Babysitting is a great way to earn money. Below are some excellent babysitting tips that will help you become a better babysitter and make more money. The best part about babysitting is that people will seek you out and it can be a pretty easy job if you follow the tips below. When I was in my babysitting years, 12-18, I did some things that a lot of people told me they liked. Those things helped me get more customers and more money! Now that I’m and adult, seeking babysitters myself, there are certain things I really like in a babysitter.
Also, after you are done reading all about how to become a better babysitter, scroll back up and get this free download. Then check out our Babysitting Business Academy!
Babysitting Tips- Before you go:
Right when the adult calls you to babysit, establish how much you charge. I can’t tell you how many times I was disappointed when someone would underpay me. There was a time when I was 19 years old and home from college for the summer, a family I had babysat for in my younger teen years called to have me babysit.
The Dad is an Ob/Gyn doctor and there was no short of money. I ran the kids to lessons, made meals, and spent the day with them. I was so disappointed when the Mom paid me about $4/hour! After, she called for me to babysit a few times and I always came up with excuses. She finally asked, how could I get you to babysit for me again? I was nervous, but I finally told her that she paid me so little last time and my time is more valuable to me then the rate she was paying me. We discussed what would be a good amount and I started babysitting for her again. It’s better to just know what’s coming.
In the small town I live in, where there are a lot of babysitters, I pay a 13-16 year old for 1 child $3 per hour. All they have to do is finish feeding my child, put her PJ’s on and put her in bed. She sleeps the rest of the time.
Here are things that should influence how much you charge:
- Where you babysit– Depending on the cost of living of where you live will determine how much you can charge. Ask around to find out what other baby sitters are charging.
- Babysitting Experience- The more experience you have the more you can charge. Apply the practices and you will gain more experience and will be able to charge more than other baby sitters.
- How many and ages- How many kids and the ages of the kids can largely determined what you could charge. Set up a pricing structure for how much you charge to watch young kids and older kids.
- Activities- You can charge more if you are doing more, like taking kids to their music lessons, soccer practice or other activities. You could also charge extra for teaching music lessons yourself or tutoring on homework.
- Time of day/night– If you will be baby sitting while kids are asleep you will have an easier time but if it is in the middle of the day and you have to cook meals and change diapers you could charge more.
- Special needs- If the child has special needs and requires more assistance and care you could charge more.
- Certified Training- If you are CPR or First Aid certified you could charge more. This could be a good way of setting you apart from other babysitters.
- Housekeeping– Take care of the kids first but if they are asleep or you find some extra time clean up the house and do the dishes.
- Transportation– If you can drive kids around or even just arrange transportation through a taxi then you could definitely charge more.
Honestly, if my babysitter asked for a higher amount and I felt like she worked for that amount, I would be willing to pay more. I found this guide to babysitting that can help if you have more questions.
Establish the time you are needed.
If you are getting yourself to the home, make sure you arrive on time. If they are picking you up, be ready and waiting. Set up times you are okay with like when they will be coming home. If it is past your curfew, talk to your parents about it.
Put together a “fun bag”.
My “fun bag” is what made the kids beg their parents to have me babysit. A few things that I would bring were:
- Coloring books and crayons
- Sidewalk chalk
- Candy (skittles are small and don’t melt or anything)
- Short movie- “The Reluctant Dragon” and “Scamper” were two favorites
- Picture books
- Games like- Connect 4, Don’t break the ice, puzzles
I could get kids to clean up after themselves, take a bath, eat their vegetables- all because I had my “fun bag” and they were willing to do ANYTHING for something in it. I kept this bag in an established place at home and I would only refill it every once in a while.
Babysitting Tips- Before they go, ask:
-Where things are
You’ll want to know where things are like rags for spills, diapers/wipes, PJs, laundry baskets, paper towels.
For example, no food outside the kitchen, only G movies, no swimming, etc.
It could possibly be: dinner, play, bath, brush teeth, story, prayers, and bed. Just find out what it is.
–What to do after the kids are asleep.
This of course isn’t fun- but if you do things to help around the house, it’s all right to be compensated for it. One family would have me match socks, cut strawberries or deep clean the playroom. I was always paid well in return.
-How they discipline.
The last thing you want is to be too hard or too soft on the kids. Ask the parents how they would handle situations.
Make sure you have all the emergency contacts you need. Just in case they don’t have a list of emergency contacts, print out this free emergency contact list and keep it in your babysitting bag: http://www.hellobee.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/hb-emergency-contacts.pdf and have them fill it out.
Babysitting Tips- While you’re babysitting:
Follow directions of parents.
If you can text, don’t hesitate to send a text if you have questions.
If you are enjoying babysitting, it will show. If you are smiling and laughing on the job the parents and kids will want you back.
Babysitting Tips After the kid(s) go to bed:
Clean up after them.
Moms especially LOVE coming home to a clean house. You want to leave the house as clean or cleaner than how you found it. Put the dirty diaper in the garbage. Put the kid’s play clothes in the hamper. Put the dishes from dinner in the dishwasher. These are small things that go a LONG way.
Do any extra assignments the parents have asked.
I asked 23 parents what they want in a babysitter to help you become a better babysitter and put it in a free pdf for you.
Click here to get free access to what they said.
Babysitting Tips- After they return:
Give a thorough review of what happened.
Parents love details. Tell them what funny things the kid(s) did. How you handled tricky situations, any discipline that took place, how much the kids ate for dinner, if the child helped with other kids or helped you, or how they went to sleep. I can never get enough details from my sitter on how it went. This will also help the parent know if they should call you again because they trust you.
Don’t ever keep anything secret. My sister-in-law came home once and the babysitter said everything went well and she found a pile of vomit under a blanket. Even if you made a mistake, it’s best just to be completely honest and open with the parents about everything. Report on all the extra jobs you did extra. For example, “I cleaned up the playroom, did the dishes and swept the floors.” That way the parents will know about all the extra work you did.
Ask if there is anything you can do better next time.
This will help you improve and show that you are teachable. These are both qualities parents are looking for in a babysitter.
Babysitting Tips- Don’ts
There are a few things you should never do while babysitting:
- Don’t use any physical negative consequences with the kids. Leave spanking, hitting or anything of the sort to the parent’s.
- Have anyone else come over without the parent’s permission.
- Leave the house dirtier than how you found it.
- Leave the home without permission from the parents.
Babysitting Tips- Marketing:
Just from my own personal experience I would never, ever call a stranger to come babysit for me. There are far too many creeps out there and my babies are far too precious to me. When I look for a babysitter, I look at what kind of person they are. Ask yourself these questions.
Are you clean cut?
Do you post appropriate things on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram?
Are you confident and sure of yourself?
Are you kind and patient?
Are you good at communicating with adults?
The next best way to market would be to:
- Be a fabulous babysitter!
- Ask those you already babysit for to tell others that you babysit.
- Make a business card for parents to give to their friends/family.
For more tips on the marketing aspect of running your babysitting business, check out our Babysitting Business Academy. It is stocked with great tips!
Are You A Good Babysitter?
Do you want to know if you are a good babysitter? Here is a what 23 parents want in a babysitter download this list for free so you learn how to be the babysitter everyone wants.
Leave comments below for how it goes and newly discovered babysitting tips.
Authored by Steven Cooper Google