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How much do I pay my babysitter?

One of the main topics on every parent’s mind is how to get a good babysitter and what do I need to pay them. Especially if you live far away from your larger family the right babysitter becomes a crucial part of parenting.  Here are guidelines when it comes to hiring and paying someone to take care of your most precious possessions.

Where do I find a babysitter? 

Trusted referrals

Referrals are always key. Ask around:

  • Friends
  • Co-workers
  • Neighbors with kids in your building or neighborhood
  • Your kid’s preschool or school (some teachers are allowed to babysit during their time off)


There are a few great on-line options with lot’s of built-in security like background check etc. 2 of the main on-line resources are SitterCity.com and Care.com. You can filter by area they live in, interest, languages and much more.

We also like Mommybites.com, as the candidates can’t list themselves but have to be listed by families who already employed their services and are willing to be a referral themselves.


This is New York, so be prepared for a whole selection of agencies, from Early Childhood Education Students from the renown Barnard College to Urban Sitters who also deploy celebrity sitters to Sitters Studio where you can be matched with an artist, singer, musician or dancer to enrich your child while babysitting.

Do you know of any great agencies you recommend? Please let us know in the comments below!

How much should I pay?

For New York City and much of the surrounding suburbs the average rate is $15 per hour.

Some sitters ask for more for the following reasons:

  • More than one child (customary rate goes up to $20)
  • Sitter has relevant education (e.g. Early childhood development degree, pediatric nurse, teacher, specific language abilities)
  • Some charge differently for “waking” and “sleep” hours (where they can  study  for example)


Should I go through an agency?
That’s entirely up to you. If you are new to the city and don’t know anyone who can give you recommendation or if you have a child with special needs that’s a great option.

Rates are higher and depend on the agency, however, good agencies background check their candidates, train them in children CPR and qualify their candidates before sending them out.



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