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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.

RyleDup Tue 01-Jan-13 16:55:42

The going rate is £15 per hour round here on NYE. I wouldn't pay that, but then I wouldn't pay anything because I don't like going out on NYE. I probably would have paid between £40 and £50 to a teenager for NYE though. Normal night I'd pay £25, but would be back by 12.30 at the latest. So I do think its a bit tight on NYE for all those hours.

toobreathless Tue 01-Jan-13 16:55:43

We advertised for a babysitter over the age of 16 recently (DD is 20 months) we offered £5-£7 per hour depending on experience.

I would have paid £5 an hour to one sitter but probably not doubled that so say £8 an hour to be split?

So 8x 6= £48 plus I'd have added on a bit for after midnight/NYE so probably £60 split between them.

£30 each? Would you have been happy with that OP?

HeadfirstForAMistletoeKiss Tue 01-Jan-13 16:56:01

If they didn't arrange a price before babysitting then they haven't got a leg to stand on in regards to asking for more money. There's a lesson to be learned!

If they had prearranged £25 to babysit until midnight then they could ask for more for the extra 3 hours based on how much an hour the £25 worked out at.

Lueji Tue 01-Jan-13 16:56:13

I find some attitudes here very exploitative.

So, it is ok to pay someone a pittance because otherwise they'd get nothing?
And it's ok to expect them to work longer hours without warning for the same amount of money?

When you choose teenagers they are expected to do the same work I the children wake up. And what if they are ill?
It's quite a responsibility.

flow4 Tue 01-Jan-13 16:58:35

No-one has mentioned this yet, but surely where you live is relevant?

I grew up in North London and when I was a 14yo babysitter myself, 30+ years ago, I would often be paid £20 for a night. When I grew up and moved to Yorkshire and had my own children who needed a sitter, I was quite surprised to find the going rate was just a tenner, 25 years on!

Rates also inevitably depend on incomes in the area or social group. There are lots of families round here living on under £200/week, so £25 is a sizeable chunk of their income. Teenagers in such families often don't get any allowance/pocket money, so £25 is a significant sum to earn. Just for comparison, a paper round pays £12 per week. And remember there is no minimum wage for under 16s, and they don't need to pay tax.

OP, since this was your daughter's friend's 'job', not your daughter's, it's hard to know whether any of these factors might have applied. It might not be stinginess at all smile

FlipFlopFloss Tue 01-Jan-13 17:00:29

Can anyone tell me what the nationakl minimum wage is for 14yos please??

i can only find a 16plus rate.

V good post, Flow.

HeadfirstForAMistletoeKiss Tue 01-Jan-13 17:01:17

"So, it is ok to pay someone a pittance because otherwise they'd get nothing?"

It's a fact. If babysitting rates were too high nobody would go out.

HannahsSister40 Tue 01-Jan-13 17:01:37

So nobody cares about 14 yr olds alone in a house in the middle of the night in charge of other children?

Moominsarescary Tue 01-Jan-13 17:01:55

I'd say for NYE it was pretty stingy. I have no idea what they charge around here but would have thought £40 + would be more like it.

We pay ds1 £20 and the price of a take away pizza and he's sitting in his own house.

HeadfirstForAMistletoeKiss Tue 01-Jan-13 17:03:23

Also if the children were ill, or there were another problem, surely the babysitter would call the parents and they would come home?

shewhowines Tue 01-Jan-13 17:05:06

£25 for being in your own space, with a friend doing your own thing, while the kids sleep - probably with snacks thrown in.


Staying in on NYE with your parents?

I'd have been happy to pay £25 as a teenager for that privilege let alone earn £25.

YABU it was easy money and their choice to split it.

HeadfirstForAMistletoeKiss Tue 01-Jan-13 17:05:18

I used to babysit at 14 Hannah. If the 14 year old is sensible enough I have no problem with it. An adult would be at the other end of the phone surely?

blueemerald Tue 01-Jan-13 17:05:30

Surely the point is that, yes 99.9% of the time you end up paying for a babysitter to watch tv while your children sleep but what you are really paying for is someone to deal with any and all crises that come up- injury and house fire are two examples that spring to mind. I would expect someone I considered sensible enough to trust with my children's lives to also be sensible enough to charge a decent rate per hour/evening.

