It’s a question as old as Eve: Who’s trustworthy enough to take care of the kids when you can’t be there? Fear not, Super Mom! We asked some of Bergen’s busiest baby mamas for their top childcare picks. Read on for how to find the best babysitters in Bergen County, NJ.
LIFEWORXS: This in-home service provider has several offices in the NY Metro area including one here in Englewood at 46 North Dean Street. LifeWorx provides a broad array of high-quality in-home services including nannies, housekeepers, elder care, personal chefs, organizers and personal assistants. Lifeworx makes the process easy for their customers by doing the interviewing and background checks at their offices and also providing insurance for the selective 10 percent of applicants they approved through this process. It does come at a premium, but it is a major time saver for those looking for help. You have two options for membership: The first is to become a member of LifeWorx for a $200 annual membership fee, which would allow you access to any of the services they offer. The child care rate is $30- $35 per hour, and the person you would receive would have workmen’s compensation and liability insurance through LifeWorx. You would be invoiced every two weeks for their service. The second option is to pay a $400 registration fee to find a nanny that you would hire and pay directly an agreed-upon salary. Once you decide to hire someone, the placement fee is 15 percent of their annual gross compensation. The fee is applied on the day you decide to hire the person you had interviewed. LifeWorx offers a one-week money back guarantee and a 12-week replacement guarantee.
SITTERCITY: This is the website many mom friends I know have turned to, but I have heard mixed reviews (dozens upon dozens of interviews, unreturned e-mails, etc.), but I figured I would give it a try myself. Membership pricing is reasonable for access to sitters: $35.00/month or $70.00/3 months. Within a week of signing up, I received about four emails and I am averaging about two to three a week. I had requested first aid certification but unfortunately, many did not have that—or recent infant experience. Sittercity does provide a helpful checklist on how to go through your search. If you want a background check that includes basic/detailed information along with driving record, you need to contact Sittercity directly. I don’t love not having someone who is automatically background checked, but still, I’ll give it a try!
ABC NANNY SOURCE: Located in Summit, this service takes the work out of searching for a nanny and is best used for someone looking for long-term help (one year plus, as they stand behind their recommendations for a year). There are definite pros to using a professional service: Background checks and driving records are up to date and included, electronic fingerprints are on file, candidates have first aid training and a thorough screening process has been done through intensive interviewing. Fees are as follows: $225 for family registration fee, which includes numerous questions to best assess your needs. Options for sitters are as follows: Full Time Live Out Nannies are typically on duty between 40-55+ hours per week. They are available at a fee of 12 percent of the nanny's anticipated gross annual salary (minimum $2400). Full Time Live In Nannies are typically on duty between 50-60+ hours per week. They are available at a fee of 12 percent of the nanny's anticipated gross annual salary (minimum $2400). Part Time Live Out Nannies are typically on duty between 25-39 hours per week. They are available at a fee of 14 percent of the Nannies anticipated gross annual salary (minimum $1800). Summer Only Nannies (mostly certified teachers with education credentials) on duty between the months of June through August are available at a flat fee of $1,295.
CARE.COM: Membership starts at 39.00/month or you can try it out for free getting limited information on caregivers. To register, you fill out a basic profile, describing your family and your needs (i.e. part-time vs. full-time care, help needed, etc.) then you get a list of providers in your area by zip code. You can then review their profiles, deciding which ones you want to do additional backgrounds checks on. This site functions in the same way as Sittercity.
AU PAIR PROGRAM: Thinking about live-in help? Consider hosting an au pair. The U.S. State Department’s au pair program is a cultural exchange that enables a young person from another country to come here and provide up to 45 hours of childcare a week in exchange for room, board, an educational experience and a weekly stipend of about $200. Program fees range from about $8,000 to $10,000. The State Department officially recognizes 14 au pair agencies, and some of the bigger ones include Au Pair in America, Cultural Care Au Pair, Go Au Pair and AuPairCare.
And don’t forget about the Bergen Mama sitter listing, where we list babysitters, nannies and housekeepers who are available to work now in Bergen County NJ. With all the available options, you’re sure to find someone stellar to watch the littles while you do your thing. Now get hiring!