About Care.com

Founded in 2007 and based out of Waltham, MA, Care.com is a website dedicated to bringing together families who need caregivers, and caregivers looking for work. According to the company’s website, they are committed to “improving the lives of families and caregivers by helping them connect in a reliable and easy way.”

Care.com holds an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, despite having nearly 300 closed complaints within the past three years. Considering the fact that the company claims to have more than 9.5 million members, online reviews seem to be primarily positive. However, by far the most common complaint we encountered during our research referenced the company’s auto-renewal program (more about this in the final section).

How Care.com Works

With more than 9.5 million members and a presence in 16 countries, Care.com claims to be the “largest global destination for quality caregivers.” As such, the primary categories on the website include:

  • Child Care – Includes babysitters, nannies, family day care, tutors, and more.
  • Adult & Senior Care – Everything from errands and exercise, to companionship and 24-hour care.
  • Pet Care – Dog walkers, boarding, training, and more.
  • Home Care – Housekeepers, event help, and more.

Because Care.com provides a wide variety of services, both for families looking for caregivers, and for caregivers looking for families, there are two different ways to use the site:

As a Family:

  1. When you’re looking for a caregiver, the first order of business will be to post a job. Here, you’ll outline your needs, list your pay rate, and provide any other information you feel is important. This is the listing that caregivers will read and decide whether or not to apply for, so the more information you can provide, the better.
  2. Care.com guarantees responses from qualified candidates within three days. Once they apply, you’ll be able to review their responses, and even view detailed background checks.
  3. Narrow your list, and interview only those candidates you feel most closely match your needs.

As a Caregiver:

  1. If you’re looking to advertise your services to those needing caregivers, you’ll first need to sign up for a Care.com account, which can be completed in minutes.
  2. After signing up, you’ll need to take some time to complete an in-depth profile, which can take some time to perfect. Be sure to include at least one photo of yourself, in addition to references, reviews, and background checks.
  3. Once you find a job posting that you feel you’re qualified for, simply apply in one easy step.

Whether you’re an individual or a caregiver, all correspondence is handled directly through the Care.com messaging system. Overall, the website appeared very user friendly, and can be accessed from almost any electronic device with an internet connection, including smartphones, laptops, and tablets.

Care.com Pricing & Refund Policy

As an employer (e.g. posting a job for another member to fill), a Care.com membership will cost you:

  • 1-Month Membership – $39 per month
  • 3-Month Membership – $26 per month
  • 12-Month Membership – $13 per month

As a caregiver however, your account is completely free of charge.

When paying a caregiver you’ve hired, you can pay them through the Care.com HomePay system. Here, you’ll be able to set up automatic completely control your payroll, withhold and file taxes, and more.

An important note: One of the most common complaints we came across during our Care.com research included billing issues—more specifically, the automatic renewal program. For example: If you sign up for a 1-month membership at $36 per month, it will continue renewing every month and charging your payment method on file, until you contact the company and cancel it. We came across numerous complaints of people being charged several hundred dollars before they realized what was going on.

When this occurs, it appears that Care.com customer service has been unwilling to process refunds. In fact, according to the company’s Terms of Use, all services provided through the site are non-refundable.

Our recommendation would be to sign up for the free account, see how you like using Care.com, and then signing up for the membership option of your choice. Then, once you find a caregiver, you can simply cancel your account, or change it back to the free version.

Pros:

  • Claims to have more than 9.5 million members, and to be active in 16 countries.
  • Easy way to post a job for a caregiver, and for caregivers to match themselves with a family.
  • User-friendly website.
  • Three different membership options.

Cons:

  • By far the most common complaint we noticed was regarding the company’s auto-renewal program, and their refusal to process a refund.

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74 Consumer Reviews for Care.com

Average Consumer Rating: 1.1
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 1 4 star: 0 3 star: 0 2 star: 5 1 star:  68
Bottom Line: 4% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 74
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  • 2 out 2 people found this review helpful

    The worst technical help for faulty website

    • South Bend, IN,
    • Oct 26, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I have been back and forth for 4 days now with their "customer service" team, and the issue is still not resolved. I am not able to send or receive messages from potential employees I've applied to, getting the "your account is inactive" message, which makes me look like an idiot when someone is trying to contact me. For whatever reason, they will not fix the problem. As a result, I am missing out on even getting a request to work. I've emailed about 6 times, and it's still not fixed.

    The worst customer service EVER!

    I DO NOT recommend if there are other similar sites! Be aware, they will NOT fix their website!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 3 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Care.com was a horrible experience

    • Montgomery, AL,
    • Oct 24, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I am an employer seeking a nanny. The website Care.com itself constantly had glitches, my "job" listing would expire not only every 10 days (as the guidelines said it would) but also just at random, then leave me no option to re-list my job! Although they never skipped a beat charging my card every 30 days! Very frustrating experience when you are depending on finding a nanny in order to work yourself, but the listing won't post or has suddenly "expired" on its own with no notice or warning. Leaving you to be needing to check it each and every single day.

