Need to Find the Best Babysitting Website? Everything You Need to Know about Sittercity vs Care.com
These sites have connected millions of families with caregivers that specialize in childcare, pet sitting, senior care, and more. But how do they compare? Does one provide better care and babysitting than the other?
Trust is a big factor when choosing someone to come into your home and look after your loved ones. Most people looking for a babysitter or caregiver online want to make sure the person they choose has been properly vetted.
So, how do the background checks compare in Care.com reviews vs Sittercity reviews? Is the cost of each site worth what you get in return?
What You’ll Find in this Sittercity and Care.com Review
In our review of Sittercity vs Care.com, you’ll find out how much each service costs, how it works, and a little about the companies behind these babysitting websites. We’ll also take a look at Care.com and Sittercity complaints and praise from users.
How trustworthy are the companies if you’re looking for a job as a caregiver? We’ll look at some Sittercity reviews and Care.com reviews from job sites like Indeed to hear what sitters have to say.
Wondering about Care.com or Sittercity scams? We’ll tell you what to watch out for.
If you’ve been wanting to learn more before looking for a babysitter on one of these websites, read on for a full Sittercity and Care.com review.
AdvisoryHQ Care.com & Sittercity Review | About the Companies
While one of these two babysitting websites has been around roughly 6 years longer than its competitor, the other has branched out internationally. Both companies have made a name for themselves as the top places to find a caregiver.
Here’s a brief on the companies behind Care.com and Sittercity.
Care.com Review | Company
Care.com was first launched in 2007 in the U.S., and in 2012, they expanded internationally. This babysitting website now operates in over 20 countries and has 29.6 million members worldwide. They’re the world’s largest online caregiving marketplace.
The company is headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts and it became a public company in 2014. When founder Sheila Lirio Marcello couldn’t find help caring for her first child, she conceived of the idea for the site.
Services offered by Care.com:
- Senior care
- Pet care
Sittercity Review | Company
Sittercity was started in 2001 in Boston but is now headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. They state that 95% of all U.S. neighborhoods have used their services when looking for a babysitter or other caregiver. They have over 7 million members.
While Care.com was founded by a mom, Sittercity was founded by a college student and babysitter (at the time), Genevieve Thiers. Who designed it to initially be a Boston-based service featuring local babysitters and nannies.
Services offered by Sittercity:
- Senior care
- Pet care
- Special needs
How Do Babysitting Websites Work?
Both sites use a similar model when it comes to how they work. We’ll get into Sittercity vs Care.com subscription pricing in the next section, but for now, let’s take a look at the basics of how you go about looking for a babysitter or finding a job.
How Do You Find a Caregiver?
- Sign up for an account with the site
- Fill in a questionnaire about your needs
- Post your job
- You can either review caregivers on the site or wait for responses to your listing
- You’ll have to pay a membership fee in order to make contact with applicants
How it Works on Care.com or Sittercity Jobs
- Sign up for an account with the site
- Fill out a profile describing your area of expertise
- Be sure to include your photo
- You can search through job opportunities or be contacted directly by those with a premium membership
Background checks are usually important for anyone looking for a babysitter, caregiver, or housekeeper. So, both Care.com and Sittercity offer a way to include those on a sitter’s profile.
In Care.com reviews of their background check policy, they mention that either a caregiver or the one hiring a caregiver can purchase a background check. One nanny mentioned paying for the basic check themselves and the family that wanted to hire them paid for a more extensive one.
It’s difficult to find the background check price listing on Care.com unless you’re a member, but we found another reference with their pricing.
Care.com charges the following for a background check:
- $9 for a preliminary background check
- $59-$79 for a preferred background check
- $300 for a premier background check
In Sittercity reviews of their background checks policy, they note that sitters with a background check get 5 times more profile views than those that don’t have one.
While signing up for the site initially is free, if a caregiver wants to have a background check noted on their profile to boost their chance of getting a job, it’s going to cost some money.
Sittercity charges the following for a background check:
- $15 for a basic background check
- $60 for an enhanced background check
- $20 for a motor vehicle records check
Sittercity background checks are only valid on a profile for 3 months.
Sittercity vs Care.com Subscription Pricing
Whether you’re looking for senior care, babysitting, or pet sitting, you can only get so far without paying for a subscription. Neither site allows direct contact between the job poster and the Care.com or Sittercity job seeker unless you buy a premium subscription.
There are several mentions of their subscription policy in Care.com reviews and Sittercity reviews, which we’ll get into shortly. First, let’s take a look at the pricing you’ll pay to fully utilize these babysitting websites.
Care.com Review | Pricing:
- Basic membership: Free
- Premium membership: $37/month or $147/year
Sittercity Review | Pricing:
- Basic membership: Free
- Premium membership: $35/month, $49/3 months, $98/year*
*The 3 month and annual subscriptions are currently showing a sale price, marked down from $70/3 months and $140/year.
