So far, my experience babysitting through this site has been very positive. Here, I share the pros and cons.
Care.com: The Best Job-Searching Experience I've Ever Had
All in all, my Care.com experience has been very positive. Back in high school, my friends and I had to fill out dozens and dozens (no exaggeration) of job applications before getting an interview. With Care.com, it was a relief to have such an incredibly simple method of applying. You write a simple email to the parent and they look at your profile for the rest of your information and credentials. I had much more success in finding jobs on Care.com than I did when I filled out applications for boring cashiering positions.
My conclusion: try it. It will probably work, but if it doesn't, you're not losing any money over it (unless you choose to). I got my first job offer after only two days after joining. I can't guarantee that everyone will have the same success, but the odds look pretty good from here.
Note: Although my experience has been positive, many people have had much worse luck than I did and even call it a "scam"—read the comments below and search online to see stories of people's one-star reviews and other negative experiences.
Babysitting on Care.com
For starters, I'm writing this review from the perspective of the babysitter—still, parents will find it helpful as well, since I've interacted with many parents through Care.com and I am happy to share a little of their experience, as well.
No Membership Fees for Applicants
As a poor college kid, I chose the Care.com because it didn't require me to pay for membership (unless I opted to upgrade to a premium membership in order to become a "featured member," which I definitely didn't). At first, I was very excited. As soon as I put together my profile, I started emailing parents and I hoped they'd be just as excited about me as I was about them.
Connecting With Parents
However, none of the parents I emailed responded to me. It was a little discouraging, but things turned around very quickly. I got an email from a woman whom I had never actually emailed. She said she was looking for someone to babysit her eight-week-old for three days a week, and we agreed to meet the next week for an interview. The job turned out great, and I am still there after seven months.
A few weeks later, I got an email from a parent who wanted me to tutor her two sons after school, and a few weeks after that, I received an email from a woman (again, one to whom I had never applied) who had me babysit her one-year-old on weekends.
I actually had such a full schedule that I ended up quitting one of the jobs so that I could continue taking classes at community college.
Applying for Babysitting Jobs on Care.com
All of this brings me to a key point: if you choose to use Care.com, then by all means be aggressive in applying to as many jobs as possible, but don't expect a response. The right family will eventually find you.
The first family that contacted me explained it this way: "When we posted the job, we got at least eight offers from potential babysitters, but none of them were what we were looking for. When a parent advertises for a sitter, they already have in mind their own idea of the ideal babysitter for their family."
What Parents Are Looking For
I began to see the truth of this as I worked for more families; parents are looking for a sitter who can be an extension of their own parenting style, and it is very important to them that they find someone who will seamlessly blend into their family's system.
How Does Care.com Work?
Care.com allows you, the job applicant, to use a free account or to pay for a featured account. I suggest you try the free version before paying, but if you're curious, here are the numbers: $39 for one month, $78 for three months, and $156 for six months.
All applicants have the option to pay for a background check as part of their profile. I was a little hesitant to take advantage of this feature because my previous retail job had taken about five weeks to finish my background check, but Care.com took about thirty seconds to confirm that I had no criminal history. I recommend that you get your background check ASAP, because families expect you to have this and they will be unlikely to hire if you don't.
How Do References and Reviews Work?
The References feature of this site is pretty interesting: you give Care.com the contact information of someone that you have worked for, and they schedule a phone interview with them, which will be recorded and posted on the website. There is also a review section, which allows other Care.com members to leave a written review for you.
Calendar and Stats?
You can fill out a weekly calendar of your availability; however, I've found that some parents don't bother reading it before contacting people. Additionally, each member has statistics listed on their page about how frequently and promptly they respond to messages from other members.
What Types of Jobs Are Available on Care.com?
Members choose to list themselves as caregivers for children, pets, the elderly, or special needs children; they can also list themselves as tutors or housekeepers. The best part is that you aren't limited to just one of these options; you can list your profile in as many categories as you like.
Other extremely useful articles about finding (or being) a nanny/sitter:
- Tips for Beginning Babysitters and Nannies: Lessons I've Learned the Hard Way.
- Nannies Needed! What you Need to Know On Becoming a Great Nanny and Other Great Tips
- How to Find a Good Babysitter
- How to Choose Quality Childcare for Your Baby
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
Brandy on April 15, 2020:
This site is just a huge scam for both sides, the family and the caregiver! I would never use it again. Please use another option as care.com is a terrible company
Cristina on January 04, 2019:
I used care.com to hire a nanny/babysitter to help us out a couple times a week and for date nights. On New Years I come to my babysitter DRUGGED OUT ON MY COUCH AND TOTALLY INCOHERENT WITH MY 3-MONTH-OLD SON!! SHE DID DRUGS IN MY HOUSE AND PUT MY CHILD IN DANGER. I WILL NEVER USE THIS SITE AGAIN OR ANY SITE FOR THAT MATTER. JUST BECAUSE YOU HAVE A CLEAN BACKGROUND DOESNT MEAN YOUR CLEAN. YOU JUST HAVENT BEEN CAUGHT YET. VERY UPSETTING AND DISAPPOINTED.
Jessica Tormos on December 17, 2018:
I have been a nanny for over 15 years and joined care.com 6 years ago. I had an impeccable profile 17 reviews at 5 star ratings. This of course I came across a gentleman posing to be a parent. He wanted me to nanny for his children at a hotel room. I was in guard as I do not deal with too many men who seek childcare. Nevertheless I ask to speak to his wife he msg back saying she was busy. We never communicated in the phone only email and txt. So he told me he wanted to hire me for $30/hr but I will have to meet him at a hotel. When I declined and told him I felt uncomfortable he began harassing me via phone. I woke up the next morning to care.com removing my profile after this party made false and slanderous statements. Care.com deletes profiles of its members without doing investigations.
