Going rates for babysitters?

My very-soon-to-be 14 y.o. DD is also a soon-to-be Red Cross Certified Babysitter. She is asking my advice on what to charge. I have no idea.

Have you paid a babysitter recently? What did you pay?

Any other advice?

My 14 year old daughter charges $5 for one kid, or $6 for two per hour. Not sure how this compares to other kids/places. She also has certification of some sort, at least CPR.

Hrm. I think you REALLY need to ask around locally; it is definitely going to vary based on where you live.

I agree, ask locally. Also check on Craigslist to see what people are asking for (or offering) there.

I’m in CA and pay my 20-year-old CPR & First Aid certified babysitter $10 per hour for 2 kids.

Yes, location matters a whole lot. My experiences in the East Bay: I didn’t babysit very regularly, but when I was sixteen/seventeen I got $10/hour watching a couple of kids (age 8+), plus free pizza, and sometimes tips. No certifications, not even a driver’s license. Yeah, I didn’t think I deserved it either. When it came time to pay, I hadn’t given any set price (cluelessness on my part, not strategy), and maybe that’s what did it - they didn’t want to look cheap.

Rates should vary per age of the child - taking a 6 year old to the park is a thousand times easier than feeding, burping, and changing a 6 month old.

We have 3 young kids, so we pay our babysitters ~$11 an hour. Of course, whenever we go out - the kids are fed and ready for bed, often with a movie to watch. So really the babysitter just has to hang out with the kids and put them to bed. I think the $11/hour is a bit on the high side for our area - but we have 2 girls on our street who do a great job, and we want to keep them happy.

My nephew gets 30 if we are home before midnight - 40 if not.

Just the other day, my friend said she was paying her 19 year old college student, certified CPR baby sitter $12 an hour to watch her 8 month old baby.

That is insane to me. I have friends with college degrees who don’t make that much money in their regular jobs (hey, the economy ain’t what it used to be). I pointed this out to my friend and she realized she should probably reassess her pay plan.

Rates in Calgary: $10 / hour, specialised respite care agency for kids with special needs charges $14/hour.

When we were looking for sitters in Austin, TX the rates ranged from $10 - $15 per hour. The sitter we chose (and are still using) is at the high end of that range, but worth it.

We usually pay $10 per hour (suburbs of Boston). We came up with this number by asking other people what they pay. The range was $10 - 12. The maddening thing is that most of the babysitters we have hired don’t ask for a specific hourly rate. They just say, “Whatever you think is OK.” I think you should tell me how much you charge. I don’t want to give you $10 when you’d be happy with $5 and I don’t want you going away mad and not coming back because I gave you $10 but you wanted $12.

I am in northern Ontario, Canada. I paid my (rather lazy) babysitter 5 dollars an hour when she started sitting for us three years ago. I pay her 7 now, since she has a part time job at KFC, and is 17. Minimum wage is $9.50. I generally offer her “extra if she cleans up a bit” (washing dishes, or vacuuming…nothing heavy) and mostly she doesn’t bother. I have offered her an extra 15 if she is babysitting over supper hour, she can cook (burgers, or kraft dinner) for herself and my son and keep the money, or order pizza for them. She orders the pizza.

Why is she still our babysitter? She lives a block away, and will walk home at night, so I don’t have to pay for a cab if my boyfriend is still out. Also, she will come over at a moment’s notice if she is not working. I had other teenager babysitters and they either lived further away, were over scheduled and needed to be booked weeks in advance, or couldn’t stay out after midnight.

I am going to explore more options this summer, as she is graduating from highschool, and probably starting community college or full time work in the fall.

Well, we have a few mitigating factors:
One, our “baby” is 10YO, and often just stays in our apartment all by herself when hubby and I are out. Two, the area we live in is very poor. Three, the ‘babysitter’ (i.e. the person our daughter can go to if she can’t find something to eat, or is lonely, or has a problem) is a tenant in the apartment building we own, and when this particular tenant is having a ‘tight’ month, she can come to me and say ‘we can’t afford all our rent this month; we’ll catch up in a month or two’ and I OK that.

Given all that, when I need her to ‘babysit’ (IOW, be there if my kid needs something), I knock $5.00/hr off her rent.

It’s kind of a give-and-take situation.

A friend is a nany in New Jersey. Here’s another vote for checking locally. Even within the same city rates differ. If you live in an affluent neighborhood, expect to pay more.

Basically any babysitter/nanny worth her salt will tell you exactly what she expects in terms of pay/vacation up front and will ask exactly what her duties will entail (and will base the expected pay on your response). A 14yo babysitting, right off the bat is not going to command the same rate as an older woman with experience. As I mentioned, make sure she knows to say what she will charge and that she asks what will be expected of her.

A lot of people looking for nanny’s babysitters are really looking for someone to do all of the house work. They will say the job is for baby sitting their kids, but on day one will leave a laundry list of tasks two sheets long. This needs to be addressed before taking the job.

A friend of my friend’s had this happen to her severla times. One time the couple refused to pay her for the day when she called and told them that no, she was not going to mop and shine the floors and clean the windows on their two floor mac mansion.

Heh, Kinthalis, I’ll never know why people do the “just watch the kids, no really!” bit, lying through their teeth. I have a bunch of friends - all in college or recently graduated - who babysit kids who live in the university area. So I mean, you’re getting someone who is (somewhat) more educated than the general population and such. You would be amazed at the requests they get. OTOH, the people who pay the most are always super nervous about asking for anything more, like hesitantly asking if the sitter would turn on the sprinklers (which takes all of 2 seconds).

Here in the DC exurbs, I’m starting the Firebug’s new babysitters off at minimum wage (even though the min-wage laws don’t apply to babysitters, I think they damned well should - I think caring for the little rascal is both harder work and more important than asking, “would you like fries with that?”) and work up towards $10 if I they seem to be doing a good job.

The Firebug’s a very active 2.5 years old.

That totally depends on the kids, not just the age. Feeding, burping, & changing a cooperative 6 month old can be cake, if it’s a compliant & happy child. You spend 20 minutes of work for a 3 hour sitting gig. And a rambunctious & clever 6 year old who likes to head for the hills whenever you take your eyes off him can be a nightmare.

Having said that, it’s totally acceptable to adjust your rates for a repeat sitting job, if you find it was a lot more effort than you expected.