Everything you Need to Know to Find the Perfect Babysitter

Hiring a babysitter for your child can be an intimidating task, especially for first-time parents. It's essential to hire someone you trust to look after your child, and it's understandable to feel overwhelmed when considering all of your options. To help make the process smooth and stress-free, let's discuss everything you need to know to find the perfect babysitter.  As your Chicago newborn photographer, I can admit it has been about fifteen years since I needed a babysitter of my own.  However, I've done some research for you, and am happy to share!

While finding a trustworthy and capable babysitter can be a daunting task, there are many resources available to help you hire someone who meets all of your needs. Start by talking to people you know and trust who have hired babysitters and ask for their recommendations. You can also use apps or websites such as Care.com, Sittercity.com, and UrbanSitter.com to find a qualified babysitter in your area. And Facebook community moms groups are alway a great resource to get leads on babysitters in your area.

Once you've gotten some recommendations on sitters available in your area, it's time to start the interview process. Consider what qualities you are looking for in a sitter and make sure to ask questions that will help you determine if the candidate is the right fit for your family.

Here's a list of questions you should ask potential candidates

- What experience do you have in childcare?

- Are you CPR certified and do you know first aid?

- Have you taken any babysitting courses or classes?

- How comfortable are you with toddlers/babies/children of all ages?

- Do you have any references that I could contact?

- Have you ever dealt with emergency situations while babysitting, and how did you handle them?

- Are there any activities or hobbies that you like to share with children when babysitting them?

Once you've found your favorite candidates, be sure to check references! This is an important step to ensure the safety of your child and make sure that their needs are met.

Setting expectations with your babysitter

Before hiring a babysitter, it's important to set expectations and discuss duties in order to make sure that your child is in safe hands. During the interview process, make sure you discuss what your expectations for the babysitter are. Will your sitter just be watching your child, or will she also be doing light housekeeping and errands? Now's the time to layout what the job entails. Let the sitter know about any allergies or medical conditions your child may have, as well as any special needs they may have and any rules you have in your home.

Be sure to discuss payment for babysitting, including when and how much they will be paid. Talk about bedtimes, meal times, and basic house rules such as no cell phone use while babysitting or no unsupervised outings with the child. Make sure that all expectations are clear and that the sitter agrees to them before you hire them.

Have a backup babysitter

Your first choice for babysitter might not work out as you had planned, or might occasionally need a day off or a sick day. It's important to line up a backup sitter that can step in when your main sitter is unavailable.

Help your baby get to know the new babysitter

When you hire a babysitter for your child, it's best to start by having the new babysitter come for short visits before they watch your child alone. During this time, let your baby or child get comfortable with the sitter and give them a chance to get to know each other. Talk about fun activities or hobbies that the sitter can do with your baby or child, such as playing board games or going on walks together. Doing this will help make sure that your baby or child feels safe and happy when the new babysitter is around.

This is also a great opportunity to familiarize your new babysitter with your home. Be sure to show them how to use any safety equipment or devices, as well as where the first aid kit and fire extinguisher are located in case of an emergency. Make sure they can easily find all the things they'll need to care of your baby, including clothing, diapers, wipes, bottles, etc.

Once all expectations have been set, it's time to hire your new babysitter and get back to enjoying life with your little one! Just remember, communication is key when it comes to a successful hire. With the right expectations, you'll have no problem finding the perfect sitter for your child. Good luck!