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Saved 4/15/08 to The Mommy Club

Daycare Costs/Question


Ok, I need some advice and from what I've been reading from this group, you guys seem like awesome people and give great advice!

My son is 5.5 months old (almost, lol). Anyways - my son's father and I are not together and we are in the process of court hearings to establish custody/visitation/support. The court appointed an attorney to my son to testify on my son's best interests. My son's father and I have both had a meeting with the attorney and she does not like my current daycare situation.

Right now - Mon & Fri my son goes to my best friends house (I pay her $50/week). Tues & Wed my son is with my mom (who works full time but schedules her days off on these days to help me out and spend time with her grandson) and Thurs my son goes to my grandfather's house and his wife watches him. I know that's a lot of different places for a lil' one to be going to, but I can't afford anything else at the moment.

However, since the attorney for my son does not like this schedule, I'm trying to work something out in order to get the situation fixed before our court date. I've found a daycare that is really close to my office and it's in a church. They have really great references and they are talking about starting a program where they watch children 3 days a week instead of 5 (so I can keep letting my son stay with my mom two days). Right now, their five day a week program is $200 a week. So I'm thinking their 3 day a week program will most likely be around $150/week.

Is that high for daycare? I feel really comfortable knowing my son will be in care at a church.

I will not be able to afford this alone. Until support is established, I'm going to have to rely on my family to help me - I can't apply for benefits, I make too much money.

Anyways, sorry this is long, I just don't know if that's really high for daycare. I've tried to call other centers to get an idea of how much they charge and they are like "you have to come in and we can talk to you..." Well, I work and don't have a lot of time to take off so it's not like I can drop everything and just go in to see how much they charge, you know?

By the way - I'm in a "higher cost of living" area. I live pretty close to Washington DC. (I'm sure that makes a difference in child care costs.)

Thanks! :)

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stina829 stina829 6 years 21 weeks
Oh, it's not my ex's attorney who is unhappy, it's the guardian ad litem that was appointed by the court to my son. Basically, it's the attorney that will be testifying to the court on my son's behalf. And the support that is going to be established is going to include the daycare and medical expenses as well... But my ex has made it pretty clear that he's not paying a dime for anything until he's ordered to do so by the court.
Roarman Roarman 6 years 21 weeks
My son goes five full days and is 10 months old and it costs me $225 per week. And since it is your ex's attorney who is unhappy with the situation, I assume he has offered a solution that has his client footing a portion of the bill? Just wondering, not trying to be nosy. I don't know how it is in Washington DC, but here the custodial parent gets child support and daycare, medical costs get calculated into that final figure.
stina829 stina829 6 years 21 weeks
Thanks for the link sofi, I'm going to check it out in just a few minutes! JennyJen, I thought it would be good for him to be in a different environment around new people too, make him more of a well-rounded type of child... But when I said that to his attorney/guardian ad litem, she looked at me like I was nuts, lol *sigh* I'll do whatever they ask of me though since she is involved with the court system. :)
JennyJen2 JennyJen2 6 years 22 weeks
I hear you about the running from place to place being stressful, but keep in mind that the separation anxiety - doesn't always happen. Our Daughter never experienced it - or at least I don't think she did (she never cries even now when someone leaves) and we have her in a varied environment on almost a daily basis. I think that she is reaping the benifits of hanging out with new people all of the time.
sofi sofi 6 years 22 weeks
yeah, make sure they are licensed, certified, and ask about the history of their workers- experience/education in child care/ child behavior. There is contact information on the website I gave you to check this out: childcarenet.org
hvanness331 hvanness331 6 years 22 weeks
That sounds like a very fair price. If you find another place to compare it with, ask if they supply the diapers, wipes, food, etc. Every place is different. You'll also want to know if they are licensed by the state, if so, they have to abide by special guidelines. It's also important to do little "drop ins" on them a few times before you commit. Hopefully you'll like what you see and are 100% comfortable leaving him there!
stina829 stina829 6 years 22 weeks
Sofi - They are having their meeting next Tuesday about the 3 day program, so I'll have the info by then... Hopefully with 3 days a week being an option for me! I don't have to go to court until the end of next month and our next meeting w/Johnny's attorney is in two weeks. So I think I'll have all the info by then. :) Oh, and I was thinking that was on the cheaper side for this area too - but some of my friends were like "OMG, that's soooooo expensive!" So I started wondering if it really was that expensive, lol JennyJen - the attorney just wants him to have a stable daycare environment, especially since he's getting close to the age where's he's most likely going to experience "separation anxiety". Honestly, it will help me out in the long run too, because right now I'm running around so much to these different places that it's kinda stressing me out, lol. And - right now - my son's father isn't really acting like the most responsible person (missing appointments w/Johnny's attorney, not showing up for his visitation w/Johnny) so I don't really like the idea of depending on him to find daycare. It was a good suggestion though! :) Thanks to all of you for your input, too! :)
JennyJen2 JennyJen2 6 years 22 weeks
That doesn't sound too outrageous. I think the price seems rather reasonable. As for your current situation - what does the attorney see wrong with your son being in care at the various places? We do something similiar - my husband has my daughter every morning and then the afternoons it is two days my mom, two days my mil and then one day me. It sounds like the custody thing is rough, but maybe you could work something out where your son's father is responsible for child care 1/2 the time and that might make the attorney happier too.
sofi sofi 6 years 22 weeks
wow- that seems pretty cheap for DC area. I am in DC and use a home daycare part-time (have used them for several years for both my children). My daughter is still there, 2 days a week and I pay about 150.00/week. It is about $8.50 an hour if I remember correctly. You seem to have found a good value if you are happy with what they provide. I would ask them what they think they will charge for 3 days instead of guessing or approximating- they probably have an idea. Do you know when they'll strart the three day program or will you have to pay for full time until it is established? You should have all the numbers for the lawyer in case you have to pay for full time until 3-day is established. Have you checked out DC resourses for more info: All about day cares in the area and referrals- childcarenet.org and dcurbanmom.com for forums you can ask others about what they pay in your area. Good luck!
Hootie Hootie 6 years 22 weeks
It sounds about right due to how young your baby is. Actually is sounds like a good price! I paid $400 a month for my son when he was 4 years old. That was 6 years ago. Daycare like everything else is going up! My son was at a Christian Daycare at a womans house. He loved it! Her yard was so huge and beautiful. She was a great teacher and friend to him! If you find a good one it's worth the money. He still talks about it with fond memories. :) Good Luck ♥
stormiedawn stormiedawn 6 years 22 weeks
I dont know about daycare costs in your area, but in my experience, thats pretty good. My son is 2 1/2 yrs and for 5 days it costs me $150. but when they are infants its alot higher. When my daughter was baby i was paying $235 a week for 4 days. If you feel comfortable w/ the situation then there shouldnt be a problem. Mommys instinct, its hard being a working mom and letting someone else care for yours baby.So if it feels right to you then it sounds like a perfect situation.