Have a way with babies? Turn it into cash as a night nanny — it's a recent trend among new moms and dads who are looking to hire overnight help to feed and comfort newborns while they rest! Here's how to get started.
Connect with parents in need.
If you have a knack for comforting fussy newborns (and calming moms and dads, too), you may have what it takes to be a night nanny — that's a pro who's paid anywhere from $25 to $35 an hour to tend to babies overnight.
The best way to find gigs? Post ads in local parents' newsletters, sign up with local childcare agencies, and create a profile on Care.com. Be sure to list all your experience with infants and babies, advises Carly Carioli, editor in chief of Care.com. Post photos that show you smiling, warm, neat, and polished. Finally, list as many references as you can, but make sure they're solid (give them a heads up) since parents typically call them all!
One of the best ways to impress potential parents is by asking the right questions. "Talk to parents about their nighttime preferences," says Carioli, who recommends asking questions such as:
- "How should your child be positioned in his crib?"
- "What do you think is the best nighttime routine?"
- "If baby is nursing, should I bring her to you for feeding then burb per afterward?"
Reassuring parents that you're willing to take their direction (no matter how much experience you have) boosts their comfort level with you.
As a night nanny, you'll be expected to stay awake to watch over the baby and attend to her on demand (ASAP), so you may need to rearrange your sleep schedule accordingly. If you fall asleep only to wake up to the baby's cries, odds are Mom and Dad will have been awakened too — and the whole point of a night nanny's job is to give parents a break.
Also smart? Carioli recommends getting additional training from organizations like the Newborn Care Specialists Association (NCSA), which offers a certificate program — it'll increase demand for your services! You can also boost parents' peace of mind by learning infant CPR and first-aid.
Check out the Red Cross to find classes near you.