Maybe you're looking to become a babysitter as your first-ever job. Or maybe you want to babysit for some side income on top of another job that you've already got. Either way, learning how to get a babysitting job is a great way to earn some extra money!
How do you get a babysitting job? Improve your chances by making sure you're old enough and have the right qualifications. Then start networking, posting advertisements, and signing up for babysitting apps. With some luck, you should be contacted by a parent for an interview and eventually offered a babysitting job.
In this article, I'll explain the steps that you need to take to get a babysitting job, and how to prepare yourself to maximize your chances of quickly finding a great family to work for.
Decide If Babysitting Is Right For You
Before you start to worry about how to find a babysitting job, I think it's worth taking a moment to ask yourself what your motivation is.
Do you enjoy spending time with kids? Are you responsible and capable of taking on a leadership role?
Or are you just getting into babysitting because it's what all of your friends are doing, and it seems like an easy way to earn some money?
I think babysitting makes for a great first job. However, not everyone is suited for it. There are a bunch of other job opportunities out there that might be a better fit for you. Like delivering newspapers, walking dogs, or mowing people's lawns.
You shouldn't feel like babysitting is your only option. You should take a babysitting job because it's something you enjoy and feel fulfilled doing!
So before you even commit to getting a babysitting job, I recommend reading my article Is Babysitting Right for You? (17 Questions to Ask Yourself) first to make sure it's a good fit.
Make Sure That You're Old Enough
Parents aren't likely to hire a babysitter who is under 11 years old. Some might not even feel comfortable hiring a babysitter who is less than 14!
The fact is that kids younger than 11 are usually not mature enough to start babysitting yet.
So if you're younger than 11, you may just not be old enough to start babysitting yet. You might have to wait a year or two and then return to the idea.
For more details, check out my article Babysitting Age: When Can You Start? (Laws & Maturity Requirements).
Get Your Babysitting Qualifications
If you're old enough, and you want to learn how to get a babysitting job for all the right reasons, then it's time to think about qualifications!
In most places in the world, you aren't required to have specific qualifications before you can get a babysitting job. Learn more from my article Can You Babysit Without Qualifications?
However, most parents will feel more confident in hiring you if you've completed a few safety courses.
It will increase your chances of finding a babysitting job, so in my opinion, it's worth spending a few some money and a few weekends to complete some basic courses. It will really set you up for success with babysitting jobs in the long run.
Take A Babysitting Course
A babysitting course is particularly important for younger babysitters, between the ages of 11 and 15. Even if you have no previous experience being around kids, these types of courses will teach you all of the babysitting basics that you need to know.
A basic babysitting course will teach you how to handle emergencies, what to do if children are misbehaving, how to communicate with parents and some basic first aid.
Most babysitting courses are geared toward tweens and younger teens. So if you are 16 or older, you will want to enroll in something like the Red Cross Advanced Child Care Training course instead. It teaches similar topics but aimed at a more mature audience.
See my recommended babysitting courses.
Learn CPR and First Aid
After completing a babysitting course, getting certified in First Aid and CPR are also great choices to maximize your chances of getting a babysitting job.
A babysitting course might teach you basics of when you should call for an ambulance and a few other topics. However, comprehensive knowledge of First Aid and CPR will prepare you to deal with almost any medical emergency that you could encounter while babysitting.
Having up to date certifications in CPR and First Aid is a strong sign to parents that you're someone they can trust to leave in charge of their kids.
For some other certifications, you might want to consider, check out my article Babysitting Qualifications (Which Ones Do You Need?)
Decide on a Rate
Before you learn how to find a babysitting job, I think it's important to figure out exactly how much your services are worth.
You don't want to end up working for pennies on the dollar, only to realize how much you could have made later on!
In the beginning, you may want to take almost any babysitting job that you can get, just to start building up some experience. However, don't let parents take advantage of your lack of experience and try to rip you off either!
A lot of different factors will determine what your going rate should be. It will depend on how many kids you're watching, what their ages are, and most importantly where you live.
My article Babysitting Pay Rates (How Much Should You Charge?) provides a comprehensive overview of rates in the US, UK, Australian, and Canadian cities and is a great place to start.
Start Looking For Babysitting Jobs
You've decided that you're babysitting for the right reasons, you're old enough, and you've taken some courses to prepare you for the job.
That's a lot of the initial legwork already out of the way, and now it's time to start matching yourself up with families who are looking for a babysitter.
Learning how to find a babysitting job isn't necessarily an exact science. Different approaches may work better or be less effective depending on where you live.
In some communities, most people may look for babysitters through word-of-mouth and asking people they know. In other places, most parents might go online to look for babysitters.
So I recommend asking other babysitters you know what has worked for them. Or simply try out different strategies until you find out how to get a babysitting job in your city.
Ask People You Know
If you've got younger siblings, a great place to start is asking your own parents if you can start babysitting. You might also ask to babysit for cousins or other relatives, as well as family friends.
You can even reach out to parents on your street who you know have young kids, and ask if they're looking for a babysitter.
It's good to start out with people who are already familiar with you, and who you already have some level of trust built up with.
Make Babysitting Flyers
Once you've exhausted your immediate network of family and friends, putting up babysitting flyers around your neighborhood is a great next step that usually gets great results.
You can use my free templates on my page here to quickly and easily create a great flyer design! Babysitting Flyers: Free Online Maker! (3 Easy Steps to Create Customized Flyers!)
Take a walk through the streets within a few minutes around your home and post your flyers on telephone poles nearby. It will help you target parents who live within walking distance, so it will be easy to get to and from their houses without needing a ride.
