Looking for a Long-Term Babysitter? 4 Tips for Finding One and Keeping Them Around

If you feel like finding the right babysitter for your family is like finding a needle in a haystack, you certainly aren’t alone.

In fact, a recent survey from the Red Cross notes that 55% of parents struggle to find a sitter on a consistent basis. Either due to personality clashes or the inability to find a babysitter with the right skill set (think: cooking, safety training), the elusive “perfect” babysitter oftentimes seems worlds away.

However, consider that sometimes the biggest problem with finding the proper sitter isn’t the candidate, but rather you. That’s right: establishing a long-term relationship with a sitter oftentimes boils down to how you treat them (not the other way around).

After all, good sitters are in high demand and can be incredibly difficult to keep around once you do find them. To ensure that they stick by your family’s side, consider these four pointers.


Establish a Connection

First thing’s first: you need to find someone that you click with and trust That’s why referrals are oftentimes king when it comes to finding a sitter rather than randomly stumbling upon someone online. If you don’t get a good vibe from whoever you’re working with, chances are it’s nothing to go work out.


Show Your Appreciation

This piece of the puzzle is so often overlooked when it comes to both hiring and retaining an awesome babysitter. Offering competitive payment as well as in-person praise not only signals that you appreciate a job well done, but encourages your sitter to put you over other potential clients.

Seriously, though: frequent gifts and “thank yous” can work wonders. You can even throw in practical gifts that your sitter can use on the job, like an Uber gift card from Ridester. Such a gift not only keeps more money in your sitters’ pocket, but allows for little outings such as a trip to the park or for ice cream with your kiddo.


Set Expectations for Your Kids

Although you might assume your children are angels, bear in mind that their behavior will ultimately determine whether or not your sitter sticks around.

Obviously chemistry between your kids and their sitter is important, yet so are your expectations. Fostering good behavior in young children means being crystal clear in terms of how they should act when you’re not around. The stronger bond between your children and your sitter, the better.


Set Them Up for Success

A great babysitter might know how to entertain your kid, but they’re not necessarily miracle workers. In other words, it’s your responsibility to set your sitter up for success in terms of your child’s favorite activities, foods and other quirks.

You can’t expect both parties to just sit in a room together and instantly hit it off, nor if your sitter a mind reader in terms of your expectations. Providing your sitter with ideas in terms of how to spend time and what to do in “what-if” situations is both a courtesy and a way to make their lives easier. Doing so can help you stick out in their minds as a client.

Don’t assume that the ideal babysitter for your kiddos doesn’t exist. Instead, bear in mind what you can do to scout sitters yourself and encourage them to stay with your family to the long-term after you’ve won them over.


About Pepper

I am a single working mom, trying to raise my kid the best way I know how. Join me as I navigate my way through the jungle that is Single Mom-hood, armed with rose-colored glasses and strength of spirit. As pepper adds spice to food, so does my daughter add spice to my life. She makes life no less than…PEPPERRIFIC!

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