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Lisa4kids 01:11 PM 03-29-2011
I'm having a problem deciding what to do about a situation. I ahve been caring for two children for the last 5 years... the youngest was 6 months old when they enrolled. I've become very attached to the children and their family over the years. I'm feeling like they have been taking advantage of me for the last 2 years since the youngest started pre-school.

Two years ago, I changed my rates from hourly to daily and the mother did not want to sign my new contract because she didn't want to pay for when the children were not at my home. I agreed because i didn't want to loose these children, but now i'm rethinking things. Whenever school is out (like spring break now) the mom always has either cousins or a teenager come to town to watch the kids so she doesn't have to pay for daycare. She NEVER gives me advance notice, i always ask 2 weeks in advance and she waits until the night before they should be attending saying they wont be here, but sorry if it is an inconvenience to me.... I find it hard to believe she is really sorry. The last two summers, the kids have been in attandance 4 full weeks out of 13 each summer...without notice until the last minute.

It has made me start thinking that I need to tell her that this summer, i am only taking full time children and she'll have to pay..... she will definately take her kids out of care. But this is my income and only receive $20 per week for both children right now and about $80 per week for summer (when they are here)... that is holding up 2 full time spots where i could be making $250 for two children. I'm not sure really what to do but i'm getting to the point where i dont want to deal with it anymore. I feel like i'm being run around by her and feeling like she does not care this is my income even though i've told her a few times over the years.


Has anyone else had a problem like this and does anyone have any advise for me??
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Unregistered 01:21 PM 03-29-2011
Start advertising. You are getting taken advantage of to say the least. Make her accountable to your rules or she needs leave. It can be so hard when you've grown fond of a family, but she is being incredibly disrespectful to you and your business. $80 a week when you could be charging $250 is crazy! You deserve better.
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MsMe 01:24 PM 03-29-2011
I am sorry that you may lose kids you are really attached to, but I think you need to make her sign the new contract. You are losing money and she is NT respecting the sacrafice you are making for her. I started 76 years ago and learned A LOT of money lessons the hard way includign this one. I have a family of three boys that I ahve had since day 1 I still work with a VERY felxible payemnt plan for them but the Mother is SO SO SO thankfull and helpful that it make it worth it for all of us.

This is your income and you deserve it. All of it.
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MN Day Mom 01:33 PM 03-29-2011
I would change your contract with her now, before summer. Why wait?? She is taking advantage of you and you need to put an end to it because she won't.
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grandmom 01:48 PM 03-29-2011
Or you could advertise, fill the spot, and then call the mom the night before at 9m and say, oh sorry if this inconveniences you...

Really, you are totally being taken advantage of. She will continue to do this until you do something about it.
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Cat Herder 02:04 PM 03-29-2011
Grow a backbone.

You deserve it.

You do not have to "kick her out", just tell her you are "restructuring" and she has 1 week to return her signed contract.

If she will not sign the new contract, she will need to give notice, though

I agree with all PP. You are being walked on.

Good luck, Hun. That is just so unfair...
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happykidschildcare 02:40 PM 03-29-2011
I was in the same place a few years ago and I finally made changes and it was effective to everyone old and new. I lost a few kids, but they were the ones that were paying my original rate from the day I started and they were coming from open to close. After making the changes rates & hours, Im sooooo much happier!!!! I make more $ then ever, and my days end by 5:15.
You'll be happier in the long run!!!!!
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juliebug 02:47 PM 03-29-2011
Originally Posted by grandmom:
Or you could advertise, fill the spot, and then call the mom the night before at 9m and say, oh sorry if this inconveniences you...

Really, you are totally being taken advantage of. She will continue to do this until you do something about it.
i love this one!~

no really she either needs to sign a new contract and pay fulltime or bye bye! it's hard to say goodbye to those kids but she has more control than you at your own business right now.
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Angelwings36 02:48 PM 03-29-2011
Originally Posted by Lisa4kids:
I'm having a problem deciding what to do about a situation. I ahve been caring for two children for the last 5 years... the youngest was 6 months old when they enrolled. I've become very attached to the children and their family over the years. I'm feeling like they have been taking advantage of me for the last 2 years since the youngest started pre-school.

Two years ago, I changed my rates from hourly to daily and the mother did not want to sign my new contract because she didn't want to pay for when the children were not at my home. I agreed because i didn't want to loose these children, but now i'm rethinking things. Whenever school is out (like spring break now) the mom always has either cousins or a teenager come to town to watch the kids so she doesn't have to pay for daycare. She NEVER gives me advance notice, i always ask 2 weeks in advance and she waits until the night before they should be attending saying they wont be here, but sorry if it is an inconvenience to me.... I find it hard to believe she is really sorry. The last two summers, the kids have been in attandance 4 full weeks out of 13 each summer...without notice until the last minute.

It has made me start thinking that I need to tell her that this summer, i am only taking full time children and she'll have to pay..... she will definately take her kids out of care. But this is my income and only receive $20 per week for both children right now and about $80 per week for summer (when they are here)... that is holding up 2 full time spots where i could be making $250 for two children. I'm not sure really what to do but i'm getting to the point where i dont want to deal with it anymore. I feel like i'm being run around by her and feeling like she does not care this is my income even though i've told her a few times over the years.


