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I was about to put in disupute charges with care.com. The deal was better for a 3 month trial and I was hopeful based on those I was looking at. You have to sign on for a premium membership in order to be able to communicate with those available. I liked being able to read what they had written to get a sense of them. But in the end it seemed like a bait and switch because some do not respond (nor are they required to I'd assume), and those that did were "unavailable". Yet the same person is still showing as available! So I wrote a brief note: What's your availability in the next two weeks? And the page is indicating she saw it...but no response. I neglected to take in the fact that it is non-refundable ($50+), but I feel very taken advantage of. They want to encourage you to "place an ad", but that will give those that pay to be listed something to nibble at and I will, no doubt be deluged with people not meeting my standards (although I realize I could specify what those are and confirm). We used them once as a professional employer for my work place and there was no response when I complained about the quality of individuals from leadership, so I guess I should have known better. PLUS, they do make clear YOU are responsible for vetting anyone...so that would be another expense if you care to be sure. In addition, as many here have pointed out, you can worry about liability, accidents, tax paperwork. In the end there may be limited cost savings...unless you know of someone yourself.

I use care.com. It took me almost 2 months to find help with the site. Out of 11 inquiries to the care givers posts, only 4 responded. Out of those 4 I have 3 of them helping me out. I was surprised that I didn’t hear from most straight away. I’m thinking that there is plenty of work by me. One gal called , she said that “Barbara “ ( the one I sought out) was too busy to tAke anymore cases so she gets Barbara’s leftovers!! Hec no! She was pushy.
Aside from that I’ve had no problems. I always have a phone interview then an in person interview. I’ve found that all 3 girls to be sincere and kind to mom. Mom would be able to tell me if there was a stinker. I’ve hired all women where this job is not their bread and butter , that makes a difference. They really want to be here. And yes you do have to pay for the premium membership to go anywhere on the site.

Best wishes.
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Reply to anonymous470693
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Good afternoon, gdaughter,

We used an agency that I found in a local Senior Living publication. This was about 18 years ago before everything was on internet. At this time we were starting our caregiving journey with our parents and just needed someone to help them with housekeeping, medicine, and to be our eyes and ears when my siblings and I weren’t there as we all worked full-time. We used the same agency until my parents entered a nursing home last year.

So, to answer your question. Go with an agency. We did have a few issues, but 90% was a good experience. They are responsible for vetting the employees, training them, and supplying with a substitute when the regular employee can’t make it. Yes, it is expensive, but well worth it.

Your part? You have to make your expectations clear. By the time my parents entered the nursing home, a professional caregiver from this agency was coming 5 hours a day every day and we were taking up the rest of the day. We had a detailed list of caregiving that we wanted done along with housekeeping and just visiting with parents. There were a few caregivers who did not work out, but they were readily replaced.
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Reply to Treeartist
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gdaughter, regarding private hire vs agency, there are pro and con with each.

When my Dad needed around the clock care, I went with an agency because the agency was licensed, bonded, insured, and had workman's comp for their employees. Also, what I liked, if a caregiver was unable to make his/her shift, the Agency quickly found a replacement. Plus the caregiver is required to stay at the home until the next shift arrives. My dad also needed night time care, so the Agency required their 3rd shift caregivers to remain awake the whole time. Thus, the Agency had employees who only did 3rd shift.

At first Dad had many different caregivers who came over for their shift, thus Dad could pick what caregiver he would prefer to be a regular. Dad had 2 that were with him for a whole year.

The drawback for an agency, expensive. Dad had saved for those rainy days. Dad was quite happy with the agency, but I had to hide the bill from him :P

If you hire private, as you had mentioned, you would need to do the vetting. Not many people realize this, any employee you have working in your home, you need to get a workman's comp insurance policy just in case an employee gets hurt on the job. You also need to see paperwork that the caregiver has had their flu shot, and a yearly TB test.
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Reply to freqflyer
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Yeah, companies make things look like a good deal then it changes. Same with benefits from insurance. Mom qualified for “free” call alert button, then after awhile you have to pay for it. Why don’t they state clearly upfront the truth??? Annoying! In our case, the call button never even worked! Did not detect falls, they didn’t respond to pressing button, when they did I was already speaking to 911 and my first priority was getting help for mom. They kept interrupting while I was speaking to 911 dispatcher. I had two new units sent out. Neither worked. Finally canceled. Why pay $45 a month for a service that didn’t work. Sounds like your agency has glitches too. Wish I had an answer for you. Good luck.
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Reply to NeedHelpWithMom
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