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  #1  
Old 04-03-2017, 02:11 PM
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Default Charging To Hold A Spot For Summer

So one of my moms has changed her schedule four times in the past year. The changes have mostly been understandable: new responsibilities at work...grandma not being consistent on which day she wanted to watch grandkids...trying to work out care for dcb who is starting K in Fall.

But I'm a bit maxed out with the changes and I was thinking to go weekly with this family to cover the fact that they have not been coming consistently on Thursdays, but I have three families who want the two Thursday spots I have available in Fall.

But then today dcb says "I won't be coming here in the Summer." What??? I text mom and ask if she knows what days she wants in the Summer, and she tells me that she is doing nanny-share for the Summer, but would like to be here in the Fall.

Well with all the changes, I don't feel like I can take her word for it, and I feel like I need to protect myself. I immediately texted mom back and asked if she was willing to pay to hold the spot open for Fall, and she said she understood and asked how much.

So I need to think of how to cover myself for possible Fall no-show and also to cover myself now for the flaky Thursday thing. And what to tell the other two families? I was leaning towards giving this family one of my Thursday spots, but now I don't know.

I'm thinking to go weekly now (like NOW) and to ask for at least one month non-refundable deposit for Fall. What do you all think?
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Old 04-03-2017, 02:24 PM
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So one of my moms has changed her schedule four times in the past year. The changes have mostly been understandable: new responsibilities at work...grandma not being consistent on which day she wanted to watch grandkids...trying to work out care for dcb who is starting K in Fall.

But I'm a bit maxed out with the changes and I was thinking to go weekly with this family to cover the fact that they have not been coming consistently on Thursdays, but I have three families who want the two Thursday spots I have available in Fall.

But then today dcb says "I won't be coming here in the Summer." What??? I text mom and ask if she knows what days she wants in the Summer, and she tells me that she is doing nanny-share for the Summer, but would like to be here in the Fall.

Well with all the changes, I don't feel like I can take her word for it, and I feel like I need to protect myself. I immediately texted mom back and asked if she was willing to pay to hold the spot open for Fall, and she said she understood and asked how much.

So I need to think of how to cover myself for possible Fall no-show and also to cover myself now for the flaky Thursday thing. And what to tell the other two families? I was leaning towards giving this family one of my Thursday spots, but now I don't know.

I'm thinking to go weekly now (like NOW) and to ask for at least one month non-refundable deposit for Fall. What do you all think?
Personally I wouldn't want her back at all with all the confusion and schedule changes she has going on.

ANY time someone wants to short me money so they can save (using alternate care in the summer) money it leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

I am not saying they need to be loyal to you no matter what but multiple schedule changes and temporary withdrawals is tooooooo much drama for me.
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Old 04-03-2017, 02:26 PM
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* CHARGING to hold spot.
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Old 04-03-2017, 02:27 PM
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Personally I wouldn't want her back at all with all the confusion and schedule changes she has going on.

ANY time someone wants to short me money so they can save (using alternate care in the summer) money it leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

I am not saying they need to be loyal to you no matter what but multiple schedule changes and temporary withdrawals is tooooooo much drama for me.
I know what you're saying. It's getting too much for me too. I'm writing a new contract right now to have her put her money where her mouth is. At least she can make a decision and let me get on with my life.
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Old 04-03-2017, 02:33 PM
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Next.
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Old 04-03-2017, 02:36 PM
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I would tell her the cost would be her normal rate of care as you do not hold spots. I would immediately try to fill that spot with another family ASAP.

I don't quite know what you mean by going weekly, do you current charge by the day? If so I would immediately switch that going forward for all families in your care.... I charge monthly but others charge bi-weekly or weekly - daily payments IMO encourage flakes who want to pay as a little as possible. I do know one local provider who has a by the day rate with a 3-day min per week, she adds all the scheduled days and charges them by the month in advance of care.
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Old 04-03-2017, 02:40 PM
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I agree with BC. If you don't need them, I'd either let them go, or would charge maybe 75% of your normal charge for the summer. If that's too much for her, then they go.

