How To Become a Babysitter

By Jordan Fabel •  Updated: September 21, 2021  •  8 min read  •  Hospitality
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Maybe you love kids and you want to spend time around them. You might think of a babysitter as a teenager that watches kids while mom and dad go out on a date. There are full-time babysitting jobs, too.

If you want to go into a career as a babysitter, you will likely be looking for jobs as a nanny. They could be labeled with either, but they are basically the same type of career.

As a full-time babysitter, you will have specific duties. Typically, you will be working with a few children for one family on a day-to-day basis. Let’s look at the job duties of a babysitter and how to become a babysitter.

How To Become a Babysitter

Job Duties of a Babysitter

Your job duties, as a babysitter, will revolve around the children you take care of. You might take care of a newborn baby, toddler, or even teenager. It just depends on the needs of the parents and the children you prefer to work with.

Some of the main job duties you will have as a babysitter include:

The job duties of a full-time babysitter can vary, depending on who you work for. However, these are very common duties you can expect with this career.

How to Become a Babysitter in 3 Steps

Step #1 – Register for and Complete Courses

There are many courses you may need to become a babysitter. Getting the right certifications and training, can lead to better babysitting jobs. Some of the courses and certifications to consider include:

There are many certification options you should consider. Becoming certified as a babysitter will ensure you get the qualifications you will need to land good babysitting jobs.

Step #2 – Pass the Exams

Many of the babysitting certifications will require a final exam. You will need to pass the final exam, no matter the type of certification. Each exam will be a bit different and will cover what’s taught in the course.

Step #3 – Meet the Minimum Requirements

Most people hiring a babysitter will have some basic requirements. You will need to meet the minimum requirements for the nanny agency or the family looking to hire you.

Typically, you will need to be at least 16 years of age. If you plan to work full-time as a babysitter, you will likely need to be at least 18 years of age. Most agencies and families will require you to have specific certifications including CPR and first aid.

A driver’s license might also be required. You may have to have a clean driving record if you will be transporting the children at all.

Some agencies and parents will require a drug test, as well. They may require a drug test on occasion since you will be working with their children. It will just depend on the employer and the family you will be working with.

While it’s not a requirement, you may need some references. These can come from a former supervisor, a neighbor, or anybody that can vouch for your responsibility and skills.

Frequently Asked Questions About Becoming a Babysitter

How much can I make as a babysitter?

The salary numbers for babysitters are a bit skewed since some work part-time and others work full-time. If you work as a babysitter/nanny and you work full-time, the average salary is about $43,600, according to

Some other types of positions may pay a little more or less, depending on what you actually do. There are several different duties you may fulfill that can impact how much you make as a babysitter. Working for a nanny service may allow you to earn a higher salary.

Your location can also impact your salary. New York City and Los Angeles both have average salaries over $50K per year. Chicago, Phoenix, and Atlanta are the next highest-paying locations for full-time babysitters.

If you have nanny experience, an early childhood education degree, or other certifications, it can also help boost your salary.

What type of benefits can you get as a babysitter?

The benefits you gain may be determined by the family you work for or the agency you work for. You will likely have food provided for you and you will likely gain paid time off for vacations and illness. Paid housing is possible if you become a live-in babysitter. You can also work from home, in some cases, and you may have access to health insurance and a flexible schedule.

Do I need a degree to become a babysitter?

No, but getting a degree in early childhood education can certainly help. About 33% of people working in this career have a bachelor’s degree. Another 6% have an associate’s degree and 1% have master’s degrees. That leaves about 60% of those working as babysitters with a high school diploma or GED only.

You don’t need a degree to become a babysitter. It can certainly help, especially if you want to work with children that have specific needs. You can also become certified to gain the training you need.

What is the work environment like for a babysitter?

Most commonly, you will work in the private residences of the children you care for. You will spend time in the kitchen and in other areas of the home. In some cases, you may become a live-in babysitter and live inside the home.

Your work environment may also include transporting children in a vehicle to school, appointments, and activities. In some cases, you will work in a child care facility. However, it’s more common to work in the home of the children you care for.

What type of hours do babysitters work?

It’s common to work hours during the day, at night, and on weekends as a babysitter. It will depend on the times the parents need you to care for the children. Some babysitters work regular hours, while others will work odd hours or even longer hours. It’s even possible to work 24-hour shifts for a higher rate of pay.

There are plenty of opportunities in the career of babysitting. If you want to learn how to become a babysitter, just use the steps above. Once you become certified, you might be able to work for the same family for several years. It’s not uncommon for a live-in babysitter to work for the same family for the entire childhood of the children.

Jordan Fabel

Jordan Fabel

Covering different 'paths' that people's lives can take. Creative, foster parent, ticket dismissal, you get the idea. Exploring the requirements, certifications, exams, and obviously, approved courses along each path.