Having family or friends babysit for you can be free, flexible, convenient and have the advantage that they already know your child. But they are not registered or inspected. It is the parent’s responsibility to make sure that their child is looked after safely.

Interviewing sitters and checking their references will help you narrow down your choices. Prepare a list of questions to ask ahead of time.

These are some things you may want to ask sitters

  • Information about their experience  
  • whether they’re certified in infant and child first aid, including CPR 
  • if they’ve taken a babysitter course
  • how they feel about pets, if you have one

It’s a good idea to invite sitters over for a test run while you’re at home. That way, they can get familiar with your household and you’ll see how they interact with your children. For more information and advice, you may wish to visit www.childcare.co.uk.

If you want help with childcare costs through Working Tax Credit, Universal Credit, Tax-free childcare or Childcare Vouchers you need to use a provider registered with Ofsted or a nationally accredited provider. To check to see if your childcare provider is Ofsted registered, please check Ofsted’s website.

Search our services section to find babysitters or childcare providers.