    As for the "nannies" that are on this site looking for work, let's say after an entire year of hiring and firing a stream of them off this site, I actually can put some percentages on it. About 90% of the workers on here are people who simply cannot keep a job, are horribly horrible and undependable, have no skills, lie on their applications and are basically pretty lazy and unemployable elsewhere. Now if you are looking for a different babysitter every now and then to come for a few hours to just sit on her phone and watch TV while your kids are in bed, this site may be for you. But if you are looking for a real worker, one who has some skills (like making toast and knows how to use a vacuum) and will come to work every day and on time and has some work ethics, this site probably is not for you. I actually paid these girls twice the minimum wage and they still would not work. I had to call the police on the last one and file a report.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 6 out 6 people found this review helpful

    This is an unsolicited website that daycare providers do not use

    • Michigan,
    • Oct 15, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I am a daycare provider, and on Google, I have a 4.7-star rating. On Care.com I have a 1/2 star rating because in my business we do not use Care.com.

    I belong to a large group of daycare providers and we work together to obtain our continued education and to help one another maintain state licensing compliance, and as well to support one another in this business in a large number of other ways.

    For us, Care.com is a fraudulent website that demands money from us in order to keep ourselves in good standing on their website. We reject this website because it is nothing more than a way for the Care.com owners to create income for themselves without earning our trust or support.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 7 out 7 people found this review helpful

    Irresponsible sitters

    • Bernalillo, NM,
    • Sep 13, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I am writing this on behalf of Ryan and McKenzie. I am 70 years old and have cared for their 4-year-old and 20-month-old sons since birth. Their Dad is a firefighter and their Mom an attorney. In the interview process, we were clear about Ryan’s rotating shift schedule. We made at least 5 hires where the candidate understood and agreed to the schedule, which is 24 hours on shift then 48 hours off. These candidates are young and irresponsible. They would call after accepting the position only to cancel, or fail to even notify the parents they were no longer coming. We are truly appalled and disappointed at their lack of a work ethic.

    Care.com, you need to do a better job of screening your applicants. Very disappointed, and I was the one who recommended Care.com to them. We are fed up.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 9 out 9 people found this review helpful

    Horrible site!

    • Massachusetts,
    • Sep 12, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I have been on this site for four months. No one replies back. Terrible access to jobs. A waste of time and money! I will not use again! I have also been on before and the same results - NOTHING.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 5 out 6 people found this review helpful

    Care account closed/Sterling InfoSystems background check

    • Tampa, FL,
    • Sep 11, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Greetings. Lengthy, but WORTH the read:

    I was a Premium member on Care.com (now giver with new app) for over year paying $24.99 with four 5-star reviews. My most recent potential employer asked to run a background check. Having passed the MA CORI in 2017 through Uber and USA Hockey level two criminal check in 2013, I approved. Two days later I could not log into my Care account. The third day I found an email buried in my Clutter file (Care continuously sent other email notifications directly to Inbox) stating they had suspended my account, to contact Sterling InfoSystems and GAVE a phone number of 1-833-780-7902.

    Knowing a DUI incident from September 2008 was accurate (I was working for a bar in Georgia, went to work for sister property in South Carolina, drank after my shift, was pulled over and per "Unwritten rule of Management" chose not to take the breathalyzer, which in South Carolina is an AUTOMATIC plea of guilt that I was NOT aware of at the time. I know, I knoooow, "Ignorance is NOT an excuse for breaking the law." I paid $4K in legal fees, plus $1K+ more for ADSAP class, Court Administration costs and DMV reinstatement for license. Accomplished everything accordingly to resolve in terms of the law), I emailed Care.com to politely ask they re-activate my account, keep the background check available to allow persons seeking my employment to be the ones who make character decision and to kindly allow me to continue being a PAYING customer. I had to keep submitting for several days after no responses. Then I received a blanket (other than where my name and case number were typed) reply letting me know I had TEN DAYS from the date of FIRST email (I was now a week or so in) to clear up my background check or my Care account would be PERMANENTLY closed.

    Next, again KNOWING my background check was accurate, I called the number Care provided for Sterling InfoSystems. I was on hold for over an hour listening to put-in-a-trance music with a recording citing "All representatives are busy you can leave a message or remain on the line." While holding I Googled "Sterling Infosystems dispute number" and this number came up: (866) 291-2985. When I hung up and redialed I was speaking with someone in Customer Service within EIGHT MINUTES. Twelve minutes in I was talking to a Supervisor who informed me, as I already knew in my heart, "there was nothing she could do," suggesting I pay to get my record expunged. (DUI in South is not an eligible offense. Expungements in all states take a MINIMUM of 4-6 weeks and couple hundred dollars.) When I told her about the over an hour wait time she said, "Give me that number." I could hear her clicking on the keyboard as I said each digit. She replied, "That is not one of our numbers..." Then she said, "Wait, it is, but it will NEVER lead you anywhere within our company." What the heck!

