have several clients — typically work in a mansion, yacht, or private jet. They might cook three meals a day. Some also have added duties, like working with a butler or housekeeper to make sure the household runs smoothly.

The median compensation for a private household chef is $70,000, although some can make a good bit more.

If they work for rock stars or professional athletes, they might wind up traveling the country or the world. "Those lucky private chefs who tour with celebrities can make upwards of $5,000 a week," says Culinary Schools Connection. "The one downside is that they are usually on call 24/7."

4. Personal shopper
If you are determined to make six figures and have a passion for fashion, you might be in luck. Top-notch personal shoppers can earn $100,000 or more annually, according to Forbes. Their mission is to make sure that their super-wealthy clientele are the best dressed people in the room.

And while the Association of Image Consultants International and other professional organizations offer certification programs, there is no formally recognized credential you need to become a style consultant. With impeccable taste — and some chutzpah — anyone has a shot at breaking into the business. "This is a bit of a Wild West industry," Bridgette Raes, president of Bridgette Raes Style Group in New York City, tells Smart Money.

5. Tutor
The private tutoring business has been growing for years. Back in 2010, the education research firm EduVentures estimated it to be a $5 billion to $7 billion industry.

Some parents are willing to pay $400 an hour for the best tutors in New York City. Tutors are just as highly sought after in the U.K. One 2011 ad in Tutors International offered the use of a London apartment, free travel, and $95,000 a year to someone capable of teaching the family's two kids, ages 5 and 7, Ancient Greek, Latin, chess, sailing, French, and Spanish, according to The Huffington Post U.K.

The high salaries are being driven, says Britain's Guardian, by striving well-to-do parents "hyperventilating that their kids are being left behind."

Harold Maass is a contributing editor at TheWeek.com. He has been writing for The Week since the 2001 launch of the U.S. print edition. Harold has worked for a variety of news outlets, including The Miami HeraldFox News, and ABC News.

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