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There’s more to finding a good babysitter in Calgary than availability and price. Sure, those things matter (the first one especially), but parents need to take into account a range of variables when deciding to leave the most important people in the lives alone with a sitter for the evening. Here are some tips to help parents make the right choice to find the perfect sitter on CarePair.

Special Needs or No?

When you’re a parent with a child who requires special care, it can be incredibly frustrating searching for a sitter. Whatever needs your child may have, finding a sitter who has experience and/ or credentials can be as easy as scrolling through the local sitter list on CarePair. Many sitters have a terrific amount of experience and credentials, with a handful having capabilities specific to special needs children. Posting a job with specifics in the title will attract those with that experience, while patiently chatting with qualified applicants will funnel the list to those with whom you feel comfortable. Never be afraid to engage the potential babysitters in dialogue before hiring; they want the job, and those with the requisite experience want nothing more than to prove to you their capabilities!

Location

Once you’ve decided what level of qualification your sitter in Calgary needs, the next important item is their location. Luckily CarePair sorts babysitters according to your location, so the sitter screen you see will always display the 100 closest sitters to you, when filtering for location. When researching babysitting patterns, one distressing issue that kept popping up was unreliability, as sitters sometimes just don’t show up, or bailing at the last minute. This can be mitigated in two ways, location and communication (we’ll touch on this next point). If a sitter knows you’re 10km away, it’s easy for them to make excuses about why they can’t or shouldn’t show up. However, a babysitter 1 or 2km away is within easy walking distance, if nothing else, and is therefore more likely to show up for someone in their own community.

Communication

Having narrowed down the location, communication is of the utmost importance. Don’t just hire and forget, assuming that all will be well three days from now, on the day of the job. Treat it like internet dating; make the date, then maybe a day before check in to see if everything is on track. And since these are your children you’re talking about, no one will be offended if you check in on the day of the job to make sure your sitter is still ready to care for your kids. Communication is key in every relationship, so you shouldn’t let it lapse when it’s your most important relationship!

Cost

It’s human nature to want the best of anything at the lowest cost. But the reality is, a babysitter with 15 years experience, who has a PhD in child psychology, while also possessing every certification known to Man will cost more than a teenager who loves kids, but is doing the job for some extra cash before graduating high school. You know your kids best; what type of care do they require? Will they have a hard time adjusting to new people caring for/ playing with them? Do they have any health issues that need attending? Will they be asleep most of the time? Does the sitter need to cook, clean or take care of any toddler toilet issues? When you answer these questions and cross-reference with what sitters on CarePair charge, you can arrive at what you need to pay based on market realities. It might be $10/ hour, it might be $25/ hour– either way, CarePair is likely to have a sitter who will meet your requirements!

Trust your instincts when searching for a good babysitter

Trust Your Instincts

Even across disembodied digital chat spaces, our guts can tell us if a person is good, not so good or just plain not the right person. If you’re having a pleasant conversation and the sitter is talkative and willing to put in the time to answer questions that make you feel at ease, you can likely trust that this is a sitter who is willing to work at what she does, and isn’t just using the job as an excuse to watch TV and get some free food. On the other hand, if the sitter who matches all your criteria gives one word answers, seems non-committal or takes a long time to respond, trust your gut and conclude she isn’t the right sitter for you. Treat it like a job interview where you are assuming the person will be trying to convince you to hire them. If they don’t convince you, don’t hire!

Follow the above points when searching for that perfect Calgary babysitter on CarePair and you’re much more likely to have success. Knowing how to find a good babysitter ultimately comes down to knowing what you want, what you need and communication. Your children are the most important aspect of your life, so finding someone to care for them should take a similar level of attention to detail that you put into other aspects of their lives.

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