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  #1  
Old 05-14-2010, 04:46 AM
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Default How to Handle This

I have this 4 year old dcg that I have been watching for 3 years now so I have had her for a long time. She is actually my first daycare child I got. When I started my rates were $100 per wk. I saw that everyone else in the area was much higher so last year I raised my rates to $130 on all new children and existing parents paid $125. I never had an attendence policy and mom would get whoever to watch this girl all the time to avoid paying so much so when I raised the rates I also limited it to 2 days off per month without pay. Beginning in September she has notice that she will pay for all days regardless. So the last couple of weeks mom keeps telling me that Grandma wants to have dcg a couple times this summer. I thought it was just conversation. Then she asked me last wk if her Grandma wanted her a couple times a week what would happen with her payment? I told her it would be the same policy and that if she was off on a Friday she could drop it off by 5pm or pay me on the last day of care and I would hold it until Friday. She looked upset but didn't say anything else. Last night she tells me that her work is cutting hours so she will have one day a week off and Grandma still wants her for 2 days this summer. She wants to know what the rate would be for 2 set days per week. I told her I do not do part time, especially for summer. She pointed out a couple kids that are only here sometimes and I didn't think it was her business but I told her they pay me full time for the spot. The girl starts school in September so if I lost her, I could fill the spot with more money from a full time child so not a big deal but she is my first child ever and don't want to see her go, but I really need full time income at this point. Any suggestions/advice?
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Old 05-14-2010, 05:05 AM
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i was recently sort of in the same boat. the first two girls (sisters) i took part time just to get my business going. it started out 3 set days a week, to sometimes grandma taking them, to now hardly ever here. i stupidly let her get away with only paying for the time used. well, now i am a bit more established, and spaces are in demand. i gave her the option to pay for the spaces regardless of attendance, or i was going to give them to someone else. i gave her until today, so she had a month to respond. i have yet to hear from her, except for the complaining she is doing behind my back. she wants to know "now what am i supposed to do for the summer?" she didnt seem to worry too much how i was going to pay MY bills all spring. as much as i hated to do it, cause i liked the girls, and grew close to them, it just wasnt working out, holding spots for part timers, when there are full timers out there who want care. i just had to let them go. parents are the first ones to look out for themselves, and what works best for them. it was time for me to look out for what was best for me and my business.
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Old 05-14-2010, 05:41 AM
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I am finding my rules are following my financial needs..I know I should be consistant though because rules should be set in stone for everyone, that way there is no "hey, she does it why can't I".

I have decided to allow only 1 or 2 part time spots and the rest have to be full time. You can't make a living on all slots being part time.

If you can afford a part time slot for her, I would charge at least 3 days/week...if you need the full time pay, it's either she pays the full week or be replaced. I know it's always a hard choice. Good luck!!
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Old 05-14-2010, 06:48 AM
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I would just be honest with her. Say I know the economy is tough & it is for me also that is why I need to have full-time income. It's up to you if you want to allow her to come part-time & pay less. It's a hard choice I imagine.
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Old 05-14-2010, 07:41 AM
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Well you have learned a good lesson.

Remeber that whatever rate you give a client is THE rate. They don't consider that a rate is a discounted rate or a "you are the ones who get to be different than the others" rate. To them it's just THE rate.

So if you have a history of allowing her a low rate AND to only pay on days of attendance... to her that is THE rate. Anything that makes her pay more money is compared to THE rate.

Many new providers don't realize that parents staying in the day care is primarily or solely because of THE rate. THE rate is almost always very unfair to the provider. In order for it to be really good for the parents it almost always means very bad for the provider.

I would tell her that you understand that she needs as much free day care and a ton of flexibility to make that free day care happen. You just don't provide services for only two days a week. The only service you can provide to her is full time at 125 per week with all days being paid regardless of attendance. IF she would like that slot of course... she would have first choice at it.

She will most likely leave to find another day care that is comprable to THE rate. As you progress in your business you are able to make these changes to insure your business is healthy and can work over time. She's been a lesson to you of what doesn't work. The Mom has benefited from what doesn't work for you. It's not time for her to pony up and start benefiting you. In her mind it's most likely time to find another deal as good as or better than THE rate.

Typical newbie mistake but we all made it. Live and learn. Parents like this need to find providers who haven't figured it out yet. She will be in search of that provider.
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Old 05-14-2010, 08:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nannyde View Post

The Mom has benefited from what doesn't work for you.

Parents like this need to find providers who haven't figured it out yet. She will be in search of that provider.
Yup. We've all done this.

The sad thing is that parents who have this kind of attitude, have children who have no stability in their lives because they are chasing THE rate.
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Old 05-14-2010, 08:19 AM
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gbcc, if you have the space available - you could tell her that you will do it until and/or unless someone comes along wanting full time care and that you'll have to let her go when that happens. that buys her a little time and you don't have anything to lose if you don't have a waiting list or something.

