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  #1  
Old 03-31-2013, 01:24 PM
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LoraJenkins LoraJenkins is offline
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Default Different Rates/Policies For New Families?

A quick question. Is it ok to start charge a new rate for new families???? Also....what about new policies??? I am interview a possible new client this week and want to start charging a "weekly" fee instead of a "daily" fee....higher than my current clients pay by $25 per week. Also I want this new client to pay ahead of time for the following week of care when all of my current families pay on Fridays for the days their children attended that week.

The current families are TERRIFIC families....never any major issues but I want to run my daycare more like my business instead of just a child-sitting service with all new clients.
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Old 03-31-2013, 01:35 PM
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I keep all of my policies the same across the board as it is easier to keep track of. But I don't typically raise rates on existing families but if I think it is time to increase rates, I bring new families in at the new rate. No one has ever said anything. And if they did I would just tell them that existing clients are grandfathered in under the old rates.
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Old 03-31-2013, 01:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snbauser View Post
I keep all of my policies the same across the board as it is easier to keep track of. But I don't typically raise rates on existing families but if I think it is time to increase rates, I bring new families in at the new rate. No one has ever said anything. And if they did I would just tell them that existing clients are grandfathered in under the old rates.
We have always "grand fathered" in our old clients at existing rates, and brough new clients in at old ones. Only once have we raised rates for exciting clients. I used to think it was a little weird, until I joined this forum - and saw that most do the exact same thing.
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Old 03-31-2013, 01:40 PM
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If you are afraid of the parents talking about how much they pay a week you can have a disclaimer that every family's schedule and needs are different and price is determined on multiple factors.
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Old 03-31-2013, 03:40 PM
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I always grandfather in current clients when raising rates. However this yr I'm in a bit of a pickle...I have one FT 5day/wk family that pays the "old fee". In the fall they will go down to PT 2day/wk, do I charge them the "old 2 day/wk fee" since they are not technicaly new clients or the "new 2 day/week fee" since this is a new schedule?
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Old 03-31-2013, 04:33 PM
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I started in Dec. I plan to change some things for new clients. I will be licensed soon and I'm changing some things when I am able to take more kids. This changes will take place for existing families on their one year anniversary.
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Old 03-31-2013, 05:04 PM
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I think if you want to run more like a business then i would charge the same rates for everyone. I would start the new family at the new rate and put out a notice to old families that rates will be going up starting such and such date. I think it's only fair to charge everyone the same. Im not sure what your reason is for increasing your rates (whether it be cost of living increase, providing more activites, new toys, etc) but you could include them in the notice as well.
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:32 AM
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I know a lot of providers and centers that do this - grandfather in the old families but change rates/policies for newer ones. This is an incentive for older families because they stay the same rate, so you might get some more loyalty there, but it still allows you to increase your income with newer families. I know one proivder who does tell the old families that changes to their schedule will mean changes to pay rates as those changes make them "new."
I agree with the pp, to make it clear that price and policy are set by a number of factors. I don't think any of my parents have discussed who pays what with each other. If they did I don't know about it.
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:55 AM
AnneCordelia AnneCordelia is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrackerJacks View Post
I always grandfather in current clients when raising rates. However this yr I'm in a bit of a pickle...I have one FT 5day/wk family that pays the "old fee". In the fall they will go down to PT 2day/wk, do I charge them the "old 2 day/wk fee" since they are not technicaly new clients or the "new 2 day/week fee" since this is a new schedule?
In my business they would pay the new rate. They did not have the old two-day rate, they had the five-day rate, and so it is not applicable to them. All contract renegotiations are done under current pricing and policy.
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Old 04-01-2013, 07:24 AM
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I don't see anything wrong with this. The tricky part will be the policies. You might want to just hand out new policies across the board. It's a good idea to do it once a year anyway, even if there are no changes, and have them signed. It reminds parents of your rules.

I'm in the process of doing the same with raising rates and by the same amount ($25). I'm also changing my hours for incoming families in order to get my closing time down by a half hour eventually.
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  #11  
Old 04-01-2013, 11:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LoraJenkins View Post
A quick question. Is it ok to start charge a new rate for new families???? Also....what about new policies??? I am interview a possible new client this week and want to start charging a "weekly" fee instead of a "daily" fee....higher than my current clients pay by $25 per week. Also I want this new client to pay ahead of time for the following week of care when all of my current families pay on Fridays for the days their children attended that week.

The current families are TERRIFIC families....never any major issues but I want to run my daycare more like my business instead of just a child-sitting service with all new clients.
I don't have a problem with having different clients on different policies, contracts or rates. I don't raise rates on my current families only on the new ones that come in or on the families that change their schedules or contracts.

For example last year I charged $160 per week for FT and in January I passed out a notice to all of my clients letting them know that I raised my rates to $165 per week but that their rates would stay the same until they changed their schedules, went from FT to PT or vice versa etc. It helps keep the contract and schedule changes to a minimum because they don't want to lose the "deal" that they are getting.

I also edit my contracts as the year goes on and any new clients automatically get a copy of my newer policies and I keep a copy of it in their file where my current clients are handed out the new handbooks once a year. Do what works for you.
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  #12  
Old 04-01-2013, 11:17 AM
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Nothing wrong with that. I've done the same and have never run into an issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrackerJacks View Post
I always grandfather in current clients when raising rates. However this yr I'm in a bit of a pickle...I have one FT 5day/wk family that pays the "old fee". In the fall they will go down to PT 2day/wk, do I charge them the "old 2 day/wk fee" since they are not technicaly new clients or the "new 2 day/week fee" since this is a new schedule?
Charge them the new 2 day/week fee since their schedule is changing and they will be signing a new contract with you stating the new days/hours.
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:17 PM
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I raise rates every 1-2 years. I keep my old families at the old rate unless their schedule changes/days needed, etc. If they change something in our contract they get a new one with the new rates. If they leave everything the same then they stay at their orginial rate.
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Old 04-01-2013, 01:42 PM
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Yes, you can charge different families different rates. (Tom Copeland even says so too! http://tomcopelandblog.typepad.com/t...uestion-1.html)

Just be sure you've got a "good" reason that you can defend in case parents somehow find out that they're paying different rates. Same thing with policies - basically the contract is between you and individual families so you can have whatever arrangements you want.
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Old 04-01-2013, 04:13 PM
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Well I plan on starting on the lower half of the price range anyway so as of now I plan either every year or every other year to increase my weekly rates by about 1-2% (which would be about $5-$10 more a month) and I plan on doing this slowly until I get to wear I am comfortable. I am putting in my contract that it will change yearly or bi-yearly but I might try the 'grandfathering in' method for the first year clients.
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