Disappointed Mom on August 21, 2018:
Nope. I am a responsible adult using the site in an attempt to find a Mother's Helper. It didn't work out for me from both a quality of care AND billing perspective. I didn't realize I had signed up for *automatic renewal* at the premium rate. I am super careful to avoid anything that resembles 'auto-payment'. Must have been in the fine print. Bogus.
Shawn on May 29, 2018:
I would recommend against the site. I travel with family a lot, and the site requires a membership per country visited! Ranges from $30 USD to almost $50 AUD per month
Cj on April 13, 2018:
This company is a SCAM!! Don't use it!
raincoaster on October 22, 2017:
I'm a pet-sitter and tried Care.com because I thought it was a good business model. Having seen word-for-word identical postings, put up at the most ridiculous hours (like 4am every day, literally every day a new job with identical wording goes up), over and over from purportedly different people in slightly different locations, I now think it's like Ashley Madison, where most of the postings are fake. They just want you to pay to communicate with these people. I've been a full-time professional for seven straight years and I have yet to receive one genuine message from a single person on Care.com after six months. They won't get another penny of mine. Kijiji works for me, and it's really free, not just pretend-free.
Yukiko on March 08, 2017:
Thank you for this review. I joined the Care a few weeks ago and have been trying to figure out how to be involved. Your thorough review was so perfect!
Michelle on February 17, 2017:
This website won't let you interact with families, view your messages, or correspond in any way without paying for premium membership.
SilverMoonGoddess on January 22, 2017:
It's sad that two years later, I see that nothing has changed with Care.com, even with the legal issues that they are having. My advice is the same: Have your potential caregivers undergo a fingerprint test offered by your local law enforcement officials and as a careseeker, you need to be prepared and willing to do the same. My last job through Care.com was almost 2 years ago and it nearly cost me my leg and my life; and it could have been avoided had the family been required to do a background check. I would have known that the family, from the Philippines, had an open case with the county for the conditions of the house (child's room and other bedrooms that I had no access to and was unaware of the health violations involved) and the fact that there were pending neglect charges that would have shown up on a background check. If the person you want to hire will not do a criminal check, or if the family will not, don't hesitate to say NO. NO job is worth the cost of your life. Here I am 2 years later and I'm still recovering from a life threatening injury that destroyed my life. Please do not use Care.com, and please protect yourself and your family.
Patricia on January 17, 2017:
Care.com used to be so nice to get jobs but they have changed so much. I used to get so many great opportunities . Now you have to pay just to get any answers or replies from any families. It is not a at all very user friendly r helpful anymore. Very disappointed with this company. Oh yea and just try to find a way to call care.com and talk to a person . You can forget that too,
Oink Oink Carecom on September 18, 2016:
I don't know where to start. After 4 years of successfully making tons of money on Care.com working for 300 plus families maybe more doing date night with 5 stars and great recommendations for my services my account was closed. I called 877-227-3115, press 1, press 1, press 3 and finally 4 to speak to a human this took about 15-20 of holding for a human. When I finally got a person on the line, they said I’m not eligible to use the website. When I asked why? The person said that Care.com is not required to release specific details as to why an account is closed. I asked to speak to a Supervisor who did not call me back but emailed me and said that:
“As per your request I have reviewed your case and unfortunately the decision to close your account is irreversible.”
I now have a Sittercity account and just like I had no issues with my background check or my DMV report on Care.com, I now have settled into Sittercity and other sitter sites on Mommy Groups, Facebook and Google. The moral of the story is that at the park with the other Nanny’s none have background checks and fifty percent of the girls on Care.com are here illegally and they work illegally with no license or background check and yet, I get blocked while my Nanny friends are still searchable. What does this tell you? I could actually show you the profiles of all my illegal friends that have no papers but pay and appear as PREMIUM care providers and give you all the names of the numerous sitters on Care.com with no papers to work in the USA but yet they all are employed by and are all employed by families who found them on Care.com. All the Nanny’s at the park have a Care.com and all pay premium fees to appear first in searches but none are legal to work in the USA. Care.com you have to wake up and smell the coffee. Yet, I’m block for life for what? I would really like to know why? And, some of these Nanny’s are expected to work from 7am to 7pm Monday thru Saturday for $9 an hour and if it’s 120 degrees outside you have to wash the Master’s car while the children nap and clean the toilets and be a maid and Nanny for $9 an hour, 6 days a week working for $600 a week being a SLAVE, with not OT and no rest for the SLAVES that agree to work for the horrific people on Care.com. I could write a book.
I think someone else mention it on this comment page. Sittercity does not have one million clients that I’m use to on Care but I need to move on and I have plenty of clients that are now my clients that will still use my services regardless of Care.com. I am so honest and awesome that I created an empire with the constant help of GOD. Also, on Facebook there a secret pages for Nanny Services. Also, if you Google, sitter services you can find other Sitter Services. On FB you need to know someone to allow you to join the different private Babysitting Services. I texted my clients as soon as I realized after not being able to log in to my Care account (only to find out after a phone call to Care that I had been kicked out or removed or terminated) about the decision of Care to terminate me for God knows what/why reason. I don’t know if my clients received an email saying not to touch me or use my services. I’m not sure if they did, none have said a word about an email stating not to touch me or use my services, as none have had the heart to tell me and I have been in their life for five years or longer and maybe that is why.
I don’t know why I was terminated or removed? That bothers me. I would like to have an idea of why please? I can’t think of anything and I’m a pretty smart individual. My only thought is I’m very popular so maybe someone out there was jealous of how successful I am. And, I am. Regardless, of this terrible news and decision from Care you have to move on and if someday there is a class action lawsuit, contact me, as I would love to join in. This is unacceptable after 4-5 years I expect to know what or why Care.com.
