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  #1  
Old 08-08-2011, 04:18 AM
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Default A Little Annoyed

I just found out that the only 2 dcks I had lined up when school starts, their Mom lost her job at the school. So now I have 0 dcks. I have been advertising and just not getting any results. I'm annoyed because I found out that there is someone doing unlicensed care and she has 9 dcks plus her own three. Oh well now it's just a waiting game and hopefully the calls will start coming in.
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Old 08-08-2011, 04:49 AM
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Ugh. What a nightmare. Perhaps her rates are lower? Try running a special.
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Old 08-08-2011, 05:11 AM
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First, is it legal to do unlicensed care in your area? I would find that out and if it's not legal, turn her in!

Whether it's legal or not, you might want to learn a little about what she offers, her rates, whether she teaches the kids, whether she provides the food, what ages she takes, etc. You will want this info to see what your competition is - that way, you can adjust your rates and what you offer to be able to compete in your area. I would also call other legal daycare homes in the area to get a general idea of what parents want, expect, and are offered at what rates.

I would keep in mind that she is your neighbor and you might not want her to know that you are the one calling her falsely looking for childcare or going on a fake interview. If the lady knows your voice or might later meet you and recognize your voice. Or if she knows what you look like or might later meet you, you might want to ask a friend out of the neighborhood to do your dirty work for you.

My friends/sister and I do it all the time! My other licensed daycare provider friends do this all the time! Here where I live it's illegal to operate an unlicensed daycare and all of us licensed providers work pretty hard to get them shut down!

If you might want to turn the unlicensed lady in, make sure to set up a fake interview so you can get her name and address to use when you turn her in. You also might need to either find an advertisement of hers to send in as proof that she's babysitting people that are not related to her (the general public). If you can not find an advertisement of hers, you might need to go to an interview at her house and hope she gives you a contract or something that proves she's providing childcare. You can send that in instead of an advertisement if necessary. You said you are licensed, so you just need to call your spe******t or whoever you got your license through and ask them exactly what you need to do and what paperwork (proof) you need to obtain for them to investigate her unlicensed daycare.
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Old 08-08-2011, 05:30 AM
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Slightly off topic, but relevant. You may want to consider looking at landscaping, lawn, porch furniture and other window dressing on the outside of your home.

I know that was the ONLY way I beat out my competition when I started up at 24 years old, new in town, unmarried without kids of my own....

Lot's of bright colored flowers, hanging baskets, manicured lawn, colorful cushions on porch furniture... It really made a difference.

First impressions, you now?
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Old 08-08-2011, 05:34 AM
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I'm in MI and it is illegal to do daycare without a license. I know who she is. She has that many kids because she charges less. I really don't think that she offers anything more than I do except she is cheaper. I keep in touch with most of the licensed providers here, I'm the same price as all the other licensed providers in my area and we offer pretty much the same type of care. I won't turn her in, I'm just annoyed that she has a houseful of kids and now I have zero.
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Old 08-08-2011, 05:35 AM
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omg stop turning in all the women who are not registered!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Maybe you , not the op but the women who thinks its best to shut down a sahm whos only income is providing care for others with better rates. Have you thought about how the sahms take care of their family!!!!!!!!!! Get a better way to compete instead of being so vandictive towards other. If their not abusing the children then who cares. Only people who arnt as good as the sahm thats who....
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Old 08-08-2011, 05:37 AM
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Why wouldn't you turn her in?! If she's running that many kids by herself and you have a maximum capacity and regulations you must comply with? Don't you think she should be held to the same?
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Old 08-08-2011, 05:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Catherder View Post
Slightly off topic, but relevant. You may want to consider looking at landscaping, lawn, porch furniture and other window dressing on the outside of your home.

I know that was the ONLY way I beat out my competition when I started up at 24 years old, new in town, unmarried without kids of my own....

Lot's of bright colored flowers, hanging baskets, manicured lawn, colorful cushions on porch furniture... It really made a difference.

