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Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>Need Advice On Daycare Deposits
FCCProvider 02:06 PM 07-24-2013
I've recently moved and started up my home daycare in a new home. I'm trying to fix all the things that were, in my opinion, "broken" at my previous home daycare. I've always been terrible at letting parents run over me and not asking for late fees, even though it is in my contract. I've come up with something I think could help with that.

I've put in my new contract, there will be a $100 deposit due upon starting with me. I will deduct late fees, if any, from that. Keeping record on their receipts each week. If any is left over at the time of termination, it will go towards their last week, or will be reimbursed.

As fellow daycare providers and parents, what do you think? Is it something parents would go for? Or do I just need to suck up and learn to confront parents about whenever it happens?
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Heidi 02:14 PM 07-24-2013
I take a full two-week deposit at contract signing, to be used for the 2-week notice period at the end of care. Then, they pay IN ADVANCE on the first day of each week. Monday mornings, they hand me their kiddo and a check.

This way, I never charge late fees (they can't pay late and receive care), so there's no extras to worry about and collect. If you're talking latepick up fees, I don't charge those. I rarely have an issue with that.

I do contracted hours, not business hours (my business hours are 7-5:30 but most of my kiddos are 7:30-5:15). I really don't count on being "done" until 5:30, so again, I don't really have any arguments. If a parent is late, it's usually for a good reason and never a matter of more than a few minutes.

I really prefer to avoid confrontations myself, so I kind of avoid the common situations that cause them. When it comes down to a real confrontation, it's usually a good sign that the relationship is almost over. I just don't have the time or patience for it anymore.
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FCCProvider 02:23 PM 07-24-2013
I'm talking late payments. Its hard for me to say, Hey, you haven't paid yet. Leaving our previous base, I had a parent that hadn't paid in 5 weeks, but still brought her child. I have a hard time turning them away. So I ended up having to collect it all at once. It took me 3 weeks to get it, because my husband had enough and went through her supervisor.
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Heidi 03:18 PM 07-24-2013
Originally Posted by FCCProvider:
I'm talking late payments. Its hard for me to say, Hey, you haven't paid yet. Leaving our previous base, I had a parent that hadn't paid in 5 weeks, but still brought her child. I have a hard time turning them away. So I ended up having to collect it all at once. It took me 3 weeks to get it, because my husband had enough and went through her supervisor.
So wait, you're talking about an existing customer or future ones?

If they pay in advance, they CANT pay late, so there are no late fees to cover. They hand you their child and payment on Monday morning. If they try to "forget" you ask..."oh, looks like you forgot my check"

If you have a deposit ahead of time, then you can't get ripped off, so even if they say "oh, I forgot my checkbook", you say "ok, well, we'll let it slide this time, as long as you bring it at pick-up. I just need to make sure you know, though, that if I don't have it today, I can't take JR back in care until I have it. I'm sure you understand that I have a budget to meet, too!"

Or

You could matter-of-factly say "oh, no problem. You can run home on your lunch hour, but since we don't want to upset JR if he sees you, you can just throw it in the mailbox".

Or

"Well, since you've given me JR here as a hostage, I'm sure you'll have no problem running it over during lunch".
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Heidi 03:19 PM 07-24-2013
Originally Posted by FCCProvider:
I'm talking late payments. Its hard for me to say, Hey, you haven't paid yet. Leaving our previous base, I had a parent that hadn't paid in 5 weeks, but still brought her child. I have a hard time turning them away. So I ended up having to collect it all at once. It took me 3 weeks to get it, because my husband had enough and went through her supervisor.
Honey, you are running a BUSINESS, not a charity organization. Stop apologizing for it. No pay, no stay. They don't let you leave Walmart without paying. Why would you allow it?
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Familycare71 04:03 PM 07-24-2013
I stopped doing advance pay because if the week changed then I always had to figure out of I owed... Or they did- seemed like a lot of work. But I do want to start the two week deposit for last two weeks of care!
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Unregistered 05:30 PM 07-24-2013
Originally Posted by FCCProvider:
I've recently moved and started up my home daycare in a new home. I'm trying to fix all the things that were, in my opinion, "broken" at my previous home daycare. I've always been terrible at letting parents run over me and not asking for late fees, even though it is in my contract. I've come up with something I think could help with that.

I've put in my new contract, there will be a $100 deposit due upon starting with me. I will deduct late fees, if any, from that. Keeping record on their receipts each week. If any is left over at the time of termination, it will go towards their last week, or will be reimbursed.

