Joanna Andres


Babysitting Rates in Ohio: The Ultimate Parent’s Guide (2024)


Older sibling in pig tails laying on a rug with her arms around her new baby sister wrapped in pink

So you need a night out, but the sticker shock of babysitting rates is giving you pause? Fear not, fellow Ohio parents! This guide will break down average babysitting rates in Columbus and give you tips on finding the perfect sitter without breaking the bank.

Don’t Get Babysitting Sticker Shock! A Parent’s Guide to Babysitting Rates in Ohio (and How to Save!)

Family Portrait including mom, dad, older sibling girl in pigtails and newborn baby wrapped in pink


What’s the average Babysitting Rate (Really)?

Newborn Baby in a bucket wearing a mauve headband

Research suggests the average babysitting rate in Columbus, Ohio falls around $16.42 per hour [Source:]. But that’s just a starting point! The actual cost can vary depending on several factors:

  • Experience: A seasoned sitter with CPR certification and childcare experience will likely command a higher rate than a teenager just starting out.
  • Number of Children: Watching one child is easier than wrangling a pack of little ones. Expect to pay more for multiple children.
  • Time of Day/Week: Weekend nights and late-night gigs often come with a premium. Weekdays and daytime hours may be a bit more affordable.
  • Activities: Does your babysitting gig involve chauffeuring kids to soccer practice or planning an elaborate scavenger hunt? More responsibility might warrant a higher rate.
  • Additional Duties: Is tidying up the kitchen or prepping dinner part of the deal? Be prepared to pay a bit more if you expect the babysitter to go above and beyond childcare duties.

Newborn baby posed with her bum up wearing pink pants and pink headband lying on a floral lace blanket

Beyond the Numbers: Finding the Perfect Babysitter in Ohio

While cost is important, finding a babysitter you trust and your children feel comfortable with is priceless. Here are some tips:

  • Ask Around: Get recommendations from friends, neighbors, and family members with similar aged children.
  • Check Online Resources: Websites like and Sittercity allow you to browse profiles, check references, and even book interviews.
  • Consider Age and Experience: Match the sitter’s experience to your needs. For younger children, a more mature sitter (think college student) might be ideal.
  • Conduct a Trial Run: Schedule a short interview/playdate beforehand so your children can get acquainted with the potential sitter.

Newborn Baby in a Huck Finn Pose wearing a white romper and floral headband on a floral lace blanket

Negotiating and Saving:

  • Be Upfront About Expectations: Clearly communicate your needs and expectations regarding the children, activities, and any additional tasks you require. This helps avoid surprises later.
  • Offer Incentives: Consider offering a higher rate for longer gigs or weekends. You could also explore bartering or offering a meal.
  • Be Flexible: If you’re open to scheduling during off-peak hours or weekdays, you might be able to negotiate a lower rate.

Baby girls in a froggy pose with her hands under chin and toes showing

The Mother’s Helper Option: Affordable Playtime Support

Looking for an extra hand but don’t necessarily need a full-fledged babysitter? Consider a mother’s helper! Mother’s helpers are typically younger teens who can provide age-appropriate play and entertainment for your children, usually ages 2 and up. This is a great option for parents who need some help managing their day while their older kids are occupied with playtime fun.

Dad kissing his newborn baby girl wrapped in pink with a headband

Why Consider a Mother’s Helper?

  • Cost-Effective: Mother’s helpers typically charge less than babysitters because they’re focused on play and entertainment, not childcare duties like diaper changes or managing bedtime routines.
  • Engaging Playtime: A mother’s helper can bring youthful energy and fresh ideas to playtime, keeping your kids entertained while you get things done.
  • Supervision While You’re Around: With a mother’s helper, you’re still in the house and readily available to assist if needed. This can be a good option for parents who want some help but also want to be close by.

Portrait of Mother holding her baby close to her face while baby is wrapped in pink

Finding a Mother’s Helper:

  • Talk to Your Teens’ Friends: Ask your teenagers if any of their friends are interested in some part-time work.
  • Local Teen Centers/Community Centers: Many community centers or teen centers have bulletin boards where teens can advertise their babysitting or mother’s helper services.
  • Online Platforms: While some online platforms may have an age minimum for babysitters, you might find responsible teens looking for mother’s helper opportunities.

Remember: A happy babysitter (or mother’s helper!) is a reliable babysitter! Treat them with respect, offer fair compensation, and you’ll be more likely to secure their services again in the future.

Parent Portrait with mom hold their Newborn Baby Girl with pride

Capturing the little moments between moms and their new babies is one of the greatest joys of my work at Joanna Andres Photography, right here in Columbus, Ohio! These precious times fly by, and I specialize in creating timeless keepsakes that will preserve those memories forever. I offer maternity, newborn, and family photography sessions to capture every milestone of your growing family. Contact me today to schedule a consultation and let’s chat about capturing your unique story!

For more articles like this check out: