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Is my childminder overcharging me?

(70 Posts)
Changeymcchange Sat 08-Mar-14 12:13:43

Name changed for this, not sure whether my childminder is a mumsnetter.

I've used the came childminder for over 10 years, and a couple of things have bothered me recently, just thought I'd see what everyone else's opinions are and decide whether to tackle it.

Childminder is self employed, yet has 6 weeks a year of paid holiday. DH is self employed and doesn't get paid holiday. As far as I'm concerned this is in her contract so I've always paid it without question.

My childminder has my 2 children for 2 1/2 hours a day, 3 days a week (after school) she gives them an evening meal. So that's 15 hours a week. During school holidays she has them for 30 hours a week in total.

I don't actually know the hourly rate as my contract averages out the extra hours during the school holidays so I just pay the same rate every week.

All of her holidays are taken during the school holidays (2 weeks at Easter, 2 weeks in summer and 2 weeks over Xmas)

I pay just under £700 a month, does this seem reasonable?

catkind Sat 08-Mar-14 12:27:32

Haven't done the sums but the rates vary hugely by where you live, and even then vary a lot between childminders depending on how much they do with the kids, proper cooked meals or snacks etc. You can only really compare to what others would offer in your area for the same thing.

Mmmbacon Sat 08-Mar-14 12:29:46

Sounds like 4 an hour roughly per child, but it is after school care and meals included, the 6 weeks paid holidays is the killer, but you have signed the contact, and agreed to it up to now, so not much you can do but shop around,

apotomak Sat 08-Mar-14 12:29:47

It works out just short of £8.50/h for both children (if my maths right).
38 weeks of school x 15 hours = 570
14 weeks of holidays x 30 hours = 420
420+570= 990
990/12 moths= 82.50
700 what you pay her each moth/ 82.50= £8.48 per hour
That's less than 4.25/h per child. That's very cheap in my area.
Childminder can put what she likes in her contract. She wanted 6 weeks of paid holidays you agreed. What's more to say?

Floggingmolly Sat 08-Mar-14 12:31:28

What made you query this now, having agreed to it for 10 years?

BertieBotts Sat 08-Mar-14 12:32:44

If apotomak's maths is right then I'd say yes it sounds reasonable. I used to pay by the hour and it was £4 per hour for one child, I was told on here that's very cheap. It included meals and outings as well smile

TheScience Sat 08-Mar-14 12:35:17

£4-£5 per hour per child is average where I am.

6 weeks holiday on full pay is a lot, but if she was upfront about her charges and you agreed to it then fair enough. I think we used to have 5 weeks holiday each on half rates.

Quinteszilla Sat 08-Mar-14 12:37:54

3 days per week 2 1/2 hours is not 15 hours, thats just 7 1/2.

Your CM is not really available much over the school holidays, as she has her own holiday, so if she has yours four weeks over the holidays, for 30 hours per week, this is 120 hours

120 plus 11 x(4x 7.5) is roughly 330 which equals 450 hours per year.

You pay 12x700 for the year, 8400, which works out at £18 per hour, when you divide 8400 by 450. Can that be right???

EvansOvalPiesYumYum Sat 08-Mar-14 12:39:04

£4-£5 ph sounds reasonable to me. Cleaners get paid more

TheScience Sat 08-Mar-14 12:46:57

I think the school term is 39 weeks, and holidays are 13 weeks.

In total that looks like 682.5 hours a year (ignoring that her holiday is all in the 30 hour weeks for a minute) - so about £12 an hour/£6 per child. That's probably quite normal for London?

If you take out the holiday hours that you aren't getting (6x30) it's 502.5 hours of actual care a year - so about £16.70 an hour/£8.35 a child which does seem steep.

For £12 an hour I'd have thought you could get a part time nanny?

Rombo Sat 08-Mar-14 12:48:48

I pay £360 a month for 2 children for 3 days after school and 3 full days in holidays except for 2 weeks holiday a year which i don't pay for.
That includes a cooked meal aswell, so yes I think you are paying a lot, and it's also very cheeky charging for time when she's not available to have them.

OutragedFromLeeds Sat 08-Mar-14 13:09:44

If apotomak's maths is right, which I think it is confused, then it's very reasonable if it weren't for the six weeks of paid holiday. Not being able to use her for 6 of the 13/14 weeks that you need longer hours bumps up what you're actually paying per hour. What do you do the 6 weeks she's unavailable? I'd maybe renegotiate a term-time only contract and use holiday clubs/a holiday nanny.

This all depends on what area you're in though, if it's London that's cheap. If it's somewhere where other childminders charge £3 an hour, it's expensive!

TheScience Sat 08-Mar-14 13:14:09

apotomak is basing it on the OP stating "15 hours a week" - however the hours she actually states are 2.5 x 3 days, so 7.5 hours a week. That's the difference between £4.25 an hour and £6 an hour I think.

OutragedFromLeeds Sat 08-Mar-14 13:19:20

but she's dividing it by 2, which is correct?

15 hours a week is the total number of hours used i.e.7.5 hours x 2 children?

So the total hourly rate is £8.48 per hour, but then you need to divide that by 2 children, which is £4.24 per child.

TheScience Sat 08-Mar-14 13:20:24

So is the school holiday hours 15 per child or 30 per child confused

insancerre Sat 08-Mar-14 13:23:06

so you wait 10 years to question this?
why?

OutragedFromLeeds Sat 08-Mar-14 13:23:10

I'm assuming (and so is apoto in her maths) that it in the holidays it doubles to 15 hours per child, or 30 hours in total, but we'd need the OP to confirm that.

GarthsUncle Sat 08-Mar-14 13:23:44

A contract with six weeks paid holiday which was all taken at the "most expensive" part of the contract wouldn't work for me, since I'd either have to take the same holiday or pay for childcare twice by using holiday clubs. She's not overcharging you if it works for you but if the contract terms no longer suit, look for an alternative.

OutragedFromLeeds Sat 08-Mar-14 13:25:17

Maybe the youngest child has only just started school? Or the childminder has only just started taking her holidays in school time? Or the childminder has just put her fees up? Or the OP has just had more important things to worry about?

Viviennemary Sat 08-Mar-14 13:26:26

It does seem a lot of money. But she is providing an evening meal and care in the holidays. Childminders in my area don't usually do this. The trouble is childminders can more or less charge what they like.

ThatBloodyWoman Sat 08-Mar-14 13:28:17

I was paying nearly that 5 years ago with no meals.

HappyMummyOfOne Sat 08-Mar-14 13:29:26

Self employed people usually build into their rates to cover for holidays, sickness etc. Theres no way I would pay somebody for six weeks for no work in return, lack of paid holidays is one of the down sides to self employment.

It sounds very expensive but depends on the area. Our after school club charges £6.50 for three hours after school care with a sandwich, juice and fruit.

IDontDoIroning Sat 08-Mar-14 13:49:17

15x39 (basic hours) =585
13 less 6 =(available school holidays) 7 x30 =210
6 weeks holiday at 15 (her holiday at basic hours) = 90
885 hours per year
700x12= 8400
8400/885 = £9.49 per hour (for 2 children)

Quinteszilla Sat 08-Mar-14 13:51:14

It is not 15 hours, it is 7.5. The children are there 3 times per week, for 2.5 hours

IDontDoIroning Sat 08-Mar-14 13:53:35

2.5x3x2= 15

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