You can also ask your parents if they can post one of your babysitting flyers in their break room at work. You can stick up flyers in your local grocery store, library, or other public places that have notice boards available. Get creative and try to think of places where parents are likely to go!
Sign Up For A Babysitting App
Joining a babysitting app is another great way to get a babysitting job.
All you have to do is create a profile with some basic details about you and your qualifications to act as a resume. Then parents can browse the site for babysitters in their area, and reach out to you if they like what they see!
Using apps has a couple of downsides.
First, you'll be competing against every other babysitter in your area who uses the app. Including many who are older or have more experience than you. So you might need to offer a lower rate to compete.
Secondly, babysitting apps will usually require all payment transactions to go through their service. The app will take a percentage of all the money you earn from babysitting jobs. Often they offer background checks and other services that make this worthwhile, but it's something to consider.
The nice thing about joining a babysitting app is that you can just set up your profile once and forget about it until a parent contacts you. So it's a good way to passively get some extra babysitting jobs in the background, even while you're actively trying to find parents on your own at the same time.
Advertise Your Babysitting Services Online
Flyers are a great way to advertise in the real world. But many parents in your neighborhood might simply not see your in-person advertising.
You can greatly improve your chances of being seen by also advertising your babysitting services online.
Look for parent groups on Facebook, as well as local classifieds groups where people in your area buy and sell products and services.
You can also post ads on sites like Gumtree, Craigslist, or Kijiji.
Just be sure to stay safe while communicating with strangers! If you aren't sure, you can always ask a parent or other adult who you trust to help with creating and replying to queries for your ad.
Make Contact With Parents
Once you start advertising the fact that you're looking for a babysitting job, you should start to expect parents to begin contacting you within a few days or weeks.
If you list your phone number on your flyers or other advertisements, be sure to answer your phone professionally to make a good impression! Assume that any call you receive from an unknown number could be a parent who is looking to hire you.
Parents may also reach out via email or text message to get in touch with you.
The first conversation will likely be a brief introduction. Expect to discuss basics like when you're available, and feel free to ask questions like the ages of their children and how many they have.
Try to use your initial contact with parents to set up an in-person interview. That way you can both put a face to a name, and discuss the expectations and duties of the role in more detail. Parents will want to make sure you're a suitable candidate for babysitting their kids. And it's also fair for you to evaluate if the family is someone that you want to work with as well.
It's safest to arrange to meet parents in a public place like a coffee shop to discuss the job, as opposed to going directly to their home.
Go For Your Babysitting Interview
If you've made it as far as an interview, congratulations! You're already well on your way to getting a babysitting job. At this point, parents are seriously considering you. And there are likely only a couple of other babysitters who you may be competing against for the job.
The night before your interview, set out everything you will need to bring with you. That might include a copy of your resume or CV, a list of references, copies of your certifications, and a pen and notepad to take notes. It's normal to feel nervous before an interview. Preparing in advance will help things go as smoothly as possible.
You might also want to pick the outfit you're going to wear the night before and have it prepared too. See my article Babysitting Interviews: What to Wear Guide (First Impressions Count!) for some do's and don'ts.
I also find it helpful to spend some time thinking about potential questions that parents might want to ask you and try to have some pre-made answers prepared. That way it's less likely that you'll be completely caught off-guard and not sure how to answer a question.
Expect to discuss when you're available, your hourly rate, and what experience you have babysitting. You might also be asked some more abstract questions like the best or worst experience you've had while babysitting, a time when you overcame an unexpected obstacle, or other questions to see how you will react on the job.
It's very important that you show up on time for your interview. This shows parents that you're a punctual and reliable babysitter. If a parent has booked a table at a restaurant for a specific time or bought tickets for a movie, they want to know the babysitter will show up on time. Nobody wants a late babysitter!
Wait To Hear Back
Once the interview is over, parents might tell you right away in-person whether you've got the job or not.
If they have other potential babysitters to interview, they might need more time before they can give you a definite answer though. In that case, you may have to wait a few days before you get an answer.
Hopefully, parents will soon let you know that they would like you to babysit their kids!
Once you've been offered a job, all that's left to do is finalize the details. Figure out when and where your first babysitting job for the family will be.
Then you can start shifting your focus from getting a babysitting job, to what you'll actually do while you're working. You can start to put together a babysitting kit, think of some fun activities and games to bring with you, and more.
If you didn't end up getting offered a job after your interview, don't get discouraged. Just keep repeating the process and you should get your first babysitting job soon.
Getting a babysitting job has some distinct phases and steps that you'll need to take.
There is a lot of preparation work that goes in upfront to make sure that you'll appear qualified and hireable to parents.
You want to make sure that you're old and responsible enough to start babysitting. Hopefully, it's also something that you think you'll actually enjoy, instead of just a job that you're doing for the money.
Any certifications that you can get like CPR, First Aid, or completing a babysitting course will help make you stand out from other babysitters when parents are deciding who to hire.
With your initial preparation out of the way, it's time to start looking for jobs. You can sign up for babysitting apps, post advertisements online, and network with family and friends to find parents to hire you.
Once you've put your name out there, it's just a matter of waiting and a little bit of luck before the right parent contacts you.
Once a parent is interested, the last step you'll need to go through is completing a babysitting interview. If you make a good impression, you should get hired and end up with a babysitting job!
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All My Babysitting Secrets Revealed!
My book, Babysitting Business Secrets, is out now as an inexpensive ebook or full-color paperback. If you're serious about becoming the best babysitter you can be, or if you want to make as much money as possible, then this book is perfect for you. I reveal all my tricks and tips for first-time babysitters or experienced sitters who just want to up their game. Get your copy today!
- Matthew Taylor, Kidsit Founder