Babysitting is one of the best ways for a teen to earn money. In order to get started, you’ll need to decide what age child you’d like to care for. It’s also important to know if the parent requires transporting their children at any time. You’ll have to decide on what type of family you’d like to work with as well.
Taking a CPR class can really help because you’ll want to be prepared if an emergency arises. You can also take a babysitting course at the American Red Cross. This will let parents know you’ve taken time to get the training needed to babysit their child. And it will help them feel comfortable knowing that their child is in good hands.
When it comes to licenses, each state differs. If you plan on babysitting in someone else’s home, a license is usually not required. But you’ll want to call your local business license office to be sure.
Set a price on what you’ll be charging for your babysitting services. Once a price is determined, don’t lower it just because you know the parent. This is a business and your goal is to make money.
Write out a contract on what your services are, including the price. Have the parent sign it, you sign it, and each keep a copy. This will help if a parent decides not to pay for your services. Everything they agreed to will be written out for them.
Plan on games and activities you can do with the children to keep them busy. You may even want to buy some games, crayons, markers, and activity books of your own. You can also make a poster board that you use each time you babysit. Put a star beside the child’s name if they’re good and they listen. After so many stars, give them a prize. This will encourage better behavior which will make your job easier.
Ask your parents if they know of anyone who needs a babysitter, or check with parents of your friends who have younger siblings. If no one comes to mind, then you can start advertising.
Make a simple flyer advertising your business. Be sure to include the age of children you’ll watch, your phone number, credentials obtained such as CPR licensing, and your price if you want. Also note if you will babysit special needs children.
Ask store owners to let you place flyers in their stores. Post flyers on poles. Give them to people you see on the street. Explain your business and ask if they know of anyone who needs a babysitter. If so, give them your information.
Place an ad on Craigslist and other free online services. You can also place a small ad in your local newspaper under Services Offered.
Once you start getting children to babysit, you’ll want to meet with the parents. Ask them to give you a daily schedule for each child. For instance, a parent may want you to give the child a snack at a certain time. Ask about what they can eat, what they may be allergic to, how to handle discipline and what to do if the child misbehaves. The parents should also give you numbers to contact in case of an emergency.
You’ll want to stay calm and cool when babysitting. Most children will misbehave at some time. When that happens, try putting the child in time out for a few minutes. If they continue to misbehave, and the parents haven’t give you other options, call the parent. Whatever you do, never hit or spank a child!
Babysitting can be a fun, rewarding business if you enjoy children. It’s easy to find clients, and it pays well. Learn all you can, maintain a good attitude, and you can build a great part-time business watching other people’s children.