Review: Sittercity

Sittercity is an online site where you can find babysitters and nannies. (Or, if you are a babysitter or nanny, it’s a place to find work.) If you are a parent who needs to find a babysitter/nanny, you sign up for an account, post a job with a little information about your children and the type of help you are seeking, and the caregivers who have registered on the site can respond to you.

In terms of cost, it is free for the initial account if you just want to check it out, post your job, and see what types of responses you get. However, if you actually want to talk to those potential babysitters/nannies, you’ll need to pay. The cost for a one-month membership is $35, a three-month membership has a $70 price tag, and a full year is $140.

(If you are a babysitter or nanny, it is free to register and see available opportunities.)

That’s it!

OK, I’m sure you have other questions, like: How do I know the babysitters are good? How much do I pay the babysitter? Why not just post my job on Craigslist?

Here are your answers:

  • You use Sittercity to find people that are looking for babysitter/nanny jobs. Sittercity does not really vet these caregivers in terms of checking their backgrounds, checking their experience, etc. The service is in bringing together the babysitters with those who need that service. What that means: you still need to do your due diligence to find the right sitter or sitters for you.
  • If your potential babysitter is smart and has offered references, you can check those out at Sittercity. You also have the option to run a background check on a sitter you are considering, though that requires an additional fee — it is not included in a Sittercity membership.
  • Ultimately, you obviously are going to want to meet a potential sitter to get a feel for her (or him perhaps) and to discuss the specifics of the job. Just like getting a babysitter anywhere else, this is where you usually will talk about price, availability, etc.
  • You could post your babysitting job on Craigslist just as easily as on Sittercity, but common sense tells you that you might have more weirdos contacting you through an open forum like Craigslist than you would through a more guarded site like Sittercity. That said, weirdos can sign up for Sittercity, so do your due diligence before hiring anyone!

Bottom line, Sittercity is a good resource to find caregivers. It has a lot of caregivers registered, and you are likely to find a good number of potential matches. You might especially value it if you live in a city away from trusted family and friends. Just remember that Sittercity is mainly a matching service and not a service that has somehow put a seal of approval on any of the caregivers who contact you. We probably don’t have to tell you how precious your child is. Be sure to thoroughly check out anyone that contacts you through Sittercity (or any other related service like Sittercity).