What should I pay my sitter?
What impacts pay rates
Several factors can impact what you pay from type of care to location. First calculate your basic pay rate. Then adjust your rate as needed with the factors listed below.
Amount of child care
- Do you need a sitter full time, part time, or just for occasional help?
- If it's part-time, is it for the same days and times each week?
- Is the job during the week, on weekends or some of each?
- Major metropolitan areas tend to have higher babysitting rates than rural areas.
- Suburbs can also have much higher babysitting rates than rural areas, especially if they serve a large commuter population and are near a major city.
Number of children being cared for
- Keeping an eye on 1 child is a lot different than watching 2 or 3 or more kids. Pay should reflect this. Your babysitter needs to control a larger group, deal with kids interacting with each other, and be more aware of group dynamics than if she's watching 1 child.
- Many babysitters are happy to help with chores, as long as it doesn't interfere with their caregiving.
- Asking your babysitter to help with laundry or pick up groceries are definitely tasks requiring extra pay. Expect to pay at least another $1-2 per hour in addition to the basic rate.
- Basic tidying up and getting the kids a snack are usually included in your basic rate-just be sure your babysitter knows what your expectations are.
- Is your babysitter required to drive the kids all over town for lessons or play dates? Is she using your car or hers?
- If she's using her car, you'll want to offer extra compensation for the gas she uses while driving the kids. If she using your car be sure you provide her with gas money if the tank needs filling. Some families offer their babysitter mileage compensation if she's commuting a long distance.
Years of experience
- Experienced babysitters get paid more than those with less experience. Paying more for experience can get you a sitter who can better meet your child care needs--and you get peace of mind too.
- If you have a newborn or twins (or triplets!), you'll want a babysitter that has specific experience to match your needs. Expect to pay more per hour than the basic rate in your local area. It's worth it.
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