First impressions, you now?
I agree with first impressions being important. When you walk up to my house, you enter the house on the right and on the left is a fenced in play area. I put in rubber mulch and a sand box that I can cover (had a problem with cats). I have been in business for 17 years and have never been this low. Last year I had 2 dcgs, the year before I had 3 full time and 1 part time. I think part of the problem is I live 3 miles from town, I'm on the way to other towns, so it's not a problem for people going that way. For years I had people who lived in town bring their kids out to me and then go back to town to work, they were mostly school teachers. Do you think reducing my rates a little to make up for the drive would help? I stay in daycare because I really like it, the money is nice and helps out but I can reduce my rates if needed. I try to stay around the same as everyone else, because there are a couple of single moms who need every penny of their income.
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Old 08-08-2011, 05:45 AM
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omg stop turning in all the women who are not registered!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Maybe you , not the op but the women who thinks its best to shut down a sahm whos only income is providing care for others with better rates. Have you thought about how the sahms take care of their family!!!!!!!!!! Get a better way to compete instead of being so vandictive towards other. If their not abusing the children then who cares. Only people who arnt as good as the sahm thats who....
Most of us are SAHM's too...and we are following the law.

If you are illegally operating, you should be turned in. That is the definition of ILLEGAL. Being able to reproduce does not make you above the law.

Now, if you are following the States rules on how many kids you can keep before you are legally REQUIRED to register (2 here) , then you should have nothing to fear.
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Old 08-08-2011, 06:05 AM
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I have turned in an illegally run daycare before. I know I did the right thing. The provider got licensed and now runs a "legal" program which consists of far fewer kids than before. It wasn't about revenge or anything, its about keeping these kids safe. There are rules for a reason.
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Old 08-08-2011, 06:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
omg stop turning in all the women who are not registered!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Maybe you , not the op but the women who thinks its best to shut down a sahm whos only income is providing care for others with better rates. Have you thought about how the sahms take care of their family!!!!!!!!!! Get a better way to compete instead of being so vandictive towards other. If their not abusing the children then who cares. Only people who arnt as good as the sahm thats who....
It's really not about competing with her. She makes her income based on the amount of kids she has, more kids equals less money per child. I have limits because I'm licensed, which means higher rates and less children.

I wouldn't know if she is abusing the children she watches and neither would anyone else until it's to late because she doesn't have to answer to anyone or meet any of the state requirements like I do, so she would never get a surprise inspection like I would.

The reality of it is, it's illegal in MI to do care without being licensed & it's illegal to not claim the income on your taxes. I said I wouldn't turn her in, but I'm rethinking that after reading some of the responses on here.
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Old 08-08-2011, 06:13 AM
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Originally Posted by morgan24 View Post
Do you think reducing my rates a little to make up for the drive would help? I stay in daycare because I really like it, the money is nice and helps out but I can reduce my rates if needed.
I am almost 10 miles out of city limits so I know what you mean.

Instead of reducing my rates I ended up adjusting my hours to allow for the longer commute.

It was 8:30-5:30 which I used to feel was fair for my clients who generally work 9-5.

UNTIL I had a 9am doctors appt one Tuesday. I was 5 minutes late because of the ridiculous congestion in the center of town. Bottleneck nightmare, I tell you.

Once I changed to 8am-6pm I have stayed full, again. It may be worth a try to drive the morning commute routes to see if that is part of your problem??
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Old 08-08-2011, 06:26 AM
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This is an article that hit home for me.

Rise of unlicensed day care puts children at risk


With day care, you get what you pay for; official says there's a reason it's so cheap.


By Josh Salman




Unlicensed day-care centers are on the rise, fanned by the economic downturn beyond Jacksonville's low-income neighborhoods to gated communities and golf course-hugging suburbs.

Meike Rice finds that trend frightening.

When the phone on her desk rings, the inspector for the state Department of Children and Families never knows if tragedy soon will follow.

In the past year, she's seen caregivers hide dozens of children in a 100-degree garage to avoid getting caught. One day care operator took it a step farther, hiding kids in a parked pickup truck. There was no air conditioning, no water and plenty of tears.

That's not the worst of it. Rice has seen children die as a result of a unlicensed caregiver's neglect.