I babysit for 2 families who have a child with severe SEN and I get £9/10 an hour and a cab after 12 if need be.

blueemerald Tue 01-Jan-13 17:07:17

minimum wage rates

Pinot Tue 01-Jan-13 17:08:14

I am boggling at the rates being mentioned on here.

£50-£70 a night?

God job I'm a home-body.

pictish Tue 01-Jan-13 17:08:49

The 14 yr old me would rather get a tenner for watching tv, that not get a tenner for watching tv.

Lueji I don't think you and I move in the same circles at all.
You are sitting in your ivory tower there declaring poor people shouldn't go out, because paying £70 for a teen babysitter is perfectly reasonable, and if you can't afford it tough shit. This is madness.

Away and wipe your bum on a fiver or something will you? grin

toobreathless Tue 01-Jan-13 17:09:20

Hannah if I knew the babysitter I would have no problem with this. I wouldn't leave a very young child or baby with a 14 year old it would leave a child over 3 or 4 (depending on the child.) I was babysitting at 14 years.

Viviennemary Tue 01-Jan-13 17:11:17

It is definitely on the low side. But they are only 14. And a lot of people wouldn't leave their children with 14 year olds. And they were out of order to come home at 3 am if they were expected earlier.

I've just asked dd2 what she thinks she should be paid for an evening's babysitting (she's 15).

She said a fiver! smile

FlipFlopFloss Tue 01-Jan-13 17:11:45

Thanks flow - thats what I cant find a minimum wage for U16s.

I also dont think a 14yo can be expected to provide the same level of care as a qualified sitter/qualified child care worker.

There is only so much anyone can do with an ill child but a 14yo is unlikely (depending on experience/having younger siblings) to deal with an emergency ill child situation in perhaps the same way a qualified nursery nurse or even another adult mum might. If I left a 14yo in charge of my young kids I would expect a phonecall and their efforts to console my child - another mum or qualified nursery nurse would be able to guage if that child needed emergency care or OOH Drs etc etc, perhaps even taking the initiative in a serious emergency.

I am not dissing 14yos and some/many may cope extremely well and take the full initiative in an emergency situation but I suspect many would panic and probably call on their own mums for assistance whilst waiting for the parents to return/ambulance etc etc.

Rare that emergency situations are - they can and do arise. I think the level of pay to qualified sitters should be higher because of how they would be xpected to deal with an emergency situation - I would expect them to take control and deal with it where as with a 14yo -I would expect them to do the best they could and contact me and perhaps follow my intructions over the phone whilst I headed home.

HannahsSister40 Tue 01-Jan-13 17:11:58

Head first, I'm basing it on the fact that I have a 13 year old who wouldn't be allowed to babysit late evenings and definitely not be left alone in a house till 3am. And she's very mature! But I'd hate to give her that level of responsibility at the moment. I was thinking 15/16 we can let her babysit her younger siblings?

Wallison Tue 01-Jan-13 17:13:04

^ I don't think baby sitting aged 14 has anything to do with minimum wage.

Agree with this completely. Babysitting isn't working; it's sitting and watching telly while helping yourself to nice drinks and snacks.

The parents shouldn't have been late and as they were out so long they should have paid more. But they shouldn't pay twice unless they specifically requested two sitters.

FlipFlopFloss Tue 01-Jan-13 17:17:41

According to the Minimum Wage Scale that blueemerald posted I calculate that for 7 hours work she was underpaid by 76pence.

I do think its wrong the parents took the piss and stayed out longer than agreed and perhaps an extra fiver may have been a kind gesture to make up for this but not obligatory.

I also think that because there was 2 of them they should not expect double or increase in payment unless the parents asked for 2 sitters. It was a "bonus" imo that the sitter was allowed to take along a friend for company.

KobayashiMaru Tue 01-Jan-13 17:20:29

Babysitting isn't working; it's sitting and watching telly while helping yourself to nice drinks and snacks.

True, in theory. But what about all the other possibilities, from the simple baby waking up to the rarer events like sick or injured children? Thats what you pay babysitters for, and there is no way I would leave my children with 14 year olds, especially that I didn't know.

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