This Calculator Shows How Much You Should Pay Your Babysitter

Finding a good babysitter can be stressful enough, but then on top of that you have to figure out how much to pay for the child care. Whether you’re returning to an office and need consistent care or just need a sitter in a pinch or two, you want what’s best for your kid, but also a fair price. Fortunately, Care.com has a handy rate calculator to help take the guesswork out of the process.

Babysitters make more in cities with a high cost of living. According to Care.com’s study, the average hourly babysitting rate in San Francisco, for example, was $18.87, compared to the national average of $16.40 an hour. Babysitters in all of the 75 cities examined all made more than $13 an hour.

How much to pay will depend on a number of factors, such as your kids’ ages, how many kids need watching, and the sitter’s experience. Expect to pay more for younger kids, more than one child, and sitters with more experience.

The average rate is a starting point, though. You can use Care.com’s calculator for an average babysitting rate for your zip code based on the various factors above. (It’s also not a bad idea to cross check those numbers with this 2019 survey of babysitting rates in cities across the U.S.) Unfortunately for parents, rates for babysitting have increased steadily over the past five years, and economic stress during a pandemic hasn’t made things easier, but a dependable, trustworthy sitter is worth it.


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