Taking a Poll on Average in Home Day Care Costs

Updated on March 23, 2010
M.V. asks from North Richland Hills, TX
7 answers

Hi there :) I am a new mom of a 3 month old and I have run into a situation with our day care situation. He has been going to a girl's house for 4 weeks. Before we started we agreed on 35 dollars per day. I usually arrive at her house at 7:30 and I usually pick him up between 4:30 and 4:45. I am a teacher so I have pretty good hours. I also give her all the diapers, wipes, food, bottles, and paci's that are needed for my baby. So...My sitter sent me an email yesterday that she wasn't expecting to watch him for more than 8 hours a day and so she wants to raise the price to 40 dollars per day and 45 dollars per day when it is more than 9 hours. (if I arrive at or after 5) This made me so upsut!! Is she counting the hours? Is watching my precious baby boy that much of a dreadful task that she wants compensation for an hour? I honestly feel like 35 dollars a day is good! That averages out to about 750 a month. Please help. Am I wrong? What do you pay for your in home care??

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answers from Dallas on

First, for a normal 4 week month, it is an average of $700/month. $35/day (or $175/week) is fair but not grand. I quoted a lady that I liked very much about that: $175-180 for her infant son; depends on where you're at I suppose. I have priced all the local daycare centers in my area because I was providing childcare, and now again because I am currently pregnant and will have my baby in a couple months. The daycares near me all charge from $185 to $230/week for an infant, and the rate goes down as the child gets older. One reason is because babies are COMPLETELY dependant for EVERYTHING. Another reason (and the main one) is because providers are limited by LAW on how many children they can watch, depending on the ages. I don't have the paperwork available at this minute, but I think you have the choice of 1 infant or 3 children. That is a huge difference! Playing devil's advocate here, I would say this lady probably got a job watching your son because she needed an income (the reason we ALL get jobs), and found out after she got into it that there's more involved than she thought, and she isn't allowed to take in another 2 children because of laws to insure an infant is well provided for and looked after. I'm sure she's not "counting the hours" or thinking ill of your "precious son" but that this is a business decision, not an emotional one.
Another thing to consider is this: often a daycare center will provide longer hours-an average of about 6:30am to 6pm. However, I personally worked at a daycare center that charged $10 per MINUTE that you were late past 6pm. Even the church nursery where I take my son during Wednesday morning Bible study charges $10 per 10 minutes that you're late. Being self employed she has the right to set her hours. If that doesn't work for you, you have the right to seek childcare elsewhere, but charging for a late pickup is routine. It is probably difficult to plan her day if she thinks you'll come at 4:30...but then it's 4:45...or 5...or a little later. When I provided childcare, I wouldn't cook or do anything that could leave me in a bind while children were up---what if someone fell and scraped their knee, but I'm up to my elbows in raw meat??? So I would have to wait for parents to pick up their children OR do all my cooking quickly during naptime. That is not a parent's problem, but you can see that if you come to someone's home 30 or 45 minutes later one day than you do another, it could throw her off schedule for her own family. So, she set a pick up time. I can see that.
As for the previous post, yes I used to provide in-home childcare for older children (toddler included) and charged $26/day (130/week)and provided them with a morning snack, a lunch, and an afternoon snack, helped potty train them, and provided wipes. HOWEVER toddlers can play on their own some, and you are ALLOWED to watch more than you are with infants. With an infant, you'll pay more and I don't know anyone that is going to take it upon themselves to provide formula and diapers NOR would I want them to for my own son....I would want MY brand name formula, MY brand name diapers, and MY brand name wipes. Infants are simply not the same as "children".
My suggestion would be that you shop around a little and see what the options are that you have IN YOUR AREA to see what's fair where you are. (Southlake, Keller, and Euless for example will have 3 different price ranges, you know?)Then have a civil discussion with her in person as to what you need and let her say what she needs. If you can come to an agreement, fine. If not, you've already got the pricequotes and availablility of your local childcare facilities. Good luck, and I hope you find something that works well for all involved, especially your wee baby.

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answers from Dallas on

The in home care my son used to go to was 165 a week which included diapers formula and food. We now pay $100 a week for each of our 2 babies which includes food for my 13 month old and baby wipes but nothing else. My kids are at daycare from 7am till at least 4:30 but can be there any time within her hours of operation (6am-6pm) for the same price. I think your person is trying to take advantage of you and I personally would be looking for a new daycare for my child. If you have to pay what she asks only for a few weeks until you are able to find something else.



answers from Iowa City on

My name is M. and I am from a little town in Iowa and I run a daycare in my home and I think $35 a day is more than enough! I usually get paid an average of $19 a day for a child in the same situation! So I think you are paying a good amount!


answers from Dallas on

For that young I think $35 day is fair. I charge $25 a day for toddlers for up to 10 hours a day.



answers from Dallas on

I worked when my oldest boy was a baby. I too, was a teacher, so my husband would drop him off around 8 and I'd pick him up around 4 most of the time, except for the occasional faculty meeting, parent conferences, etc. I never arrived after 4 without telling her first and getting an ok from her to be late. If it conflicted with her schedule, I would make other arrangements (my parents would pick him up or she would bring me my son when she came to pick up her kids). Anyway, I paid $125 a week, so that was $25 a day. We had this arrangement for 2002-2005 when I quit. However, I had another baby in 2004, so for 2 months, she watched both my boys until the school year ended. During that time, I paid $200 a week for the two kids - ages 3 and 4 months at the time. I think $35 or even $40 a day seems fair. A daycare would charge much more for an infant. My sister-in-law pays almost $200 a month for her infant in daycare. I provided diapers and baby food / formula. She provided wipes and table food when they began that. She was not a licensed child care provider. She was the parent of one of my students the year I was pregnant with my first son. She only watched my son and her daughter while her other two kids were at the school where I was teaching.

As for the late days, how often though is he left there after 5:00? Is it on a regular basis? Does she know it's going to be later that day? My sister used to watch kids when she had babies of her own. She had people that really took advantage of her (not saying you do this of course). They treated her time like it was of no importance and showed up whenever they felt, not warning her if they were going to be later, etc. If you're expecting the child you watch to be picked up at say 4:30 and they show up at 5:30, that could set your day off. Maybe she had dinner plans, errands to run, another job to get to (this was the case of my babysitter), kids to get to soccer practice or something. I can remember my sister not wanting to start cooking dinner until the kids were picked up and when the parents came late, her kids started getting cranky having to wait to eat and it would just make for a long evening.


answers from Dallas on

i think 35-40 dlls is fair usually a day care charge a little more



answers from Dallas on

When my son was in an in-home daycare she charged $35/day. I could not drop him off before 6:30am and had to pick him up by 5:30. I hated him in in-home daycares. There are probably good ones out there but she had so many rules that would just appear out of thin air. He is now in a GREAT preschool. We have had zero problems. I do pay more but it is so worth it! Good luck. Finding good people to take care of your child is so hard and nerve wracking. I would keep looking around. If she's doing that about the pay she will make other "rules" that follow.

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