Factors To Consider For A Fair Babysitting Rate
SOUTH JORDAN, Utah – It’s a question that has tormented moms and dads since the creation of date night. How much do we pay the sitter? With so many factors to consider, there is no easy answer.
On its website, Care.com has posted a babysitter rate calculator partially based on surveys of caregivers around the country. For a babysitter with at least two years of experience, it suggested $12.50 per hour for every Utah zip code KSL tried.
“I think that’s pretty high for around here,” was Cami Higley’s response when we gave her Care.com’s number. “I pay my babysitters $10 an hour.”
“That would be excellent if I got paid that much,” said babysitter Shannon Jeffs. “I get paid $3.25 an hour, per child.”
Jeffs was also a mom that occasionally hires a sitter.
“I usually do $2.50 per hour per child. I have four children, so it adds up!” she said.
“If she’s 13 years old and she’s watching a baby for like an hour, I don’t know if I would go that high,” said Marsha Jentzsch of Care.com’s $12.50 an hour figure. “If it was someone with more experience, like a 16 or 17-year-old, then that’s probably fair.”
“I think they should be paid more,” was Tony Bianchi’s response. “Kids can be a pain. They’re not easy to take care of.”
Brighton Reasor runs Daybreak Babysitters, a Facebook group of 1,500 parents and sitters based in the Daybreak area.
“I know that it can be a hot topic amongst the mothers,” Reasor said of the question over a fair rate. “Because, there can be very passionate feelings one way or another.”
She tells parents $8 an hour is fair, if you’re looking for someone to come to the house for a few hours, maybe while the kids nap.
“If you’re wanting them (the babysitter) to play with them (your kids), do crafts with them, do a lot of involved things, maybe cook dinner, things like that, usually, I would say $10 an hour,” said Reasor.
Other factors, Reasor said parents should consider include your kids’ ages, if there is more than one and the sitter’s experience.
Her sitter, Markelle Andersen, agreed.
“It really helps you develop social skills. It’s better than working a normal job,” she said. “I’ve been doing it ever since I was 10.”
The State of Utah doesn’t have a minimum age for babysitters. The Red Cross might offer some guidance here. Its nationally-recognized course for new babysitters is recommended for 11-to-15 year olds.
Reasor said she does not usually hire sitters younger than 14, and, she needs references and a recommendation.
“I know we picked Markelle because somebody else said how amazing she was,” Reasor recounted. “Once you have one mom’s word, you’ve pretty much got gold right there.”
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