Finding a Babysitter Online

By: Stacy McCloud
By: Stacy McCloud

Knoxville (WVLT) - Schools out and that means you're probably searching for someone to watch your child.

Whether it's everyday, or just now and then, it seems people are moving away from simply word of mouth to the word on the web.

But is it safe? Volunteer TV Stacy’s McCloud tells us how some local moms are finding what they say are the best babysitters out there.

Three-year-old Brogan and his new friend Connor don't know it, but their friendship blossomed thanks to the internet!

Moms and dads are no longer logging on for simple parenting advice.

They're setting up play dates, ranking the best play grounds and pediatricians, and now finding the best babysitters!

Internet ads are the new resumes and multiple mommy opinions are the hottest references.

"One thing we know is mommies trust mommies,” says KnoxMoms.com manager Barbie Shipley.

Message boards on the new local site KnoxMoms.com, are filled with posts of both those looking for a baby-sitter and those wanting to babysit!

"Mommy recommendations are the best," Fairly new to the area, with a three-year-old going strong, and another baby on the way, Ali James, site producer of KnoxMoms.com, knows how difficult it is to find a trusting sitter. "It's one thing to let someone come in and clean or work outside your home, but this is someone your child is going to get attached to."

It may sound scary, but with the immediate hits and endless opinions, James says as long as you are being smart, networking sites are the way to go.

James suggests that you always ask for a complete resume, thoroughly check many references, meet in person without the children, then set up a supervised play date.

If it's a teen, meet their parents, get a background check, and most importantly trust your instincts.

From now on, Tabatha Ogle says the net will be her babysitting guide. Speed attracted her to search online, multiple moms advice will keep her coming back. "Listening to and trusting a lot of moms opinions worked for me very well."

Easy, convenient, and seemingly the new word of mouth.

Places like KnoxMoms.com not only have open discussions about finding a babysitter, they also have helpful topics like how much to charge.

Knoxville Police Department does not recommend ever doing a background search online, they suggest going to your local police or the TBI.

Local police can only search the particular county you live in, so it would be more beneficial to contact the TBI.

You can download the form online at http://www.tbi.state.tn.us.

The cost is only $29. KPD also suggests that if you are advertising your babysitting services, you should do your own background check through the TBI and provide that for customers so they don't have to pay.


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