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Like Kids? Need cash?
Try Babysitting!

If the lemonade stand is a classic kid business, then babysitting is the same business opportunity for preteens. Plus, it has all the right qualities to fit a preteen and help with preteen money management. It can be a great way to earn money. It doesn't require any money to get started and uses skills you probably already have - especially if you have younger siblings.

But before you jump into your first job as a babysitter, you need to make sure this is good fit for you. Here are some things that you need to consider:

  • Do you enjoy being around kids? If the answer to this isn't "yes", you need to move on to a different money-making area. It really is that important. Kids (and parents) can tell usually tell whether you like them, and it can make all the difference in how well the job goes.
  • Are you responsible? Being responsible is a key part of being a babysitter. You are in charge for the children you are watching - and their parents have put a great deal of trust in you.
  • Are you mature? Can you handle an emergency? Although unlikely, an emergency can happen while you are babysitting. You must be able to handle the situation, which is a combination of knowing what to do as well as being able to actually do it. This doesn't always come with age - although it helps.

  • Are you informed or educated about children? You will need to be able to take care of kids' basic needs as well as being a good play partner. You will need to know the basics about feeding, diapering (or using the bathroom depending on age), dressing and bathing. Even if you don't need each of these skills for each job, they are key skills that a qualified babysitter should have.
  • Are you adaptable? Every child and family is different. You will need to be flexible to their routines and needs. If there are things that make you uncomfortable, you may need to reconsider working with that family.
  • Do you have good manners? You will most likely be caring for the children in their home, not yours. It important that you respect the family's privacy by not viewing rooms or areas that are not necessary for your job (like the parent's bedroom or closets).
  • Are you organized and self-confident? Children can tell if you're not sure of yourself and will act accordingly (maybe not to your advantage!). Be prepared. Get the necessary emergency information. Have a plan for what you and the kids will be doing that follows the house rules of the family.

Ok - you've figured out that babysitting is a GREAT fit for you, but you still need some help getting started on actually being a babysitter. Check out our resources:

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