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***Help new cm @ contract signing stage***

(12 Posts)
MummyCee Fri 09-Jan-09 00:32:21

About to put pen to paper, however parents wish to pay in arrears and with no deposit!!!
Am I being a mug??(yes) and should I demand the money up front???(yes)...Or do some minders work the month "then" get paid????

Also want to charge for bank holidays not for my 2 wk hols, is that reasonable or the "norm" in the world of CM's???

Fellow CM's please shine some light hmm

KatyMac Fri 09-Jan-09 06:17:12

"norm" is what ever you want it to be

Ask your local minder what they do

BUT I would not accept arrears - what is to stop them doing a runner (yes I know they seem perfectly nice & honest, but I have lost thousands to perfectly nice & honest seeming people)

There should be a bit in your NCMA handbook/contract about them advising pay upfront

I always describe it as a payment for a service (like a gym membership) rather than for a purchase (like getting the car repaired)

Holidays are a controversial I'm not going there - have a look in the archives

Picante Fri 09-Jan-09 06:54:30

No way don't do it. In advance only, with deposit.

purepurple Fri 09-Jan-09 07:03:50

take a deposit, that will cover you if they become non-payers and charge them in advance, weekly is best so they can't run up a huge bill.

malovitt Fri 09-Jan-09 07:17:55

I am paid monthly in arrears, as I like to think that the money is already earned when I get it!

I've had no problems receiving payments so far.

NumberFour Fri 09-Jan-09 07:18:50

I agree: charge in advance. If weekly, do not let them run into arrears angry. I need to issue small claims court summons for a few hundred pounds angry.

Start as you mean to go on! If you start off being overly kind, you will find it very hard to claw your way back to being business like. I wish I had done so in the first place.

ayla99 Fri 09-Jan-09 10:06:50

Its your service - you have to do what works for you. If accepting the possibility of a future loss of fees means you have a client and not an unfilled vacancy? If not taking a deposit makes your service more accessible and desirable to parents than your competitors? Then maybe the chance is worth taking for you.

I used to take payment in arrears, it works well in most cases parents pay promptly. But I've learned the hard way that it only takes one parent's mistake (forgetting their chequebook, forgetting to stop at cashpoint, even forgetting its payday) to make you miss your mortgage payment deadline, prevent you from being able to fuel your car or replenish your fridge. I'd like to trust everybody, but I can't afford to.

So now I get all payments in advance plus a deposit up front, which I keep until the last day of childcare. So the next time someone tells me they've lost their job that afternoon, I won't have to decide whether to waive the notice period fees or ask them to beg, borrow or steal to pay me as I will already have it.

Also consider if there are any disagreements regarding late fees, payments during absence or how you've calculated the bill etc - its much easier not to pay back what they've already paid you than it is to extract the payment you're entitled to.

Do preschools or nurseries accept payment in arrears with no deposit? Personally, I think it best to have a system that does everything it can to help parents avoid falling into arrears. Accepting payments in arrears is one big step in the wrong direction IMO.

michellethegooner Fri 09-Jan-09 11:47:11

Just a note on this, I am sure if you use NCMA contracts they advice you to take payment in advance. also be aware that if you accept payment in arrears and parents don't pay you still have to work your notice so potentially you could b working a month in arrears and then your own 4 wks notice period for nothing!!!! I would never accept payment on arrears again, was caught short few years ago lost £1000 in total, I would speak to NCMA if you are unsure.

Just a point explain to them that with payment you have to purchase food etc that their child will be using and supermarket doesn't take payment in arrears.

Start as you mean to go on

MummyCee Fri 09-Jan-09 12:08:38

Thanks peeps...

My gut feeling was not to allow this nice and easy, flexi approach start from the get go.

I felt I was'nt able to ask 4 money up front??? (credit crunch and all that jazz) So thought I'd be a little relaxed, but after sleeping on it I feel different?

Also have had to pay for goods, toys, first aid kit, general start up costs etc.

So feel money up front would be more appropriate.

Have'nt signed yet only discussed.....

HSMM Fri 09-Jan-09 13:19:02

I always get a deposit (people often don't turn up on the first day) and I am always paid in advance. If you are paid in arrears and they are 2 weeks late with their payment, then ... Also - on the Bank Holidays - I don't charge for them, because I am not prepared to work them. Parents pay for my availability. Are you prepared to work Bank Holidays? If you are, then definitely charge. Everyone is different. Some charge Bank Holidays and their own holidays, because that's what people get in 'proper' jobs.

moshie Fri 09-Jan-09 13:26:04

I charge full for bank holidays but nothing for my holidays ( 4 weeks ).

I calculate a monthly payment by charging for 48 weeks then dividing the total by 12 to keep my income the same throughout the year.

moshie Fri 09-Jan-09 13:26:53

Oh, and always get paid in advance!

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