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Cat Herder 07:55 AM 02-24-2014
For competitors to start calling for your rates and services while pretending to be potential clients....

How many calls asking for rates have you received so far?

How does it make you feel when you drop the number into google only to read their "updated" childcare ads??
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NeedaVaca 07:58 AM 02-24-2014
2 in the past week...
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Kimskiddos 08:02 AM 02-24-2014
Only had 1 but she was honest and told me up front. I thanked her for her honesty. Then had a nice chat about starting out.
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Leigh 08:05 AM 02-24-2014
I swore that the next time I received one of those calls, I was going to tell them that I was $50/week! It IS annoying to have them waste your time pretending to need a space.
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Blackcat31 08:24 AM 02-24-2014
I will usually give a rough estimate of what my rates are but I don't share specifically what I charge each family.

Since my rates are very dependent on each individual family's needs, I can't very well give an exact rate.

Also, I stay pretty close to what my state pays out for subsidy payments so I kind of feel like it is "public info" for newbies if they base their rates accordingly.

If a potential client (real or not) calls for info, most of what I give out is pretty generic so unless they schedule an interview, the answers they get from me is only going to create more questions, not answer the ones they have.
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SilverSabre25 08:25 AM 02-24-2014
none but I have been doing exactly ZERO advertising so I doubt I will.

Now, I have been getting calls thinking I'm a daycare CENTER. Who are really confused when I say "no I can't take your 4 kids, I don't have room." and "Well I guess I'm the director, but I'm just a small, in-home daycare. We don't need your professional cleaning services"

Oh and one jerk who yelled at me because I'm (LEGALLY) unlicensed and thinks I shouldn't be allowed to advertise on Yellowpages.com if I "just decided to do this"
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Cat Herder 08:33 AM 02-24-2014
Originally Posted by Leigh:
I swore that the next time I received one of those calls, I was going to tell them that I was $50/week! It IS annoying to have them waste your time pretending to need a space.
I will go with this on the next one.

The one this morning was very catty about meals and curriculum being included in my rates. Kept asking about hidden fees

I chalked it up to "red flag wait list basket" (garbage can) but when I asked for her name she hung up on me. Quick google drop; just opened a family child care last month.

You'd think they'd be smart enough to use a cell phone or something. If she had told me the truth, I would have answered anything she needed to know. Now I know her name, address, phone number and will see her in a training class very soon. I am pretty sure she does not know how this community works, yet.
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Cat Herder 08:35 AM 02-24-2014
Originally Posted by SilverSabre25:
none but I have been doing exactly ZERO advertising so I doubt I will.
I don't advertise either... Our info is listed on the State website. All they have to do is search their own zip code.
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SilverSabre25 08:36 AM 02-24-2014
Originally Posted by Cat Herder:
I don't advertise either... Our info is listed on the State website. All they have to do is search their own zip code.
Yeah, I'm not licensed so I don't have that. I am on a few sites like YP.com and I have my website, so the info shows up and i get a few calls here and there, but I have a lot of work to finish before I'm ready to advertise in earnest. Gotta do it soon, but I need to "look cooler" in order to compete with brats who charge a fraction of what I do.
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NeedaVaca 09:09 AM 02-24-2014
Originally Posted by Cat Herder:
I will go with this on the next one.

The one this morning was very catty about meals and curriculum being included in my rates. Kept asking about hidden fees

I chalked it up to "red flag wait list basket" (garbage can) but when I asked for her name she hung up on me. Quick google drop; just opened a family child care last month.

You'd think they'd be smart enough to use a cell phone or something. If she had told me the truth, I would have answered anything she needed to know. Now I know her name, address, phone number and will see her in a training class very soon. I am pretty sure she does not know how this community works, yet.
That will be a funny introduction! You meet at a class and get to say oh,yes, we spoke on the phone lol, nice to put a face with the name. I wondered why you asked so many questions and then hung up on me.
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Cat Herder 09:27 AM 02-24-2014
Originally Posted by NeedaVaca:
That will be a funny introduction! You meet at a class and get to say oh,yes, we spoke on the phone lol, nice to put a face with the name. I wondered why you asked so many questions and then hung up on me.
I am sure others will want to do something similar, I doubt I am the only one she called today. Her level of frustration and "cattyness" was palpable.

