Back in the day, moms just hired any neighborhood teenager to watch their kids — whether it be for date night, a school function, or due to a last minute emergency.
We live in a different world now.
Sure, there are greater dangers these days, but it’s also a world where parents don’t know random babysitters from the neighborhood.
Parents also need more long-term care options like nannies.
But now we have the technology to help us.
Before, nanny agencies were the way many families found reliable help outside of their neighborhood circles.
These days, we have online services that help us find and book babysitters and nannies — and fast.
It’s easier for parents to find babysitters and for babysitters to find great families.
UrbanSitter makes finding your next babysitting or nanny position a breeze.
This service connects you with people in your community or network that need childcare.
It also helps you vet the families you choose to work for so you know you’ll be safe, your schedules will match up, and you’ll get paid.
Whether you live in San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Denver, or another major city, you can find reliable work all on your own schedule with UrbanSitter.
We’re going to give you all of the information you need to become an UrbanSitter babysitter or nanny.
Read on to find out what makes UrbanSitter different and how to maximize your profile.
- How Does UrbanSitter Work?
- How Do I Sign Up For UrbanSitter?
- What Are the Perks of Working for UrbanSitter?
- UrbanSitter Connects You to New Families via Your Social Sphere
- Tips for Finding Success With UrbanSitter
How Does UrbanSitter Work?
Let’s take a high-level look at how UrbanSitter works from the sitter perspective:
First, UrbanSitter is excellent for just about any sitter.
Gigs are available for all kinds of sitters looking for work from part-time babysitting jobs to being a full-time nanny.
So, if you’re just looking to babysit for a few nights a week, they’ve got you covered.
UrbanSitter gives you the freedom to enjoy flexible hours.
Is working with just one family on a regular basis your thing?
UrbanSitter parents are looking for nannies, too.
It’s easy to get started with UrbanSitter.
Here’s what you do:
- Create a profile
- Search for jobs and apply
- Accept jobs within the app
But the best part?
Get paid through the mobile app on the spot when the parents get home and keep 100% of what you make.
UrbanSitter doesn’t charge the sitter any fees.
It’s entirely free for sitters and nannies.
The parents pay the fees.
No fees mean that you don’t have to calculate your total payout each night.
Another thing that makes UrbanSitter different than other babysitting job apps is that it maximizes your earning potential by referring you to new clients based on your current ones.
UrbanSitter connects you to leads based on your real life and online social networks.
According to the site:
“UrbanSitter is a real-life community. When you join, you’ll see how you’re connected to families through other sitters, families, and community groups.”
That is directed at parents, but it works for sitters as well.
You’ve babysat for Marcia in the past.
You babysit for Sally via the app.
It turns out Marcia and Sally are connected.
Their friend Barb joins and see that both Marcia and Sally rate you highly.
You get an invite from Barb, and that puts you in her circle which also includes Lisa and Wendy.
You could have four new clients just because you know Marcia.
But is babysitting for strangers safe?
UrbanSitter makes parents go through safety hoops, too.
Parents have to verify their identity through an authentification process.
UrbanSitter does not publish your contact information, and they only let a parent connect with you after the parent’s identity has been verified.
Plus, UrbanSitter customer service is available 24/7 to assist whenever you need them.
How Do I Sign Up For UrbanSitter?
It’s super easy.
Just follow this detailed breakdown below.
Here it goes:
- If you’re using a laptop, head to the website and click “Apply to Jobs.”
- If you’re using a mobile phone or tablet, open the app and click “I Am a Sitter.”
- Choose which platform you’ll use to sign up: Facebook, Google, or email. (UrbanSitter works by social connections, so you have to pick one of the three).
- Verify that you’re at least 16 years old.
- Fill out your basic contact info (UrbanSitter will not share it with anyone that hasn’t been through the verification and authentication process).
- If you accidentally sign up as a parent, click here to fix it.
After you’ve created your account, they’ll ask you to complete a few checklist items.
The checklist is what builds your profile.
You have to do all of the checklist items before you can request approval from UrbanSitter.
But don’t rush it.
Think about what you say and how you present yourself.
They will ask you to:
- Write a detailed description of you and your experience
- Upload professional photos of yourself
- Set your rates (don’t undersell yourself or underbid – look up professional averages for your area and then adjust for your level of experience)
- Add your direct deposit banking information so you can get paid instantly
- Create a short 30-second video that gives parents a sense of your personality (be professional but be yourself – that way parents that you like will book you)
When you finish the above items, you can click Request Approval.
After that, you wait to be cleared for duty.
UrbanSitter will manually review your profile to “make sure it best promotes your sitter skills and personality while meeting our Terms of Service.”
Your profile will probably be reviewed within 14 days, but it can take up to four weeks to approve.
Until then, parents won’t be able to see you, and you won’t be able to apply to jobs.
UrbanSitter will let you know via email when you’re all set to start searching the job board.
Want to get things moving faster?
Pro Tip from UrbanSitter:
Bonus Pro Tip that will help you hit the ground running:
Once your profile is approved, you can start searching the job board for opportunities that are a good match for you.
Experiencing issues creating an account?
Check the FAQ, and if you don’t find the answer there, contact UrbanSitter’s support team at [email protected]
What Are the Perks of Working for UrbanSitter?
