Here's How Much Parents Pay Babysitters Across America

You might not be surprised by the city with the highest rates.

Child-rearing isn't a solo endeavor by any means. After all, they say "it takes a village." But childcare can't always be a family affair. That's why babysitters are essential for parents trying to navigate today's chaotic world. However, unlike shipping the kids off to Grandma's for the night, babysitters cost money and according to UrbanSitter's annual National Childcare Rate Study, their help doesn't exactly come cheap.

According to the survey, San Francisco stands as the most expensive city in which to hire a sitter, at $17.34 per hour for one child, while Phoenix offers the least expensive babysitters in the nation at $11.83 per hour for one child. However, the national average equals out to be $16.43. Also, of the 20,000 parents polled, 60 percent said they'll spend over $1,000 on babysitters this year, while 40 percent expect to spend more than $30,000 a year for their nanny.

Researchers also discovered that, while 55 percent of parents tip their babysitter — an additional expense on top of an already pricey expenditure — 45 percent don't. However, 83 percent of those surveyed do offer their babysitter various perks, including entertainment (i.e. TV, Wi-Fi, and on-demand movies), free food or delivery ordering, paid transportation or mileage, and museum of amusement park passes. Thirty-eight percent agreed that they hire a sitter at least once per week.

But, as self-care becomes increasingly important, parents are also hiring babysitters so they can escape the demands parenthood incurs every now and then. While parents still hire babysitters for the usual reasons — date night, errands or appointments, backup care, and sick days or school holidays — "me time" now marks the fifth top reason parents hire a sitter. Of those who seek solitude, 26 percent use this alone time to go to the spa or get a massage, 14 percent work out, and 11 percent go to the nail salon.

Regardless of the reason, though, these statistics emphasize that there's no shame in asking for help. Many assume that being a "good parent" means taking on all the associated responsibilities singlehandedly. But great parenting starts with great parents, so don't hesitate to take some time to recuperate and reenergize here and there.

Check out the infographic from UrbanSitter for more information. 

Courtesy of UrbanSitter
Courtesy of UrbanSitter

Cover image via Geinz Angelina / Shutterstock

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