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  #1  
Old 06-18-2009, 09:17 AM
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seashell seashell is offline
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Default LICENSE vs. UNLICENSED ENROLLMENT CALLS

I currently run an unlicensed home daycare and I am considering becoming licensed. Now before you jump on me for being unlicense, let me tell you why I chose not to become licensed.

I previously owned a large center and I was licensed. I was discusted at the level of professionalism and training the "Inspectors" received. I had no respect for the system and I honestly believe daycare is between the parent and the provider. Parents have a sense of false trust when they see a licensed center. They believe there is someone looking over the program, watching whats going on. We all know the truth here. Licensing come to see you once a year? If that? I went 4 years between visits at one point. Parents are in and out everyday. They see whats going on. Licensing? They are clueless!

So that's my first reason for not getting licensed. I just dont believe it makes for better care.

My second reason is that it is very expensive to have the medical exams done if you don't have insurance.

And before anyone starts yelling, I DO PAY TAXES ON THE MONEY I MAKE!

These reasons combine, I chose not to get a license. I am now reconsidering for one reason. Exposure.

I had a full house until about a month ago. One child moved out of state. Another had her grandma retire and start to care for her. 2 moms just got laid off. Im sure you know how much that hurts losing the kids you love, let alone the financial problems that come along with it.

I advertise on Craigslist for kids, but I haven't had a phone call in several weeks.

So here's my question. Do you receive more calls for daycare based on referals from state licensing or from advertising that you do?

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 06-18-2009, 10:01 AM
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Default Just a little comment.....

I TOTALLY agree with you on licensing. I worked at a licensed facility for almost 20 years. I have NO respect whatsoever for state licensing. I think they are a bunch of hypocrites. I think they change the states rules to suit them on any given day. For example: our licensing rep we had for a number of years, told us we always had to clean up crumbs etc... off the floor/ground no matter what. I agree with that statement. Once we were outside and there were a few pieces of corn on the ground. The kiddos JUST finished with lunch. This inspector found NO violations that day. Well you guessed it. She wrote us up because there were a few pieces on the ground. I am talking about maybe 15 pieces of SMALL corn, if even that! I explained to her that the children just finished etc..and she flat out told me that if she didn't write us up, she wouldn't be doing her job. So the next inspection, someone else came and as luck would have it, there were peas here and there (alot more than the corn!) !!!!! She looked right at it. I apologized to her and said it was crazy and the children wanted to go inside for their Friday movie time etc..She said not to worry, the birds would eat it!

So long story short, again I have no respect for licensing. I will NOT work in another daycare that is licensed. I could write a book of all the encounters I have had to deal with them. NEVER AGAIN!
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  #3  
Old 06-18-2009, 04:17 PM
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I am licensed, for what it's worth, and cannot recall a parent being too awful interested in it.
I put a nicely painted sign in my front yard and that has gotten me the most calls.
Second would be the childcare resource and referral and word of mouth.
Newspapers and fliers have produced a couple, but not worth the expense.
I don't guess I've ever had a referral from state licensing.
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Old 06-18-2009, 04:30 PM
GretasLittleFriends GretasLittleFriends is offline
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I'm licensed and the main reason I am so is to be able to take care of more than one family at a time. I had one family (one child) prior to my licensing, and that just wasn't covering the bills.

I've only been licensed since March so I don't really have too many opinions on my licensor, other than she is very busy because she handles homes and facilities for both daycare and foster care. I also heard that she licensed the adult facilities too, but I'm not 100% sure on that.

I got many more calls once I started advertising in the paper using the word "licensed". Also being licensed and willing to take care of children on the child care assistance program I was put on their provider's list and since then have gotten several phone calls.

So, for me, being licensed helped me gain business and pay the bills.
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  #5  
Old 06-18-2009, 05:36 PM
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I live in a state where you don't have to be licensed. All providers I know are not licensed, are full and have waiting list. I also have always been full. We have all said should it ever come to being forced to being licensed, we were all done. Too much bs to go thru for a job with no benefits, low pay, and lots of expenses.
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  #6  
Old 06-18-2009, 05:59 PM
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I am from an area that you do not need to be licensed/registered - I am. The main reason I got registered was cuz I when I 1st started was for my best friends son was having a baby & I knew they would qualify for assistance. I no longer have that family & my registration is up in a couple months. I have thought about letting it go but I am on the food program & I need to be registered to qualify for that. Starting out being registered helped cuz I got my families threw child resource center. Now I have a waiting list due to word of mouth.
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  #7  
Old 06-18-2009, 06:16 PM
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I am not familiar with the food program, we don't have it here. But we do get to take the standard deductions off for meals and snacks, and I know that makes a huge difference in my taxes when it comes time to do them. I wonder what the difference would be if you figured it both ways.
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  #8  
Old 06-18-2009, 08:11 PM
GretasLittleFriends GretasLittleFriends is offline
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The food program is a federal deal, so should be available in all 50 states I'd think. Regardless of which NPO you pick they all pay the same for the food program. I checked out a few different food programs in the area after I first got licensed. One of them gave me a flyer that broke down tax benefits. Here's the link:
http://www.providerschoice.com/pdfs/tax_flyer.pdf

