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The Bump Editors

Rules for a Babysitter?

We’re hiring a new nanny and want to lay some ground rules. What should we do?

When hiring a sitter, spell out your expectations from the get-go. “Never leave it up to the sitter to assume that you need certain things handled a certain way,” says Adrienne Kallweit, founder of SeekingSitters, a national babysitting referral company. That means laying out some ground rules right from the start. These might include basics on what to feed baby, nap schedules and guidelines for other daily tasks.

But that also means spelling out terms for your sitter herself. Some good rules to start out with: Show up on time, no texting or using cell phones for personal calls, no visitors and always engage with the kid by doing age-appropriate activities together.

Things not working out as planned? Talk to your sitter if there’s an issue. Most of the time you just need to clarify your expectations. “Speak calmly and include solutions for any problem,” says Kallweit.

Plus, More from The Bump:

How to Find the Perfect Nanny

How Your Nanny is Using Social Media

Finding a Great Babysitter (and What to Pay Them)