Babysitting or a Nanny? Read before you choose!

babysitting or nanny

Babysitting or a Nanny?

Which one is right for you?

As parents, we want the very best for our kids. We want them to grow up to become well-rounded, holistic individuals that perfectly blend into the society. We all want our children to get the first class education and well-supported development. However, to be able to fulfill all these necessities, it means at one point we will have to spend time away from them, and this is where the role of a nanny comes in as an option.

Most parents are not conversant with the differences between a nanny and a babysitter and to some a babysitter is just another synonym of a nanny. Though both nannies and babysitters provide quality childcare, there exists a thin line between the two, and while some of the differences vary from one home to another, there are some generalizations that can be made regarding the both positions. This article seeks to: distinguish the roles and duties of nannies and babysitters and the tips to consider when you are looking for a nanny. Let us jump into it!

Babysitter vs. Nanny

For starters, it is only sensible for us to define the two to get a glimpse on the difference between the two titles.

  • Babysitters:

Babysitters are child caregivers that often operate on hourly rates either from their homes or in your home. Most babysitters are part-time caretakers who also work for many families as well. Typically, babysitters are usually high school or college students who are looking for an extra pocket money. babysitting

The roles and duties include: keeping your kids entertained, preparing meals and general clean up after the end of their sessions.In most cases, babysitters are usually paid less as compared to their nanny counterparts because their job revolves around taking care of the kids.

  • Nannies:

Nannies on the hand are full-time caregivers who may reside with the family and usually receive weekly or monthly salary depending on the agreement. A nanny can be defined as a babysitter, driver and maid all folded in one. Nannies have more roles and duties as compared to babysitters they are usually expensive. They cook for the kids, clean, help out with kids home and schoolwork, drive kids around to soccer practice or amusements parks to mention a few.

Difference between nannies and babysitters

  • Availability

Nannies are usually available on a full-time basis or can work part-time depending on the preferences of the employer. On the other hand, babysitters’ availability is based on as needed’ basis and usually, work for few families. They have the option to live with a family or families provide accommodation if necessary.

  • Scope of work

nannyNannies have a wider scope of work as compared to babysitters. Some of the roles and duties delegated by nannies include: entertaining and playing with the kids, helping the kids with their school and homework, driving kids to sports or amusement parks, guidance, and counseling.

On the other hand, babysitters are caregivers whose role is only limited to feeding your little one and keeping him safe. Probably that is why babysitting is a very popular choice for the younger generation and students.

  • Employment contract

A nanny is considered an employee of the family or an agency, the employer is obliged to be responsible for the income tax and social security taxes. A babysitter is a contract worker and therefore most of the time he or she is responsible for his or her taxes.

  • Remuneration

A nanny has more comprehensive compensation package as compared to a babysitter. A nanny has entitled a salary, vacation pay and other benefits such as the retirement package while a babysitter is remunerated depending on the number of hours he or she has worked.

Nannies are considered as guardians, and hence they come out as professional caregivers. While most babysitters are there to help out with the kids, they are not necessarily there to guide them. Therefore, or those opting for a more one on one, involved caregiver, a nanny is an ultimate solution for you. As you can see to hire a student or somebody next door is pretty simple. But what factors should you consider before hiring a nanny?

Factors to consider before hiring a nanny

While finding a suitable nanny for your family may be a daunting process, the following tips when taken into account may relief you the tedious process involved in recruitment and selection.

You can get a suitable candidate on our website or via a nanny agency. On our site, you can post your well crafted specific job offer and wait until the applications start to roll in. Then you have plenty of time to choose the best one for your needs.

Through a nanny agency, you do not need to do all the legwork to find candidates. A company with a solid reputation will not only scout your candidates but will also have done a comprehensive background check. Also, agencies may assist you in drafting the contract between the nanny and you which is an essential step and document in governing the relationship between the two parties.

Why do we advise both? Sometimes agencies can overlook candidates due to the high number of applicants and due to the registration process in place which sometimes against an otherwise good candidate. So to post a job privately too just gives you and extra chance to spot a real talent.

  • Experience: it is always advisable to go for a candidate with relevant experience in child care. A minimum of 1 year of childcare experience recommended, but you can give a chance to someone who is just about to start out as a nanny. More experience can mean higher wage demand. Babysitting experience can be considered as it can be a good base to build on.
  • References: If the candidate you like has an experience you should request references from the previous employer. It will go a long way in determining if the prospective will integrate well with your family.
  • Education: a potential candidate with a strong educational background is usually a plus especially if you want the nanny to help out your kids with schoolwork. While most agencies require high school diploma a candidate with a college degree and professional certification may be a bonus. Being a nanny is not only about being with a child all day. A nanny should be able to show that she/he is making further steps to deepen their knowledge about how to work with the kids. Look for completed relevant courses on the resume.
  • first aidFirst aid training:  basic first aid knowledge is a must. If he or she certified in pediatric first aid then the better. Also, you can buy a first aid manual and give it to your nanny to study it. Make sure you have a first-aid kit at home and show it to your nanny.
  • Trial day: this is important for those not using a nanny agency as a source of recruitment. Setting up a trial date will enable you to do a total assessment. If the candidates check on qualities of a nanny, if your kids love him or her and if integrates well into the family, then you ought to sign the contract without delaying.

If you are a parent who can spend an optimal time with you child, and you only need some time off from your parenting duties, then a babysitter is a good option. Make sure you choose someone with babysitting experience and someone trustworthy.

Or if you are a parent who wants to provide extra support for your child by guiding through development stages, want to make sure that your kids have quality time with planned activities, play sessions, socializing then you have to look for a good nanny. There are plenty out there all you have to do is choose 1 out of the three options

  1. Search and hire privately
  2. Register to an agency and let them do the work for you
  3. Do both to increase your chances to find the best one for your child

Please don`t forget to keep your children`s needs on the top of your priority list when you look for a nanny

Are you working as a nanny or babysitter and you have more to add? If we missed something, please write in the comment section.

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Istvan Hetesi

1 comment

  1. Nanny in London
    says:

    Thanks for this very informative post! Indeed, working with a nanny agency remains as one of the best options when looking for a babysitter or a nanny in London. I am currently looking for a dependable nanny, and I will certainly be considering some of the points you’ve discussed here.

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