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Cost of childcare for a preschool child vs. staying at home with a child.

Posted by on Dec. 6, 2012 at 1:34 PM
  • 28 Replies

Dear moms,

Just wondering - do most of moms who go back to work within 6 months after having a baby have some kind of "discounted" arrangemens for childcare (like relatives or friends, doing it for free or very much below market rate).  I live in NYC and the cost of childcare here is from $2000 a month and up after tax!  You have to have a salary of at least 100K to make it worthwile to go back to work.

by on Dec. 6, 2012 at 1:34 PM
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by Melissa on Dec. 6, 2012 at 2:12 PM

My sil did daycare for a while for us and charged us $150/week plus we provided everything ds needed including food and milk even after he started eating what we did. Now my mil does daycare and she only asks that we put at least $200/month into ds' savings account. The past 2 weeks my mil has been with fil while he finishes his radiation so ds has been at a sitter's and she charged us 175/week which included breakfast, lunch, a snack and drinks.

It was tough when my sil was watching ds since we were already struggling a little bit. Paying the sitter the past couple weeks hasn't been bad since dh got a better paying job. I also think the benefits ds (who is 2) is getting from the sitter's 3 kids is also worth the money since he seems to be trying to talk more and seems more interested in potty training.

by Bronze Member on Dec. 6, 2012 at 2:16 PM

I didn't, unless you count the 10% sibling discount I got on my oldest child for enrolling a second child in the same daycare. I had been working for over 5 years in my career and already earned a pretty good salary before having my first. It would have cost us much more financially for me to stay home, especially since I earned more than my husband until a few years ago. My field would be very difficult to reenter if I had stayed at home for several years; it's also unlikely I would be earning what I do today if I had taken years off.

by Group Admin on Dec. 6, 2012 at 2:29 PM

I pay $885 per month right now.  Before she was 18 months, it was $1080.  In January, it will be $664.  This is for a center, with qualified, certified teachers.  They require childhood education classes before becoming an employee.  This is not discounted, but is average for my area.  Between DH and I, we earn about $100,000 per year.

by on Dec. 6, 2012 at 2:33 PM

Try looking for Home Daycares. They are usually much more reasonable. You can probably even get a nanny to share with another baby for that amount!

by Gold Member on Dec. 6, 2012 at 2:40 PM

We live in a small town so things like that are typically cheaper. During summer at a daycare center I pay $122.50/week. For after school care until I get there after work, I pay $18/week. This is for about 8-10 hours/week. When DS was a baby, he had home daycare with a retired lady who loved him like grandma and she charged $75/week. We have no family within 200 miles so that was not an option for us.

by Platinum Member on Dec. 6, 2012 at 3:10 PM
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that price, as outageous as it sounds initally is probably about right. I live in kansas, where cost of living is less, but so are our salaries, haha, and infant daycare is now about 1500/month. I had an infant and toddler in daycare and let me tell you, it was a HUGE sacrifice, so no discounts here. We were so childcare poor, way more than our mortgage.

It's a tough decision, I know because it is so outrageously expensive.and I do get frustrated when I think that we cannot find a solution for cheaper daycare for our society for hard-working dedicated moms. But it is what it is.....

I think it really depends on what kind of job you have. But other things professional moms have to consider:

1) if a WOHM quit her job and pulls herself out of the workforce (or DH) does, she saves herself  $22,000/yr but long-term could she get hired back in that role, did she miss promotions, tenure, would she be losing even more money over the long 10 year outlook. Daycare does end eventually, but the cost of raising a child goes on and on, so moms really have to look at the 20 year picture.

2) many WOHM lease or buy expensive vehicles, homes, vacations, cell phones....which are all less important than our child's safety and care. So you have to weigh your priorities.

3) In world where, vocational jobs are shrinking, farmland is going away and the new "high-school" degree is really a now a "college" degree, some WOHM feel that teaching their children academics from a very young age in a high quality daycare is worth a high cost.

4) Some WOHM (although acknowledge no care is free of danger) prefer a daycare center over nannies, one relative, etc. as there are more eyes (other parents, prospective customers, accrediting agencies) making drop in visits, utlimately feel their infant who has no voice is safe.

by Member on Dec. 6, 2012 at 3:14 PM

Is this rate for a private nanny?  I have heard that day care centers are much cheaper.  Even when I had a nanny I did not pay that much.  I paid about $1600 a month for 2 kids, one of which was in school half a day.  Good luck.  It was not cheaper for me to stay at home.  Oh, I only used the nanny 3 days a week when I worked.  She was also a full time student, so it worked great for the both of us.  

by New Member on Dec. 6, 2012 at 3:29 PM

Yes, this is the rate for a private nanny (about 11 -12 hours a day, 5 days a week) and for day care centers located near us (priced the same). 

by Ashley on Dec. 6, 2012 at 3:46 PM

We are in Colorado. For daycare, if you want an in-home daycare, expect to spend from 400-1k per month for cost per kid. If you want a facility daycare, full time starts at 1k per month and goes from there. We actually are not that far off from NY costs based on a 2011 comparison by states (page 16 and 36 on the link below). I make 74k a year right now, going up to 80k next year. I am the only one with an income in the house (DH is working a home business). We pay $630/month for 4 days a week 1 kid at an in-home center. 

For me, it wasn't about the money right now, but the opportunity in the future. I work as an engineer, and I need to stay current and relevant in my field. If I were to quit for, say, 5 years and try to go back, I would go back at a much lower salary and it would be more of a struggle to get back in the door. We all have our separate reasons for working, and its not all about how much money you are making or saving. DS is almost 3 and I love that he has a life and stories of his own. The DCP does an art project with him everyday, something DH and I are not good at. DH and I are very logical, so we looked for someone to give him balance in that aspect. And like I said, taking time off would have been severely detrimental to my career path. DH works from home and pulls in no income right now, and we still make the monetary sacrifice to send our DS to daycare for his own enrichment and to make sure we have our family on the right path.

by Member on Dec. 6, 2012 at 3:47 PM

 luckily i had my mom watch my kids when i had to go back to work, if i didnt have her, i dont know what i would have done. chid care is ridiculously expensive. luckily my kids are now in school.

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