There are lots of perks! UrbanSitter is truly free for sitters.
Other nannying and babysitting sites, like Care.com, charge sitters fees.
If sitters that use other sites want to benefit from upgrades like priority email alerts for the best new gigs, or a highlighted profile that’s bumped up in search results, they’ll have to pay.
UrbanSitter is different — it’s entirely free for sitters.
You don’t have to worry about where your profile stands in the search results just because you aren’t paying a premium.
How well you do depends on how well you curate your profile, what ratings you get, and how your network of parents grows.
UrbanSitter connects you to families you already know or who are part of your community.
Your connections will be optimized or catered to what you’re looking for when you add your social media accounts and other communities.
Not only that, your network of parents will be growing in the background as they find their connections through the same process.
Remember Marcia and Barb?
You don’t have to connect them or use them as references for each other.
The UrbanSitter mobile app does that for you.
You won’t ever have to endlessly scroll through job listings only to never find the right opportunity. UrbanSitter simplifies it all.
They give you a platform that helps you find people that you have a connection with.
That connection makes you much more appealing to a parent than a random person answering a job ad.
You are rewarded for professionalism and hard work.
If you do the job well, you will be highly rated.
You can even earn badges that will make your profile shine.
Parents can write reviews, and if you consistently offer outstanding childcare, those reviews will garner you more babysitting opportunities and booking with repeat families.
Parents want to hire sitters and nannies that their friends and colleagues trust and that kids love.
If you establish yourself through high ratings and good reviews, you will reap the rewards of more bookings!
Tips for Finding Success With UrbanSitter
Your UrbanSitter profile shouldn’t be basic or stagnant.
There are just too many ways to optimize it to leave it bare bones!
Even at the minimum, you can optimize the general profile:
- Upload a quality professional looking profile photo that looks warm and happy.
- Be detailed in listing out your experience and include languages you know, classes you’ve taken, what kinds of kid stuff (like games, or outings) you like best, etc.
- Rehearse your video before you record it so that you know it puts you in your best light.
Those are all things that will make your profile shine.
But shoot higher by earning or adding badges.
Have you completed a CPR course?
Get the badge.
Passed a background check?
Get the badge.
It’s very important you pass the background check to start finding families.
You can also build up your profile with good reviews and earned badges.
Demonstrate Excellent Communication From the Start
The last thing that garners trust in a new babysitter is slow or little communication.
Parents are anxious.
They want to know as much as they can about you before leaving their kids with you.
A lack of response on your end will not help your case.
Instead, respond promptly and ask them about the kids.
Show an interest in the kids and the family’s life.
Ask what kinds of things their children like to do or what they should eat.
Write in clear, coherent, sentences.
Don’t use acronyms or texting shorthand unless a parent uses that particular one first.
Communicate in a way that puts the parents at ease about the entire process — even if it’s a parent you know well.
Remember that parents can be nervous even when they have Grandma babysit.
Pro Tip: Send a confirmation message the day of the scheduled job to make sure everything is all set with the parents and to let them know that they can still expect you.
Set Yourself Up For a Successful Booking
Follow these guidelines to make the hand-off with the parents a breeze:
- Arrive five minutes early
- Offer to take your shoes off and wash your hands
- Interact with the kids immediately
- Reconfirm what time the parents will be home
- Ask about house rules (e.g., what kids can/can’t do, bedtimes, etc.)
- Ask if the parents would like updates while they’re out
Little things like this make a great impression and will help you get rebooked time and time again.
Remember these nearly effortless practices, and you’ll always be set up for a successful sitting.
Be the Best Sitter You Can Be
When the parents have left, and it’s just you and the kids, it’s your time to shine.
- Make memories with the kids.
- Have fun.
- Do things they like to do.
- Be (responsibly) fun and follow the house rules.
- Make safety a top priority. Your job is to protect and entertain the kids until mom and dad are home.
If you suspect they’re trying to bend the rules, let your instinct lead you with caution.
And don’t be afraid to say no.
Even if they tell you that Grandpa lets them jump on the bed, you need to explain to them why it’s not safe and won’t be happening.
Also be sure to follow the routine set out by the parents and have teeth brushed and kids in bed on time.
Leave the Home Better Than You Found it
Parents LOVE coming home to a clean kitchen or living room, especially if you made a mess with the kids while playing.
Doing a bit of light cleaning will go a long way with the parents (and in your review) if you also put in a little extra where it’s needed.
For example, put away all toys — not just the ones the kids got out once you arrived.
Or if after dinner you don’t just rinse the kids’ plates, but stow what’s already there in the dishwasher too.
Follow Up After the Visit
Take a moment to send the family a quick thank you note through the UrbanSitter app.
Doing so ends that sit on a positive and friendly note, and it also reminds them to leave a review for you.
Be sure your scheduling calendar is accurate so they can book you again right away.
There is a lot to be said for a mobile app that makes babysitting a viable career.
UrbanSitter has made it easy to find steady, high-paying babysitting jobs through digital word of mouth in your virtual neighborhood.
Whether you’re looking for a part-time job or a full-time job, if you want to be the go-to sitter for date night or a long-term solution, UrbanSitter makes it easy to find great families that work with your schedule.
So what are you waiting for?