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View Full Version : Charging For Late Pickup


JENNL49
07-12-2011, 02:45 PM
I have a parent who is ALWAYS late to pickup. They have asked that I give them a $ amount to pay for these times. What is reasonable? I close at 6pm they come anywhere up to 6:30.

THanks!!

Meeko
07-12-2011, 02:46 PM
I charge a $1 per minute.

PolarCare
07-12-2011, 02:48 PM
Do you want to charge a reasonable rate or do you want them to pick up on time?

If you want to extend your hours, then extend them, and just charge them a little more.

If you want them to pick up on time, charge a late fee that is a deterrent because it's high. The center I had my son at when he was a toddler charged $5 per MINUTE for every minute after 6 pm that children were not picked up. I was NEVER late picking him up. I had to work later but made other arrangements for him to be picked up.

If you extend hours for her, are you going to extend them for everybody with the option of paying the higher rate?

KEG123
07-12-2011, 02:58 PM
So she plans to continue being late? Does this interfere with you're evening plans? If you are willing to work past closing for her, make it worth it.

daycare
07-12-2011, 03:02 PM
Do you want to charge a reasonable rate or do you want them to pick up on time?

If you want to extend your hours, then extend them, and just charge them a little more.

If you want them to pick up on time, charge a late fee that is a deterrent because it's high. The center I had my son at when he was a toddler charged $5 per MINUTE for every minute after 6 pm that children were not picked up. I was NEVER late picking him up. I had to work later but made other arrangements for him to be picked up.

If you extend hours for her, are you going to extend them for everybody with the option of paying the higher rate?
ditto this!!.
Either extend your hours or charge a late fee, or fee increase.

I don't do care past 6pm. My new policy that will start in sept.

Each time a client is late, it will raise their daily rate $1.00. There will be no cap on how much I will charge. Bottom line don't be late.
EX. first time late....play it by ear...possible waive of late fee
second time they are late fees will go from $50.00 a day to $51.00
third time $52 and so on...

I have never seen this done before and not sure why I want to do it this way, but I am just soooooo done with the late excuses and flakes....

AfterSchoolMom
07-12-2011, 06:05 PM
ditto this!!.
Either extend your hours or charge a late fee, or fee increase.

I don't do care past 6pm. My new policy that will start in sept.

Each time a client is late, it will raise their daily rate $1.00. There will be no cap on how much I will charge. Bottom line don't be late.
EX. first time late....play it by ear...possible waive of late fee
second time they are late fees will go from $50.00 a day to $51.00
third time $52 and so on...

I have never seen this done before and not sure why I want to do it this way, but I am just soooooo done with the late excuses and flakes....

Oooh, that is a FANTASTIC idea!!!!!! Love this!

CheekyChick
07-12-2011, 07:03 PM
In the past four years, I haven't charged a penny for late fees. I'm a pushover.

CoachingForQualityImprovement
07-12-2011, 07:46 PM
I don't do late pick ups, and my families are very respectful of that and appreciative of my time. There is the very rare occasion that a parent will ask for an early drop-off or pick-up and because they are so respectful of my policies, I do it for free. I wouldn't do it at all for a client who was not respectful of my time and policies though.

If I were you and was really considering offering extended hours on a regular basis for her, (it will become daily, most likely) I would offer it to all families and raise my weekly rate for the extended day......add it to the contract and the parents can choose which option they want.....what you currently offer with late fees for late pick up, or the extended day for an additional $20-$30 per week.

littlemissmuffet
07-12-2011, 08:22 PM
I charge $ a minute, even if they call and let me know they will be late. I never let it slide. Once I charge ONCE, it never happens again.

If you extend your hours for her, she will USE IT EVERYDAY! SO WILL EVERY OTHER PARENT!

Stick to your rules - you CANNOT be a pushover in this business. Period.

JENNL49
07-13-2011, 05:33 AM
Thanks! I think I will start charging $1 a minute since she clearly stated "I will be that late parent all the time!" Im sure she will keep the behavior up! I am going to post a letter today putting this into effect immediately.

Meeko
07-13-2011, 07:32 AM
Thanks! I think I will start charging $1 a minute since she clearly stated "I will be that late parent all the time!" Im sure she will keep the behavior up! I am going to post a letter today putting this into effect immediately.

Make sure your written policy says the time will be taken from YOUR clock at the DAYCARE. (I have one in the foyer that can be seen the second parents walk in.)

