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Online babysitting services may be the place to look whether you just need a babysitter once in a while, or a full-time nanny babysitter. Most babysitting services also offer pet sitters, private tutors, housekeepers and senior care as well.
Babysitting services? Newspaper Classifieds? High School bulletin boards? Nanny agencies? Hiring a babysitter or other childcare provider can be a stressful undertaking. Let’s face it, usually this means hiring a complete stranger to come in to your home, stay there for several hours unsupervised with all your personal belongings, and be responsible for the lives of your children. This is scary stuff! You hope the sitter is trustworthy and she’s not neglecting your children or going through your private things. But how would you know? You probably wouldn't know for sure but you can do your best to prevent it by choosing your potential sitter carefully.
A great place to look for a reliable babysitter in your area is on the internet at an online babysitting service or nanny agency. These services and agencies offer benefits that newspaper classifieds cannot match. For instance:
An online babysitting service or nanny agency usually provides photos of potential sitters. While it is true “you can’t judge a book by its cover,” people do like to see a face when searching for a nanny, babysitter or child care provider.
A short biography is usually posted by online babysitting services, nanny services, and nanny agencies that often gives you some background information and an idea of the sitter’s age and experience level.
Some online nanny services, nanny agencies, and babysitting services have pre-screened the babysitters and nannies in their service and have made background checks available for members to review. (Even if a nanny agency has prescreened a nanny babysitter or child care provider, you should still check references.)
Many online nanny agencies will also show each sitters rate of pay and possibly his or her availability.
Typically, if a babysitter or childcare provider has bothered to apply to an online babysitting service or nanny service, upload a photo, and write a short biography in addition to fulfilling any other requirements of the babysitting service or nanny agency, then she probably is eager to work and interested in caring for children, not just interested in making money.
When you find a babysitter in your area whether through the newspaper or a nanny service, consider your needs before you interview her. Then jot down a list of questions. Obviously, you would not need to ask her if she has experience with infants if your children are over the age of two and you don’t plan on having any more. But, you should be sure she has had experience with kids in your children’s age group. If you have found your potential babysitter in one of the babysitting services or nanny agencies listed above, then most of your questions may already be answered for you. But keep in mind that you should always ask for references and check them yourself!
Once you find a babysitter that you feel is perfect for your family, find another one as a back-up! You should have two or three babysitters that you can call in case one cancels at the last minute. Babysitting services and nanny agencies usually have many available babysitters in your town as well as neighboring towns to choose from. Some nanny agencies will also provide a backup nanny babysitter or child care provider if your nanny is ill and cannot care for your children for a few days. When searching for babysitters or nannies, keep your standards high – your children are worth it!
Babysitting services are great places to find a babysitter. But, listen to this audio message for important questions to ask when you interview a potential Babysitter even if you found her through a nanny agency!
I posted a babysitting job and in a day, I received an overwhelming response - over 65 calls/emails! It was tough to choose a babysitter, but eventually, I've found 3 that we really love. Now we don't have to bother our friends to babysit; we can actually go out with them now!
- Pam R., New York NY
Thank you for providing this service! We were new to our area and had no idea what we were going to do for babysitting. We found the most wonderful babysitter who goes to college 7 miles from us. This was a great experience and I've been recommending you to all our friends. Thanks again!!!
- Trina W., Sudbury MA
I had looked for an after-school babysitter for three years without success using conventional methods. With Sittercity, I found a fantastic babysitter within two weeks of posting my first job. She's been with us all year and plans to come back in the fall!
- Suzanne F., Cranston RI
My kids, husband and I are thrilled with our new sitter - too good to be true! Thank you for being a site that had a large enough draw to put us together.- Bonnie N., Finksburg MD
Moving from the big city, I was worried about finding a new babysitter that we weren't used to. SitterCity.com made it effortless to find a reputable sitter who could come to our home when we needed a parental break. I plan on using the service to find a babysitter in New Orleans, when we travel there this fall. I can't recommend them enough!
- Jennifer S., Mishawaka IN
I joined Sittercity.com a few weeks ago and I can't express how I pleased I am with the service! Having four children, we have always had to rely on family or friends to take care of all of them. Desperate for last minute help, I joined Sittercity.com at the advice of a friend and almost immediately heard from several wonderful babysitters. This service has been amazing for my peace of mind, for me and my husband's relationship, AND the relationships with family and friends!
- Natalie P., Inver Grove Heights MN
Since I've joined, I have found a number of amazing babysitters for my two children. Sittercity does all the hard work for me and allows me to just search profiles of potential sitters from an easy to use database! The process is simple and the girls that I have found are highly qualified and wonderful!- Erin W., Hingham MA