Babysit for Money
There are two types of people who babysit for money, professional babysitters and unprofessional babysitters. Professional babysitters usually belong to an agency. By using an agency a baby sitter can be found at short notice. However, the agency may not provide the same sitter every time and therefore consistency may be a problem.
Babysitters from agencies are often mature people who have childcare experience and many are Ofsted (UK) registered as child minders. They should have a recognised 1st Aid Certificate and be aware of the principals of Health and Safety, including Fire Safety. The British government has currently set the National Minimum Wage at £5.55 (just over $10.00 in U.S.) per hour. Therefore a professional babysitter’s hourly rate of pay should be a least this. Going rates vary in different parts of the country and special rates will need to be agreed for evenings such as New Years Eve and Valentine’s Day, bookings which begin before 6 p.m. and end after midnight and those bookings that are made with less than 4 hours notice. It is very rare for professional babysitters to ‘sleep over’. So parents intending to be away all night may need to consider using an "non-professional babysitter".
Non-professional babysitters are usually young people, someone within the neighborhood and known to the parent. There are no set minimum wages set by most governments for young people under 18 years old. Therefore a realistic rate should be negotiated with the young person. This can be hourly or per session. Hourly rates are within the area of £3 ($5.00) per hour and session rates are usually between £16-£30 ($20.00 - $50.00). In major cities such as London, Sydney, or New York, the rates are usually higher. Although young people do not charge as much as professional babysitters, consideration needs to be made for their transport home, for example the petrol you use and the fact that one of you will not be able to consume alcohol! It is also not always appropriate to ask non-professionals to baby sit after midnight, unless they are sleeping over. However, young people may charge up to £10 ($20.00) per hour, and up to £100 ($200.00) for a sleepover, nearly the same price as a professional!
The sitter who is willing to babysit for money should consider charging rates that are realistic for the area in which they live. Adults hiring a sitter also must take this cost into consideration when planning an evening out.