Summer can be an interesting time for daycare owners because many clients go on vacation, or take breaks and need their spots held in the daycare. Payment issues like these can be tough because sometimes we are fearful of losing clients with whom we have developed a long term relationship. For example, a daycare owner asked: “How do I charge a client whose school-age child will be absent 6 weeks (not consecutive) during the summer while attending camps, vacation, grandma visits, etc. Normally parents pay me regardless of attendance. Does anyone have any suggestions for payment?”
- If your policy is that they pay regardless of attendance then you should follow your policy and charge tem accordingly. Otherwise, you may come across a situation where your payment policy is disputed. If you are expected to hold a space for that child while they are away here and there then they should be paying for that space. Otherwise, I would not guarantee that space to that child, I would fill that space to guarantee my income and if I had a space for the child when they needed care…they would be welcome to attend at a higher drop-in rate.
- I would give them a slight discount, so she feels like she is getting a deal and you still get paid for holding the spot for her till fall. It’s totally what you feel comfortable doing.
- I would only charge them for the weeks they are in attendance and maybe some sort of holding fee for the weeks he is absent. Perhaps 1/4 of regular fees. Try to fill your spot right away. They are leaving anyways and if they don’t like what you charge, then what is to stop them from finding alternate care for the remaining three weeks of summer holidays?
- Can you charge them a prorated usage fee by a minimum of 2/3 days to “hold” there spot? Or average the amount of weeks they’ll use and break payments up. For example: 4 weeks usage (3 days here 2 days here etc.) to total 4 weeks = $500.00 dollars. Pay half now and remainder BEFORE last day/week of service.
- I charge school age for just the weeks they attend. I ask for their schedule so I can try to fit in other kids to the spot when they are not there. It usually works out ok.
- I usually convert to a part time contract at that point. I have a slightly higher day rate for those that wish to pay for the days they book in advance. So I schedule the child in for the requested days at the higher day rate, charge accordingly. They are still responsible for the entire amount owing for the days booked even if the child stays home for whatever reason.
- They want the spot they, they pay the price. I only have 10 spots available. If they want it, they PAY. My family should not do without so their child can go to camp.
- I have school teachers that stay home with their kids all summer and come back in the fall. They still pay my weekly rate. Have the parent postdate checks for the weeks they are not there, that way you don’t have to keep calling for your payments. Also, if you’re a home childcare, then they should pay for those weeks.
- I charge, but it’s also in my policies that if they choose to go to a daily rate they have to give me the same courtesy to go down in rate. And each rate is a two week request to get to that rate. Like it goes full time-then PT daily rate- then drop- in rate and each level will require a 2 week notice. Example: to go from a full time rate to a PT daily rate would take 2 weeks’ notice (these are set days) guaranteed and then another 2 weeks for drop in rate. (Not guaranteed spot and guaranteed available) and if they go through the steps to go down to any of these at a min. notice they can go up to a full pay spot with approval if there is room. I normally never loose anyone if I do this and they leave good referrals to parents that i worked with them. I love when they respect my two week policies rules. Because i try to let them know it gives me two weeks to adjust my bills to my pay schedule and time to fix and adjust if needed. They normally understand this.
- I think we have to remember this is our paychecks, so can u afford to go without your income? I would personally keep charging things change. Or just make sure she knows you are going to fill the spot. I always want to be nice and fair, but then it hurts me in the long run. It’s tough when it comes to money and it shouldn’t, this is our job… Don’t get me wrong I do love my job .
- When I’m feeling generous to a kind family I charge 25% to keep the spot on the weeks they do not attend but ONLY for those summer weeks. Most often, I fill them with former kids from out of district.
- I would definitely have them pay at least 75% of what their normal rate would be. I have children of school teachers in my daycare and altogether for about 3 months out of the year they are on vacation. They will definitely give you a hassle but you have to stick to your contract and “DO NOT BUDGE”.
- You can do whatever you want, really. But put it in writing…new contract for this summer (unless you decide to keep it the same and they have to pay no matter what.) I have 1 school ager and I do let them only pay for the weeks he is here (plus my 1 week vacation), but he’s my nephew and my bro and sister-in-law have been awesome clients. For others, I might let them pay just for the weeks they need but it would be a slightly higher rate and they’d have to understand that if I fill the spot, I may not have space for all the weeks they want.
- For me, my teacher kids pay for the days they will use in the summer because on the days they are not here, I fill the spot with older children or other children. If you won’t be filling the spot and need a steady income still, I do the 1/2 tuition rule for vacations and time off.
- We are only licensed for so many kids therefore in order to keep a spot in my daycare they have to pay the normal rates for it as stated in my contract whether they are in attendance or not on their scheduled days. I guess it would come down to if you can afford to not be paid and still keep the spot or risk losing the family.
- Have they asked you to reduce their fees? Otherwise let them continue to pay full rate. I have a teacher’s child and from Aug-May they pay full time rate for June and July they pay the drop in rate if their child is here. I only did it because this year I could fill their space with a school age child. Next year I haven’t decided I may do the same since I have a child who will be school age by then
- If they have been a long term family, with a sibling still in your care I would try to work with them. I had a similar situation and felt after 13 years of care, and numerous referrals I did not want to have them leave with hard feelings. We sat down, discussed the problem and both gave a little. Possible, they would agree to a set guaranteed fee for the summer that you both could live with.
- What I do in such a situation I charge them half day fee instead of full day and explain nicely this is your income they expect their income to remain the same even when they r on leave. What’s fair is fair so instead of eg: r850 they must give r650
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