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  #1  
Old 08-08-2011, 05:55 AM
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Default How Strict Is Your Inspector?

I do childcare on the main level of my house only, my basement is used for emergency shelter and the upstairs is where my family sleeps. I have a lock on the basement door so it is clear that area is not used or open during normal circumstances and a gate on the stairs leading to our rooms.

I had my pop inspection and I was left with a list of corrections. I have to have outlet covers in my own kids (Teens) rooms, there rooms were not clean enough (what a shock for a teens room right), and they have to have mouthwash, tooth paste ect out of reach in their bathroom.

I don't understand the point of this. My upstairs doesn't meet the fire laws for doing childcare so I am not allowed to have children up there. I have a gate blocking children from going up the stairs, shouldn't my family have some area that is theirs? Are you required to live in a house that looks like a model home (I am talking about your NON-DAYCARE areas)?
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  #2  
Old 08-08-2011, 06:39 AM
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I have a new one almost twice a year now (4 inspections a year) and no two want the same things. It seems they have WAY too much free range in how they define the Rules and Regs.

Some just want to visit and ask for gossip about other Centers, some really want to help, have useful information and are a pleasure to know...some seem to want to harass every soul they come into contact with.

It really is a crap shoot.
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Old 08-08-2011, 06:47 AM
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Mine was a former Child Abuse Investigator. It was if she was looking for signs of abuse and neglect (which she didn't find) instead of inspecting my program. She was annoyed when I didn't get angry with her comments. What sucks is assigned to me and I guess they don't get a large turn over of staff She is supposed to come back this week to go through my entire house with a fine tooth comb, not looking forward to that.
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  #4  
Old 08-08-2011, 06:52 AM
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I have a different one almost yearly. They vary on how picky they are, some go through everywhere and everything, some barely look around. They never look in areas that are not daycare child occupied though, except maybe the first inspection.
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Old 08-08-2011, 06:54 AM
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Every time I get an inspection it has been by a different inspector and every one has defined the rules different. I think if its off limits to the dcks then it should be however you want. I had the same thing happen. My hubby's bathroom and our master bedroom are not approved for use, but they inspected anyway. He had shave cream on the counter and toilet cleaner under the sink and I had to move it and put the shave cream up, even though the dcks aren't allowed in there.
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Old 08-08-2011, 06:56 AM
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Sounds like you have my licensor. Same thing here, my boys rooms are upstairs where no kids are allowed and do not have access too and their bedroom doors have to have locks on them; but on top of that they too had to have outlet covers and a covered garbage can and be picked up. I got pretty angry about this and told my licensor what I thought of this ridiculous rule. Of course I didn't win the battle but could not keep my feelings to myself.
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Old 08-08-2011, 07:21 AM
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Mine only went to the upper level of the house during the initial inspection to get my license. She has never come up there since. She has the same rules though about the bathrooms and such if they are on an approved level.
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Old 08-08-2011, 07:25 AM
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I know I've said this before.....but........

....if it's not in the written rules, then she cannot write you up.

Her inspection would not fly here in Utah. Inspectors are not allowed to go through family bedrooms etc as long as it is off limits to the day care children. Meaning those areas must be behind a baby gate or have locking doors.

Inspectors are allowed to peek in to make sure there are no hidden children or obvious dangers like firearms on the bed etc. They can ask you to open a closet door, but can only peek in. Telling you that your teens bedrooms are not clean enough is just plain rude and has nothing to do with day care. We do day care at my son's home. He uses two bedrooms as his bedroom and living room. He's a 26 year old single male. He lives like one (I don't need to give details do I??!!!) At our last inspection, she just peeked inside his rooms as they are behind a baby gate in the hallway.

Inspectors cannot make up rules as they go along or give their personal opinions. If they write you up, there has to be the reg number next to her notes (at least here). It has to say which reg you broke and what exactly she found. Providers here are told all the time to know our regs inside and out. I read mine regularly, so I am confident when an inspector comes that I am in complete compliance.

Utah has a licensing website and you can print off the EXACT checklist that the inspectors use. Maybe yours does too. I do this about every 6 months and give "myself" an inspection. I never worry if they show up on the doorstep because I KNOW I have everything in order and I have learned the regs well enough to know I can confidently argue if needs be!!

It sounds like you have an inspector who likes a power trip. If your state is the same as ours, you cannot refuse her as your licensor, but you CAN request she brings someone else with her, so it's not just her word against yours.

My advise is read and re-read your regs...then be prepared to take a stand if needs be. Whatever she says.....ask for the reg. If she writes you up because your kids room are not clean enough...ask her to show you the reg.
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Old 08-08-2011, 07:55 AM
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I just want to say my licensor rocks!!!! I love her and every time I read a post about a bad licensor or picky or unfair inspection, I think I love mine just a teensy bit more!!!
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Old 08-08-2011, 08:10 AM
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I honestly think I would contact her supervisor or another licensing rep for advice.