Patricia on November 16, 2015:
Sittercity and Care.com sites are fraught with scammers, in two weeks posting as a nanny on Sittercity I received a dozen emails from check scammers. Google this site and Care.com via BBB, Sittersity or Care.com complaints, Nanny complaints, etc, and you will be shocked at what you find. Both Sittercity's and Care.com's income is from selling memberships to parents, and background checks to nannies. Getting jobs is simply a byproduct of that, if you get lucky. Once Sittercity has your debit card info for a one-time background check, you can't get them out of your bank account for recurring charges. In the details of your bank account, they will show up as a Recurring billing, under the name of "Computer Stores Miscellaneous." I had to close my bank account to stop recurring billing by them. My friend has had the same experience of fraud from both the website, and the users, with Care.com - from fake check scammers to pedophiles. Beware, beware, beware...and Google them extensively before using.
KenPeters2015 on May 15, 2015:
Another baby has died in the hands of a Care.com babysitter. A 2 year old this time. It irks me to see these blogs about Care.com but at the same time it is a platform to let others know not to leave babies or children with Care.com or any other babysitting site that is internet based with no proper pre screening.
Sarahmiller1970 on May 12, 2015:
I wanted to let people know especially nanny's how fraudulent and unethical Care.com really is. Care.com will terminate any member, parent or caregiver for any reason or no reason at anytime with out warning or explanation. I did do an investigation to see how true this really was. OR are people just breaking the rules and whining?
People are not whining. I am sure some did break the rules but for the most part the ones that take the time to make a review about it are telling the truth. I myself have been shut down by care.com a few times.
Here is what happens: Care.com will not allow for many negative reviews on a caregivers page from any and all parents. (WHY EVEN HAVE REVIEWS THEN?) That was my question.
Care.com will only allow no call no show or 1 star reviews of little importance and lacking detail. Care.com will terminate both the parents account that wrote the review and the caregivers account as well and then ban both parties for life.
Care.com clearly states : "We welcome all feedback and encourage all parties to report any issues either by review the report button or phone call to the customer service center" This is Why: Care.com targets all accounts that have issues and will throw that issue out the door within 15 minutes of reporting it by closing both accounts. This gets rid of all legal issues and is much less time consuming then investigating any complaint. Care.com could not care less what happened.
Care.com reps will say "Thank you for letting us know we tall all reports very seriously" Then they will look up both accounts and send out an auto generated message to both email addresses that they both have been removed and banned.
If you look up Sitejabber, Reviewopedia, The dollhouse, Complaints board, Hiya, Waffles at noon even the BBB (the BBB also only allows for a few negative remarks as well) there are over 1000 reviews from parents that said they were banned for reporting a bad babysitter. Also babysitters reporting abusive parents were banned as well. How could 1000 people be making this up? They are not. That is only one issue of many.. Auto renew billing that is hidden in very small print with no E receipt..Unsupported background checks from Care.com. Care.com uses as NO ID system to run checks...Criminals are running rampant as well as scams. Minors, prostitution and all sorts of illegal activity is going on. Since Care.com does not properly monitor anything they run the business like a reckless rudderless ship and close down any issue that they come across. STEER CLEAR!!
Tracey on May 11, 2015:
When you sign up for a 30 day membership, you think that it expires in 30 days, right? Nope, it's a scam. If you read the VERY SMALL print, you realize that you are actually agreeing to a monthly subscription, for which your credit card will be automatically charged. This practice is actually illegal in some states. When I finally realized how much I was being charged (long after I stopped using the website), they stood by their practice of scamming people and would not reimburse me. Being in the business of childcare, I would assume that being ethical and establishing trust with your customer is a priority. Care.com has failed miserably in this domain. Do not fall victim to this scam!
Deborah Hemsworth on May 09, 2015:
Ok lets be honest then. It is a taboo subject to talk about other people's kids. It always will be. No matter what is said, the general public will most always be favorable to the parents with kids, not the nanny. With that being said, that is why it makes no sense to air your opinion about children. As for the parents being being dirty, I agree. There are dirty people in this world and there are some nutjobs that put the house way before the kids. I have been through the wringer with special needs kids if you want to get real lets get real. I have worked for parents that put the house and their own needs before the kids so blantantly it was disgusting. Would come home and be concerned about a spot on the carpet that was the size of a dime, and not ask about their child that had a feeding tube.I have worked for parents that the kids were so out of control I have bite marks on me an bruises at the end of the day. I have worked foe some very rich families in Annapolis Maryland that were clearly out of their minds and put the kids completely last on their to do list. (And Chuck if you ever read this this is not about you) I plan on using you as a reference for years... You were always fair and honest with me to a fault. Being a caregiver is not easy emotionally, its not for everyone.
SilverMoonGoddess on May 09, 2015:
Yes I said bratty because Deborah, some are. Most are not, but many of the ones I have worked with, IN MY AREA are. You say that you would never blame the family, especially online, so why is it most posts blame the nannies and caregivers and the families take no ownership of their roles in the dynamics? I have worked for families elsewhere that were wonderful and amazing, unfortunately I didn't find that where I was up until recently. Was my last employer dirty? Yes, are most? No. I had bad luck. But to imply that ANY nanny who speaks out is uneducated and ignorant doesn't say much. Perhaps had you been through what I have been through, you MIGHT have more compassion. I hope that you never have to go through what I have been through however, I wish you and everyone else nothing but the best.
Deborah Hemsworth on May 08, 2015:
I have also been a nanny for 20 years and a parent for some years. I would never blame a family, especially online for anything. Calling kids bratty? I am lost for words. Kids are kids. Care. com is a fraudulent misrepresenteed company that allows uneducated, ignorant caregivers on board.
SilverMoonGoddess on May 07, 2015:
My experiences went from bad to life threatening due to the family that I had been working for off the site. I just came out of 2 months in the hospital for a severe staph infection which I contracted from this dirty family. I let Care.com know and I've never heard from them. I see all these complaints about the caregivers, some of you families NEED to look at yourselves and your behavior and habits. I've never been so sick in my life, and now I'm looking at a recovery period of no less than a year and a half because of how bad the infection got. I have decided to give up being a caregiver due to this, and it kills me because I have been doing this for 20+ years, but watching some spoiled, bratty, children is NOT worth my health. I do apologize if this offends the decent families on here that have had issues, but in 4 years I have yet to meet one decent family in my area and honestly, after 2 months in the hospital, I'm not interested in meeting any more families in my area. Caregivers beware! Run background checks on the family through the police department and do whatever you have to in order to protect yourself! Care.com does not provide quality families, they just don't. :(
Mike Radford on May 07, 2015:
DO Not Use Care.Com. This a risk not worth the reward.
