Choosing the proper in-home child care can be daunting, especially when balancing quality with cost. UrbanSitter compiles data yearly to provide insights into the average cost of in-home child care across the US. Here’s a comprehensive look at the cost of child care, helping you make an informed decision for your family.

In-Home Child Care Rates

Based on UrbanSitter’s latest data, the average rate for in-home child care in the US is $23.61 per hour for one child and $26.57 per hour for two children. This average cost varies based on location, experience of childcare providers, hours per week, and any additional services offered. Here are some noteworthy stats:

  • Highest Child Care Rate: San Francisco, at $26.75 per hour for one child and $29.67 per hour for two children.
  • Lowest Child Care Rate: San Antonio, starting at $16.14 per hour for one child.
  • National Average Babysitting Rate for 3 Kids: $29.36 per hour.
  • National Average Flat Rate for 1 Child: $106.33, with an average booking length of 4.5 hours.
  • Reasonable Price for a Babysitter per Day for 1 Child: $130 to $235 for an 8-hour day, depending on location.
  • Overnight Babysitter Rate: Typically ranges from $150 to $300 or more, based on location, experience, responsibilities, and the number of children.

Key Factors to Consider

When determining how much to pay for in-home child care, consider these key factors:

  • Location: Rates can vary significantly depending on whether you live in an expensive city or a more affordable area.
  • Experience and Qualifications: More experienced and qualified caregivers (i.e., infant care) will typically charge higher rates.
  • Additional Services: Tasks such as cooking, cleaning, or tutoring will increase the hourly rate.
  • Type of Care: Different forms of child care, like full-time or part-time care, have different costs.
  • Number of Children: Caring for multiple children usually results in a higher hourly rate.

Types of In-Home Child Care

Understanding the different types of in-home child care is crucial for selecting the best fit for your family’s needs. Here’s a breakdown:

Type of Care Average Hourly Rate Duties Included
Nanny $18-$30 Full-time care, educational activities, household chores
Babysitter $15-$25 Occasional care, basic supervision
Au Pair $8-$12 Cultural exchange, flexible hours
Mother’s Helper $12-$16 Assists primary caregiver, light household chores

Related: UrbanSitter’s Guide to Pay Rates

Alternatives to In-Home Child Care

If in-home child care rates per hour are outside your budget, consider these child care service alternatives:

  1. Daycare Centers: Offer structured environments and often have lower rates than in-home care. Daycare providers offer opportunities for social interaction and educational activities.

  2. Nanny Sharing: Sharing a nanny with another family can significantly reduce monthly costs while providing personalized care. This option allows you to split the nanny’s salary and additional expenses.

  3. Co-op Child Care: Forming a co-op with other parents in your community can be a cost-effective solution. Each parent takes turns caring for the children, providing a collaborative and supportive environment.

  4. After-School Programs: For school-aged children, after-school programs offer supervised care and enriching activities several days a week until you finish work.

  5. Family and Friends: Relying on trusted family members or friends for child care can provide a familiar and comfortable environment for your child at little to no cost.


Financial Assistance and Subsidy Programs

Various subsidy programs and financial assistance options are available to help with the cost of child care. Many states offer child care subsidies to help eligible families cover these expenses. Programs such as the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) provide financial assistance specifically to low-income families. Each program has specific eligibility criteria that families must meet to qualify for aid.

Making an Informed Decision

Deciding how much to pay for in-home child care providers involves considering factors such as location, cost of living, type of care, and your family’s specific needs. By understanding the average rates for child care expenses and what influences them, you can make an informed decision that ensures your child receives quality care without breaking the bank.

See how these babysitting rates compare to last year’s data.