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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64 Consumer Reviews for Care.com

Average Consumer Rating: 1.1
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 1 4 star: 0 3 star: 0 2 star: 4 1 star:  59
Bottom Line: 5% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 64
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  • 2 out 2 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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  • 7 out 7 people found this review helpful

    This is nothing but a way to beg you to upgrade to monthly price

    • Green Bay, WI,
    • Jul 23, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    This platform to find on side jobs is nothing more than a plot for Care.com to beg you to upgrade your package to get better hits on jobs plus pay for the phone service they provide to contact the ones seeking childcare, housesitter or petsitters. It’s ridiculous, my profile was filled out beautifully and they terminated it. I asked why and they had no reason.

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

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  • 6 out 6 people found this review helpful

    Terrible, rude, and a scam!

    • Colorado,
    • Jul 5, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Terrible company and not a great resource! I have tried over the course of four years and never found a sitter. Most recently, last September I renewed my membership looking for a sitter. I found one, not on their website, called three times to cancel but had to wait on line for 10 minutes. I'm a working mom so kept giving up. Eventually, I got so busy I totally forgot.

    Well, they have been charging my credit card, one I don't use anymore so never look at for the last 10 months. I never got an email confirming payment or an automatic email to see how my search was going. Finally, once I saw these charges I called, sat through the 20 minute wait time only for them to tell me they couldn't refund more than a month and to lie about having someone from billing or a manager to call me back.

    But to top it off, I got about six emails a day once I downgraded my service trying to get me to upgrade. What a slimy, unethical, and obviously uneducated group of people to make it so hard for busy, working families. Shame on you!

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

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  • 8 out 8 people found this review helpful

    Horrible experience

    • Orlando, FL,
    • Jul 2, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Care.com is very misleading. I created an account in order to become a tutor. After a few months, I contacted Care.com because I was unable to retrieve messages. I was told that I needed to pay for a premium account in order to correspond with potential clients. I paid the money and upgraded. I am still unable to communicate with potential clients. I emailed, I called, I sent messages via Facebook to Care.Com and still no resolution. This company sucks! Don't waste your time or money!

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

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  • 7 out 7 people found this review helpful

    Scam, bordering on fraud

    • Champaign, IL,
    • Jun 27, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I joined Care.com looking for help in the home with my 80-year-old husband. He has mobility issues and recently had a stroke and now has serious communication issues. I posted the job and got several applications near my zip code. I spent several hours whittling the list down to four.

    I then preceded to the next step of trying to communicate with them. A big screen pops up and says something to the effect that background checks are strongly recommended. I clicked to see how much it would cost. First, it came up at around $59.00 for three months use. Money is tight so I just canceled and decided to think about it. I then decided it was worth it and so I went back to this screen and the offer was at a much lower price. This fee would auto charge every three months without cancelation. Ok.

    Then I picked a candidate and asked for a background check. Another screen popped up indicating that there would be a charge for criminal background check and another charge for a driving background check. I thought I had paid for this and so I waited two hours for the customer service 800# to come online. (10:00 am Illinois time). I spoke with customer service and they explained that I only paid for background checks on applicants who have posted or had one done on themselves! For my monthly payment, I could look at these. None of my candidates had this.

    Care.com did not make it clear what I paid for. They did not make it clear that I would be charged again for different kinds of background checks. They were reluctant to give me a refund. I had only set the account up one day before. I had to shed grandma tears of frustration and anger and a very long time on the phone to get this "one chance and this one chance only" of a refund. I took the refund, but am still angry about the situation and that they implied that I was the one committing some fraud. Avoid this site unless you have a fat wallet. I presume the site is really owned by some background check company who profits from their site.

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

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  • 8 out 8 people found this review helpful

    You'll be sorry

    • Crystal River, FL,
    • Jun 25, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    We are a cleaning business for over 18 years. After seeing other reviews our experience pails in comparison. We never even knew we had an account with Care.com. We had never been charged for anything but kept getting emails that we just deleted because we didn't do business with Care.com. Then one day one of our employees saw a negative review of our business on Care.com. When we went to Care.com to inquire how we could have a negative review with a company we don't do business with we were informed that our account had been closed and that it was company policy not to tell us how we had an account or why it was closed. Then when I inquired about reopening an account they told me, once a companies account is closed they can never do business with Care.com ever again. What?

    Good thing we don't need Care.com. Terrible business practices and ethics. Sounds like a real scam. I would stay as far away from this company as possible!

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

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  • 8 out 8 people found this review helpful

    Scam company

    • Pittsburgh, PA,
    • Jun 18, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Care.com is a scam. I set up an account, as a teacher looking to tutor this summer. Less then an hour later my account was terminated for no apparent reason and without warning. I urge you to look elsewhere when it comes to the education and safety of your children.

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

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  • 13 out 13 people found this review helpful

    Scam, even for sitters

    • Santa Clarita, CA,
    • Jun 9, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    As a former sitter on the site, I have to say I was absolutely appalled. I had a negative experience with a parent (which is a whole different thing, don’t get me started), and in addition to HER posting a negative (and false) review about me, she asked a friend to post a negative review as well. I contacted Care, saying I had never talked to or met the second person who posted the review and I was told that I should try asking the person to take it down.

    If Care is reading this, just because I ask you to take something down doesn’t necessarily mean you will. I find it absolutely baffling that you have the power to disable accounts, but you don’t have the power to take reviews down. How hard is it to go into your system and see that I never talked to this person on your site (or anywhere else I can assure you)? I really do wish this website (or any sitter website really) allowed sitters to review families in addition to families reviewing sitters. There are families that show up late without notice, families who don’t pay on time, etc. and it is important to notify other sitters before they take a job from them.

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

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  • 8 out 8 people found this review helpful

    Scam, you may be lucky to get a job.

    • Reisterstown, MD,
    • Jun 7, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    So I have signed up for this site when I was 16 with no luck until I was 18 when I finally landed a small job with a single mother who needed someone to take her daughter to school. Over the past few years I’ve gotten spam text messages promising a job and with pay but the email is a basically dealing with fraud and bs.

    When I first signed up, to be a caregiver was completely free and to just complete your profile before looking for jobs. I recently found out you have to buy credits to apply for a job or pay a subscription to apply for as many jobs in a time period. I closed my account that same day. One star, but it’s far below it.

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

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  • 11 out 11 people found this review helpful

    Possible scam

    • Cleveland, OH,
    • May 30, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    The caregiver seemed eager up until the day when they became unreachable through the site. I suspect the site employs and creates fake profiles, to attract attention and interest, however, do not expect to actually obtain a caregiver.

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

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    • Jul 5, 2018

      Yolanda S.

      Yes, I do feel that the site creates FAKE jobs, just to keep you subscribing. I have applied for 15 jobs only, and one emailed response but never an interview when I showed interest. DONT USE.

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  • 8 out 8 people found this review helpful

    Horrible and unprofessional company!

    • New York,
    • May 29, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    This company is extremely misleading, they say that you would get paid for your work within 30 minutes after your first payment, but that is completely NOT true! I have been waiting for my payment for a week now. NO ONE calls you back, there is no supervisor to speak to! They tell you that you would get a callback, that NEVER HAPPENS. They even choose to stop emailing you, when it relates to YOUR payment and YOUR account. Extremely unprofessional and misleading!

    Caution: Work at your own risk.

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

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