Background checks provided are not legit at all. Background checks are provided by an outside .com company that clearly states they are not responsible for any accuracy or completeness of any background check because NO ID is ever seen by anyone. A caregiver punches in a DL# from her home computer and any DL# that is borrowed or stolen can be used. SS#s are also used however however a SS# is not always required to pass a check. The check will come back as a pass but say no records found with no SS# on file. Most parents just look at the big picture where is says PASS NO RECORDS FOUND.
References are also not verified by Care.com. Caregivers forward email addresses from previous employers herself over the computer. Any made up email can be used then the caregiver will verify the reference herself with her computer as the parent. One auto computer phone call attempt per reference by Care.com is made. Most often the parents don't answer thinking it's a annoying sales call with the long delay once answered.
CPR, First aid, college info, none of that is verified at all.
The review boards that boast about Care.com with the 4 and 5 star ratings are all fake and owned and operated by Care.com. The reviews are hand picked by the CEO'S themselves. Those review boards are always at the top of the pile when googled of course.
The real review boards are on:
Welcome to the Doll house
Another issue that has blown up the review/complaint boards is the auto renew billing that is buried in light grey font that most parents never see when signing up for one month at $35. Millions of dollars are being scammed out of unsuspecting, overtired parents that trust Care.com will not overbill them. Who wouldn't trust a company that uses "CARE" as it's catch phrase. Care.com does not "CARE" at all about parents or children. Care.com is run by greedy, money hungry Ceo's that operate one inch from the law.
Care.com will terminate any members account that puts in a complaint about theft, abuse, neglect. This is much more cost efficient than dealing with any issues/complaints. If a member, either caregiver or parent makes a complaint to the call center, report button or negative review on a caregivers page the reporters account will be closed that day. Only non important issues are let through to a review like no call or no show for example. Often it is the one that reported the issue that gets closed down..because it is too time costly too look up who that member is reporting. Ridiculous, but this is the truth..its blown up on many complaint/review boards. Popular titles on reviews are "Leave an honest review on a caregiver and get shut down" OR "Don't call the call center they will terminate you" Care.com will then send an auto generated response to the member that was shut down "We reserve the right to remove any member from our community for any reason or no reason at anytime" That way Care.com can get rid of all issues legally, and cover up anything and everything they choose.
Care.com allows minors to babysit (very stupid indeed).
Care.com has over 13 million accounts in 16 countries. They are hiring low pay office employees. Dishonest employees are selling American Care.com members personal information between the 16 countries. Scams, prostitution, and much more is being hosted by Care.com. The most popular being the "Fake check scam" Millions of dollars have been lost in America because of this popular scam. Most of the lost money coming from Care.com directly. It is too costly for Care.com is investigate scams or prevent scams from happening. If anyone should report this to the call center the member will get this boilerplate response "We at care.com are sorry about this but we are not responsible for anything" If a member should continue with any complaint and not drop it Care.com will terminate the member for reporting.
This is just the tip of this giant ice burg that is slowly starting to melt and reveal the ugly truth about this dirty, unethical, fraudulent .com platform.
Care.com is no better than Craigslist for childcare. The only advantage Care.com has is having a collection of caregivers to choose from. Craigslist does not claim to be a safe verified community of caregivers by advertising on TV and highlighting reviews and background checks. Care.com is a misrepresented .com platform that should be shut down by the federal trade commission.
Babies have died because parents think this is a safe way to find last minute care when a certified nanny calls out sick. It is not safe on any level and should never be used for last minute care if used at all.
Sarah on April 07, 2015:
Care.com is a fraudulent Care platform that misrepresents caregivers by forwarding misleading, inaccurate and incomplete information on Caregivers. They are endangering childrens lives daily. The amount of scams and illegal activity that goes on over the message boards and sent by text messages over phones is a disgrace. CARE .COM will soon be shut down by the federal trade commission for defrauding both babysitters and parents.
Claire Depont on February 19, 2015:
Thank you for responding lisamark. There was one in particular that said that he wanted my info and then he would be coming to my town next week.
So I told him that when I met with him, I would give him my info then. I told him that we can’t be too careful.
He even went to so far as to send me a picture of him and his son. It is SOOOO disgusting that anyone would use a child in a scam!!! I am a Nanny/Sitter, so I can’t even begin to express just how horribly offensive and despicable that is to me!
Of course…I never heard back.
I didn't think that I would.
Dimple A. on February 17, 2015:
i just terminated in care.com without any reason ... I pay $40 for 3months and i only use 1 month.. I try to register but can't make it .. Im just trying to find job here ... I use care.com last year too i found my good job here for 10months .. Now i try to find again but in one month care.com terminated me which is i don't know why.
lisamark (author) from Illinois on February 16, 2015:
That definitely sounds like a scam! Good thing you're too smart to fall for it :)
No real customer would offer you monetary advances before even speaking with you in person or on the phone. Honestly, I don't even think it would be realistic if they offered you an advance at all. Real clients aren't going to pay you until you've actually done some work for them.
Claire Depont from Nashua, NH on February 13, 2015:
I have been receiving messages lately for potential jobs for dog walking/pet sitting and Nanny Positions. Here is what makes me nervous…
1. They are always relocating from out of country or out of state.
2. They offer A LOT of money and have financiers to initially handle it.
3. They offer me advances to lock me in.
4. They want my personal information, example…first, middle and last name, as well as my personal phone number and full address. Before even talking about an interview or requesting to speaking with me on the phone.
