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Considering starting child care- ? about food costs

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
added question:
I'm wondering how much it costs to feed a child, both snacks and lunches. How much do you all figure on when you figure out your prices?

I'm considering doing some child care in my home for spending money. I'm wanting some opinions on my situation, and tips for getting started.

I'm thinking of doing something like 1 child (maybe 2), and advertising on CL as flexible. I know that most daycares require you to pay 5 days a week (or specific part time days) whether you will come or not. I'd like to be more flexible- anywhere from 2 to 5 days a week, and they don't have to be set in advance (so if, for example, a family member can babysit, they can just let me know the day before).

I'm hoping that this would draw in people who *won't* need me 5 days a week every week. I know from experience that I don't do that well with that sort of schedule, so a few days a week, even if it changes every week, would be great.

We have a fair sized living room that is pretty child proofed, and a nice fenced in back yard. Ds1 will be starting grade 1 next week, and ds2 is 14mos. We have a dog, but she's super laid back, and is generally outside of the baby gated area.

Also something I'm wondering- when you provide child care, how does it work when your own dc need to nurse or nap?
post #2 of 6
Thread Starter 
Well, I just did some numbers, and it would make very little sense for me to do full time child care for one child. If I could make $7500 a year, I'd lose over $5000: what we'd owe in additional taxes, what we'd lose in the child tax credit, what we'd have to pay for health care (which is income based), and we'd lose our free dental care for the kids. So...that's not going to happen.
If I watched more than one child it might make sense, but I think it would drive me crazy.

I could do after school care, or one day a week babysitting, and not lose much, so I'm going to put a CL ad up for that. That sounds like it would be easier on my head too.
post #3 of 6
Ok, So you just want to babysit every now and then? How do taxes work there? Here you can deduct a lot (rent, utilities, everything that touches the daycare kids....) I hardly reported any income at all.

That said, I hated HATED doing daycare. so much. I mean really hated it. And I had one girl J. two days a week and H. whenever they needed me..0 to 3 times a week. I loved H. her parents were laid back and really really appreciated me and always came prepared. I hated babysitting J. Her mom was picky, she was crabby, and I was "the help". I had a couple more kids every now and then. They ended up being our best friends so it was more playdate than job.

Anyhooo, what did I do when I needed to nurse my baby....That was the worst part. i could not always take care of everyone. It was especially bad with H. because she took the bottle well until she saw I had the goods then would scream her head off for hours because she thought I wasn't sharing. Smart kid. but it was a nightmare. every day that i did it.
post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
Yeah, I'm worried I'll hate it too. lol. I need a way to make a little extra money, and it seems like a good way I just put up an ad for afterschool care, which I think I won't mind.

I looked up the taxes- I didn't know there were that many deductions available! Here, though, you can only deduct expenses if you do child care full time. It seems bogus to me, but that's what the tax guide says. Doing it FT, though, the expenses would really help a lot!

I'm wondering how much it costs to feed a child, both snacks and lunches. How much do you all figure on when you figure out your prices?
post #5 of 6
Because your ds1 is going to school full time now. I'd totally try to find one or two kids that you can look after before school and after school. Since your up anyway and walk ds to school or are close enough to the school that he can walk on his own...it's the perfect opportunity to find some kids to accompany you. I'd ask around to see if anyone is looking for care for your specific school that your ds1 goes to.
Usually when you do before school care, it includes breakfast....just cereal or toast...not a hot breakfast. It would also include a after school snack I'd imagine. If they want to pay less then you can have them supply their own breakfast and snack.
The good thing about doing before and after school care is the age of kid is older and more likely to get along with your ds1, this also allows you to care for ds2 with no problems. You are also free to do things while school is in session. I'd also mention doing ProD Days for the family as sometimes it's hard to find a caregiver.
The lady in my complex pays $25 a day for a 7am drop off, and she picks her up at 5pm. Her daughter is 10. I'm not sure if this includes food or not.
post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Hey Dawn! Great minds think alike I'm doing after school care for a 4th grader a couple days a week. I guess it's hard to find after school care for my school district. I give him after school snacks, and he's pretty self sufficient other than that. It's not much money, but it's not much work either! He's a good natured, sweet kid, so it works well!
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