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Babysitting $Moola$ for the Challenge

January 19th, 2007 at 03:07 am

In an attempt to find new income streams for the $20 Challenge, I decided to sign up with a local online service that matches college-aged babysitters (I live in a college town) with parents looking for child care. It's free for sitters to register, but parents must pay a fee to look through sitter profiles. It's an interesting idea for any aspiring entrepreneurs!

I was contacted by a family looking for a babysitter every Wednesday and Saturday night for their 3 kids, ages 6,9,12.

Last night was my first night. The kids were great and the parents were equally nice. They pay $10 / hour, so I came away with $25 which I'll add to my Challenge.

Old Total: $367.48
+25 babysitting
New Total: $392.48

I was really pleased with the rate they offered. $10 / hour is about what babysitting is "worth" for me, so it was great to have them offer it right off the bat. If it had been less, I'm not sure if I would agree to this being a regular job. I'm not saying that parents should pay babysitters $10 / hour (It seems like a night out could get awfully expensive at this rate!), but $10 / hour is about what my time is worth FOR ME to give up every Wednesday and Saturday night. Another factor that might contribute to their offer is that I'm committing to a regular schedule and I drive myself out to their home which is ~ 7 miles from the campus area. Many college students don't want to give up Saturday nights or don't have a car.

I remember babysitting for $2.50 / hour in high school and $5 / hour in college. For those of you with children, what do you pay a babysitter?

9 Responses to “Babysitting $Moola$ for the Challenge”

  1. mjrube94 Says:

    Nothing if it's my sister (always my first choice) Smile.

    We usually pay in the neighborhood of $10/hour for our 2 kids, ages 6 and 8. I'm not sure where you're located, but northern NJ, where I am, is pretty expensive. Also, my kids are younger than the ones you're babysitting, so theoretically require a bit more work. $10/hour for the 3 kids is probably fair.

    Way to go on the $20 challenge...

  2. Amber Says:

    Could you send me the website for sitters, my co worker as been looking for a sister for awhile.
    Way to on saving Smile

  3. Ima saver Says:

    My daughter use to get $1 an hour.

  4. tinapbeana Says:

    way to go! i would also be interested in the sitters website...

    i made $5/hour for 2 toddlers around 1990, but the father was a friend fo my dad's... i think it's pretty common to have a 'price schedule' for folks who sit regularly, like $4/hr/child and a minimum of $15 per night sort of thing. otherwise, somone wants you to sit for 1 kid 2 hours 20 miles away and after the price of gas you make $3 =/

  5. threebeansalad Says:

    The web site is specific for my town--so unless anyone else is in the same college town in the same mid-Atlantic state as me, it won't be helpful.

    However, if you have some entrepreneurial spirit and database skills, you could set up such a site for your area!

  6. Broken Arrow Says:

    Oh, that's fascinating!

    I live near a college town too. Big Grin Been hitting the area hard, looking for work. I figure if anyone's going to under a wonky schedule, it would be those businesses.

    I can't do babysitting though. Just... can't. Big Grin

  7. monkeymama Says:

    WTG! We need more sitters.

    What I find interesting is it was almost impossible to find sitters for less than $10/hour for one. (housing is pricey so EVERYTHING is pricey). But 2 kids would be $10-$15. So it sounds a lot more appealing with two kids. (more bang for the buck).

    But you are right - nowhere near our budget unless we go sit at the park - LOL. Every year we say maybe it will be in our budget next year. One of these days.

    But out here it is really hard to find sitters too. We tend to swap with other parents, not just because cost, just hard to find a sitter who is not booked up for eternity.


  8. threebeansalad Says:

    Wow! I'm just surprised babysitting pays so well. I'm not complaining, but I don't have any special qualifications aside from being responsible (if that can even be a special qualification). If I were a high schooler or college student I would skip the PT work and pursue babysitting (even though I'm in school graduate school is more like a job... expected to in the office or lab M-F, 9-5). Not only is it tax free, you don't have to wear a uniform, deal with rude customers, etc.

  9. monkeymama Says:

    Actually - that is the thing - $10 is about the cheapest I have ever seen for a college student with no experience. Considering last time I looked I had an infant and a 2-year-old, I was not going to pay that much for someone inexperienced and I Was super anal about who would watch my kids. The experienced charge a lot more - it is crazy!

    We live in a high COL area so it is a little skewed. But from what I have seen I think you have found the proverbial goldmine - hehe.

    I am with BA - I hate babysitting with a passion. I can not do it - that is why I thought I never wanted kids. LOL. Even swapping kids is hard to take - dh and I Decided we rather never get out - LOL. But we will consider once in a blue moon so we have some options...

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