If the area is off limits to daycare and inaccessible because there is a gate, then I don't see the problem.

My licensor has NEVER gone in to one of my children's bedrooms.
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  #11  
Old 08-08-2011, 08:59 AM
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I have only had them inspect off limits areas during the initial inspection. After that, they can only inspect areas that children have access to. IF they inspected my niece's room, they'd call the health dept. Her room has a lock on it and also a door knob thingy so that the kids can't open her door.

I would call your local agency and ask exactly what they have the authority to inspect. Look online, is your states regs available?
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Old 08-08-2011, 09:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meeko60 View Post
....if it's not in the written rules, then she cannot write you up.
This is true....you can look in your Regulations Handbook and contest (argue) whatever you want.

My Licensors are pretty helpful. One is a little pickier than the other but they're still pretty nice. Anyway, as far as my kids' rooms go the only reason they looked in there is because they need to see every room on my diagram. They said that if the room isn't approved for use, then there is no reason for me to child-proof it.
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Old 08-08-2011, 09:38 AM
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OP....what state are you in?

Here they inspect the entire home on the initial inspection. After that, any area that I state are off limits to children are not inspected UNLESS there is a complaint. Then they will inspect the entire home.
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:51 PM
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We are a center, so our inspections are much tighter than home daycares, which is fine. I love my inspector and she likes us too. She knows who has problems and who doesn't. I have a large, crappy center across the street. For every time my inspector is here, she has been there at least 3 times. She IS VERY STRICT, but she should be. We have an upstairs as well, it is our office. She never goes up there. But the fire inspector does.
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Old 08-09-2011, 11:44 AM
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I would like to add that on my last licensor visit when she said told me I had to add yet another gate to an area not used by kids. I blew up at her. I said all these rules are ridiculous and I am getting sick of their pettiness. She then told me that her sister also does daycare and she says the same thing. Then she said to me "well if we don't find something wrong in every home then they figure we are not doing our job" Insane. I told her that what they were doing was causing good providers to quit.
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  #16  
Old 08-09-2011, 01:41 PM
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Wow! This makes me nervous. When I had my initial inspection the man checked my smoke alarms, my fire extinguisher and the deed to my house!!
He never checked cabinets to make sure they were locked or toys or anything! Even though he walked throughout my daycare area he never said anyhing other than " I like the layout of your house!"
The only negative comment he had was that my dogs water bowl " could" be considered a drowning hazard by some licensors!!!
So Im constantly in fear of doing something wrong!!!!
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Old 08-09-2011, 02:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KBCsMommy View Post
Wow! This makes me nervous. When I had my initial inspection the man checked my smoke alarms, my fire extinguisher and the deed to my house!!
He never checked cabinets to make sure they were locked or toys or anything! Even though he walked throughout my daycare area he never said anyhing other than " I like the layout of your house!"
The only negative comment he had was that my dogs water bowl " could" be considered a drowning hazard by some licensors!!!
So Im constantly in fear of doing something wrong!!!!
Why would he check the deed to your house? That is definetly one I have never heard of!
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Old 08-09-2011, 04:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Country Kids View Post
Why would he check the deed to your house? That is definetly one I have never heard of!
They may want to determine that you are a homeowner and not a renter. In our state you must have written permission from a landlord before you can be licensed.
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Old 08-09-2011, 04:23 PM
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Originally Posted by MyAngels View Post
They may want to determine that you are a homeowner and not a renter. In our state you must have written permission from a landlord before you can be licensed.
I thought you didn't get the deed to your house until it was paid off? I thought that was how a person knew they owned the house outright?
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  #20  
Old 08-09-2011, 04:36 PM
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OP:

I'd suggest you read your regs and immediately ask for a supervisory review if that's possible. Find out now how to do it, you likely have a timeline you could miss.

Here's why: If you leave this on your record, and she or another licensor checks next time, now you have a *history* of these issues. And that may open up the opportunity for fines, or a change in your license status at a future date.

Imagine now, that you have an angry parent in a couple years who makes a bogus complaint that the daycare area is a mess. Now, the mess in your son's rooms will also be held against you.

This has been a huge issue in some areas. Hope it isn't in your state.
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  #21  
Old 08-09-2011, 09:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Country Kids View Post
Why would he check the deed to your house? That is definetly one I have never heard of!
In CA, you have to prove whether you are a home owner or renter. I had to show a mortgage statement and a tax bill.
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Old 08-10-2011, 03:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sharlan View Post
In CA, you have to prove whether you are a home owner or renter. I had to show a mortgage statement and a tax bill.

OMG!! Sorry folks that is way above and beyond in my book, nor would I comply with that. I live in a state you don't have to be licensed and I can understand why most don't go that route after reading some of this stuff!
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