If you can't open it, let me know.

And just a head's up Tier 1 pay is higher than Tier 2 pay. Everyone is guaranteed Tier 2 pay, however, if you live in a low income area, or if over 50% of the children at the elementary school qualify for low income lunches you get Tier 1. It is also possible for individual families to qualify for Tier 1 for their kids if they are lower income. The reimbursement for the meals really isn't that great per meal, but they add up. Here it is:
Tier 1 Tier 2
$1.17 $0.43 Breakfast
$2.18 $1.31 Lunch/Dinner
$0.65 $0.18 Snack
You're only allowed reimbursement for two meals and one snack or two snacks and one meal. I do have one little guy that sometimes spends 12+hour days here, so those days I claim lunch, pm snack and dinner even though he's here for breakfast and am snack and sometimes evening snack.

Of course, by being on the food program, which is a government program, there is potentially a bit of paperwork. Many of the sponsoring NPO's now offer the majority of the work to be done online. When my MIL did daycare she had to fill out bubble sheets and write down what she fed the children and how much she offered each child at each meal/snack she fed them. Then she had to mail these packets in at the end of the month. Now you can click the day, meal, which child/ren are in attendance, then there are drop down choices for each of the necessary food groups for that meal/snack. So easy. Plus most of the NPO's use similar software which also offers other benefits such as accounting software (including different statements, receipts...), software for making awards and charts, a calendar, you can print out daily reports as to what the children ate and activities done today, even when they napped and such. Though, being a govt sponsored there are also inspections. The program I'm with does 3 inspections/meetings annually. One is unannounced at meal time to verify I'm feeding the children healthy.

Ok, I'm done rambling. Worth checking into even if you're not licensed if they allow it.
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  #9  
Old 06-19-2009, 02:55 AM
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Those are the exact rates that I claim under the standard deductions. I can claim 2 meals and 2 snacks.
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  #10  
Old 06-19-2009, 05:57 AM
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If I remember right even thow we get a monthly check from the food program we can also claim a percentage at tax time also. to me it doesnt matter the amount of kids you have & the amount of time they are in your care that extra money comes in handy. The amount does depend on the amount of kids you have & the amount of time they are in your care. Its nice cuz it does not cost you or the parents anything. It is a little annoying when they make there unexpected visits.

This is what I hand all my parents explaining the food program
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  #11  
Old 06-19-2009, 08:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tymaboy View Post
If I remember right even thow we get a monthly check from the food program we can also claim a percentage at tax time also. to me it doesnt matter the amount of kids you have & the amount of time they are in your care that extra money comes in handy. The amount does depend on the amount of kids you have & the amount of time they are in your care. Its nice cuz it does not cost you or the parents anything. It is a little annoying when they make there unexpected visits.

This is what I hand all my parents explaining the food program
I've thought about the food program, but it's just as easy to write groceries of my taxes and there's no paperwork involved. My parents also have the option of paying me for meals or bringing their own. Most pay me, so I don't really pay for groceries anyway.
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Old 06-20-2009, 02:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mac60 View Post
Those are the exact rates that I claim under the standard deductions. I can claim 2 meals and 2 snacks.
Being able to write something off isn't the same as having an income of the same amount-write off is a nice way of saying "expense" that you don't have to pay taxes on.

Revenue is money coming in....deductions is money going out. I'll take a check for $250 every time over a write off of $250.

It's not unheard for a DC provider to have food program checks coming in of $250++ per month.