Not their watch, not their phone, not their car clock.......you don't need to hear arguments about what the time "really" is.

daycare
07-13-2011, 09:02 AM
Make sure your written policy says the time will be taken from YOUR clock at the DAYCARE. (I have one in the foyer that can be seen the second parents walk in.)

Not their watch, not their phone, not their car clock.......you don't need to hear arguments about what the time "really" is.
yes great advice... I bought a cheap atomic clock from targtet for about $20.00. When I wrote the late/early policy, I made it clear that I would use this clock to determine late/early fees.

Also, make sure that you not only post a notice about the change, but have the parents sign it...

Crazy8
07-13-2011, 03:29 PM
I like the $1/minute idea - I think I'm going to change mine to that. For me a late fee is to DETER the behavior, not to make the extra money. I often need to be out the door right behind my daycare kids - I would be terminating care if a family continuously picked up beyond their contracted time, regardless of late fees.

Meeko
07-13-2011, 07:01 PM
I like the $1/minute idea - I think I'm going to change mine to that. For me a late fee is to DETER the behavior, not to make the extra money. I often need to be out the door right behind my daycare kids - I would be terminating care if a family continuously picked up beyond their contracted time, regardless of late fees.

Exactly. That's why I make mine a $1 per minute. It hurts their checkbook. It's the only way to get their attention sometimes. If it's not steep, they just grin and pay up, thinking it was worth it.

AfterSchoolMom
07-13-2011, 07:19 PM
Do you think $1 a minute is high enough to be a deterrent? These types of families are famous for just strolling in late and just handing you the money because it's "only" 5 or 10 bucks...

Not that I can say anything about it, I can't get anyone to pay late fees. :mad:

jen
07-13-2011, 07:23 PM
Do you think $1 a minute is high enough to be a deterrent? These types of families are famous for just strolling in late and just handing you the money because it's "only" 5 or 10 bucks...

Not that I can say anything about it, I can't get anyone to pay late fees. :mad:

Sure you can...no pay, no play.

TBird
07-14-2011, 06:10 AM
Not that I can say anything about it, I can't get anyone to pay late fees. :mad:

Can I ask why not??? :confused:

AfterSchoolMom
07-14-2011, 07:59 AM
Can I ask why not??? :confused:

I've said it before...I do B/A school care for SA's. I get a group in August/September, and it's almost impossible to get new kids if anyone leaves. Families know this and take advantage.

Crazy8
07-14-2011, 08:03 AM
Do you think $1 a minute is high enough to be a deterrent? These types of families are famous for just strolling in late and just handing you the money because it's "only" 5 or 10 bucks...

Not that I can say anything about it, I can't get anyone to pay late fees. :mad:

I wonder that too - especially if its only 5 min. but right now my policy is $5 for every 15 min. which definitely isn't high enough.

you CAN get them to pay - you just have to buckle down and stick to it. I started by sending out a note to parents saying while in the past I have been lenient about late fees due to a few recent incidents where I have missed my after hour appointments that effective immediately they would be strictly enforced. This way it didn't sound like I was picking on one family.

Good luck!!!

PitterPatter
07-14-2011, 08:24 AM
I charge $5 per hour per child in my contract. It's a joke tho because now I get parents who are 10 -15 mins late and figure screw it they are already paying the $5 so why not take the whole hour. When I mentioned charging a dollar per minute my licensor asked "dont u think thats just a bit much?" and looks at me like I'm silly.

daycare
07-14-2011, 09:00 AM
I charge $5 per hour per child in my contract. It's a joke tho because now I get parents who are 10 -15 mins late and figure screw it they are already paying the $5 so why not take the whole hour. When I mentioned charging a dollar per minute my licensor asked "dont u think thats just a bit much?" and looks at me like I'm silly.
But that’s the whole point!! You need to charge something that will hurt the pocket book so they will think twice before doing it again... It's not a bonus plan, it’s a penalty...

littlemissmuffet
07-14-2011, 09:11 AM
I charge $5 per hour per child in my contract. It's a joke tho because now I get parents who are 10 -15 mins late and figure screw it they are already paying the $5 so why not take the whole hour. When I mentioned charging a dollar per minute my licensor asked "dont u think thats just a bit much?" and looks at me like I'm silly.

And you listened to your licensor WHY??? S/he doesn't run your business. S/he doesn't have to work late for FREE (because at $5/hour... that's basically free).
$1 per minute is the norm in my area - and seems to be on this forum as well.... like I said, I almost never have late pick-ups because it's expensive and they KNOW I will indeed charge it.

TIME IS MONEY!