Tuesday, April 12, 2011

How To Start A Teen Babysitting Business

Looking to earn some serious cash? If you have the time and the energy (and you don't mind changing a few diapers), babysitting can be a great way to get it.

According to the Census Bureau, there are currently about 10.6 million children under the age of 5 who's mothers work, and about 1.9 million are cared for in daycare.

This leaves a huge opportunity for teens looking to make a lot of money, as there is a BIG market for it.

Getting Started
Have you ever watched any children before? What was your experience like? Have you ever received any special training in child care (e.g. CPR, attended a babysitter course, ect)? Is there an adult or family member nearby in the event of an emergency?

When opting to babysit, you should be prepared to answer questions like these when being interviewed for a job. After all, parents won't let just anyone take responsibility for their children. They want to feel that they can trust you and your ability to keep their kids safe.

Check out this list of questions from about.com featuring questions parents may ask you in an interview. It's a good idea to have a flyer with you that lists these questions along with well-written answers (remember to discuss them with your parents as well!).

Training for the Job
The usual rate per hour (depending on where you live) is around $7-$9. However, you could increase your rates by getting babysitting training and receiving a certificate for doing so. There are many organizations that offer such training. For instance: BabySittingClass.com

This site offers:
- Personal attention and Live Help
- Up-to-Date materials and chapter notes
- Access to The Babysitter's Encyclopedia (offers hands-on solutions to problems babysitters may face)
- A year-long pass (from the moment you register, you have access to the site for one full year)

It costs $17.50 to sign up, but if you can increase your income, it may well be worth it. Becoming a trained, professional babysitter shows that you are serious about your services and you will be more likely to get business.

Transportation & Time
Before you can begin looking for babysitting jobs, you'll need a way to get around. Do you need a system to where your parents can pick you up and drop you off at different locations? You should never walk to locations by yourself at night, even if it's just a street away. Safety is very important.

When are you going to be able to work? Think about things that may prevent you from working during the day/weekdays: school, activities, other part-time jobs, ect. Are you able to work at night? Do parents need to have a curfew? Consider your options and come up with a plan that you can share with your customers.

As I've mentioned before, the usual rate (depending on where you live) is around $7-$9 per hour when babysitting. However, it's possible to earn $5-$10 per child per hour. Yet you should also take into consideration if there are other babysitting services in your area. If so, you should consider your prices and keep them competitive in order to gain new business opportunities.

If you find that you can only babysit on the weekends, that's alright - you can still earn a tidy sum of cash. But if you want to make *a lot* of money, you'll have to be open to weekdays, as well.

Just like with any other business, you'll need a way to advertise your services. This could mean posting about it online or buying ad space in your local newspaper. Marketing is one of the most important aspects of your business; pass out business cards and flyers to random people. Tell all of your friends and family about it. Whatever you can do to get the word out.

Babysitting presents a wonderful opportunity for you to earn money and learn about running a business. It certainly isn't the easiest job on the planet, but the lessons and income you receive will be well worth it in the long run.

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