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How to Find a Babysitter or Nanny Right Now

How to Find a Babysitter or Nanny Right Now

This is how to find a reliable babysitter or nanny when you need last-minute child care.

Need to find a last-minute babysitter, nanny, or child care provider in the New York area? Don’t panic! Luckily we live in an area where finding a child-care solution is easy—if you know where to look. This is how to find a babysitter or hire a nanny in the New York metro area—plus information on how to find a reliable babysitter.

Find a Babysitter or Nanny Using a Nanny Board

It can feel like such an overwhelming task finding a nanny or a babysitter in an emergency situation. Your first option should be to go with a trusted, established nanny board. A great place to start your search is with Mommybites Nanny Board, which consists of nannies who are recommended by their former employers, or the Mommybites Emergency Sitter Board

Ask Other Parents

The best way to find a babysitter or nanny is to ask a friend you trust, someone who has the same values as you. If you have a friend who is raising a child the way you want to raise yours, ask him or her for recommendations.

And if you have a friend who is (or your child’s friend’s parent is) a stay-at-home parent, see if you can come up with a temporary arrangement for them to watch your children. Bonus: built-in playdates.

Religious Groups Can Help You Find Babysitters

These groups often know of good babysitters and nannies from other parents within their communities.

Ask Your Pediatrician

Another excellent resource to help you find babysitters or nannies is your pediatrician. Parents will often contact their pediatrician when they no longer need a full-time nanny or babysitter and want to share an excellent caretaker with other families.

Try a Nanny or Babysitting Agency

Child care agencies typically do extensive background checks on nannies and babysitters before committing to finding them a placement

Share a Friend’s Nanny or Babysitter

Do you have friends who employ a nanny for their children? If so, see if that nanny might be willing to watch your kids on the days yours is unavailable. Your nanny can then return the favor. Of course, you check with your nanny to make sure she’d be okay with this—and talk to your friend—ideally before you’re in a jam.

If this sounds like the long-term option for you, there are other families in the area who have a nanny share that you might be able to join.

Search Locally 

Take advantage of the high-population density. Look for a sitter in your local neighborhood so her punctuality isn’t at the mercy of public transportation. The jackpot? Finding child care help in your own apartment building. 

Neighbors are also an invaluable child care resource when you need to run out to the doctor or grocery store and would rather not drag your kids along.

And with many area universities and colleges either closing or suspending in-person classes—including Hofstra, NYU, Rutgers, Columbia, NYIT, and St. Johns—there are plenty of college students who are more readily available for babysitting gigs. 

Invest in Future Babysitters 

Hire a pre-teen as a mother’s helper during school breaks or after school, which is likely when you need the most help. With NYC transit options aplenty, she won’t need a parent to drop her off. She will love the early babysitting experience, your kids will love the helper’s youth and energy, and your wallet will thank you for finding a less expensive option. In a few years, you will have effectively trained a full-fledged babysitter who can handle a multi-kid bedtime routine or adventure to Central Park.

Considerations when Hiring a Babysitter or Nanny

When hiring a child care provider, you obviously want to be very careful and thorough with your screening, both character and medical. It is important that you meet your potential caretaker with your baby, so you can see how he or she acts toward your child. If she is engaged with your infant and shows a sincere interest in your baby, that is a good sign. You'll also want to take the time to ask your potential nanny or babysitter questions to get to know them and their child care experience better.

These are eight characteristics that are cited time and again as to what is most important in their search for a caregiver:

  • Trustworthiness
  • Dependability 
  • Flexibility
  • Warmth
  • Friendliness
  • Lovingness
  • Good Communication
  • Has Safety Training (Infant CPR)

In short, your ideal nanny or babysitter is someone that you click with, someone who will be your partner in taking care of your little one. The good news is what may have seemed like an overwhelming task in the beginning of the search, gets easier toward the end—and there is a child care solution at your fingertips if you know where to look. As with anything in parenting, the beginnings are a bit challenging, but with a little time and energy, we trust our instincts and find our way.

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Courtesy Mommybites


Mommybites’ nanny boards only feature postings from current families. You can rely on their recommendations. If you need a nanny or babysitter, visit

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