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when to start looking at nurseries?

(18 Posts)
artisanroast Thu 14-Jan-16 17:20:34


My daughter is 4 months old. I have taken a full year of maternity leave. When should I start looking at nurseries to send my daughter to?

I had thought about 6 months but is that maybe too early?

I work 4 days. My husband is self-employed so he will take her one day, so I am looking for her to be at nursery 3 days.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.


StitchesInTime Thu 14-Jan-16 17:31:43

Depending on where you live, nurseries can get booked up well in advance.

I'd start looking around now, get a feel for how busy things are near you, how much you like your local nurseries etc. There's certainly no need to wait until 6 months before looking. I would expect most nurseries to let you reserve a place now for your DD to start when she's 12 months or so, provided that they're not already booked up. I filled in the forms for DS2 to go to DS1's nursery before DS2 was a month old to be sure they'd have a place open for DS2 when my maternity leave finished.

Micah Thu 14-Jan-16 17:36:15

In my area it's roughly around 20 weeks pregnant.

I waited till after my 20 week scan, and only just got a place because an existing nursery opened a baby room.

I'd start looking, visiting, and asking questions about availability and waiting lists now.

kaymondo Thu 14-Jan-16 18:14:33

Depends on area but I did my nursery visits whilst I was still pregnant with my first - i wouldn't have got a place otherwise!

I'd do it sooner rather than later if I were you. It can't hurt and once it's sorted you can relax and know childcare is taken care of.

OddBoots Thu 14-Jan-16 18:17:30

It is unlikely any nursery would tell you that you are too early now and even if they do that would be better than ;leaving it too late. I'd look now.

Dinosaursdontgrowontrees Thu 14-Jan-16 18:17:35

In this area you look as soon as your pregnant if you want a baby room place. When I worked in a nursery women would phone up the day after they got the bfp! Madness!

Nosnowjustrain Thu 14-Jan-16 18:19:37

After 20wk scan to start at around 9mnths old.The good nurseries fill up very quickly around here.

tangerinesarenottheonlyfruit Thu 14-Jan-16 18:24:03

Have you considered childminders? We've had some great CMs who have worked in partnership with other CMs to effectively run micro nurseries. Childminding is much more of a proper profession these days, check out the OFSTED reports on CMs in your area to find the good ones.

Just a thought to widen your options maybe.

Inneedofadvice553 Thu 14-Jan-16 18:24:04

3year waiting list for some round here...i was gutted not to get any of my preferences despite thinking I was ahead of the game when my ds was 9 weeks old

WelshWereRabbit Thu 14-Jan-16 18:28:31

Registered both of mine before they were born - no.1 after 20 week scan because sonographer asked whether we had chosen nursery yet, and no.2 after 12 week scan as waiting list was even longer by then (18 months)!

IpsyUpsyDaisyDo Thu 14-Jan-16 18:29:51

DD was 3m when we started looking for a full-time place to start when she was 9m. We're west London and had quite a choice, although places were getting snapped up quickly, I'm glad we didn't leave it any later. It was a weight off my mind to get it all organised well in advance of going back to work.

AmandaTanen Thu 14-Jan-16 19:12:10

I was 24 weeks pregnant when I booked the space at nursery. I knew what one I wanted as my older DD attended another branch.

CMOTDibbler Thu 14-Jan-16 19:17:08

I needed a FT baby space so looked and booked when I was 16 weeks pg - and actually wanting FT worked in our advantage as the waiting list was longer for PT places.

tangerinesarenottheonlyfruit Thu 14-Jan-16 19:24:25

artisanroast don't let this thread freak you out too much! If you are somewhere like London then you do need to get your name down way in advance. But even then if you're happy to consider child minders you still have time to find one you like.

If you're elsewhere it could well be fine. We live in a medium sized town and the pressure on places isn't anything like it is in London.

tangerinesarenottheonlyfruit Thu 14-Jan-16 19:25:08

... and presumably other big cities not just London!

artisanroast Thu 14-Jan-16 20:18:44

oh crikey!!!

Hahaha!!! I am in the west end of Glasgow so I think things will book up quite quickly so my nursery search is starting tonight...

thanks ladies smile

tangerinesarenottheonlyfruit Thu 14-Jan-16 20:45:35

Good luck! smile

AmandaTanen Fri 15-Jan-16 07:41:31

The Care Inspectorate website lists all of the nursery inspection reports.

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