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to think £25 for babysitting 3 children until 3am on New Years Day is disgustingly stingy.

(241 Posts)
TaggieCampbellBlack Tue 01-Jan-13 16:03:09

DD and her friend. Both 14.
Parents said they'd be back shortly after midnight. Finally rolled in at 3am.

DD and friend slept over but were expecting them home before 3.

Stingy bastards handed over £25 this morning.


And also more than a little surprised. That isn't the done thing really is it? Getting in 3 hours late.

StinkyWicket Wed 02-Jan-13 02:38:43

I got about that much for babysitting on NYE.

That was 15 years ago though, and they were back before 12.30 and drove me home.


(Although I wouldn't have had 14 year olds unless the children were about 10)

holidaysarenice Wed 02-Jan-13 02:40:07

I think a lot of the people saying its fine don't use babysitters much.
They are expensive. These girls have the same responsibility in the house as any adult caregiver you are using.

Frankly I think two is better than one, more sense, and more authority if their are any problems

ChippingInLovesChristmasLights Wed 02-Jan-13 02:41:06

You are paying for them having the responsibility of looking after your children, you are not paying them to watch tv and text their friends - the fact they can do that at the same time is irrelevant. You need them there or you can't go out - so it's ridiculous to say it's 'for doing nothing'.

The rate is going to be very dependant on the area - but around here that would be low and I would have paid an absolute minimum of £40 plus drinks, snacks etc.

flow4 Wed 02-Jan-13 02:41:51

Dowager > "I really hate the fact that childcare is so horribly underpaid and so under-respected in this country. It's really wrong."

I agree. But the government's minimum wage policy has ipso facto made childcare low paid. It is impossible for people to pay over NMW for childcare if they are being paid NMW themselves. Since people need to eat and pay bills, and tax and NI are due on full-time NMW wages, it is probably impossible for anyone to pay their childcare provider more than about 50% of their own income (and even that would be a stretch, I guess). This means that the current NMW rates (£6.19for 21+ yos; £4.98 for 18-20yos; £3.68 for 16-17 yos) pretty much guarantee that people on low incomes will see £3/hr as the maximum that they can and should pay for their childcare.

IMO, anyone who wants to see higher wages for childcare should start by campaigning for higher NMW.

blueemerald Wed 02-Jan-13 02:45:12

I agree, I would be very reluctant to hire a babysitter under 16 unless I was very nearby and going to an event I could easily leave.

flow4 Wed 02-Jan-13 02:46:30

holidaysarenice and Chipping - Parents may think they are paying for a babysitter to 'have the responsibility'... But if the sitter is under 16, they are not, because it is legally impossible for a child under 16 to have responsibility for another child. (See my post above for more info/links, if you're interested).

ChippingInLovesChristmasLights Wed 02-Jan-13 03:01:38

Flow 'legally' is not the point. If you are going out and leaving a babysitter in charge they are (morally, if not legally) responsible for those children and that is why you are paying for them. Sniping about 'paying them to sit on their backsides watching the tv' is ridiculous.

flow4 Wed 02-Jan-13 03:05:13

I dunno about 'morally' either, Chipping, personally. I always tended to feel like I was morally responsible for the few younger babysitters I ever used, as well as remaining responsible for my own kids. Which is why I looked for older sitters. Or swapped with friends. And didn't go out much!

mathanxiety Wed 02-Jan-13 03:11:23

No, Flow, it is the way childcare is seen as low skilled or even unskilled women's work that guarantees it is the last thing to be considered important, and worthy only of minimum pay. Or actually half of minimum pay.

Even so, in areas where demand outstrips supply, babysitters can make much more.

The logical conclusion is perhaps to scrap minimum wage and let parents try their luck in a world where service wages are determined only by market forces? When a certain job pays minimum wage it is guaranteed to be looked down upon.

Responsibility when it comes to babysitters means ability to respond appropriately if a situation occurs that demands a certain response. No matter who is ultimately 'responsible' in the legal sense, the appropriateness of the immediate response is what matters. I agree with Chipping.

Wallison Wed 02-Jan-13 08:18:31

Meh. I agree with Flow. Childcare is paid for out of wages, so therefore if wages are low then there isn't a lot that can be put towards childcare.

Also, if parents are using children to look after their children, rather than qualified professionals, that will bring down the wages of the qualified childcare professionals too.

mrsL1984 Wed 02-Jan-13 08:27:45

Fair enough we don't know details why two girls went. But at 14 would you have liked to have been on own in NYE???

SaraBellumHertz Wed 02-Jan-13 09:44:07

Definitely tight - £40 would have been appropriate for NYE.

With math re responsibility - my 8 year old is capable of changing a nappy and helping my 20 mth old brush her teeth. She knows the difference between a bump that requires her giving her little sister a cuddle and one that requires me to attend to it. I imagine by the time she is14 she'll have progressed a little...

VestaCurry Wed 02-Jan-13 09:45:14

stingy feckers

TheFallenMadonna Wed 02-Jan-13 10:26:59

I'd pay more on New Years Eve.

But, I would not have accepted the change of arrangements during the evening.

Is it that the couple are friends of you Dd's friend's parents? Because if plans were changed once the evening had started to include an overnight stay somewhere I didn't know, I think I, and not my 14yo, would have been phoning the couple to get them back st the arranged time.

AlfalfaMum Wed 02-Jan-13 11:10:19

YANBU, that is really stingy. They should have at least got that each.

When I was about 13 I babysat for neighbours, from about 8pm until 12:30, and they gave me 50p shock ok so it was 24 years ago, but even then it was shitty. I never babysat for them again.

bringbacksideburns Wed 02-Jan-13 11:24:03

Was the £25 agreed before they turned up three hours late?
Did they think it was just the one babysitter?
I'd be giving feedback to whoever knows the couple that arriving back so late without bunging a bit more on was mean and they won't be doing it again!

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