About a year ago, a 12-month-old boy died after the caregiver took the unconscious infant to a neighbor's house and asked for help. She didn't call an ambulance, fearing she would be arrested.

In late June, 20-month-old Bernard Davis died after being left in alone in a sweltering pickup. He was in the care of a woman who police say was illegally operating a day care in her Westside home. Shantel Wilcher, 38, was charged with giving police false information for attempting to conceal the operation.

Lots of kids, lots of day care

There are more than 50,000 children enrolled in some form of day care in Northeast Florida, the DCF says. And when the economy is in turmoil, officials say unlicensed facilities and in-home day care operations become a bigger problem, especially when kids are out of school during the summer.

For many struggling families, one of the first things to go when money is tight is expensive child care. But most parents also have to work and can't stay home to watch their children. To cut costs, hard-pressed families increasingly are turning to unlicensed care, state officials say.

Rice has found them in affluent neighborhoods. One, she said, popped up in Ponte Vedra Beach, surrounded by golf courses and million-dollar, oceanfront homes.

"Usually it's the stay-at-home mom who wants to earn a quick buck," Rice said of the illegal operators. "They're overly accommodating, and you can't find a better deal. But you also get what you pay for."

With most unlicensed in-home day care facilities, there's no way to tell if the caregiver has proper training or is even suited to watching children.

"It's very concerning and certainly something to worry about," said Nancy Dreicer, who oversees the local DCF region. "It can be very unsafe for the kids, and we're doing everything we can to root them out."

But finding them isn't easy.

Licensing required

Although Rice once came across an illegal day care that brazenly advertised on a 10-foot-high sign, DCF mainly has to rely on a trickle of complaints and Craigslist postings for tips. The agency has received 15 complaints so far this year, six in June. Four of these day cares were deemed to be unlawful.

Operating an unlicensed day care is punishable by fines of up to $500 per violation per day and a year in prison, although the state rarely seeks harsh sanctions.

"It's hard to know about them because they really fly under the radar," DCF program manager Pam Buckham said. "And we can't investigate them if we don't find out about them."

Jacksonville resident Cindy Green operated an illegal day care out of her home last year, according to the department.

She watched children for family, friends and neighbors. Having a background in child care, Green thought she was qualified. She said she never cared for too many children and never had a serious problem.

But after receiving several complaints, DCF forced her to shut down the operation. Green since has opened another day care at Hogan Baptist Church, where she oversees 40 children and has a handful of full-time employees.

This time, though, she's licensed.

"Times are really tough, that's why people do it," Green said of unlicensed day care. "It's easy to overlook the harm it can cause. Our goal is to help families, and we can do so much more with a license."

The Times-Union went to several other homes that were subject to complaints regarding unlicensed day care. But all of the occupants denied the allegations and refused to talk.

Like Green, Buckham said many day-care operators don't realize they're breaking the law until it's too late.

Others only see providing child care as a temporary job or they believe they can't afford a license, which carries costs totaling nearly $150.

"Without a doubt it's an economic issue," said Greg Frazier, chief development officer with Community Connections, which operates a low-income day care and several after-school and summer programs.

"Most of these unlicensed operations do so on a need basis for both the parent and caregiver," he said. "But day-care centers are regulated for very good reasons."

Really cheap for a reason

The average licensed day care charges $170 a week for a 12-month-old child. The price varies based on location, quality of care and food service. Many illegal day cares charge as little as $15 per day, according to DCF.

Families who can't afford licensed care can apply for child-care vouchers issued by the Jacksonville Children's Commission.

They also can have relatives watch their children for pay. It becomes a problem when a caregiver goes outside the family.

"We'll see eight kids from all different races who look nothing alike," Buckham said. "The caregiver will say they're all related. We know they're lying. But it's a matter of proving it."

Legitimate day-care facilities must have their license on the wall and the license number on any advertisements. The 1,100 licensed day cares in the area are inspected three times a year. Each employee needs to pass a background check, complete 40 hours of training, including CPR, and take a yearly 10-hour course on caregiving.