paying full price for 2 days is like 65 dollars a day. anyone would reconsider that i think.
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Old 05-14-2010, 08:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gbcc View Post
I told her I do not do part time, especially for summer. She pointed out a couple kids that are only here sometimes and I didn't think it was her business but I told her they pay me full time for the spot. The girl starts school in September so if I lost her, I could fill the spot with more money from a full time child so not a big deal but she is my first child ever and don't want to see her go, but I really need full time income at this point. Any suggestions/advice?
It was absolutely none of her business what your arrangement was with your other families! I had a parent pull this on me on time. She looked at the daily sign-in sheet and questioned the drop-off time of one of the other kids. The very next month I switched to individual sign-in sheets for each family so that no family knows what time another family is coming and going.
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  #9  
Old 05-14-2010, 09:31 AM
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I had the same thing happen to me, the dck i had since he was 10 mo and is 5 now and we really had a bond, When I first started care I didnt have all the policies down. So the mom was use to paying a lower rate and for the days used. As time goes on parents start becoming more comforatable with you and leaving there child in care for longer hours and almost counting on you too much. Since the dck was only coming on average of 2-3 a week I told she needed to start paying an average of 100 week regardless of if they were here or not. She did fine with that and totally understood that her child was taking a spot that I could charge 150 a week for. After a while she started coming early and staying late I thik she though since she was paying a set amount that I owed it to her (haha)
So I had to let her know Im open from 7-5:30 and can no longer do any extended hours. She still was showing up late, and popping in without notice it got to where I didnt know when they would and wouldnt be here.
Finally I had enough and typed out a letter stating that her rate would be the same as everyones elses 150 week and my hours were 7-5:30 anything before or after that will cost $10 per every 15 minutes. Needless to say she left without notice.
But since Ive filled the spot.

Anyhow in your situation since the dck is leaving for school in sept I would tell mom that you have a 3 day minimum regardless if she uses it. And I would go ahead and fill her spot with a ft child. Chances are shes only going to come 2 x a week and so what if your over 2X a week for a few months.
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  #10  
Old 05-14-2010, 09:34 AM
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I charge a set amount per week.... I give my parents 5 missed days PER YEAR without pay... plus an addtional day per year they have been enrolled with me... so if this client has been with me 2 years... they have 7 missed days to us FREE. Stick to your rules and stand up tall with head up straight.. dont let the parents RUN your buisness!
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  #11  
Old 05-14-2010, 10:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grandmom View Post
Yup. We've all done this.

The sad thing is that parents who have this kind of attitude, have children who have no stability in their lives because they are chasing THE rate.
Personally, as a parent, I feel that the quality of care is more important than the rate. No I wouldn't pay over the going rate, but a comparative rate, even if $20 more, my child's stability and well being is more important. I am still lower than any registered/licensed childcare in the area so a better rate means un registered which she seems to have issues with.

Quote:
Originally Posted by QualiTcare View Post
gbcc, if you have the space available - you could tell her that you will do it until and/or unless someone comes along wanting full time care and that you'll have to let her go when that happens. that buys her a little time and you don't have anything to lose if you don't have a waiting list or something.

paying full price for 2 days is like 65 dollars a day. anyone would reconsider that i think.
If she brings it up again or seems like she is looking elsewhere I will offer it to her. I will make her sign a contract understanding once I find a replacement she will be given 2 weeks notice.
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  #12  
Old 05-14-2010, 10:12 AM
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I have ft and pt rates, fulltimes are 150/ 30 a day, part times are 35 a day with a 3 day minimum. Since your losing the dck in sept, I would go ahead and keep her, and fill the spot.

Last edited by Michael; 05-14-2010 at 03:21 PM. Reason: Grammar
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  #13  
Old 05-14-2010, 10:57 AM
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MarinaVanessa MarinaVanessa is offline
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Do what is better for YOUR BUSINESS. You obviously notified her of the rate change and she is well aware of the attendance policy and that she has two days a month free so tell her that your are surprised that she now wants a lower rate because her child wants to go to grandmas. I explain to all of my families (and have it in my attendance policy) that the spot is based on enrollement not attendance. Explain to her that even with the two days a month she is lucky because I don't about the rest of you providers but I know I don't offer that. I offer a week (5 days) free a year for vacation and a 2nd week after that at half price if they give me a month's notice in writing and in advance. Anything else taken after that including a day off here and there for sickness, appointments, family time etc. is not deducted.

Even if she says that she notified you verbally of what she wanted to do, like you said, it was a conversation not in writing and she never talked to you beforehand about having it deducted. When she brought it up again THEN she asked about a deduction and you did the right thing and said no. Good for you.
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  #14  
Old 05-14-2010, 02:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gbcc View Post
I have this 4 year old dcg that I have been watching for 3 years now so I have had her for a long time. She is actually my first daycare child I got. When I started my rates were $100 per wk. I saw that everyone else in the area was much higher so last year I raised my rates to $130 on all new children and existing parents paid $125. I never had an attendence policy and mom would get whoever to watch this girl all the time to avoid paying so much so when I raised the rates I also limited it to 2 days off per month without pay. Beginning in September she has notice that she will pay for all days regardless. So the last couple of weeks mom keeps telling me that Grandma wants to have dcg a couple times this summer. I thought it was just conversation. Then she asked me last wk if her Grandma wanted her a couple times a week what would happen with her payment? I told her it would be the same policy and that if she was off on a Friday she could drop it off by 5pm or pay me on the last day of care and I would hold it until Friday. She looked upset but didn't say anything else. Last night she tells me that her work is cutting hours so she will have one day a week off and Grandma still wants her for 2 days this summer. She wants to know what the rate would be for 2 set days per week. I told her I do not do part time, especially for summer. She pointed out a couple kids that are only here sometimes and I didn't think it was her business but I told her they pay me full time for the spot. The girl starts school in September so if I lost her, I could fill the spot with more money from a full time child so not a big deal but she is my first child ever and don't want to see her go, but I really need full time income at this point. Any suggestions/advice?
I would simply tell her that you no longer do part time care and you do have waiting list. Either she pays full time rate and can use the days/hours as she wishes OR you will have to terminate her as she is going to school in the fall.

I know its easier said then done esp considering the history. However you have to look out for your business and your future.

Good Luck!
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