The Difference between a Nanny and Babysitter

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I love my nanny I found with and have recommended your service innumerable times! Our nanny has been with our family for about 18 months and is now working longer hours and vacationing with us. I have 2 children, a 3 year old son with Autism and a 2 year old daughter. She has been a wonderful help with our son's hectic schedule that includes many different therapies and she takes him to some of them so I can have time with my daughter.

Emma,Alpharetta, GA

Nanny or Babysitter

What is the difference between a nanny and a babysitter?

Although nannies and babysitters both provide quality childcare, there are some basic differences between the two. While some of these differences may vary from family to family there are also some generalizations that can be made regarding the two positions.

Hired for childcare and perhaps some additional duties on a scheduled full-time or part-time basis and may live with the family. Provides childcare "as-needed" often for multiple families.
Generally an employee of the family, with the employer responsible for their half of the Social Security taxes and for income tax withholding. Considered a contract worker. The babysitter is responsible for all taxes.
May be paid a salary or hourly wage and may also receive vacation and/or holiday pay and perhaps other benefits. Paid only for hours worked.

If a nanny suits your needs, then you're in the right place. Go to the "Find a Nanny Now!" box under the Nannies4Hire logo in the upper left corner of this page and find nannies in your area that meet your needs.

Or perhaps for your family, a babysitter is the right choice. Visit our sister site and browse the many babysitters listed there that are available close to your home.

If you want more information about nannies and babysitters, read some of our blog posts:

  • The Parent-Nanny Relationship - Part employee, part family member, your nanny is a hybrid in your world. And she's oh so important to your kids. This is one of the relationships that you really want to do right. What can you do to ensure that your relationship with your nanny is on solid footing?
  • How to Recruit, Interview and Hire a Nanny - Finding and hiring the right nanny for your family can seem like a daunting task. We at are here to make the process easier for you.
  • Childcare Options - Parents considering childcare for their children have many options at their access.
  • Transitioning to a New Nanny or Babysitter - Your only child is starting school. You no longer need a full-time nanny: a part-time nanny or babysitter is what you will need going forward (at least until next summer). How do you prepare your child for the transition?
  • Hiring a Babysitter for the First Time - You are preparing to hire a babysitter for the first time. What all do you need to do to be well prepared for successfully employing a babysitter?