Our reviewers evaluate products and services based on unbiased research. Top Consumer Reviews may earn money when you click on a link. Learn more about our process.

Jovie vs Sitter

Tuesday, March 5th

2024 Babysitter Agency Reviews

Jovie Review 3.5 Star Rating

Jovie

3.5 Star Rating
  • Babysitting agency with franchise locations in 30+ states
  • Wide range of childcare, from on-demand babysitting to full-time nannies
  • All babysitters undergo a local/state/federal background check
  • Caregivers receive ongoing training
  • Can take up to a week to be matched with a sitter
  • Requires a meeting with your local Jovie franchise to get started
  • Set-up fee plus hourly rate paid directly to Jovie
  • In business since 2001

Jovie (formerly known as College Nannies and Sitters and a subsidiary of Bright Horizons) operates as a babysitting agency with its own employees, providing various childcare options from occasional babysitting to full-time help. The caregivers are background-checked and receive ongoing training, and you can book services through a user-friendly app. However, Jovie's availability varies by location, and pricing, including setup fees, is determined locally. While some families have praised the vetting and quality of the babysitters, others have mixed feelings; your experience will depend on your local franchise. Jovie offers convenience, but it's a good idea to do some research on the reputation of your particular office before making a decision on this babysitting agency.

Sitter Review 2 Star Rating

Sitter

2 Star Rating
  • Free for a Basic account (limited to three messages)
  • Premium membership costs $68/month
  • Discounted rates with 3- and 12-month subscriptions
  • Parent company CareGuide is "A-" rated by the BBB
  • In business since 2013

Sitter, a part of the CareGuide network, offers access to various services, including babysitters. Founded in 2013, it stands as one of the original CareGuide services. However, the website's initial browsing process will require you to provide contact information, and the $68 per month Premium membership may not be worth the money: babysitter profiles lack background checks and comprehensive reviews, and the platform doesn't pre-screen users, leaving payment arrangements (and establishing trust) up to you. Client support is equally limited. With these downsides, Sitter is not a service we recommend for finding vetted childcare.

Where is the Best Place to Find a Babysitter for Your Children?

Finding a trustworthy babysitter can be a daunting task, especially if you're a parent with a busy schedule, or you're in a new town where you don't know who to ask for a recommendation. Fortunately, the digital age has made it easier than ever to connect with reliable caregivers through babysitting agency websites.

Online babysitter platforms offer a range of features and benefits that can simplify your search for the perfect babysitter. These websites provide a convenient way to find childcare services at your fingertips. You can browse profiles and contact potential babysitters from the comfort of your home. This eliminates the need for time-consuming interviews, begging for referrals in community Facebook groups, or searching through classified ads, making the process far more efficient.

The Best Babysitter Agencies Compare Babysitter Agencies Compare Babysitter Agency Reviews What are the best Babysitter Agencies Best Babysitter Agency Reviews

Babysitter Agency FAQ

A babysitter takes care of your child (or children) while you're away - at work, on a date, at the gym, or for any other reason. Babysitters can be male or female, old or young, but some states have statutes regulating the age that minors can be left in charge (usually anywhere from age 12-16).
A mother's helper is usually there to help with the kids while at least one parent is still present: maybe taking care of lunch and activities while Mom works from home, or doing the laundry while Dad gets the kids to bed. Nannies work on a more fixed schedule, either part-time or full-time, and there are usually employment/tax considerations to keep in mind. Au pairs come from other countries and live with the family, watching the kids and tending to other household responsibilities in exchange for room/board and sometimes a monetary stipend. Compared with those three situations, babysitting is much less formal and more of an as-needed childcare arrangement.
Word of mouth is the most common way to vet a new babysitter. It's great to have someone that's already taken good care of your friends' children with no problems! The downside is that these sitters will be in high demand, and you might not be able to get them on your desired schedule. You can also ask for references or run a background check, if you're considering a babysitter that isn't known to you personally.
When you're new to an area or don't have any available sitter referrals from friends, you could put the word out in local groups on social media. Unfortunately, that could attract less-than-reputable individuals! Instead, consider using a babysitter referral service: these platforms allow prospective sitters to create a profile, complete with client reviews and information about their background and any certifications they have (like infant/child CPR). Some referral services make it possible to get a background check, though the sitter may have to opt in before you can access the results.
You can expect to pay a membership fee in the neighborhood of $20/month to access most babysitter referral services. That gives you unlimited access to the database and to making connections with the sitters you find. Some platforms give you limited free access to get started, or a trial period to see if there are enough potential babysitters in your area to make it worth the membership fees.
That varies widely by geographic location, the number of children you have (and their ages), the expertise level of the sitter, and what you expect your sitter to provide. You can ask other parents in your area what the going rate is: underpay your sitter and they're not likely to come back! In the past, the reported average hourly rate for babysitters in the US ranged from $15-$20, but in less urban areas it tended to be closer to $10/hour.
Yes. You can make whatever arrangements you like with your babysitter. It's not uncommon to ask a sitter to fix a light meal, take care of the dishes after the kids are in bed, or tidy up the playroom while the children are watching a movie. Just remember that their primary focus should be on keeping your little ones safe, not housekeeping.
Compare the Best Reviews

Continued from above...

Additionally, babysitting agency websites prioritize safety and reliability. They often vet their babysitters through background checks and interviews, giving you access to trusted caregivers. This extra layer of security can bring peace of mind to parents, knowing that their children are in the hands of experienced and thoroughly screened individuals.

Moreover, these websites provide a wide selection of potential babysitters. You'll have access to a diverse pool of caregivers, allowing you to find someone who matches your family's specific needs and preferences. Whether you require a babysitter for a one-time event or regular childcare, agency websites can accommodate your unique requirements. This flexibility is particularly valuable for parents with varying schedules and childcare needs.

When choosing a babysitting agency, it's not always easy to know which ones will best suit your situation. Here are some key comparison points that can help you narrow it down:

  • Availability. First, you'll need to verify that the website operates in your area and can connect you with babysitters in your locality. Then, check if the platform offers babysitters who are available when you need them, whether it's for date nights, weekends, or weekdays. Finally, some websites may offer additional services, such as tutors or pet-sitters, so choose one that aligns with your family's unique needs.
  • Reputation. Look for websites with a strong reputation for connecting families with reliable babysitters. Check online reviews and ask for recommendations from other parents. And, of course, look at the ratings and feedback on each individual sitter, regardless of the babysitting agency you're using. The best babysitting agencies conduct thorough background checks on babysitters to guarantee the safety of your children.
  • Fees. Compare the fee structures of different platforms. Some charge you a membership or sitting fee, while others take a percentage of the babysitter's earnings.
  • Scheduling and communication. Evaluate the platform's scheduling tools and messaging systems to determine how easy it is to coordinate with babysitters.
  • Customer support. Consider the level of customer support provided. Responsive support can be invaluable when you have questions or encounter issues. If your babysitter doesn't show up (or worse, you have a bad experience), you want to know that the agency will have your back.

To help you find the perfect babysitter for your kids, Top Consumer Reviews has checked out and ranked various babysitting agencies. We hope this info boosts your confidence as you search for someone to look after your little ones when you're not around!

The Best Reviews of Babysitter Agencies