It's common for unlicensed caregivers to have inadequate training, if any at all. Some have criminal records. Others, Dreicer warned, could be registered sex offenders.

"It doesn't mean everyone that's doing it is a terrible person," Dreicer said, "but parents ought to think about this before they put their kids in dangerous situations."

josh.salman, jacksonville.com,
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Old 08-08-2011, 11:11 AM
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Cat-excellent article! Very accurate and SCARY!

Morgan-yes I hope you do reconsider and do turn her in. Its illegal in your state, so yes, turn her butt in!!! As for your lack of business, I'd try running a special, like 50% off first week of tuition for new clients. I feel your pain. Seems like whenever I sign someone new, someone drops off the roster.

Unregistered- Gimme a break! I'm soooo tired of the sense of entitlement from people operating illegally! Its ILLEGAL, meaning NOT legal, as in "you could go to jail". If your state allows unlicensed, great. If not, then people running daycare illegally deserve what they get. I want to vomit when I hear people complaining "boohoo I'm a SAHM, so why shouldn't I be allowed to break the law?" Cry a big tear. And then get compliant with your state's laws. There's a LOT of people who run legitimate home daycares, (licenced or legally allowed to be unlicensed) that people like you give a bad name to.
REPORT ILLEGAL DAYCARES! If not, there's gonna be more cases like Catherder showed us in the article. Shheesh. This shouldn't be controversial!
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Old 08-08-2011, 11:19 AM
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Cat you should repost that article as a new thread. I think everyone should read that. Sorry, I get pretty stirred up by illegal daycares.
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Old 08-08-2011, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Sugar Magnolia View Post
Cat you should repost that article as a new thread. I think everyone should read that. Sorry, I get pretty stirred up by illegal daycares.
I tagged it under "Illegal Providers" so it will come up anytime someone searches that term on here or a search engine..

I hope I correctly gave the author credit... I tried to do it the right way but am never really sure...

I felt fewer would actually read it with just a link... I know I am guilty of it from time to time, myself.
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Old 08-08-2011, 11:45 AM
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omg stop turning in all the women who are not registered!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Maybe you , not the op but the women who thinks its best to shut down a sahm whos only income is providing care for others with better rates. Have you thought about how the sahms take care of their family!!!!!!!!!! Get a better way to compete instead of being so vandictive towards other. If their not abusing the children then who cares. Only people who arnt as good as the sahm thats who....
Illegal is ILLEGAL!!
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:03 PM
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Illegal is ILLEGAL!!
( Sarcasm:
)

But she's a SAHM! (Sniff) She has the RIGHT to do as she pleases because she needs the money (sniff). And I'm sure she's better educated and trained as you vindictive, licensed, legal operators, who "arnt". And I'm sure she's cheaper out of the goodness of her heart, not at all because she's illegal. Booohoooo awww let's have a pity party.... (Sorry, sarcasm comes pretty easily to me when people like 'unregistered' try to defend illegal child care). Yes, blood still boiling!
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sugar Magnolia View Post
( Sarcasm:
)

But she's a SAHM! (Sniff) She has the RIGHT to do as she pleases because she needs the money (sniff). And I'm sure she's better educated and trained as you vindictive, licensed, legal operators, who "arnt". And I'm sure she's cheaper out of the goodness of her heart, not at all because she's illegal. Booohoooo awww let's have a pity party.... (Sorry, sarcasm comes pretty easily to me when people like 'unregistered' try to defend illegal child care). Yes, blood still boiling!
I love sarcasm...Lol
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:10 PM
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WOW CAT...THANK YOU!!!