If you want to keep them, 1 month pay for the summer is ok, if you have the option to get summer care clients to fill in some of what you lose. If you're going to lose a full month of income by doing that, that's too big a discount. As many have said here, parents shouldn't be charged based on attendance, it's based on the space. It's not fair for you to lose money over the summer so she can save.

For Thursdays, if she's not normally there on Thursdays, I'd let others have that day and tell her it's not even an option, unless she wants to pay you for it EVERY time.

What it all comes down to is, you provide a service, they pay for it whether they use it or not. Any adjustments are solely at your discretion and should be determined by what you feel is fair to you.
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Old 04-03-2017, 03:14 PM
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I would charge the full amount.

One of my families in passing said they would be gone all summer for a vacation and never asked about a discount. They understand that full monthly tuition is due regardless of attendance (they take at least a week vacation every two months) and never have asked for a discount. It is written in my contract and handbook, and verbally explained during the interview.
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Old 04-03-2017, 03:53 PM
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Yeah, I agree with all the above. And as I am thinking about it...I am realizing that no matter how big a non-refundable deposit was, it's no substitute for an on-going family.

I have actually charged hourly for the whole 4.5 years I've been doing daycare. The reason is that we've had a lot of demands in our family life with different things, and it's been a real squeeze for me to work at all. So part-time families have been great. But things are a bit more stable for us now, and I'm transitioning to working at daycare being more of a full-time profession for me rather than wanting bare-minimum earnings.

One of the things that really bites with this family is that the last time there was a schedule change, it was because they were trying out a different daycare part-time (still with me on Fridays), because it was close to where dcb would be starting kinder. Okay, fine. But then they didn't like it. There were so many SA kids and they didn't separate ages, so the dcg3 was getting pushed around and dcb4 was learning crude words etc.

So they came back and I felt like my great program and group of children was being recognized and appreciated. So I offered to transport dcb as well as my other two who are starting K in Fall. I worked out insurance for all this. And now she's going to give nanny-sharing a shot. Grrrr! Finding good care is NOT easy!!!!
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Old 04-03-2017, 04:45 PM
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Changes can complicate things, but in business, sometimes changes are needed.
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Old 04-04-2017, 06:54 AM
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Yeah, I agree with all the above. And as I am thinking about it...I am realizing that no matter how big a non-refundable deposit was, it's no substitute for an on-going family.

I have actually charged hourly for the whole 4.5 years I've been doing daycare. The reason is that we've had a lot of demands in our family life with different things, and it's been a real squeeze for me to work at all. So part-time families have been great. But things are a bit more stable for us now, and I'm transitioning to working at daycare being more of a full-time profession for me rather than wanting bare-minimum earnings.

One of the things that really bites with this family is that the last time there was a schedule change, it was because they were trying out a different daycare part-time (still with me on Fridays), because it was close to where dcb would be starting kinder. Okay, fine. But then they didn't like it. There were so many SA kids and they didn't separate ages, so the dcg3 was getting pushed around and dcb4 was learning crude words etc.

So they came back and I felt like my great program and group of children was being recognized and appreciated. So I offered to transport dcb as well as my other two who are starting K in Fall. I worked out insurance for all this. And now she's going to give nanny-sharing a shot. Grrrr! Finding good care is NOT easy!!!!
Sadly, it wasn't being recognized or appreciated it was just the easiest thing or most workable option they have available.

DCM is showing you that by continually looking elsewhere (for WHATEVER reason) for cheaper or closer or easier that she doesn't value or appreciate you. She just knows you are their safety net. You will be there willing to take them (and go the extra mile...getting insurance) no matter what situation they have going on.

You are their "It will do for now until something better comes along".