Pricing for a monthly subscription for pet care, babysitting, or other help is pretty much the same on both sites. But Sittercity jobs subscriptions cost quite a bit less if you pay their annual rate at the markdown price.
Job Seeker Costs | Sittercity vs Care.com
Both sites allow job seekers to sign up and make a profile for free.
Care.com is less transparent about their pricing, but in Care.com reviews of user comments, they noted that you can only direct message a potential employer if you sign up for one of their premium subscriptions.
Sittercity is more transparent about pricing. They don’t mention the job seeker needing to sign up for a membership, however, they may still not have direct message contact unless the person posting a job has signed up for a premium subscription.
If you’re looking for Sittercity jobs you can give your profile a boost by paying $9.99 per month for a “Featured Sitter” subscription.
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Sittercity and Care.com Reviews | How Do People Rate these Services?
Right off the bat, as we began researching ratings and user reviews for this AdvisoryHQ News Sittercity and Care.com review, we saw some pretty low scores on certain review sites. But millions of people also use these two services, so there have to be plenty of people that also like them.
Rating scores were much better on employer sites, like Indeed.
We’ll give an overview of the Care.com and Sittercity reviews and ratings first, then go into some detailed positive and negative reviews for these two caregiver websites.
Care.com & Sittercity Reviews Ratings
- Facebook (out of 5): Care.com reviews, 2.4 / Sittercity reviews, 2.4
- Indeed (out of 5): Care.com reviews, 4.3 / Sittercity reviews, 4.3
- Sitejabber (out of 5): Care.com reviews, 1.2 / Sittercity reviews, 2.2
Care.com Reviews | Negative
- A premium job seeking subscriber complained about the company’s customer service in their 1-star Care.com review. They got no answers to email and thought that they should be able to contact the potential employer without both sides having to pay a premium subscription.
- Another frustrated reviewer that had posted a job on Care.com said navigating the site was a nightmare and that the “basic” free subscription did not let you do much of anything.
Care.com Reviews | Positive
- In one Care.com review, the sentiment was one that many can relate to. They said they have no family nearby to help with their little one, and the website gives them a great resource for finding quality childcare.
- Another happy reviewer of Care.com needed help with an aging parent and did not have much luck elsewhere. Through the site, they were able to review several qualified candidates and found one that was perfect for them and their mother.
Sittercity Reviews | Negative
- One reviewer had a Sittercity complaint about the company continuing to charge their card even though they canceled their subscription. They said communication and customer service were poor.
- A person looking for a babysitter at Sittercity said they had a hard time contacting responders and getting them to show up for a scheduled interview. They felt it was a waste of time.
Sittercity Reviews | Positive
- A happy sitter that was hired by a family and worked for them for a year, had no Sittercity complaints. She said her professional care babysitting was positively appreciated. Her Sittercity review said she’d use the service again.
- One parent that was a little apprehensive about allowing a stranger in their home, was put at ease with the safety badges for things like first aid training on multiple sitters. They gave a 5-star Sittercity review.
Care.com and Sittercity Scams
Anytime you’re contacting or being contacted by strangers online, there are going to be some scammers out there trying to take advantage of you for a quick buck.
Here are some common red flags that may lead to Care.com and Sittercity scams:
- Someone that states they are overseas but moving to your area soon
- Someone that wants to pay you in advance to hold the job
- Someone asking for your address to mail you a check
- Someone stating that a finance manager will handle payment or expenses
Often these scams include the lure of a big check, that happens to be fake, along with a request to wire them back the “accidental overpayment.”
Others may also ask for background check information to get personal details with no plans to hire. The Sittercity scams page says to never release your background check to anyone you’ve never communicated with.
AdvisoryHQ’s Care.com vs Sittercity Reviews Conclusion
If you’re just interested in the price of using a caregiver service, then Sittercity costs less than Care.com, especially if you’re going for an annual subscription. At their current marked down price, you’d save about 33% at Sittercity if paying 12 months at a time.
For those that are overseas or just searching for a larger pool of options, Care.com has a larger global footprint and has roughly four times more members than Sittercity.
The biggest complaint for users of both services are the automatic charges and difficulty canceling them. There are multiple Sittercity and Care.com reviews that echo that same issue and say customer service for that particular problem is very bad.
On a positive note people that use both services to find caregivers tend to be happy and appreciate the extra information given in the user profiles for background checks and safety qualifications.
If you’re looking for a job, then you may need to pay for a premium membership at Care.com to have a good chance or buy the featured sitter option at Sittercity.
Both of these caregiver and babysitting websites are nearly identical when it comes to user ratings. They both look to be good options if you’re looking for a babysitter for date night or a trusted caregiver for an older parent. Just be sure to read the fine print when you sign up so you know what charges to expect for using the service.
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Reasonable efforts have been made by AdvisoryHQ to present accurate information, however all info is presented without warranty. Review AdvisoryHQ’s Terms for details. Also review each firm’s site for the most updated data, rates and info.
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