How can I have the assurance that they aren’t simply trying to get my personal information. It just sounds so fishy. It is been like four offers just in the last two weeks.
Has anyone else come across this? Any recommendations?
Deb H on December 19, 2014:
Care.com is not a good place to find a caregiver or work as a caregiver. I have been a member for 3 years and they have taken down my profile 3 times now...easy enough to put it back up. However the real reason they take it down is absurd. They take down my profile because I have too much business/traffic I guess you could say. I invite parents from other networking sites to sign up..I had 1600 contacts and 5000 views this time...I guess that was my limit. I have generated thousands of dollars of business, premium memberships, preferred background checks, Free advertising..Care.com does not want a caregiver to make money. I had over 21-5star reviews and I guess that was too much for them. Care.com does not allow anyone to have an opinion about anything. They prefer that all paying customer sit quietly in the corner while they rape your credit card with their predatory billing practices. If you don't want to be shut down and ripped off and would like your kids to be safe...then steer clear of this Mcdonalds drive through window (care.com)..I would like 1 caregiver with a side a fries hold the mayo type of caregiving.
SilverMoonGoddess on October 02, 2014:
I wish I could say my experiences with Care.com have been good, unfortunately, they have not been. I have been on there for several years, and the first family I worked for, lied to me about their income so that they did not have to pay a decent wage. I left after a year. 90% of the emails written are not responded to, and while I understand it costs money to be able to respond to the nannies, it's usually known up front there is a cost involved with placing an ad. The few responses/replies that I get, I usually end up getting jerked around. One woman had me come out for an interview, a 20 mile drive for me, only to tell me after the fact that she wanted someone closer. FYI: I make my location very clear when I apply for positions. I see an abundance of ads posting wages that are highly illegal, one of which stated hours of 35 or more per week, yet she was only willing to pay 150 at most per week. Most people put wages they just cannot afford to pay, to draw the sitter in. I'm flexible to a point, but I need to be able to survive too! I have had far more frustrations with this site and how they do things as opposed to positives. I have worked with children for nearly 20 years, but I'm not a servant. It makes me sad because I know there are good families out there, and I do understand that they may have had less than favorable experiences with nannies/caregivers, but you can't assume all are the same as what you had. I've been on both sides of the fence, having to hire someone to care for my mother when she got out of the hospital, so I do understand the frustrations of some of the parents, but the parents need to remember that some of us caregivers have had equally unfavorable experiences as well.
lisamark (author) from Illinois on September 09, 2014:
That story of "S" sounds a little sketchy-- you say the mother didn't give a return time, but then you say she was 90 minutes late. How could she be 90 minutes late if she didn't say when she would be home? Also, what kind of person calls the police for child abandonment just because a mom is late? One time my mom was an hour late picking me up from the pool when I was a kid because she was on the phone with her dad and lost track of time, but if someone had turned her in to the police for that it would have ruined our lives and destroyed my family. Some people are too eager to call the police and get someone thrown in jail. I too would be mad if a mom was late to pick up her child, but I would not take such extreme revenge for somebody inconveniencing me. Just quit!
Aubrey on September 08, 2014:
Think care.com is a reputable company? Think again! Please read and be forewarned.
The Story of S:
S is a former caregiver on #caredotcom. During a babysitting job she had concerns as to the baby's living conditions and physical condition. She was so concerned that she called the police to file a report. They encouraged her to file a CPS report. When the mother failed to give a definite return time and showed up 90 minutes late, S called the police again, fearing a possible case of abandonment. The mother showed up the same time as the police, and showed her outrage by complaining to care.com.
What did care.com do? They deleted S's account with no warning and without getting her side of the story and sent all of her potential clients a vague email insinuating that she had done something bad. A potential client told her that she could not hire her because of that email.
S tried to give her side of the story to care.com, but they refuse to reinstate her account. They obviously care more about money than a child's well being.
My complaints are much more minor but show the fullness of care.com's failure as a company. I subscribed to be an in home daycare. The rules for posting a picture are strict but I followed them. Several pictures were rejected with a vague form email before I finally asked for a specific reason why they were being rejected. Again I received a vague form letter. I still have no idea why I could not post certain pictures. I have had no business traffic in the couple weeks I've been subscribed, despite actively seeking out clients. I cancelled my subscription.
I ask that you boycott this deplorable company.
AJ on August 01, 2014:
Ask the parents in Wisconsin whose child was sexually abused how they feel about care.com. They are suing the website. According to the news report the parents paid for a background check that the company never did. The provider they picked had 3 charges.
Hannah on July 30, 2014:
It's such a relief to see that so many other people here have also had bad experiences with care.com. I've been trying to make an account with them for months, and today I got a response saying I previously had an account but it was closed due to the results of my background check - what?! Are you kidding me? I have absolutely NOTHING against me in my background. Never been in trouble or anything. I can't imagine why care.com would deny me. The e-mail stated, and I quote - "Unfortunately we are unable to accept your membership. This decision is final and irreversible. No exceptions will be made to these terms." Oh well, I wouldn't want to sign up with such a shady company anyway. Seems like they're scamming people out of their money left and right.