As fellow daycare providers and parents, what do you think? Is it something parents would go for? Or do I just need to suck up and learn to confront parents about whenever it happens?
What a great idea
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Cradle2crayons 06:23 PM 07-24-2013
Originally Posted by Christie71:
I stopped doing advance pay because if the week changed then I always had to figure out of I owed... Or they did- seemed like a lot of work. But I do want to start the two week deposit for last two weeks of care!
You don't do contracted rates that are the same every week??
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daycare 07:02 PM 07-24-2013
I think that this would become a hot mess. How do you track it? It sounds like more work that it's worth. When someone is late, I will not allow for it to make more work for me....Then what do you do when someone terms and they say well why am I only getting back this much. Show me proof that I was late on this date or that date. Sounds like a lot of information that would need to be collected to make that happen. What do you do when someone passes the $100.00 mark???

I have parents pay monthly one month in advance. I invoice them by the 10th of each month. Their payment is always on the last friday of the month unless we are closed for some reason or another then it would be due the day before we close.
If your payment is not in my hand, then NO pay NO stay come Monday AND you better bring my $50 late fee........I don't let people mess with my money, I just let them walk all over me in other ways....lol

It is hard to speak up and say you owe this....BUT you have to do it. The more you do it, the easier it gets.

Just this morning I had a client tell me that all of a sudden they are not ok with my vacation time that I am taking off in a few weeks. I told them well this was given back to you at the start of the new year. I am not open to negotiate my already paid vacation. I would start talking to family and friends to help you while I am away...
It was a bit awkward, but REALLY I only take 5 days a year off and you had the nerve to say something........UGH...well they don't know what it's like to have to do my job, so I guess to them it's cake and I should just do it......

building a back bone takes practice and time......
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Familycare71 07:05 PM 07-24-2013
Originally Posted by Cradle2crayons:
You don't do contracted rates that are the same every week??
If I close I don't get paid(three vacation weeks with half pay and some paid federal holidays). School age doesn't pay if they aren't here in closed school days. If the parent is part time and adds a day that would be extra. But otherwise yes- contracted weeks. I would love to switch to a flat weekly fee no matter what (lower per week but same per yr) but I don't know how that would go over. When I asked about it with my last review no one seemed into it-
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daycare 07:10 PM 07-24-2013
Originally Posted by Christie71:
If I close I don't get paid(three vacation weeks with half pay and some paid federal holidays). School age doesn't pay if they aren't here in closed school days. If the parent is part time and adds a day that would be extra. But otherwise yes- contracted weeks. I would love to switch to a flat weekly fee no matter what (lower per week but same per yr) but I don't know how that would go over. When I asked about it with my last review no one seemed into it-
I personally would never ask my clients how they would prefer to pay for their care. It's my company and I have obligations to my family. I do what works best for me and my family always.

You may lose a client or so, but if you don't want to do it with them, then start with the new ones that come in....

I did this when I switched from weekly to monthly only payments
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Cradle2crayons 07:20 PM 07-24-2013
Originally Posted by Christie71:
If I close I don't get paid(three vacation weeks with half pay and some paid federal holidays). School age doesn't pay if they aren't here in closed school days. If the parent is part time and adds a day that would be extra. But otherwise yes- contracted weeks. I would love to switch to a flat weekly fee no matter what (lower per week but same per yr) but I don't know how that would go over. When I asked about it with my last review no one seemed into it-
Lol of course nobody seems I to it.

It's easy to institute.

"Beginning on ____________________, XYZ daycare will change to a flat weekly rate for each client. Pay will be due on the first day of drop off for the week and if not paid at drop off, a late fee will be instituted. If payment is not received by pick up that same day, care can not be continued until payment is received"

Or something of the sort

Then type up a late fee policy.

Then type up any other policies that go along with this.

Update any other policies while you are at it, including your PAID VACATION, PAID FEDERAL HOLIDAY etc policy.

Decide if you want to have one week of no paid vacant a year etc.

It's easy to institute, NIKE JUST DO IT

We will all help if you want!!
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daycare 07:26 PM 07-24-2013
NIKE JUST DO IT

lol that was cute.......BUT true...you can do it....but you have to take action to make it happen........
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Familycare71 09:24 PM 07-24-2013
Originally Posted by daycare:
NIKE JUST DO IT

lol that was cute.......BUT true...you can do it....but you have to take action to make it happen........
This is why I love this forum!! Ill start a new thread on it
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