Social Question

Jude's avatar

What would be a reasonable rate for in-home childcare?

Asked by Jude (31977 points ) April 26th, 2010

A girlfriend is looking for summer to watch her spawn throughout the summer months. Two school age children.

What should she charge?

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15 Answers

Jude's avatar

** typos. Meant to say “looking for someone”. And, what is the going rate?

janbb's avatar

It varies tremendously by part of the country. It’s very hard to hazard a generic guess. Is she looking for a teenager, an adult or a college kid?

MissAusten's avatar

This made me smile because my husband’s cousins refer to our children as “the spawn.”

It all depends on where you are. The going rate for child care varies widely from location to location. When I was a kid, I got $2 an hour to watch two kids in rural Indiana. Ten years later, as a daycare teacher, I’d sometimes babysit on weekends here in Connecticut and make $50 watching one kid for an afternoon.

Does your friend have other friends with kids who use sitters and could tell her what they typically pay? I’d think $8 an hour would be reasonable for a student, but maybe more if she hires someone with more experience. If the sitter will be expected to do light chores, like dishes or cooking, and take the kids to lessons, playgrounds, or playdates, the price should go up a bit. Your friend’s best bet is to start looking for someone, ask each applicant what she charges, and try to get an idea from other parents about what is considered fair in her area.

wundayatta's avatar

When we needed baby sitters maybe five years ago, the rate for daycare workers was between 10 and 15 dollars per hour. When we hired someone to watch the kids last summer, we hired a high school kid for $250 per week. She’d take $200/wk the summer before. My wife gave her a raise because she felt guilty paying her so little. If you paid $8/hr for 50 hours a week, you’d be paying $400 per week.

It’s always a negotiation between the sitter and the parents. I’d shoot for at least $400 per week, but I’d be prepared to come down to get the job.

tinyfaery's avatar

What is minimum wage in the area?

Jude's avatar

@tinyfaery 10.25

@penguin, she’s looking for an adult.

tinyfaery's avatar

Well, that sound like a reasonable hourly rate.

janbb's avatar

People usually pay less than minimum wage for childcare, I believe, otherwise most women couldn’t afford to work. I would think somewhere between $250 – $350 might be reasonable for someone to ask, but it’s been a while since I’ve had to use childcare.

tinyfaery's avatar

Can you legally hire someone and pay them less than minimum wage?

janbb's avatar

Happens all the time for domestic work. I don’t know what the legal exception is but there must be one, I assume.

YARNLADY's avatar

To come into your home, you need to pay them the minimum wage in California. It gets very complicated if they are your employee, because you have to pay Social Security and Compensation Insurance, plus withhold taxes from their pay. If they are supposedly an independent contractor, you are still have to provide liability insurance to protect yourself, and send a 1099 to the government to report the amount you paid them, if the amount you pay them exceeds $600

janbb's avatar

I just did a quicky search and found this article about the push for domestic worker rights in New York. It does seem that if you are legally employingsomeone, you are supposed to pay Federal minimum wage and of course, withold SS and FICA, but that benefits are still a contentious issue. I know that many of the domestic workers I have seen and heard of are employed under the table; a risky business if you ever are vetted by the Senate for a position. I am certainly not advocating it as a tactic. The article highlights the fact that payment is an issue often discussed in parenting online fora.

tinyfaery's avatar

@YARNLADY That’s what I thought.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I think I’d pay $15—$20/hour.

MissA's avatar

It depends on the quality of childcare you require…babies, toddlers or older. And, the background of the potential sitter.

There also may be things to consider from the sitter’s point of view.

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