Average Babysitter Rates in U.S. Are So Low It Almost Seems Criminal

OMG 110

babyFinding a responsible person to care for your baby while you are out is a daunting task for any parent, and once we do find someone we trust -- it's imperative that we treat them well so we don't ever lose them.

And that's why the new UrbanSitter infographic showing the average hourly rates for babysitters across the U.S. is not only alarming, it's also appalling, and pretty darn sad too.

Based on the stats shown, most of the babysitters in this country are getting gypped, plain and simple.

The hourly rates range from $9.75 in St. Louis on the low end, to $14.00 in San Francisco on the high end.

Um, excuse me? You mean to tell me in one of the most expensive cities in the U.S., they're only paying sitters $14.00 an hour? And if that's not bad enough, in New York, another pricey location, the average is only $13.50. For crying out loud, you can't even get a decent lunch in NYC for under $13.50 -- and that's all babysitters are being paid to care for the most precious people in parents' lives?

Something seriously just doesn't add up, here.

When my son was a baby, which was six years ago, I vaguely remember paying our first babysitter $12.00 an hour -- because that was the rate she asked for. But I bumped her rate up to $15.00 an hour fairly quickly because I wanted to make sure to remain at the top of her list.

To this day, I can't even begin to imagine giving a babysitter anything less than that to care for my son. And on top of the hourly rate I'm paying, I always make sure to include a nice tip, usually an extra hour's pay -- and no, I don't think that's the least bit excessive.

It's so important for moms and dads to be able to get out of the house and enjoy a night out on the town -- even if that means shelling out an extra $60.00 - $100.00 or more for a babysitter in addition to whatever you're spending at dinner, the movies, etc. I mean, we're trusting these people with our kids' safety, well being, and happiness -- isn't that something we should expect to pay more for?

And another thing, I can't help but wonder if some parents will see this infographic and decide they're paying their sitters way too much and lower their rates. This really sets such a horrible standard for sitters everywhere, and makes them appear so much less valuable than they actually are.

Come to think of it, I think I'll start paying the babysitter I use now a bit more from here on out. She's certainly more than deserving of a nice raise.

How much do you pay your babysitter per hour?


Image via Mary Fischer



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nonmember avatar Krystal

If you can afford it that's great but not everyone has the luxery of being a stay at home mom and have to pay for 40+ hours of babysitting a week, really how much do you think parents make?

bella... bellacazzate

As a teenager in the mid '90s, I made $11.00-$12.00 an hour for one kid, $15 for two and $20 for three. This was in middle-class metro-Boston. Oh, all the things I did! I was CPR and first aid certified and tutored as well. My clients were always satisfied, so I think my pay was warranted. My parents watch the kid if we ever need it, but if we used a sitter, I image somewhere around $17 an hour. 

Wheep... Wheepingchree

My sitter is a 15 year old local kid and I pay her $6 an hour.  When I was 13 (12 years ago) I began babysitting and made $8/hour for twins.  The last time I babysat I was 19 and the two children were 4 & 2 - again, I got paid $8/hour.  I think that is very reasonable.  I have a mom friend who recently moved here from Brooklyn (I live in the lower Hudson Valley) and she was paying upwards of $16/hour.  Insane.  

szinna szinna

If you want to complain about the rate of pay for the people that take care of children, complain about daycare workers and school teachers.  Babysitters are great and all, and I pay mine extremely well, but they set their own wages.  They can ASK for more money.  

Jenna... JennaPBug

I pay 10 per hr for 1 toddler plus gas.  Thats all I can afford and most sitters around here are just doing it for money on the side anyway so they're more then happy to watch my kid for that much. If my child was difficult or I had more then one, of course I'd  bump it up.

miche... micheledo

Wow! Usually a babysitter is a young teen you trust. They do it for a little money and job experience. At least that is how it was when I was a kid. I charged a $1 an hour and 25¢ for each additional kid. Granted that was about twenty years ago! My parent sbabysit for free ,and once in a great while one of our friend's children will babysit for us. We have paid $10 an hour for four or five children. And before anyone complains, I know that isn't much. The kids often volunteer and do it to help us out. They are wel laware of how much they will make and have told us we don't have to pay anything. To be honest, if we had to pay the going rate we would never go out alone (and that would be fine too)

youth... youthfulsoul

I think this author is out of touch with reality.  I think $8-10/hr is fair and reasonable for a babysitter. Now, if we're talking Nanny who does the job full time, that's a different story. 

Mommy... MommyOfOne2710

...Babysitting isn't a full time job. It's usually a teenager. They don't have job experience and they're not professionals. This article is very strange.

nonmember avatar katrina

Wow!! I'm glad I'm from Indianapolis! People don't ask for or pay anything even near those amounts. My four boys go to the babysitter's for a flat $15 for a day. Typical is probably $20 ... daycare on the other hand is nuts, like $100 a week per child!

nonmember avatar Sarah

This is ridiculous. Babysitter's aren't professionals. They are typically teenagers looking for some extra cash. When I babysat in the late 90s I made $6 an hour for 2-3 kids.

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