I am sorry if that really is true....I doubt myself sometimes as it IS easy to become jaded in this business but so far based on what you've said about this family...they are using you and will leave in a heartbeat when they don't need you anymore.

Do what works best for YOU!!!
....and do NOT feel bad about it!
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Old 04-04-2017, 07:02 AM
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Personally I wouldn't want her back at all with all the confusion and schedule changes she has going on.

ANY time someone wants to short me money so they can save (using alternate care in the summer) money it leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

I am not saying they need to be loyal to you no matter what but multiple schedule changes and temporary withdrawals is tooooooo much drama for me.


Yup.

I would give notice at the end of this school year, and fill the space with a more stable family. Mom doesn't get to decide my enrollment or income, I do.
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Old 04-04-2017, 07:27 AM
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Sadly, it wasn't being recognized or appreciated it was just the easiest thing or most workable option they have available.

DCM is showing you that by continually looking elsewhere (for WHATEVER reason) for cheaper or closer or easier that she doesn't value or appreciate you. She just knows you are their safety net. You will be there willing to take them (and go the extra mile...getting insurance) no matter what situation they have going on.

You are their "It will do for now until something better comes along".

I am sorry if that really is true....I doubt myself sometimes as it IS easy to become jaded in this business but so far based on what you've said about this family...they are using you and will leave in a heartbeat when they don't need you anymore.

Do what works best for YOU!!!
....and do NOT feel bad about it!

Yes to this!

I have no issue with parents wanting to change daycares, but i am also not an idiot. I know when they are looking for cheaper and trying to keep me on the hook, just in case. I dont like it and i dont let them come back when things dont work out (they rarely work out). Call me petty, but I value myself and know i would have a tough time looking past it, so it would be an awkward relationship...aint nobody got time for that!

Tell her that you will be filling the spots and wishe her the best of luck! And when she calls this summer bc the nanny share falls apart, dont answer your phone!
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Old 04-04-2017, 07:34 AM
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1. Grandma care, 2. nanny share, 3. inconsistency, and 4. argues with your policies (illness especially) all tell me you will have a much better summer without this family. They seem to be the source of the majority of your job stress.
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Old 04-04-2017, 10:05 AM
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Agree with the others!

She pays fulltime for the summer OR you get rid of her. She is using cheap student labor for the summer and sharing the expense with someone else while your family goes without?? Not only that but she didn't even tell you!?!

Um nope!!
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Old 04-04-2017, 10:17 AM
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1. Grandma care, 2. nanny share, 3. inconsistency, and 4. argues with your policies (illness especially) all tell me you will have a much better summer without this family. They seem to be the source of the majority of your job stress.


I would be advertising and replacing. Hopefully before the summer.
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Old 04-04-2017, 10:35 AM
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Id tell her the normal weekly rate. And when she says, but they won't be here. Why should I pay?
Well why should you take a paycut because she wants to save some money?
I would just replace her asap. And give her notice when you have deposit for new child. Do not let someone else's life dictate your security.
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Old 04-04-2017, 04:43 PM
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So last night I got an email from mom, with a longer explanation of what was going on. I spent time trying to think of a way to make this work financially for me, and I couldn't work it out--it seems so complicated.

So this morning, I told mom that I couldn't hold spots. Mom communicated that she really badly wanted it to work out. We talked about it quite a bit and I explained my point of view, and I told her what kind of $ numbers it would take to make me want to even consider holding spots.

In the end mom, who is a lawyer, offered to write up an proposal to "mitigate any possible losses to me should she change her mind in the Fall" and to cover me holding spots for the Summer, using the numbers I mentioned to her. After asking her what "mitigate" means (lol), I said "sure, make me an offer." So I guess I'll look over what she writes up and see if I feel okay about it.
I'll let you all know if it works out or not.

I like mom pretty well, I just don't think she really gets what it would mean for me to hold open spots when transportation is an issue, and I only have five seats available in my van and she has two children. I spelled that out to her so hopefully she understands it a bit better now. I'll have to see what she comes up with and if I feel good about it or not.

