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how much scope is there for negotiation on fees?

(18 Posts)
CatIsSleepy Fri 15-Jul-11 18:13:13

i need a childminder in september for my 2 dds, dd1 needs to be collected from school and there are very few available CMs who can pick up from her school.
But i met up with one today who is almost ready to start, she seems nice, but she wants to charge what seems like an excessive amount for dd1's after school care...in fact the same as she would charge for a full day's care in the holidays. I didn't think this was the norm, her logic was that dd1 would be blocking a full-time place for someone else. That doesn't seem right to me but our options are VERY limited (just found out dd1 hasn't got a place in the after-school club)...so do i just take the pain and pay up or is there some scope for trying to negotiate?? am looking at paying out £200 a month more than for my previous CM (who was already more expensive than the one I had before her!)

CatIsSleepy Fri 15-Jul-11 18:16:46

and how to approach any negotiation?

CatIsSleepy Fri 15-Jul-11 18:24:17

bumping as I am STRESSED

Dozer Fri 15-Jul-11 18:34:07

What's the wider provision of after school care in your area, other CM's, nannies? Have you tried other avenues? If options are limited, you may need to put up with it unless you're prepared to walk away.

If you are charged on the basis you outlined, eg not poss for CM to fill that space, then she fills the daytime space, still not sure if much you could do.

No knowledge here at all, just uninformed ideas!

SarkySpanner Fri 15-Jul-11 18:45:52

V unusual IME to charge like this.
For nursery age kids it is usual to charge if they go to preschool etc. But not for school age children.

I would offer to pay her usual hourly (rounded up to a sensible minimum if the slot is short) for the hours you actually need and she what she says. And I can't see how she is taking a ft slot if she is of school age.

bellybuttons Fri 15-Jul-11 19:29:25

At a guess I would say the child is 4 and starting reception so the childminder is counting her in her 'under 5' category but should be treating her as a 'rising 5' which comes into the over 5 category if in full time education (ie 10 sessions - 5 full days).
Mention this to the CM and see what she says. She can of course charge what she likes but I don't think she understands fully.
I might be wrong and she is just charging the earth!

CatIsSleepy Fri 15-Jul-11 19:48:40

'I can't see how she is taking a ft slot if she is of school age.'
exactly Sarky, it doesn't make sense

bellybuttons, dd1 is going into yr 1 next year, she is well over 5!

dozer, there's not much childcare round here. I already went through this 3 months ago, had little luck finding a CM who could collect from dd1's school (had a choice of one who had a non smoke-free house but decided against this one), so had to opt for one who i knew wouldn't be able to collect dd1 as of September. I was hoping for an afterschool club place for dd1 but obviously that hasn't come up and is unlikely to for a while. can't afford a nanny.

is the consensus that it is not normal to charge like this?

SarkySpanner Fri 15-Jul-11 19:54:50

Definitely not normal to charge like this.

Does she have other after school kids?

nbee84 Fri 15-Jul-11 19:58:14

Maybe she's talking about 'taking up a space' as she doesn't have room in her car to have any more children?

I wouldn't have thought that anyone would be happy to pay for a full day when their child is at school full time.

BerylOfLaughs Fri 15-Jul-11 20:27:54

I charge an hourly rate regardless. However, for a child under 5 (eg 4yr old reception starter) it would be taking up an under-5 slot.

Ultimately, a childminder sets her own price and generally only charges what she can get. You can try to negotiate but be prepared to go elsewhere.

CatIsSleepy Fri 15-Jul-11 20:29:12

Sarky, she hasn't actually started minding yet. She is still waiting for her CRB check I think.

nbee-well you may have a point about the car. i hadn't really looked at it that way. still seems a bit off though!

nbee84 Fri 15-Jul-11 20:37:24

Cat - definitely off - I can't see that anyone would pay for a full day. As she's new to minding it sounds like she doesn't quite know how things work and I think you do have a case for 'negotiating' with her and pointing out that this is not how cm's normally charge for children that are at full time school.

Beryl - if the 4 year old is attending 10 sessions of school a week then they do not need to be counted in your under 5 ratio's.

I've read this before but forgotten - what happens to the ratio's in school holidays when you care for a 4 year old that is at school normally?

BerylOfLaughs Fri 15-Jul-11 20:38:50

nbee - that was my problem when minding for rising 5s, it was fine in term time but in holidays they do count in your under 5s.

KatyMac Fri 15-Jul-11 21:05:31

They don't tho' once they have started attending school F/T they count as a rising 5 forever after

Umm I'll try & find the OFSTED thingie

Tweetinat Fri 15-Jul-11 22:34:03

Cat - nothing helpful to add I'm afraid but I'm wondering If I know the CM... Are you based in S Cambs ish area??!

moogster1a Sat 16-Jul-11 08:36:53

they don't count as under 5 in the holidays. Once they're rising 5, they are in that category all the time.
I think she's taking the p***. Nobody I know would charge a full time place for after school.
just to give you an idea, I charge £10 a day from 3:30 - 6:30 including dinner. ( Lancashire way)

Dozer Sat 16-Jul-11 09:22:04

It's definitely cheeky!

CatIsSleepy Sat 16-Jul-11 12:26:47

tweetinat, no, am in SE London

moogster, she wants to charge £25. which is pretty good for a full day ( it would be rather more for dd2, but she is only 2) but ridiculous for 2-2.5 hours after school

grrr
am going to text her today i think

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