Has anyone else had a problem like this and does anyone have any advise for me??
You have to remember to put your business first. You need to be firm with your policies and procedures regardless of it you feel it's going to cause problems with the other party...right now they are causing problems for you and do not seem to be concerned about it. I would draw up a new contract. State that the parent pays regardless of if their child attends or not and stick with it. I'm sure you will be able to pick up a new client to fill their space if it came down to that and you will have less of a headache in the end!
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BentleysBands 02:52 PM 03-29-2011
Originally Posted by LLD:
I am sorry that you may lose kids you are really attached to, but I think you need to make her sign the new contract. You are losing money and she is NT respecting the sacrafice you are making for her. I started 76 years ago and learned A LOT of money lessons the hard way includign this one. I have a family of three boys that I ahve had since day 1 I still work with a VERY felxible payemnt plan for them but the Mother is SO SO SO thankfull and helpful that it make it worth it for all of us.

This is your income and you deserve it. All of it.
Holy crap!!! 76yrs??? Hope that's a typo
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wdmmom 03:07 PM 03-29-2011
I allow parents to take up to 4 weeks of vacation at 1/2 their normal rate. In In order to get 1/2 off, I am to receive a 2 week notice and 5 days must be taken at a time to receive it. Failure to provide notice means they have to pay the full weekly rate.

I would charge this mom the weekly going rate or up your daily rate to make up for it.
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Evansmom 03:13 PM 03-29-2011
I know it's hard but you have to do what is best for your business. I just had to tell two parent yesterday and I'm restructuring and one little girl I've been watching 3 years. It's not personal at all. But in this business it's sometimes hard to keep that seperate b/c we do become attached to the families and the kids.

Those two spots could add up to quite a bit of money over a year for you.
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cheerfuldom 04:03 PM 03-29-2011
I don't allow any absence unpaid for full timers, no exceptions. I have made allowances in the past and have always gotten the short end of the stick. Once I laid down the rules, I was able to get rid of a few headaches and keep better families. You have nothing to feel bad about except maybe that you didn't do this sooner. Start advertising for new kids now and give her whatever notice your contract allows. She will leave and find something else and you will go on with one less pain to deal with and able to make more money.
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morgan24 04:05 PM 03-29-2011
When I first started out I had the same thing happen to me with a family that I loved their boys. I decided I either needed to run my daycare as a business or do it for fun and not let it bother me that they didn't want to pay when they weren't here. I decided that I would like to stay in the business to make a living. I wrote up a new contract and handed it out and stuck to my guns that I'm a business and that's how I had to treat it from then on. Of course they gave me notice but it bit them in the butt because they couldn't find someone that would let they only pay for the time they were there. They wanted to come back. I had already filled their spots.

I would write up a new contract now and get it to them before summer. That puts the ball in their court and they can decide what's best for them. Then if they give you notice you can fill the spots now.
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missnikki 05:25 PM 03-29-2011
Originally Posted by morgan24:
When I first started out I had the same thing happen to me with a family that I loved their boys. I decided I either needed to run my daycare as a business or do it for fun and not let it bother me that they didn't want to pay when they weren't here. I decided that I would like to stay in the business to make a living. I wrote up a new contract and handed it out and stuck to my guns that I'm a business and that's how I had to treat it from then on. Of course they gave me notice but it bit them in the butt because they couldn't find someone that would let they only pay for the time they were there. They wanted to come back. I had already filled their spots.

I would write up a new contract now and get it to them before summer. That puts the ball in their court and they can decide what's best for them. Then if they give you notice you can fill the spots now.
This is similar to what I was thinking.

It sounds like you had started on a casual basis. I think in order to make the transition to 'professional provider' from 'casual babysitter', you need to do a couple of things to show them you are serious.

1) Come up with a name/logo/ policies handbook for your program. Print off cards, flyers, etc.

2) Use the logo on a letterhead explaining your rates as of ____, 2011. Give them the letter, and explain that you are advertising for the spots currently. Give them the "first chance" of full time at those rates. Tell them you will be interviewing and will fill the spots once you have received a deposit.

3) They will huff and haw, and drag their feet leaving if they don't pull out immediately. Either way, trust me when I say this...You will be very glad they are gone (unless they wised up and paid you what you are worth).

4) Stay positive! The best programs had to start somewhere!
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momatheart 05:33 PM 03-29-2011
I agree with all previous posts. (grandmom's LOL that was great!)
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Lisa4kids 04:15 AM 03-30-2011
Thank you, Everyone!! I feel much better about the situation hearing all of this from you! I knew in my heart what I have to do. I have been feeling horrible because I am letting my clients take over my business. I have had a daycare in my home for 16 years and this is the first time I've felt like this because of someone else's decisions. You all are Right, I have to put an end to this because the mother wont and it will probably get worse. My Business is my income and livelyhood and I need to remember that!! Thank you again ~ It helped me to realize that i'm not the only one this has happened to ~ I love this forum!!
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nannyde 05:00 AM 03-30-2011
Originally Posted by Lisa4kids:
Thank you, Everyone!! I feel much better about the situation hearing all of this from you! I knew in my heart what I have to do. I have been feeling horrible because I am letting my clients take over my business. I have had a daycare in my home for 16 years and this is the first time I've felt like this because of someone else's decisions. You all are Right, I have to put an end to this because the mother wont and it will probably get worse. My Business is my income and livelyhood and I need to remember that!! Thank you again ~ It helped me to realize that i'm not the only one this has happened to ~ I love this forum!!
She is using you for a drop off day care. That's very expensive per hour where I live.

It sounds like it's just a tiny bit of money so why not just drop them?
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Tags:contract, contract - won't sign, rate change, rates - hourly to daily, taking advantage
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