Leahna Slaughter on July 29, 2014:
Out of 3 years of using care.com personally I don't recommend it out of 3 years I have only once found an honest family that was really nice and treated me very well. I believe that care.com should have a section to post reviews about parents that you have worked with to prevent other nannies or babysitters from getting scammed, my first bad experience that was with one family that had three girls, the parents were crazy there daughter weren't allowed to wear there hair done they could only wear flats and there parents never let them use the guest bathroom which was the only one I could use and whenever anyone was eating I was sat away from everyone in a different room it was horrible, the worst experience though was I had met a family for the firs time and the very first day I met them the parents let for hours and I didn't charge them my usual rate because it was our first time meeting each other, and then parents wanted me to spend then night also, at first I was ok with it but them I told I didn't feel comfortable sleeping over so the parents told me ok that was fine and I agreed to only be paid $40 when I was there for 8 hours so the parents said they would be back at 11 then 11 turned Into 12 pm I call the parents asking where they were and they said they were in the middle of dinner at a wedding I was like ok but the latest I could stay was 12 because my ride was already there waiting, then 12 turned into 1 am I call them and they say there in traffic which turned into them getting home at 2pm and I never even actually watched the kids, the grandma was there the whole time it was if I was house sitting and when they get home all she paid me was $40 and I was there for 10 hours they didn't even have the common decency to say they were sorry either! I just don't recommend this site because of people like that!
lisamark (author) from Illinois on July 29, 2014:
@Miroslava, You are definitely being taken advantage of. If my calculations are right, you are making less than $2 per hour in the summer!!! The federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour, and in Illinois where I'm from it's $8 per hour. This means that even if you work at McDonalds, you will make much, much more money. And right now you are working about twice as many hours as normal full-time (you're working 78 instead of 40 hours per week) and normal jobs have to pay higher wages for overtime. If you made minimum wage, you would only have to work about 20 hours per week to make the same amount of money you make now.
The other side of the story is that you are getting paid to watch netflix :) Sounds like it could be a dream job for some people. My advice is that if you'd like to make more money, find a different job. If you want an easy job that pays next to nothing for the time you put in, stay there.
miroslava on July 27, 2014:
My expirience :
After months and months of applying at different places I came to the opportunity of becoming a nanny for an indian family that owns a restaurant here where I live, I was hired on the spot . Everything was going well , but I feel like im being taken advantage of but I just don't have the gyts to say anything . Im a nanny to a 7 year kld little girl I work full time, from 8am to 9pm tuesday-sunday durring the summer and from 3-9 tuesday-sun& I only get paid 600 a month (summer)&& $400(when the little girl goes to school ) I have to pick her up from school and take her straight to her home . But what really upsets me is thst they don't let her have friends from around the block and thr don't let me take her to the park or anywhere because its too sunny& when its not its too cold .. the want their child at home 24/7 watching netflix . I don't know but I just feel likevthey are making her anti social besides im 19 im spending All my summer days sitting at their house ...
Cathy on July 23, 2014:
Sorry, the message reads like this:
This family has reviewed your application, but has chosen to pursue other applicants. Care.com would like to thank you for the time you took to apply to this job and we encourage you to apply to more jobs that meet your qualifications. Want some tips? Read 14 Ways to Get Families to Respond to You on Care.com: http://www.care.com/applicationTips
Cathy on July 23, 2014:
@Momiam Too care.com does have a button that appears as an X by an applicants name. This button sends the automated "no thanks" email. It reads like this:
Those of you complaining about the automatic renewal fees, you are, I'm sorry to say it, morons. It is clearly stated.
Those of you complaining about pictures, they clearly state they do not want pictures of children on your profile unless they are your children or you have written consent from their parents because it is ILLEGAL. They also clearly state that for your primary picture, they want a picture of just you. The others can be of dogs and whatnot.
However, those of you having your accounts terminated, that's a shame. Even though it is in the agreement, that is very fishy. I think I'm going to look in to that and let y'all know what I find.
Momiam Too from Tri-Cities TN on July 17, 2014:
Quote: How could care.com force families to email you? I think in this case there really is nothing they could do to help.
Answer: Care.com could have an option for families to "click" on an option for an automated response that emails a "not interested" or "thanks, but no thanks" email out. It's easier to click an option than to write an email.
Dina on July 09, 2014:
Does anyone know the phone number or email for customer service? I can't contact them...
I posted a cleaning job and paid for the membership. Then I posted a babysitting job and they expect me to pay for another membership. I thought you could post for a month!! Why do you have to pay twice for a membership?? So confused.
Molly on June 13, 2014:
Here's a quote from their terms:
"[you are prohibited to] attempt to re-register with Care.com if we have terminated your account for any or NO REASON." (Capitalized for emphasis.) Listen, you guys, your account has been terminated just for attempting to receive justification. Care.com sucks, point blank. Just go to parks and mingle and post flyers with your e-mail address.
Christina on May 16, 2014:
Sorry, but this is just a bunch of nonsense. ''To protect the privacy and identity of all our members we are not able to share the reason for an account termination.'' ... ARE YOU JOKING ME? Tell someone why they were fired. That is the decent, human thing to do. I was considering working for care.com but after I saw that I would never. That is just corporate crap for ''it is what it is''. I wouldn't work for such a company, and really no one should.
Ashley on April 30, 2014:
Care.com changes what you say!! They edit you're messages and profile!
Paige on April 17, 2014:
For those saying they did not get a response.....it may be because, as is in my case, as a parent you can post a job but not reply in any way unless you become a member. Because we have heard it's almost impossible to cancel the services after you find a nanny my husband and I will not pay this site. We would prefer to reserve that money for our awesome and hardworking future nanny. Sadly, there were lots of candidates I would have loved to chat with but not for a fee. Lesson I learned a long time ago........anytime an employer/agency asks you to pay for working for them-RUN!!!!!
Sicily Troveno on April 11, 2014:
Have you seen all of the negative reviews about this site on sitejabber.com and especially the Better Business Bureau website concerning Care.com with their shady unethical practices, and their predatory pricing and billing tactics used by them with automatic renewal to collect unsuspecting consumers personal and credit card information. No transparency from this company at all. From what I have read the negatives outweigh the positives, and even the neutrals form consumers, and the fact of the matter is it seems there is no transparency in how they do business, they have underhanded tactics in which instead of having an actual person for the consumer to get in contact with someone they have a number that leads to automated phone messages, and of course what a lot of negative complaints have been saying about them automatically renewing and charging people's subscriptions to their accounts without their consent, and then charging them for services they may or may not have wanted or used, and most of all no transparency especially with the tiny small print on how to cancel a subscription indefinitely. Too much shadiness and downright shiggidy coming from this company.