My husband thinks that getting paid for children who are not attending in the Summer is a fine idea!
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Old 04-04-2017, 05:06 PM
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So last night I got an email from mom, with a longer explanation of what was going on. I spent time trying to think of a way to make this work financially for me, and I couldn't work it out--it seems so complicated.

So this morning, I told mom that I couldn't hold spots. Mom communicated that she really badly wanted it to work out. We talked about it quite a bit and I explained my point of view, and I told her what kind of $ numbers it would take to make me want to even consider holding spots.

In the end mom, who is a lawyer, offered to write up an proposal to "mitigate any possible losses to me should she change her mind in the Fall" and to cover me holding spots for the Summer, using the numbers I mentioned to her. After asking her what "mitigate" means (lol), I said "sure, make me an offer." So I guess I'll look over what she writes up and see if I feel okay about it.
I'll let you all know if it works out or not.

I like mom pretty well, I just don't think she really gets what it would mean for me to hold open spots when transportation is an issue, and I only have five seats available in my van and she has two children. I spelled that out to her so hopefully she understands it a bit better now. I'll have to see what she comes up with and if I feel good about it or not.

My husband thinks that getting paid for children who are not attending in the Summer is a fine idea!
That's the only way to keep a spot, unless you want lower income.

Make sure you read any fine print in her contract.
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Old 04-04-2017, 06:51 PM
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So last night I got an email from mom, with a longer explanation of what was going on. I spent time trying to think of a way to make this work financially for me, and I couldn't work it out--it seems so complicated.

So this morning, I told mom that I couldn't hold spots. Mom communicated that she really badly wanted it to work out. We talked about it quite a bit and I explained my point of view, and I told her what kind of $ numbers it would take to make me want to even consider holding spots.

In the end mom, who is a lawyer, offered to write up an proposal to "mitigate any possible losses to me should she change her mind in the Fall" and to cover me holding spots for the Summer, using the numbers I mentioned to her. After asking her what "mitigate" means (lol), I said "sure, make me an offer." So I guess I'll look over what she writes up and see if I feel okay about it.
I'll let you all know if it works out or not.

I like mom pretty well, I just don't think she really gets what it would mean for me to hold open spots when transportation is an issue, and I only have five seats available in my van and she has two children. I spelled that out to her so hopefully she understands it a bit better now. I'll have to see what she comes up with and if I feel good about it or not.

My husband thinks that getting paid for children who are not attending in the Summer is a fine idea!
Images of red flags are popping up in my head. Hundreds of them.
I could be wrong here, but I highly doubt any lawyer would "write up a proposal" that would benefit YOU when the said lawyer is the other party in this arrangement.
Just sayin'
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Old 04-04-2017, 07:30 PM
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Images of red flags are popping up in my head. Hundreds of them.
I could be wrong here, but I highly doubt any lawyer would "write up a proposal" that would benefit YOU when the said lawyer is the other party in this arrangement.
Just sayin'
RED FLAGS plus some; Being I worked in the legal field before doing childcare... yeah, the proposal she writes won't be in favor of the provider and essentially, the lawyer is trying to control the situation. I say either OP writes up a proposal to favor the childcare or start looking to replace like yesterday.
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Old 04-04-2017, 08:09 PM
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RED FLAGS plus some; Being I worked in the legal field before doing childcare... yeah, the proposal she writes won't be in favor of the provider and essentially, the lawyer is trying to control the situation. I say either OP writes up a proposal to favor the childcare or start looking to replace like yesterday.
Totally agree with this!
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Old 04-05-2017, 02:03 AM
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So last night I got an email from mom, with a longer explanation of what was going on. I spent time trying to think of a way to make this work financially for me, and I couldn't work it out--it seems so complicated.