I won't even mention it, though . We only had 4 legal home providers here last year. I am the second oldest in the room every year at classes, we all know and respect one another so it would be cruel for a newcomer to be singled out like that. Too close to home and all that .

I will simply introduce myself, give her my business card and move along like I always do. It is the norm and expected. She will know and that is enough. ***If she appears to be really struggling I will end up helping her, though. We need good "mid-priced" providers out here***.
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Daycaregranny 10:43 AM 02-24-2014
I try not to give out too much information over the phone. I usually ask a few questions about their children and their needs and ask what would be a good time for them to schedule an interview. If they keep at it I let them know that rates and policies will be discussed then.
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daycarediva 10:49 AM 02-24-2014
Usually about once a week. If I figure out it's a provider, I DO tell them that we aren't legally supposed to be discussing rates and leave it at that. Most aren't even aware of that.
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mia 12:03 PM 02-24-2014
Originally Posted by NeedaVaca:
That will be a funny introduction! You meet at a class and get to say oh,yes, we spoke on the phone lol, nice to put a face with the name. I wondered why you asked so many questions and then hung up on me.

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spud912 12:21 PM 02-24-2014
Originally Posted by SilverSabre25:
none but I have been doing exactly ZERO advertising so I doubt I will.

Now, I have been getting calls thinking I'm a daycare CENTER. Who are really confused when I say "no I can't take your 4 kids, I don't have room." and "Well I guess I'm the director, but I'm just a small, in-home daycare. We don't need your professional cleaning services"

Oh and one jerk who yelled at me because I'm (LEGALLY) unlicensed and thinks I shouldn't be allowed to advertise on Yellowpages.com if I "just decided to do this"
YES! I have my website plus I'm on YP.com and yelp. I get TONS of phone calls asking to speak to the "director" . I use my personal cell phone for business too and so I don't pick up "XXX Child Care, how may I help you?" Instead I say "hello?" Most people act super confused and say "oh, is this a daycare?" I say yes and then they start asking center-related questions and I politely inform them that I am an in-home daycare. Usually they get off the phone as quick as they possibly can at that point as if in-home daycares are such awful places .

My favorites are the commercial-style companies that try to sell me things. You would think that once I said I was an in-home daycare, they would be quick to get off the phone too. Instead, nothing stops them from trying to sell me $10,000 worth of outdoor playground equipment. Yeah, cause my 4 daycare children afford me that luxury .....I wish!!
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EntropyControlSpecialist 01:12 PM 02-24-2014
Originally Posted by Cat Herder:
I will go with this on the next one.

The one this morning was very catty about meals and curriculum being included in my rates. Kept asking about hidden fees

I chalked it up to "red flag wait list basket" (garbage can) but when I asked for her name she hung up on me. Quick google drop; just opened a family child care last month.

You'd think they'd be smart enough to use a cell phone or something. If she had told me the truth, I would have answered anything she needed to know. Now I know her name, address, phone number and will see her in a training class very soon. I am pretty sure she does not know how this community works, yet.
"Hey girl. Did you get those hidden fee issues figured out yet? "


I haven't had this happen that I know of.
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Cat Herder 01:25 PM 02-24-2014
Originally Posted by EntropyControlSpecialist:
"Hey girl. Did you get those hidden fee issues figured out yet? "


I haven't had this happen that I know of.
Love it!!

I'd guess, after a few hours of thought, she was referring to the sign on deposits and supply fees some bigger places require? When I asked for clarification she became more agitated. I have never been able to pull those off.. I am happy with my paid vacation and National Holidays. That was all I ever had in the public market as well. Just a weird topic, IMO.

