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  #1  
Old 12-19-2011, 10:19 AM
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Default Family Care Providers - How Hard Was It For You To Enroll Your First Child?

I'm just curious. I'm getting ready to start advertising and spreading the word in person that I'm opening up in February/March.

How hard was it for you guys to get parents to enroll their children?
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Old 12-19-2011, 10:23 AM
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Had some within a week or so, but I pulled my son from his daycare and stole some kids in his class to come with. But then I posted an ad, and had interview within a few days. I was unsure of how many kids I could get because we had a smallish space ( duplex of a house). Good luck!
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Old 12-19-2011, 10:27 AM
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I got lucky to have word of mouth when i started, but when i placed my first ad, it was MONTHS before i got interviews and then a few weeks after that, that I got my first child from my own ads.

Also, the way the economy had been, I have had spots open for a very very long time. I have been trying to still fill spots from kids that left last march.....

Good news is that I will be full again after the first of the year, but it took A lot of getting out into the town and doing a LOT of talking to A LOT of people...
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Old 12-19-2011, 10:28 AM
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I started 11 yrs ago and I had kids within a couple of weeks after I put up my flyers. I have 6 kids within the first about 4 months of starting and I let it at that for the first yr till I could get everything figured out. I now have 10 and am licensed for 12.
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Old 12-19-2011, 11:08 AM
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I started advertising in August the year I started (and this was for the one family I was allowed to have unlicensed while I was getting my license.) I lucked out as that is a busy time for people looking for daycare. Within a week I had the perfect family who had 2 children my own children's ages.

Once I was licensed, there was a four month lull where I didn't even get a phone call. So I think it all depends really on when you are looking for clients.
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Old 12-19-2011, 03:04 PM
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I also got lucky because I mentioned to my neighbour I was going to start a home daycare and she told me she was looking for care! She was my only client for a couple of months. I didn't start advertising officially until a few months into it when I knew I could handle more kids. I'm pretty picky about ages because I don't do infants and prefer part-timers so it took me a while to find other kids that fit in here.
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Old 12-19-2011, 04:40 PM
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I started posting on CL this past July and by Aug. I had 6 families (some part time and some full time). I think my CL posts made a HUGE difference because I included lots and lots of details, and I included pictures of myself, my family, and my home. A lot of families told me that mine was the only child care post they responded to online. Oh and I also posted a few smaller ads on CL with only a few details and I got NO responses to those ads at all!Between July 1 and Aug 1, I talked to at least 35 families, it was insane! I helped a friend of mine fill up her center too ( and she had been open for months without being able to fill up). I also live in a big city and I think there is just a HUGE demand here for quality in home centers. Good luck with everything!!!
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Old 12-19-2011, 08:15 PM
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I only had a few families my first year. I posted fliers and that was a bust. I posted fliers on community boards and that was a bust. I posted an ad on Craigslist and that is how I filled the rest of my spots. Since then, I get about 75% referrals and the rest from my CL ad.
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Old 12-20-2011, 03:59 AM
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I'm looking through a lot of posts on Criagslist and Care.com saying parents need care in my area, so hopefully it won't be too hard to get clients. Rght now, I'm working f/t at a distribution center and applying to p/t jobs so I can get this up and running soon. The demand for care in my area seems like it'll be good for me, but I guess you never know. Hopefully everything will work out.
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Old 12-20-2011, 04:51 AM
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I started advertising Oct 2007, I got my first family Mar 2008. I've been full since. When I lost my 2nd family, my 1st was expecting a baby 2 months later, so I didn't fill her spot. I kept it for the baby. When I lost another dcb, I had his spot replaced within 2 weeks. When I lost my 1st dcf at thanksgiving, I filled those spots last week. So, I've been very fortunate not to have gone too long with empty spots once I actually got my 1st family.

It can take some time before you get your 1st family. I had received a lot of phone calls, several interviews before I had a family sign up. Don't give up.
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Old 12-20-2011, 06:13 AM
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It took me 2 weeks to fill up, but I only wanted to start with 2 children and it was the best time of the year (January).
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Old 12-21-2011, 12:33 PM
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I moved from a big city to a small town 1.5 yrs ago.

It took about 3 weeks and my first DCF was a no show 3 times! They are still with me!

The 2nd was with me for 3 months and left. I was back to 1 child until last January.

I have gone through 4 DCF that were not good fits.

Then the calls started pouring in. I am full today. All from word of mouth.

I advertised on Kijiji, my front porch, mail box's, town newspaper, and the bulliton boards in the grocery stores.
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Old 12-21-2011, 12:35 PM
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I have also noticed that the dck"s that dont fit in with the rest are usually only there for about 3 months or less.
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