Setting your babysitter rates

Setting your own babysitting rates can be a bit of a challenge. You certainly do not want to set your rates too high when many of your local competitors use lower babysitter rates. However, at the same time, you do not want to risk going so low that you are leaving money on the table. It is important to be upfront about your rates and set a fair standard value for your services. There are a number of different factors that can influence babysitting rates. By following these suggestions, you can be sure that you have a much better understanding of what the ideal price for your services might be.

Research standard pay rates in your area

One of the best ways to determine how much you should charge for your services is finding out how much others in your area are charging for their babysitting rates. This does not mean you need to spend hours doing market research either, talk to parents and childcare workers in your area and try to find out how much the ‘average’ is. If you are going to take a babysitting course, you can ask what the local babysitting rates are. Alternatively, you can look at some of the services offered online and see what the average rates are there.

Consider your local economy

Babysitting rates are going to change, depending on whether you are in a rural area or an urban area that features high-end real estate. Remember that affluent clients are expecting to pay for quality. What this means is that setting your own babysitter rates too low may actually hurt your chances of establishing yourself as a credible professional. For example, the standard rate is going to be less if you have a largely rural client base.

Be consistent

Remember that parents are going to talk to one another and word gets around. In fact, getting positive feedback from parents might be the single greatest way for you to steadily grow your customer base. However, chances are that parents are going to discuss babysitter rates as well. Even though offering a discount may seem tempting at first, even if you mean well, it could damage your value. Not only are all potential new clients going to try to get a discount from you, but those who pay your standard fee are going to feel shortchanged. Treat all your clients equally and be consistent. This is ultimately going to help you avoid problems.

Adjust what you charge based on the number of children

Even if you have basic babysitting rates, you have to keep in mind that caring for one child or four children at once is going to be very different. You can always include an extra sum per hour based on headcount. Your rate should reflect that it is likely to be far more taxing to care for several children than it is to care for one.

Adjust what you charge based on age

Age is another variable that can alter your babysitter rates. For example, you may decide that toddlers and infants are going to require significantly more effort than teenagers would. You want to adjust your rates accordingly and have a slightly higher rate for those age groups that require you to do more work.

Make sure you choose your clients wisely

Remember what we mentioned earlier about ‘ensuring your own value’, choosing your own clients plays an important role in that. It is important that you work with parents who are going to value someone that they can count on and are going to compensate you for that. While this may not always be the most challenging profession, you deserve to be treated with respect and appreciation. It is important you settle for nothing less.

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