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Hiring a babysitter to watch your kids can be difficult. Not only do you need to find a babysitter who fits in to your budget, you also need to find someone that you can entrust your children’s lives with. The best way to find the right babysitter for your family is to ask the right questions. Take a look at these questions you should ask prospective new babysitters for interview question ideas – you will want to work these down to what is relevant based on your needs, of course.
Why do you like working with children?
Why does your babysitter choose to work with children? The answer to this question could be the deciding factor when it comes to who you will hire. You will want to hire a babysitter who genuinely cares for children and loves being around them. Some people choose to babysit because it’s easy money or because they can’t find any other jobs at the moment.
What is your rate? Ask them up front how much they want to paid to ensure it falls within the expected range.
Are your hours flexible?
Unexpected things pop up all the time. You might get stuck behind a train on your way home from date night or your boss might ask you to stay an extra hour to finish a project. Make sure your babysitter is flexible when it comes to those unexpected events. If they aren’t, you might want to look at other options as you may be stuck if you need them in an emergency.
Do you live nearby? How are you going to get here? It’s best to hire someone who has reliable transportation. If they are under the age of 16, ask them if the person taking them to your house is reliable.
Background and Experience
Do you have references?
One of the best ways to tell if a new babysitter is the right fit for your family is to check references. Ask your new babysitter for any references they might have, and then take the time to call those references and ask about the babysitter. You’ll want to know what these references have to say about your babysitter’s skills, timeliness, and character.
How long have you been working with children and in what role?
Do you have any children? This is a huge plus if they already have children – of any age.
How old were the children you have worked with previously?
Have you ever been arrested or convicted of a crime? Alternatively you may want to request a police background check.
How many kids are you comfortable with watching?
How many have you watched in the past? This is important if you have more than 3 kids as you want to know that your sitter will be able to handle a larger number of kids at once.
Do you like being around pets? Do you have allergies to pets? Obviously you should only ask this question if you have household pets of any kind.
Training and Safety
Are you CPR & First Aid certified?
Another great question to ask your new babysitter is if they are CPR and first aid certified. Hopefully, nothing will go wrong while your kids are being watched; however, accidents do happen. The knowledge that your babysitter knows how to respond in these situations can make you feel more comfortable that your children will be safe.
Have you ever dealt with an emergency?
Can you drive in case of emergency?
Tell me about a time when you faced a difficult situation. How did you deal with it?
What are your favourite activities with kids? Find out how they plan to keep your children entertained and that it is a good fit.
How do you respond to a child throwing a tantrum?
How do you respond to a child who is not following instructions?
How do you plan to discipline the children if needed. Are you willing to discipline our way?
Why should I hire you?
Responsibilities and Tasks
Are you comfortable with putting children to bed? Bedtime can be a challenge so be sure that if your babysitter has to put them in bed, that they are comfortable with it.
Aside from babysitting, are you comfortable with light housework or making dinner?
Are you available for after school pick up?
If the Sitter will be Driving
How long have you been driving?
May I see your driver’s license?
Have you ever been ticketed for speeding or been in an accident?
If you have an infant
Are you comfortable caring for an infant?
What is your experience with infants?
Do you know infant CPR?
Do you know how to change a diaper?
How do you respond to stress and/or frustration?
Do you know how to prepare a bottle?
Elizabeth Lampman is a coffee-fuelled Mom of 2 girls and lives in Hamilton, Ontario. She enjoys travelling, developing easy recipes, crafting, taking on diy projects, travelling and saving money!