Steffie ... I have a question for you(m)

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Registered: 03-27-2003
Steffie ... I have a question for you(m)
Thu, 04-10-2003 - 2:24pm
Steffie ...

If I remember correctly you have returned to work full-time - is this correct? If so, do you have Omar in daycare? What kind of environement is it - daycare center, in-home care, with family, etc? Are you happy with the care? Also, if you don't mind me being totally nosey how much do you pay (weekly or monthly) if you do pay?

I know that we live in the same general area and I am attempting to get an average cost of infant daycare. My ex-husbands wife is a SAHM with their 2.5 yo DD and has offered to take care of the baby for us when I return to work. They are very good friends of ours and live about five houses away so very convienent and I trust both of them implicitly so I know it will be a good solution to my daycare crisis. However, she has left the amount of payment entirely up to me and I have no idea what is fair. I don't want to underpay her but I also don't want to over-pay. So far I am thinking about $150.00/week. Any input would be much appreciated.

Thanks dear!

: ) Gia

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Registered: 03-27-2003
Fri, 04-11-2003 - 11:13am
Hi Gia,

Yep, I am back at work full time, but my DH has a flexible work schedule, so actually watches Omar most of the week. We have him at a sitters for the other part of the time, which is about 15 hours a week.

Actually, the people who sit him are friends that we met through our birthing class - its a similar situation to yours - they live really close to us, we trust them completely, and they also have a son who is 2 months older than Omar. The dad is a SAHD, who is actually his sitter, while the mom works out of her home part of the time that Omar is there, so its working out quite well.

I did some investigation into rates and all, and we're probably slightly on the "over pay" side of things when compared to daycare centers, and probably average when compared to nannys. We pay $8/hour, I found that the average for Nannys and babysitters is around $7-10/hour. My boss pays a Nanny $500/week for 35 hours of shared care with another family. From my research, daycare centers though, average about $200-$250 a week for full time care. I guess daycare centers can be cheaper because they look after lots more kids which pays their basic "overhead" costs. We were just more comfortable with the hourly rate, because we wanted to pay our friend what he was worth, and also wanted to have some assurance that he'd be motivated to do a good job by being paid well....does that make sense? My DH comes to me each week though with a new daycare center that he has heard about and says, "its only $200 a week for full time care, and we're paying $125 for part time!" Maybe we should have offered something less, but I'd feel really cheap to try to re-negotiate that rate now, and on the other hand, it is difficult to put a price tag on the comfort of knowing your child is in good hands.

I think $150 sounds reasonable, but if its going to be around 40 hours of full time care, you might want to offer slightly more..just my opinion. It really is a hard think to figure out, especially when you're trying to have a "business relationship" with friends.

Also, I have to say, that personally we are so comfortable with the idea of Omar being at a friends home, as opposed to a day care center. The only way I would consider putting him in a center is if it was a place I could easily pop into during my weekday. I called around to a lot of daycare centers, and ended up in tears - either the people were very difficult to communicate with (barely spoke English, or just couldn't communicate well/politely), or they treated me and my baby like a "commodity".

Lastly, besides phoning each other during the day, we also talk about how things went when we pick Omar up, so its nice to have that personal ease and comfort at being able to check up on him often. But, we also schedule time about once a month, to just sit down, all of us parents, and talk about how things are going for both sides. We've discovered that we actually have a lot of questions for each other, that aren't really that urgent, but I feel are important to Omar's care, that we just don't get a chance to talk about in the busy coming and goings. Also, we gave them a 2 page list of things about Omar when he first started with them, but things change so fast - his eating and sleep habits, his preferences, etc. So that's another reason why its good to have time to just catch up on things.

OK - that's it for now -whew that got long!

Hope this helps!