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Babysitting for a friend...Sticky situation...please help!

Last month, a friend of mine asked if I could watch her daughter (7) for a couple of weeks while she got summer camp sorted out. I said sure, our daughters are friends and it would be nice for her to have a friend around. I also have a baby at home, but the older girls are pretty easy. She asked how much I wanted and I told her to pay me whatever she would be paying at camp, which turned out to be $150 a week. I was watching her from 9am-6pm M-F. It went fine, but now she's asked me to do it again for another three weeks. If I had known it was going to be an all-summer thing, I would have charged more... Now I feel stuck in that rate if I decide to say yes. Is there any tactful way to ask for more money at this point, or do you think $150/wk is fair?

Answer Question

Asked by HeySheila at 11:55 AM on Jul. 4, 2013 in General Parenting

Level 2 (5 Credits)
Answers (13)
  • I pay 150 for my son per week, I think that is reasonable amount.

    Answer by 2kids2dogs2cats at 11:59 AM on Jul. 4, 2013

  • Is that for a nanny in a private home or for daycare?

    Comment by HeySheila (original poster) at 12:00 PM on Jul. 4, 2013

  • In a private home, from 8-5:30, he gets lunch, and a snack included, she watches another boy the same age in the summer, now I just read you have a baby, does this keep you homebound considering car seat situations etc? I think that your kid is probably enjoying the company, and unless it is a huge burden, why not get the extra money?

    Answer by 2kids2dogs2cats at 12:09 PM on Jul. 4, 2013

  • Her daughter is tall enough to sit in the front seat w/booster (we checked the local laws). I do feel a bit restricted in what I am able to do, for instance I don't feel comfortable going shopping or running errands with all three kids but I would normally do them with just my two. It isn't a huge burden but I've had others tell me I'm being taken advantage of, that a nanny should charge $15 or more and I am only charging $3!

    Comment by HeySheila (original poster) at 12:15 PM on Jul. 4, 2013

  • 150 a week for a 7 yr old seems fair to me- especially since you are friends...
    you had set the price already, so asking for more now could be really touchy

    Answer by charlotsomtimes at 12:17 PM on Jul. 4, 2013

  • If you were going there, 15 and hour would be fair, but my friend is a full time in home nanny for 2 children age 3, she gets $400 per week, and does some laundry, cooking cleaning as well.
    We pay a babysitter $12 an hour when we just need out for a few hours, but as you said day camp is only $150 per week, just work her into your routine, go on Craigs List and see what in home daycare charges in your area.
    If you go somewhere, ask for extra for the movies, what ever. The lady who watches my son takes them to the pool 2 days per week and I pay for his snacks and the entry fee. I think you are helping her out and get some extra bucks you didn't have.

    Answer by 2kids2dogs2cats at 12:27 PM on Jul. 4, 2013

  • PS- Last summer she watched both of my kids, for $200 per week, this year the older is doing a summer program for music, and that is only $150 per week, and includes alot of fun actitivity!

    Answer by 2kids2dogs2cats at 12:28 PM on Jul. 4, 2013

  • Thanks to both of you for your insight. I do think it would be "touchy" to ask for more at this point but I didn't know it was going to be an ongoing thing...and I don't want it to become a trend in the future that she expects me to babysit for that rate, know what I mean?
    She has also asked that I pick her daughter up from camp one week in the afternoon and bring her back to my house for 3 hrs until she can pick her up... I'm not sure what to charge for that. I'd have to drive across town to get her and then factor in the gas and three hours of childcare at home.. I was thinking $20 per day, does that sound fair?

    Comment by HeySheila (original poster) at 12:30 PM on Jul. 4, 2013

  • Wait a minute... this is your friend? And you are thinking about charging her more money? Seriously when did we become such money grubbing people? $30 a day for a playmate for your daughter is perfectly reasonable. If you don't want to do it, say that you can't. But don't go charging her more.

    And picking her up from camp and keeping her for a few hours... and you want to charge her an additional $20 a day on top of what she is paying to the camp is pretty rotten imo. I say $10 for the after camp days.

    If you are unwilling to do it for that much, then tell her you just can't do it. I really thought friends just helped each other without expecting anything in return.

    Answer by SleepingBeautee at 1:05 PM on Jul. 4, 2013

  • When my kids were in daycare, I paid $184 a week for the both of them, and a private in-home daycare, it was $100 for the both of them. so $150 seems more than fair for just one, to me.

    I would just make sure she knows that this is a short-term thing, and that you won't continue doing it indefinitely.

    Answer by wendythewriter at 1:38 PM on Jul. 4, 2013

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