Should Grandparents Be Paid for Babysitting?

Should parents pay grandparents for their babysitting services? See what other readers had to say.

By The Editors

When we asked members whether they thought parents should pay them for their babysitting services, we received some passionate responses. There's a huge difference, many of you pointed out, between doing occasional date-night sitting and providing what amounts to no-cost daily daycare. And while many of you agreed that caring for a child on a regular basis warranted a paycheck, others said that they could never accept money from their kids. Check out what your fellow grandparents had to say:

"I have no problem babysitting my grandchildren when their parents have appointments, or would like to go out to dinner. However, when it comes to providing daycare, I feel they should pay something. We got (and still get) a lot of static from my daughter about her paying us for daycare. Considering that she was paying us maybe half the going rate, I think she was really lucky. I think we would do it again, but we would have to have an agreement in writing so we both knew exactly what we were expecting." — alanapr

"I don't want to be paid, but ... help with the extra housework caused by the children would be nice. When I mention it, I always hear about how much they already have to do." — ConnieFibro

"I watch my very active 3-year-old grandchild three full days a week, but despite the workout, I love doing it. I don't get paid, but my daughter-in-law takes me out to dinner often and son and daughter-in-law gave me a generous Christmas gift. They show their thanks in many ways." — ksgram

"Yes, I charge for watching my grandson and I feel this is only fair. It feel that it teaches responsibility. I like the extra money, so I can spend on him and the other three grandkids without feeling like I spent household money." — dave4carole

"I watch my twin granddaughters four to five days a week. I don't and won't take money from my daughter. It is my pleasure and I wouldn't miss this opportunity to be close to my granddaughters for any amount of money." — twingrandbabies

"I am thrilled when asked to babysit, as it gives me time alone with the grandchildren. The pleasure I get out of watching them is worth more than the money." — LVMom

"It seems strange to be paid for a normal family responsibility. It's a privilege to be closely bonded with my granddaughter. I assisted in rearing her for five years for 12 hours a day. It would have been much less of a strain had her parents offset my expenses, but my relationship with her has been a salve to my life and given me great pride." — Grandma2Kayla

"When I babysat for my grandson, it was so both mom and dad could earn money. I told them I would get paid, but half of my check would go into savings for the baby. My daughter was so excited that he was getting savings every time she paid me." — drec

"Our son and his wife wanted me to quit my job and care for their son and insisted on paying my husband and me. As retired people, we needed the income. This truly has been a joy to see him every day." — Grannyof14

"If the grandparents watch the child all week every week, the parents should pay something. In my case, though, I beg for opportunities to have my grandchildren. If I ever asked to be paid, I'd never see the kids!" — LindaRS

Where do you stand on paying grandparents? Share your opinion in the Comments area below.


I am gramma to 4 grandkids aged from 6-8 years of age, 3 of whom live nearby. I have picked up my older grandson from daycare, preschool, and now grade school from the time he was 4 months old, he is now 7. First it was on an "as needed" basis, then we had a Monday Amma & Logan day, now I've picked him up after school for 3 days a week, as well as snow days, school holidays, etc. for 2 years. I also assist in getting two other grandchildren off to school 3 days a week, which includes driving them to school, and picking them up from school, 3 days a week, as well has providing a safe place on snow days and school holidays.. I drive to a neighboring town to do this, a 16 mile round-trip twice a day. I will never ask for payment for helping out my kids and for showing my grandchildren exactly what family means, and how we help each other out in times of need. I love these little kids and they are not objects of payment. They are little once and I am privileged to be a part of their lives.

mfseidl on 2014-01-08 14:41:39

I watched my Grandson's from the time they were 3 months old until they both went to school. So rewarding I must say. My daughter insisted on paying me for things I purchased when they were able to start eating something besides bottles. I never wanted to take it and she would hide it in my purse. This is something i chose to do. Her thought was she was going to pay someone anyway.

butterfly61 on 2013-10-15 10:21:23

I have been asked to watch my 3 grandchildren for the first time. We have to drive 15 hours to get to their home. My husband and I are very excited. I would never expect payment for travel expenses or for time spent with the children. I am so happy to do this, and we would do this when ever they ask. I know it would not be often.

If I lived in the same city and they wanted daily child care from me I would want to be payed. Not as much as a day care.

JeannieRN on 2013-06-03 01:02:47

i feel that it is ok to charge for taking care of ur grandchildren, if you need the money, and it is like a full time job, yes i agree to charge. If it is for only on an ocassion, the i say no. I really love being with my grandchildren, so anytime I can is a true blessing to me.. on 2013-03-12 21:33:24

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