    Meanwhile, more disheartening than bad judgement/a poor decision combined ten years ago re-interrupting my life and leading to my no longer having access to positions for my livelihood via the Care.com app is the humiliation of the following: While FOUR out of five "jobs" I applied for as a Premium member on Care were scams (stay away from generic postings, "I need care for loved one in their xx’s, non-smoker...") and at some point you do get to the point you HAVE to give personal info and references, which if you make it through the first series of scams to next, people then sell your contact info to robo callers for monies for another degree of scam, Care does in SOME instances work. I have cared for a few fabulous families, so imagine me crying snot bubbles hysterically when I found out Care uses the private background check (which you agree to when joining) to then email every person you have ever messaged to notify them you (enter your full name here) have been removed from Care site due to "security reasons," not explaining specifics because the background check is PRIVATE.

    It would be best if Care cared more about their clients and remained a facilitator only site, allowing the potential employer/employee to agree on what is best suited for each. Never the less, save your resource and do NOT allow Care to run a background check. Sterling InfoSystems says they "had no idea Care was using their background checks to report to anyone other than the person who requested it." That is difficult to believe with 7K+ complaints through-out the internet.

    Side note: I was on auto-pay for $24.99 a month. Once Care closed my account I considered creating one under a pseudo name like most (until I went to SitterCity and found my current Senior) to see Care offers discounted packages as low as $11.66 a month for a six-month membership. If you are in enrolled in auto-pay, restructure your account for less!

    Also, if you are going to reply to bash me about a DUI, don’t bother. I have been through enough. I spent time typing this post to help enlighten and save time for those whom Care disregarded without second consideration or review and hopefully save others a hassle, not to give haters a platform. I guarantee if your Senior loved one needed assistance I would be the clean, compassionate, dependable, fun, loyal, and OCD organized person you WOULD want to hire.

    Thank you.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 5 out 5 people found this review helpful

    Horrible service

    • Maryland,
    • Sep 6, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I have been paying for a premium membership for Care.com for months and I got hired by a family. This family NEVER paid me. I called Care.com three times and reported this family online. They did nothing. The family's account is still active, despite the fact that Care.com told me four times that their account would be taken down. Care.com also refused to help me at all. Their advice was to "show up at their house," which is unsafe and makes me extremely uncomfortable. Basically, I paid for a service that provided me no rights to my services. After I expressed this to Care.com, they still refused to refund me all the money I have paid for their service. My advice - never sign up for this website.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 6 out 6 people found this review helpful

    Scam and fake accounts

    • usa,
    • Sep 6, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I have tried for hours, trying to find a caregiver for my mom. I had 22 applicants and did four phone interviews. One caregiver, I set up an interview but she texted the morning of and told me that her doctor's office called to remind her of an appointment that day, and said she needed to cancel. She then reapplied for the job, and when I told her it was the same job, she gave me a different excuse why she didn't come. That time she had to assist a hospice patient to go to heaven! Her profile now is suddenly gone.

    I had four people not show up, and several gave me excuses once I called them why they couldn't come for an interview. Several said they weren't available for a phone interview. I gave my phone number and address to several people before reading these reviews. I'm now going to contact BBB because I believe this site is a total scam. I asked for a refund and was told just to downgrade AFTER I was promised a refund. I wasted so much time and my husband had to take time off work to be here for the interviews I set up to which no one showed up! I do not recommend this company to anyone.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 8 out 8 people found this review helpful

    Caregiver account won't work unless someone is a premium member

    • North Carolina,
    • Aug 27, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    They say that the caregiver account is free. I sent an application for a pet sitter. However, the employer couldn't respond, unless I upgraded to a premium account. When I emailed Care.com they responded by saying, "Only premium members are able to respond to caregiver applications." However, they would give me a discount to upgrade my account to premium for a 3-month or 6-month subscription. I had already paid $60.00 for a background and driving record report. I am unemployed looking for work. Just thought I'd set the record straight.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 7 out 7 people found this review helpful

    Don't use this company to hire

    • Waynesville, NC,
    • Aug 24, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I paid to join as an "employer" I was looking for a housekeeper. I found someone I wanted to work with. I could not contact individual through the site, how to contact them was not clear since the message I sent wasn't answered. I forgot about that they did recurring billing every three months (so it was harder to pick up).

    It is VERY difficult to figure out how to cancel the membership. In fact, there's nothing about canceling, terminating, etc., so that they stop billing you. You have to "downgrade" through accounts and settings, membership, then downgrade. This is BS. Do not use this company. Advertise on Craiglist or something.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 8 out 8 people found this review helpful

    Terrible scam website, a waste of your money

    • Belgium,
    • Aug 4, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Totally awful, please be aware and don't be cheated!

    It doesn't help you to find anyone suitable at all, and also you'll be billed automatically without any notice, incredible! Someone just created this fake website to earn money from the parents.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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