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In Today’s post you will learn how to make money doing babysitting for friends and family and even parents in your neighbourhood.
Babysitting is a great first job if you’re a teenager, or an excellent way to make a little money on the side if you’re already employed. It seems like everyone has babysat at some point, but when you’re just starting out, getting that first babysitting job can feel really difficult. By getting some informal experience, advertising strategically, and nailing your interview, you’ll be on your way to a babysitting job in no time!
Part 1 Finding a Babysitting Job
- Offer to take care of younger siblings, relatives, or family friends. Ask to take care of your younger siblings while your parents are out, or volunteer to watch young cousins or the neighbor’s kids. People who already trust you will be willing to help you your first babysitting experience
- Talk to your parents about whether you should get paid for looking after your younger siblings or relatives. You might watch them for free the first few times, then ask for a low pay rate, like $7-$9 per hour. Once you start babysitting other families, you can ask for higher rates.
- Ask your first “customers” to be your references when you look for other babysitting jobs.
- Make flyers to advertise your services. Write “Babysitting Services” or “Need a Babysitter?” in big, bold lettering. Then, write a little about yourself, like, “I love taking care of kids of all ages. Responsible, loving, and lots of experience. Ask me for references!” Include your first name and phone number on the flyer, or on tear-off strips at the bottom.
- Don’t put your last name or address on your flyers.
- Advertise throughout your community. Ask your parents or guardian to help you hang your flyers on bulletin boards at daycares, elementary schools, local coffee shops, and gyms. Remember to ask the facility before you hang anything.
- You can also put advertisements in local papers or church newsletters. Check the back of the publication for a contact number and call to ask about advertising prices, or ask your parents to call for you.
- Ask your parents or guardian to tell their friends that you’re looking for babysitting work.
- Look for jobs on babysitting websites. On these websites, you can fill out a profile with your name, experience level, general location, and schedule. Message back and forth with a family for a week or so before agreeing to meet in-person.
- If you’re under 18, make sure to ask your parents before using a babysitting website.
- No matter how old you are, practice basic Internet safety when using babysitting websites. Keep your personal details private until you meet with the family in person.
- Take first aid training to increase your chances of getting a job. Look online to see what classes are available in your area. They’re often offered by local hospitals, YMCAs, or Red Cross branches. You probably won’t have to use some of the more intense training, but it’s good to know how to treat a scrape or do abdominal thrusts to help a child who’s choking.
- If you’re trained in first aid and CPR, you’ll be more likely to get hired and get a higher pay rate.
Part 2 Meeting the Family
- Prepare answers to a few typical questions. The family will want to know a little about you, and will definitely ask what kind of experience you have with kids. They might get into more specific questions, too, like how you’d respond if their kid was crying or throwing a fit. Using your prior experience, come up with some good answers to these kinds of questions so you come to the interview confident and prepared.
- Arrive a few minutes early. You want to show the parents that you’re punctual. They don’t want to hire a babysitter that will show up 15 minutes late to the job and make them miss their dinner reservations.
- Ask a parent, guardian, or a trusted friend to come with you. You can ask to bring your parent or guardian inside for the interview, telling the family that your parents wanted to meet them before you watch their kids. You can also ask your parent or guardian to give you a ride and have them wait outside in the car.
- This is an especially important safety tip if you don’t know the family and are meeting at their house.
- You could also ask to meet in a public place, like a coffee shop.
- Talk about your experience and provide references. Talk about ways you’ll keep their kids entertained and safe. Mention your experience doing typical babysitter jobs, like giving kids baths, cooking for them, and putting them to bed.
- Give the family the phone numbers of a few families you’ve babysat for in the past, and invite them to call to get an idea of your skills.
- Remember to confirm with your references before you give out their contact information.
- Be confident, polite, and mature. Introduce yourself and shake the parents’ hands. If their kid(s) are there, bend down and say hi to them too. Sit up straight, make eye contact, and smile during the interview. Show that you’re eager for this job and can handle yourself like an adult.
- Ask a few questions about their kids. Ask them what a typical day in their house looks like, and what kind of things you’d be expected to do as their babysitter. You want to make sure your expectations are in line before you both agree to the job.
- You could ask, for example, “Will I be cooking for Jimmy when you’re out?” or “Will you need me to stay past 11 pm very often?”
- Be honest about your availability. Tell them if you have sports practice, play rehearsals, or other activities on certain days of the week. Although it might feel awkward to do this in your very first meeting, it’s important that they know what your schedule is before they start asking you to come over on days where you have prior commitments.
- For example, you could say, “I want you to know upfront that I have soccer practices on Mondays and Wednesdays, so I probably won’t be able to babysit on those days.”
- Ask for a reasonable rate. If this is your first babysitting job, ask for $8-$10/hour. If you have references or extra qualifications, like CPR or first aid training, ask for a few dollars more. If you’re taking care of multiple kids at once, you can also ask for a little more, around $10-$15 per hour.
- You can base your rate off of the area you live in. If you live in an expensive city, it’s completely acceptable to charge higher rates. If people in your area typically have lower incomes, you’ll likely need to charge less.
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