Christine Mello on January 22, 2014:
I was amazingly surprised at how many people have been terminated from Care.com without explanation. I hired an attorney who can not get any information, based on what we all signed saying we can be terminated for any reason at any time without explanation.
Someone, an attorney friend of mine who knows how contracts like this work. She has suggested going on the news or reporting it to the news.
Anyone here willing to do that in there area? I am in the Boston area, and am looking for people to join in. It would also be wonderful if we all did it on our own local news.
What do ya think?
Gee on November 03, 2013:
I am frustrated with the hard work of finiding live in nanny through care.com- i posted an add few times, my babies are turning 9 month now and i'm still looking. I do not understand how come all these girls that really don't want to do this job turned to be my nanny- one was so aggressive she almost punch me in the face when i even tried talking to her, the other didn't want to leave my house although i let her go, the third said i don't understand her situation- which was true, as she was homeless with an attitude and just lazy... I can write a book on live in nanies! There is a better searching place for live. In nannies that someone actually know? Or should i continue till they will grow to be accepted in daycare?!
Molly B. on October 30, 2013:
As a caregiver I was ripped off by a care.com client. I complained to the client and care.com about the theft of my services, and when I did, the deadbeat client wrote a false review about me. When I complained to the deadbeat client and care.com that not only was I ripped off, but I was also defamed, as well, care.com cancelled my account. Prior to that, I had tried to write a very nicely worded rebuttal to the false review, explaining that actually this was a ruse, because these folks still owed me money six months later, but care.com would not let me rebut the bad, false review. No managers were available on the 877 number when I called to complain. Sadly, some poor woman paid like fifty bucks to run a background check on me just the day before care.com unfairly closed my account, and now she'll have no way to contact me. Poor thing - I bet she's really pleased about that charge on her cc card. I stay booked all the time, and checked with my dozen or so paying clients, and it turns out all of them, 100% came from care.com's competition. So, I guess it's no loss. But what a dirty, cruddy little episode. I'm very unimpressed. The only positive is, after reading all the cc# fraud complaints on care.com, is that they do not have my cc#. You see, care.com chose to side with their paying customer, though they are thieves and liars, than the poor caregiver. I would say care.com needs to change their name to wedon'tcareatallaboutourcaregivers.com. That'd be about right. Thanks for listening!
Christine on August 30, 2013:
I possess a level 2 background check (allowing me to work in healthcare facilities); however, Care.com would not accept it. They wanted to run their own check and charge my card an additional $79. When I asked for a copy of it, I was denied this. I was also told I could not view my letters of references from former employers. Yet, I am expected to, site-unseen, send them to potential employers. Who does that? In addition, unless I upgrade my profile, yet again, I cannot post a profile title. As of now, this is what my title reads” A Full-Time, 48 yr old senior caregiver from Riverview, FL with 10 or more years of experience and a background check on file." Nowhere in that sentence does it say I have a nursing background. I wished I had read all the negative reviews on Better Business Bureau before wasting my money.
Angered on June 09, 2013:
I have had terrible success with Care.com, seriously I've applied to around 25 jobs in about a month with zero responses, nothing, it's like my applications don't even exist! I refuse to pay because if I can't even get a nibble of success or even that people acknowledge me or look at my profile then what's the point!
Also they disapproved my profile pic of me at graduation with my little brother in his pre-k graduation cap and gown. What the . . .
I have had better success from Sitter city and I've only been on there for two weeks.
Samantha on June 05, 2013:
Both my Husband and I have tried to register with this site. My Husband actually managed eventually to be "Approved" by them. But not because he did anything wrong. He was advertising as a dog walker, so he put pics of himself on his profile walking his dogs. Those pics were " inappropriate" What? just regular pics of a dog walker walking his dogs. for an advert seeking a dog walker. Hmm, imagine that? what a shocking thing to post photo's of.
Today I decided to set up my own profile to advertise as a babysitter and I was "disapproved" too. Apparently my REAL name and my REAL address were not real after all, or incorrect. I guess they know me better than I know myself!
I find this website very suspicious and I would say they are only interested in applicants who are willing to pay, because they seem to make it totally impossible for people to register and use the site for free. even though they advertise free access. You want to try before you buy right? especially on a site like that.
I have never been disapproved of anything in my life before and this totally dumbfounded me to be denied for what seems like nothing at all wrong.
I would not recommend care.com to anyone and I would say to anyone thinking about trying it. Do not bother, it is not worth the hassle and constant frustration. My husband has been using it for over a year and got nothing out of it at all.
BEWARE! and do something more productive, try old fashion newspaper advertisments instead !!
lisamark (author) from Illinois on June 03, 2013:
Thanks Mandy-- I didn't know the charges to parents and families would be automatic monthly renewal. I can imagine that you aren't the first to have had that confusion!
Mandy J on June 03, 2013:
This site is a total scam. You think you are buying a trial month and then they charge your card until you notice charges on your account that you weren't expecting. They do not even have a billing questions option when you try to call. It is virtually impossible to get through and when you do, they tell you to go jump. They take your money through clever marketing and have no intention of ever returning it. SCAM SCAM SCAM SCAM BEWARE
Bernadyn from Jacksonville, Florida on May 21, 2013:
Thanks for all the info about this site. I'm a parent so it was very helpful. I have heard about this site but haven't taken a look at it. It's good to hear the views from the other side. Thanks again :-)
lisamark (author) from Illinois on April 10, 2013:
@duped: Were the problems with your caregiver anything that care.com could have screened for? Care.com runs background checks upon request but that is the extent of their screening, unless somebody gets reported...