So this morning, I told mom that I couldn't hold spots. Mom communicated that she really badly wanted it to work out. We talked about it quite a bit and I explained my point of view, and I told her what kind of $ numbers it would take to make me want to even consider holding spots.

In the end mom, who is a lawyer, offered to write up an proposal to "mitigate any possible losses to me should she change her mind in the Fall" and to cover me holding spots for the Summer, using the numbers I mentioned to her. After asking her what "mitigate" means (lol), I said "sure, make me an offer." So I guess I'll look over what she writes up and see if I feel okay about it.
I'll let you all know if it works out or not.

I like mom pretty well, I just don't think she really gets what it would mean for me to hold open spots when transportation is an issue, and I only have five seats available in my van and she has two children. I spelled that out to her so hopefully she understands it a bit better now. I'll have to see what she comes up with and if I feel good about it or not.

My husband thinks that getting paid for children who are not attending in the Summer is a fine idea!
Um, no. Parents do not dictate (in any terms) how I run my business. I would NOT accept any forms/agreements/contracts from a dcp!! Especially one who is a lawyer. This is YOUR business. YOU set the rules.

The only terms she needs to know is that full fees are due, whether children are in attendance or not. This doesn't need to be complicated, or arranged, or discussed. You have spots. You need them filled. She pays or she goes. I would not even discuss this any further.

"Dcm, my rate is this. Tuition is due regardless of attendance. I do not hold spots for a reduced rate. Please remember that I need 2 weeks notice if your child is withdrawing from care."

End of discussion.

Honestly, I would just be telling her to look for care elsewhere. Once parents think that they have a say in how business is run.... it's very hard to reel that back in.
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Old 04-05-2017, 04:41 AM
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Images of red flags are popping up in my head. Hundreds of them.
I could be wrong here, but I highly doubt any lawyer would "write up a proposal" that would benefit YOU when the said lawyer is the other party in this arrangement.
Just sayin'
Yep- time to find a new DCF. Once DCP gets in their head they can dictate terms to a provider on how to run things it goes downhill fast.
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Old 04-05-2017, 06:40 AM
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Curious as to why you are allowing this parent to run your business?

If it is difficult to find clients in your area, I understand but you have to look at this situation objectively and understand that she (DCM) is simply manipulating the situation (and you) to benefit her.

Why even use a nanny share this summer at all if she values/appreciates you?

Essentially she is saying to you "I will put something on paper that will make this situation appear to be a compromise for both of us but in reality I am pulling kid from your care (and budget) to save myself money but when I don't have that option any longer I want you to be waiting on the sideline to pick up where my nanny left off."

She is clearly the one in charge and you are allowing it.

I am not in any way saying that you are wrong in this situation I am just making sure you are looking at what is happening with clear eyes and without emotion.

This woman is willing to go so far as to create a legal document "to protect" your finances but yet isn't willing to just appreciate and value the continuity and quality you are currently providing her child.

I see nothing but trouble with this one.

If it is truly a "needing the money" situation on your end, don't lose sight of the fact that not all money is good money.
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Old 04-05-2017, 09:50 AM
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I agree with all of the others. I had a family that was constantly changing their schedule and I was OVER it. I had to start a new rule. 2 schedule changes per year and then there was going to be a contract fee charge and if it was too much, I was just going to move on.

I don't hold spots. I am open all year around and only close for major holidays.

So If my spots open in May, you need to enroll in May and pay for the spot if you use it or not. If you are looking to only enroll for fall, then you may be out of luck.

I would tell this mom that you have to do what is best for business and to call you in the fall when they want to enroll and see if you have any openings...
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Old 04-05-2017, 10:41 AM
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I'm in complete agreement with everything Blackcat has said.
This woman is using you and sadly you're allowing it 😢

This is a perfect example why I ONLY take full time children. I have a weekly charge and it's paid no matter what!! I do not hold spots for enrolled children. If they leave for any reason, they still pay the weekly rates. I do offer 1/2 pay for one weeks vacation, but it must be 5 consecutive days in a row!