When I first thought it was a parent I was concerned she was a chronic late pick-up or chronic late payer. Those were the first red flags that I came up with. That is the only way to rack up fee's here..
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blandino 01:49 PM 02-24-2014
So funny you mention this... I ran into a past DCM at a liquor store Friday night, and she told me she was going to get her license. Her oldest son (that was our DCB) is 10 now and she has been a SAHM since new baby arrived.

She wants to come meet with us and see how our day is structured. Which I have no problem doing.

We are sort of interested for her to see it from the other side, since I always got the feeling that she thought our policies were a little ridiculous.
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blandino 01:53 PM 02-24-2014
Originally Posted by Blackcat31:

Also, I stay pretty close to what my state pays out for subsidy payments so I kind of feel like it is "public info" for newbies if they base their rates accordingly.
Do you realize how crazy that sounds to me ? Right now our rates are $140-160/ weekly, average for the area is $125-150. The state reimbursement rate is $68.00/week AND we are not allowed to charge parents the difference.

So if you can imagine, no one is willing to take state payments. So all the subsidy clients are at horrible daycares. Talk about a broken, broken, broken, system.
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Sunshine74 09:44 PM 02-24-2014
Last year we had another center call us about our rates pretending to be an interested parent. Funny this is, we have caller ID, so the center's name came right out. The person who answered the phone responded, "What do you charge there at (competing center's name)?" And the person hung up. We all got a good laugh out of it though.
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Play Care 04:13 AM 02-25-2014
None. Maybe it's because I'm in a small town? IDK.
When my own kids were little, just before I started doing day care, I was desperately seeking child care - and people weren't even calling me back. I hadn't even thought to begin the process of being licensed at that point. I'm sure there are some providers in my town who think I was trying to set my pricing, but the reality was that if I had found a good provider, I wouldn't be doing this at all.
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morgan24 04:46 AM 02-25-2014
None. I'm in a small town and I know all the other providers and even though we aren't suppose to talk about rates we do.
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Cradle2crayons 05:59 AM 02-25-2014
Originally Posted by blandino:
Do you realize how crazy that sounds to me ? Right now our rates are $140-160/ weekly, average for the area is $125-150. The state reimbursement rate is $68.00/week AND we are not allowed to charge parents the difference.

So if you can imagine, no one is willing to take state payments. So all the subsidy clients are at horrible daycares. Talk about a broken, broken, broken, system.
I get it... Our state reimbursement rates are in the $40's a week... But we can charge the difference.

I never ever get calls from other childcare people.... However I saw an ad on CL about a person starting out so I emailed her and I was going to share about our NHI program etc to help her with her start up. We ended up becoming friends and she drove over one day and we hit it off. She is very grateful for the help and had no idea about all the helpful information.

Of course, she isn't really competition as she is like 45 minutes from me anyway...
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Blackcat31 08:00 AM 02-25-2014
Originally Posted by blandino:
Do you realize how crazy that sounds to me ? Right now our rates are $140-160/ weekly, average for the area is $125-150. The state reimbursement rate is $68.00/week AND we are not allowed to charge parents the difference.

So if you can imagine, no one is willing to take state payments. So all the subsidy clients are at horrible daycares. Talk about a broken, broken, broken, system.
Wow, that's a bummer how your state pays.

Ours does a rate survey of ALL providers in the state to see what the average rates are.

Once they have that info, each county or area figures out the amount they will pay as reimbursement.

Right now our reimbursement rates are above the average cost of child care so its a GOOD thing here. We are also allowed to charge parents the difference if we charge more than the state pays.

We also get paid 15% more (than the reimbursement rate) if we are accredited or have a CDA and we get paid 20% more if we are a star rated facility.

Most providers around here charge the same or less than what the state pays out.

I charge a bit more, but I have also been in the business for two decades and don't really get many calls for families in subsidy. I don't know why, it is just the way it seems to be.

Most the seasoned providers in my area don't even accept subsidy families.
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Tags:competition, ethics, honesty, rates
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