@aparkhurst7: That is a very similar problem to what I had-- families get so many applicants that it is much easier for them to choose one caregiver and ignore the rest. Although it would be good manners for them to give a polite "no thank you", they get contacted by so many sitters that it feels like a hassle to try to reply to all of them. How could care.com force families to email you? I think in this case there really is nothing they could do to help.
aparkhurst7 from Wilkes Barre, PA West Hartford, CT on April 10, 2013:
I got an account before school started. I obviously don't know any families since I'm 4 hours away from school so I figured care would be the perfect idea to make some extra cash and make connections. I created an account, got a background check, and applied to jobs that fit my schedule. After 2 weeks I had, what I thought, would be the perfect job. The hours worked, it wasn't too far, and the ages were exactly what I was looking for. I got the job and when I asked about contact information to interview, call, etc. I never heard back from her. She told me I was hired and backed out. It wasn't that big of a deal but then again I was trying to scramble out of debt and I'm still recovering. Anyway, I brushed it off and applied to more, hoping for one response. No family ever got back to me. A simple no thank you would have sufficed but I got nothing. I tried to contact care but got nothing from customer service about the woman who bailed or the families who wouldn't give me an answer.
I've seen them advertise a lot and I also think about how little they "care" about the babysitters as well as the kids.
I tried again recently and found the perfect family. I'm pretty set with them for now but I'm still not happy with care.com. I'm sorry but "We can't do anything about that" is not a good answer.
duped on April 08, 2013:
I'm sure the site is fine. But my caregiver.was not screened properly, she was a failure in all aspects..
lisamark (author) from Illinois on March 27, 2013:
Thanks, Janice-- it's good to know somebody's listening :)
MemberCare1 on March 25, 2013:
This is Janice, a representative from Care.com. We are so thrilled to hear that you had such a positive experience finding a job while in college through our site. We understand that this service is critical for our younger caregivers which is why it is free for them to sign up and apply for jobs. To address the other comments on this thread, we do require a membership fee for our families. A membership includes more than just posting a job and replying to candidates. A family also receives the ability to run background checks, listen to recorded references, and write and view reviews. Essentially, families are paying for the tools to be successful through the interview process. We think it's a steal!
Lastly, we always encourage open and honest feedback. I will certainly be passing along all of your feedback today. Best of luck with your future endeavors!
lisamark (author) from Illinois on January 19, 2013:
I had no idea that this was such a common problem! It really seems contradictory that a website that rates you based on how promptly and frequently you reply to communications from fellow members can't even give you the courtesy of open communication and honest answers. They owe you an explanation -- what they did is worse than breaking up with someone over text message :P Seriously though, I would send them a complaint except that it seems like they censor and silence all complainers.
Christina M on January 13, 2013:
I was a member for over 2 years with care.com. I strived to make sure I reply back to people, even it Im not taking a job. I've met numerous families from the site who loved my services and even had 6 reviews posted online, with the most stars you can have. I have always paid for a background check and had it available on file. Recently the woman I work was diagnosed with cancer, so after working for her for a while now, I am now looking for another position. I went on care.com and applied onto a few jobs and randomly received an email that my account was terminated. When I called, they told me I violated the terms of agreement, but I'm sure I didn't. I've been a member for so long and have had contact with so many families, without an issue. I haven't changed my habits with the website, so why close my acccount now? I'm an still trying to figure out what can be done about this, but I really think they need to look more into an account before closing it. The comment above about that creepy, flirty guy I can understand, but if you review y account since it opened, nothing is fishy. It's just not right.
lisamark (author) from Illinois on January 03, 2013:
That's awful! I'm really sorry about that. I would have thought that Care.com would be happy to have honest feedback from clients -- especially because your feedback was on the profile of a specific care.com member, and you weren't criticizing the entire site. I really do think that they should offer people at least some explanation when they shut down their account.
Cor on December 30, 2012:
My personal experience with care.com was terrible. I did not find any qualified nannies but the worst was that I interviewed a person who committed to come and work for me. I even booked her ticket. Suddenly, she sent me a text let me know that she found another job (not even called me to give me an excuse). Up until here care.com obviously has no responsibility. But when I left a comment on her profile in care.com (without using any bad wording or anything), just simple stating the facts, care.com cancelled my membership, which by the way was paid (I have seen the refund yet). I asked them why that happened and they did not want to reply. I find it very bizarre, unless they don't want members to appear dissatisfied. If you check you will not find my comments on the profiles of candidates, so either people are not writing or care.com does not want people to complain so that the service seems impeccable. I found this really weird and was very disappointing because I would have thought that they would want to protect their members.
lisamark (author) from Illinois on October 26, 2012:
I wasn't aware of that -- as a sitter, I never had to pay anything to use the service. That's really unfortunate that they make you pay to contact potential sitters!
gmg12667 on October 24, 2012:
The biggest problem I've had with Care.com is that they lure you in with the ability to post a job (like needing a sitter) for free but when you try to reply to the people who answer your ad, you have to pay a fee, which for a one-month subscription is $40. That's just ridiculous!
lisamark (author) from Illinois on June 28, 2012:
Yeah, I had an interesting experience related to that topic. A man had contacted me to walk his dogs and tutor his son, but he was a divorced middle-aged man who seemed much too friendly and flirty for my comfort. I turned down the job, and a few months later Care.com notified me that the man's account had been canceled. I'm guessing he must have creeped out some girl who reported him, because he definitely came across as very unprofessional in the conversation he made with me. I'm certainly not saying that your experience was anything like this-- the only similarity is that in both cases Care.com decided to shut down an account. However, did you have a bad experience with a family? I've had a lot of experiences where a minor dispute arose between myself and the parents, and I could certainly see how some parents could complain about a nanny for just about anything. There are many who like to criticize a nanny's way of doing things when it's not exactly the same as the way the parent would have done it.
LexaR on June 05, 2012:
lisamark (author) from Illinois on February 24, 2012:
Thanks, Kate! If you have any suggestions for how I can improve my writing, I'd be happy to hear them!
katedonavon on February 24, 2012:
You have done a good job of reviewing the care.com website! I actually found my current part-time nanny position through them--like you, by being contacted by the parent rather than from the jobs I applied to. It took me a lot longer though...almost two months to find a job that worked out. I also tried Sittercity, but prefer Care.com, probably because of the fact that I actually got a job through that site.
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