I've been around too long and know every trick in the book families try to give me.. If they don't like the contract, then they leave and I fill the opening.

Stand up for yourself and your business!! 😃
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Old 04-05-2017, 11:01 AM
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You are being manipulated by a professional manipulator. It is literally in her job title. “act[ing] in a representative capacity in protecting, enforcing, or defending the legal rights and duties of another and in counseling, advising and assisting [another] in connection with these rights and duties.”

Tell her you will need a "$7,500.00 retainer to be applied against full time daycare fees and costs incurred by client or expenses paid by provider on behalf of client."

Honestly, just going to full-time, only, services is life changing. Enrolled or not enrolled, it is that easy.
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Old 04-05-2017, 03:04 PM
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I would charge at least 1/2 rate tuition for the summer and charge monthly (due the 1st) to "hold" the spot.
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Old 04-05-2017, 06:21 PM
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She seems like a very confused lawyer its not rocket science. Pay to play lady!
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  #31  
Old 04-06-2017, 04:06 PM
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I love all your responses.

I haven't agreed to anything yet. I really meant "make me an offer." I will have to consider it to see if I can live with it. She isn't dictating my business, I just agreed to let her put the effort into putting her thoughts into words.

The number I quoted for over the Summer was $300 per month. It's enough for me as long as there's compensation in the Fall for if she changes her mind again. I'll have to see what she comes up with. And I will counter-offer if we're close.

I'll let you know when I actually see it. They aren't here on Wednesdays, so I thought I'd see something this morning, but she said that something difficult/bad was going on at work. She does work for the government these days, and I know a little bit about what she does, so I do trust her if she says that something unusually difficult is going on. But I can only wait a little while longer.
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Old 04-06-2017, 04:57 PM
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I hope you know I am not trying to tell you that you are wrong or that you have to do X or Y.

I just want to make sure your aren't getting screwed over.

It doesn't make you a bad provider for doing something others wouldn't or a good provider because you are rigid or hard about policies 100% of the time.

I've done lots of deals/agreements where I'm sure I got the shorter end or agreed to things I'd never do now.... sometimes the current situation just requires it... there is no right or wrong answer.

Only what's right for you.
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Old 04-08-2017, 08:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackcat31 View Post
I hope you know I am not trying to tell you that you are wrong or that you have to do X or Y.

I just want to make sure your aren't getting screwed over.

It doesn't make you a bad provider for doing something others wouldn't or a good provider because you are rigid or hard about policies 100% of the time.

I've done lots of deals/agreements where I'm sure I got the shorter end or agreed to things I'd never do now.... sometimes the current situation just requires it... there is no right or wrong answer.

Only what's right for you.
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Old 04-09-2017, 03:14 AM
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Originally Posted by LysesKids View Post
RED FLAGS plus some; Being I worked in the legal field before doing childcare... yeah, the proposal she writes won't be in favor of the provider and essentially, the lawyer is trying to control the situation. I say either OP writes up a proposal to favor the childcare or start looking to replace like yesterday.


A lawyer?? And she's always looking for cheaper, better, alternative child care?? Uh no. I'd be asking her when her last day is and fill her spot asap. Lawyers do want and work for the control, this is NOT HER BUSINESS!!!! And I think you'll be asking for trouble agreeing to anything she writes up. Unless you have a lawyer friend who can read it for you. Lawyers are so good at finding loopholes.
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Old 04-09-2017, 03:23 AM
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Be careful thinking about it as free money over the summer too because not knowing what the fall will bring might cause some backlash.

Feeling the same as most everyone here. This sounds like a touchy situation that could turn out badly for you. And I have certainly done things that 95% of the people here would've shaken their finger at . Thankfully I learned but it was expensive education.

Good luck to you for choosing what YOUR best option is.
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