I can see "live & let live" but the least this lady could do is keep her numbers down to the licensed amount...9 DCK's without a license is just BRAZEN!!! Either way, it's illegal and getting turned in is the chance she takes.
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:18 PM
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I love sarcasm...Lol
Sorry Morgan, didn't mean to hijack your thread. I do hope you get some kids. Its not fair the illegal daycare has more business BECAUSE they are cheap and illegal. Its a shame. Another idea: does your local paper have a section where you can list "community events"? Its usually free to list an event. Something like "Fully licensed home daycare is having an open house! Free kids crafts for children while parents tour facility, get policy information and learn about the program. Half price tuition for the first week if you enroll during the Open House. Saturday from 10am to noon" Just a thought. I am having one of these Open House events this saturday.
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
omg stop turning in all the women who are not registered!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Maybe you , not the op but the women who thinks its best to shut down a sahm whos only income is providing care for others with better rates. Have you thought about how the sahms take care of their family!!!!!!!!!! Get a better way to compete instead of being so vandictive towards other. If their not abusing the children then who cares. Only people who arnt as good as the sahm thats who....
Naturally you posted as Unregistered.

You said if they're not abusing the children, who cares. Well, how do we KNOW whether they're abusing the children, neglecting the childrens' needs, providing an unsafe environment, not feeding them healthy foods, taking in too many and thereby stretching herself too far to adequately care for them, taking too many infants at one time, inviting possibly unsavory guests into the home, etc., etc., etc..... How do we know ANY of that if she is not registered and inspected?? If the OP had said it was LEGAL in her state to provide services without being registered, that would be a different story. She said registration is a requirement. Therefore, this unlicensed person is committing a crime. To top it off, she is taking business away from those who went through the proper channels, spent the time in classes, took CPR & First Aid, had their home inspected many times over, and paid all the fees to be legally registered. YOU BET I'D TURN HER IN!!!!
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Sugar Magnolia View Post
Sorry Morgan, didn't mean to hijack your thread. I do hope you get some kids. Its not fair the illegal daycare has more business BECAUSE they are cheap and illegal. Its a shame. Another idea: does your local paper have a section where you can list "community events"? Its usually free to list an event. Something like "Fully licensed home daycare is having an open house! Free kids crafts for children while parents tour facility, get policy information and learn about the program. Half price tuition for the first week if you enroll during the Open House. Saturday from 10am to noon" Just a thought. I am having one of these Open House events this saturday.
You didn't hijack my thread. I feel the same way. I'm in a small town and know this person. She was one of my daughters friends when they were in school. The one advantage that I forgot to mention is that in the town next to mine is a providers association and a couple of the providers here are members and they will mention it to the president of the association and she will turn them in. Works to my benefit because my name never has to come into it. I can't belong to this association because I live in the wrong county.

Are you in a small town? Let me know how your Open House goes. I have never had to do anything like that.
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Old 08-08-2011, 03:53 PM
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I'm in a medium sized city, but my center is right in downtown and next door to an elementary school. I am hoping for a busy open house, my enrollment is down. I'm glad you can avoid an awkward situation and report the illegal lady without getting involved. I'd be more than annoyed if I were you. Hey, I don't begrudge competition, as long as its FAIR. its hard to compete with illegal.
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Old 08-08-2011, 04:43 PM
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I know exactly how you feel! Last week both my dcks gave notice. I'm hoping that one returns quickly. She may only be out for a month when DCD's training starts again. The other is a come and go kid. He'll be FT for weeks, then not come for weeks. Now she's saying it'll be only occasional if they both have to work and I have a spot. Which it looks like I will.

I did get an email last night, interviewed them tonight. Hoping they will sign on.

Good luck to you!

ps. love the open house idea! I had thrown that around back in Jan/Feb.
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Old 08-08-2011, 05:22 PM
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I know how you feel. It's tough here in the central valley of California. We have one of the highest unemployment rates. Unlicensed daycares ran by SAHM are all around me. I am a SAHM of two with a daycare but I am LICENSED. They charge about $15 a day. It's tough on me because I charge double that. I refuse to take care of kids for prac free. $15 day is nothing when you think about having to feed the kids meals & snacks and doing activities with them. I'm starting to get calls and parents really like my preschool program ...something the others don't offer. Let's see if any of these calls/interviews result in enrollments. Otherwise, I might have to look for work and a daycare for my kids...nightmare.
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ANNOYED!!! (Rant!) AmandasFCC Daycare Center and Family Home Forum 2 10-14-2009 07:10 PM


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