View Full Version : open for 2 years,but no children
02-11-2009, 07:33 AM
I've had my license for two years and I have no children.I spent so much money doing this.I'm on craigslist,flyers,business cards everywhere,and now Daycare.com..I know the economy has a lot to do with it as well as the area I'm in (low income). What else should I do?
02-11-2009, 01:49 PM
Where are you located? The economy is effecting effecting everyone. When it picks up then I have faith you will get a housefull.
02-12-2009, 05:57 AM
Hi there. I live in a low income area, too. Over 50% of the people in the city I live in are on welfare according to the food program survey. I am in the same boat as you are. I do have four full timers and one part timer right now, but if I lose kids, I cannot replace them. My rates are about the cheapest in town, I have one of the nicest houses and definitely one of the largest houses, etc. Daycare providers have gotten cut throat here. I had one daycare provider start a rumor that I was moving and one of her daycare child's mother visited my house, figured out who I was watching (small town) told two parents, and I lost two kids over it. The other provider gained those two kids.
I do not receive phone calls, and I do have a contract with the State to watch kids for low income families (they dont even have to pay for it, the State does, and I still dont get calls).
Here's a few ideas, though: If your city allows it, put a large sign in your front yard. Make it out of a large piece of plywood and paint it with balloons, confetti, etc. and advertise your daycare 24/7 at no cost other than the cost to make the sign. (the city I live in made me take mine down, because it's against city ordinance to have a sign that is larger than 1x2, and it must be attached to the house.... of course, my other neighbors who have lived here forever have signs in their yards, and that's okay but I'm not "in the club" so I cant have a sign).
Get online and order car magnets. I have a different business other than the daycare, and I ordered my signs for my vehicles (they are about the size of a car door). When you drive your car around town, more people will see that you exist.
If you have a contract with the State, try sending them a letter or send a letter with business cards included to some of the temp agencies or headhunters in the area. Simply introduce yourself and let them know that you have openings. If people are looking for work and they have kids, they are going to need daycare. The State here only gives a list of providers, and then the families have to start with the "A"'s and call every provider until they find one with openings.
Consider running a "bad economy" special. Maybe come in $5 per week less than the low-end price for daycare in the area. If you are not making any money right now, then whatever you do make is better than nothing. But dont sell yourself short too much. Some around here are also offering a free week of care after a certain number of weeks in attendance.
You could also build a website for your daycare. Mine does not get a lot of attention, but since I put it on my business cards, I had to build the site to go with the cards.
These are just a few ideas. I hope maybe some of them help.
02-12-2009, 09:24 PM
I have struggled to keep my daycare full the past 18m or so. I blamed it on a number of factors... that it was due to either our new location (more remote corner of town) or that I was pregnant. Now that I have had my baby, and realized there are a LOT of daycares out here as well, I do think it is the economy.
I have cut back my rates and offered enrollment incentives like 1st week free... 10% discount when you pay more than a week at a time... some helped, some didn't.
02-17-2009, 01:20 PM
Ive always found word of mouth to be the best...I tell everyone, I will make the point to mention it as Im checking out at walmart or in any other times where its a group. I make up flyers for all the local grocery stores and malls, I participate in the annual parade for our town also.
Hope that you get someone soon!
02-17-2009, 03:57 PM
Have you checked with your local Child Care Resource and Referral agency? Most areas have an R&R that is paid by the state to help parents find child care. This means that, generally, any licensed child care provider in good standing with the licensing agency (no holds on your license or anything) can be listed on their database and get free referrals from the R&R. If you are already on their database and are not getting referrals, make sure that your listing is up-to-date. (When I ran an R&R a few years ago, I would get calls from providers who weren't getting referrals and, when we looked them up, would see that they hadn't updated their file in 6 months and it showed no vacancies.) If your listing is up-to-date, ask your R&R if they can give you any suggestions for how to tweak your program and improve your profile. Maybe they are receiving a lot more calls from parents who need care an hour or after you open; maybe there are more calls for school-age child care; etc.
(you can find your local R&R through www.naccrra.org)
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