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Retainer

(4 Posts)
SquishyCinnamonSwirls Mon 05-Sep-11 18:02:00

Bit of advice needed please.
Have a new family coming to interview next week with a view to placing their dc with me in February. I have been considering how to go about charging a retainer as it's so far in advance and will be using up my baby place which actually becomes available at the beginning of January.
I am thinking of suggesting a months fees in advance to hold the place, however once the contract begins, this will then be used as the first month's fees. So if all is well and they decide to use me they'll be paying now for Feb's invoice, and then not pay again until the beginning of March.

Does this sound reasonable? I don't want to say I'll hold the place, it gets to xmas, they change their mind and then I'm left with an empty baby place and no-one to fill it. Any other solutions or experience gratefully received. Thanks.

squinker45 Mon 05-Sep-11 18:41:29

I charge a months fee as a deposit, which is used at the end of the contract going towards the last invoice. A bit like how you might pay for a rented property - so they are paying in arrears as the placement goes along but you have that months fee to fall back on if they do a runner or don't want to pay their 4 weeks notice. Or of course, if they don't take up the space and you aren't charging a non-refundable deposit then you can keep it.

However if they are holding a space open but not using it you can charge a non-refundable retainer, up to 100% of the actual cost of the child coming to you. I charge 50%, but if it's a really long time until they take up the space it can be as low as 20%

gardenpixies32 Mon 05-Sep-11 19:17:12

I was in a similar situation. A parent booked a place with me in March to start beginning September. I charged her 400 as a retainer, non refundable of course. Unfortunately for the parent, she decided not to use the space in the end.

I would definitely charge a retainer/deposit

SquishyCinnamonSwirls Tue 06-Sep-11 18:16:11

Thanks, I'll definitely charge something but was just wondering if 100% of a full month's fees was reasonable. Don't want to scare them off as the sessions they require fit in well with current commitments.

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