Mama Wants to Know: What Do You Pay the Babysitter?

What do you pay the babysitter?

Is this question taboo? Should I not ask because you know people don’t like talking about money? I really need to know.

Sometimes we really need a babysitter. Of course, we have wonderful family members that keep our kids from time to time. But then sometimes, our family is not available and we are DESPERATE for a sitter. Over the winter, we worked out a “babysitting trade-off” with another family. They just so happen to have kiddos that are friends with both of mine. We would keep their kids for an evening, and our friends would repay the favor another night. This type of babysitting cost us zero dollars and was super awesome. My kids were pumped to hangout with their buddies and therefore I felt guilt-free about enjoying a quiet dinner with my hubby.

what to pay the babysitter

 Out celebrating our anniversary…and on the phone with the kids

 But, just like the family option, I don’t want to overuse my friends for free childcare. Which brings me to my original question: what is the going rate for babysitters these days? My husband and I talked and decided that we would pay between $10 and $12 for our two kids. On the rare occasions that we do get a babysitter, it is only for two to three hours for us to grab a nice dinner out. We make sure the kids are fed, bathed, and in their pj’s. Our expectations are that the sitter play for a little while and then put in a movie. Easy money. I think we are a little on the low end on the payment. But if I am being honest, if I have to pay more than that per hour, then I am probably just gonna stay home. The money adds up quickly. Three hours * $15.00=$45.00 plus dinner {and maybe a drink or two!}, and we are talking a 100 dollar night out easily. Just so my husband and I can chat uninterrupted about our next home improvement project or whatever.

It begs the question, is it worth it? I know it is. Our little squeeze-them-in-when-we-can-fit-them-in date nights are imperative to our healthy marriage. I was definitely torn about the going rate for babysitting though, so I brought it up while in mixed company. I found that there are a million different acceptable price points based on expectations.

what to oay the babysitter

When I asked a group of moms how much they pay their babysitters, I made the exact comment: “If I have to pay much more than $10-$12 per hour, I would probably just stay home”.  A mother of a tween overheard me and interjected. She made me see things from a different perspective.She explained that her daughter would LOVE to have $10 rather than no dollars. Babysitting is a great way that young teens can earn spending cash without a huge work commitment, and her daughter relies on the odd jobs she can pick up. I guess the lesson is this: If I want an evening out, I need to have open conversations with my possible babysitters about my expectations and pay. If they want the job they can take it. If it is not worth it, then they can pass.  

So, can I ask, what do you pay your babysitter? What do you expect from them? Share your thoughts with me!

, , , , ,

One Response to Mama Wants to Know: What Do You Pay the Babysitter?

  1. Christina August 8, 2018 at 12:41 pm #

    My 14 year old has been babysitting for a year now. She charges 10-12 /hr so you are right on track. We actually came up with the figure from a babysitting site. You put your zip code in and then years exp etc and it gives you the “going rate”. She is CPR/First Aid certified and has completed the babysitting course offered through the local REC Center.

Leave a Reply