I do believe that we are able to write off a percentage of groceries, but not 100% sure on that....that's the wife's and the CPA's dept.
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Old 06-20-2009, 06:47 PM
GretasLittleFriends GretasLittleFriends is offline
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Originally Posted by Chickenhauler View Post
I do believe that we are able to write off a percentage of groceries, but not 100% sure on that....that's the wife's and the CPA's dept.
I'll have to double check with the CPA to verify how much of the stuff claimed on the food program we can write off, but since I can only claim 2 meals and one snack (or two snacks & 1 meal) and often times the children are here for 3 meals and snacks in between I'll be writing off the meals that aren't claimed on the food program. Also, the food program payment per meal is somewhat measly, and I should also be able to write off some on those meals as well. Plus then there is also the food I buy strictly for daycare (baby food, formula, rice cereal, whole milk...) that I wouldn't buy at all if I wasn't a daycare provider.
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  #14  
Old 06-21-2009, 12:46 PM
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Question Question-License

i work somewhere that is a licensed child care and is also accredited through NAEYC and STARS but I'm looking to do an in home child care at my house but I'm wondering about the insurance side of it. to be licensed how much did house insurance and everything else go up, if anyone did that?
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  #15  
Old 06-24-2009, 04:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
i work somewhere that is a licensed child care and is also accredited through NAEYC and STARS but I'm looking to do an in home child care at my house but I'm wondering about the insurance side of it. to be licensed how much did house insurance and everything else go up, if anyone did that?
I just had my homeowners insurance add a rider to the policy. It costs about $66 a year.
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Old 06-24-2009, 07:51 AM
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I just had my homeowners insurance add a rider to the policy. It costs about $66 a year.
I'm not licensed (it's not required in my area for caring for 3 or less children), but I also added a rider to our policy. It was around $65 also. You'll have to check with your insurance provider because not all companies will cover you. I had to switch and am now with State Farm.
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Old 06-24-2009, 09:01 AM
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Our homeowners policy wouldn't add a rider on for home daycares. Sooo, we had to purchase a separate policy from another company, and it costs us around $300 a year, a tax write off, but I sure wish we could have gotten the $60 deal.
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  #18  
Old 06-30-2009, 07:22 AM
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Unhappy licensing requirement surprises


I am getting very frustrated with the licensing too. Last year the new specialist said I had to do something the previous specialist said I did not. I contacted the previous specialist who then denied ever having agreed with me, and my husband even remembered the conversation! Now, this year the same new specialist that was here last year is telling me that any room in my house is "accessible" to the kids if there's no lock and my kitchen drawers, and everything is suddenly accessible even though the kids aren't allowed in the kitchen, and nothing is any different than last year! Now I have to put safety catches on all my drawers, cabinets, etc. in my kitchen. Our dog is potty trained to go on a pad in the utility room (other side of a galley kitchen) because I can't always get her outside the way our house is set up. She's saying that's accessible to the kids too! So now I have to choose between the daycare and our dog. We've had her nearly 7 years and no one has said anything about that pad yet! Even this same specialist! I'd go unlicensed but being in a low income area I'm not sure how many kids I'd get and it wouldn't look too good...
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Old 06-30-2009, 11:49 AM
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I am getting very frustrated with the licensing too. Last year the new specialist said I had to do something the previous specialist said I did not. I contacted the previous specialist who then denied ever having agreed with me, and my husband even remembered the conversation! Now, this year the same new specialist that was here last year is telling me that any room in my house is "accessible" to the kids if there's no lock and my kitchen drawers, and everything is suddenly accessible even though the kids aren't allowed in the kitchen, and nothing is any different than last year! Now I have to put safety catches on all my drawers, cabinets, etc. in my kitchen. Our dog is potty trained to go on a pad in the utility room (other side of a galley kitchen) because I can't always get her outside the way our house is set up. She's saying that's accessible to the kids too! So now I have to choose between the daycare and our dog. We've had her nearly 7 years and no one has said anything about that pad yet! Even this same specialist! I'd go unlicensed but being in a low income area I'm not sure how many kids I'd get and it wouldn't look too good...

Just tell them you got rid of the dog. They won't know the difference.
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Old 06-30-2009, 12:28 PM
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Depending on how big the dog is you could get a baby gate & put it up but leave it up high enough for the dog to crawl underneath. I do that with one of the gates here so the cats can go down to the basement where there boxes are. What if you do not put the puppy pad down when you know you will be having an inspection then that would not be a problem.
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Old 07-02-2009, 04:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chickenhauler View Post
Being able to write something off isn't the same as having an income of the same amount-write off is a nice way of saying "expense" that you don't have to pay taxes on.

Revenue is money coming in....deductions is money going out. I'll take a check for $250 every time over a write off of $250.

It's not unheard for a DC provider to have food program checks coming in of $250++ per month.

I do believe that we are able to write off a percentage of groceries, but not 100% sure on that....that's the wife's and the CPA's dept.
I was told you have to count those checks as part of your income.
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