View Full Version : what's the standard deposit to hold a place in daycare?
02-04-2004, 02:07 PM
We found a daycare we LOVE, even though we were expecting to use a nanny share--it's a montessori-style school with an infant program. We're very excited. We need a spot for May, which they have. My question is, they are asking for one month's tuition (applicable to the last month, like a security dep for an apartment) plus an additional month's tuition to hold the spot for May. That additional month is not refundable, it's to keep them from giving away the spot before May. Is this usual practice? I trust the director and everything, I just think it's an awfully big chunk of change. Any experience w/ this? TIA.
02-04-2004, 02:11 PM
No experience here, but is it the Ancona school? Just curious...
Since it's only February now, that seems like it's reasonable to me. Many of the centers I've looked at in my area (San Franicsco/Silicon Valley) would not hold a space for that long for the price of a month's tuition. You'd have to start paying for the spot even if your kid didn't need it because the openings are first come, first served.
02-04-2004, 05:09 PM
No, I don't know anything about the Ancona school as I only looked at places in our neighborhood, since we're selling our second car. It's Brilliant Beginnings Children's House in Kenwood.
02-04-2004, 07:16 PM
Ancona is in Hyde Park, so that's why I was wondering. Don't know anything about the one you picked...
02-04-2004, 08:35 PM
I know you asked for a daycare deposit, but we've been looking for a preschool for DD and are getting ready to put down a deposit for a preschool spot in September.
FWIW, we are grudgingly coughing up $500 per month for a Montessori preschool that we love and that is part of the reason that we are waiting until September to start. I had expected to put down the enrollment fee ($300)and *perhaps* one month's tuition. Instead, I just got off the phone with the Admissions Director and she will be holding our spot until September for $150!
Back on topic. Could you ask the director to hold one month's tuition as non-refundable to hold your space and then when tuition is due for May, add the *last month's* tuition so that you are up to date? I would feel very uncomfortable if DD's preschool was demanding $1000 non-refundable to hold her spot. Just my two cents...
mom 2 Katie 12/02/00
& Jack 04/16/02
02-06-2004, 12:22 AM
That sounds very reasonable. To hold a spot at DD's school, we had to pay the $150 annual registration fee that was not applied to anything and one month's tuition ($1000). I don't believe any of this was refundable.
There is one thing that makes no sense to me though, and that is that the registration fee is an annual thing so I have to pay the $150 every July. That seems lame as they should incent me to stay by not making me pay the fee. Oh well, I still think highly of the school. It just received a 5-star rating from the State - the highest rating a school can receive.
02-06-2004, 12:55 AM
I don't know about a fee for holding a spot...but we had to put down two weeks of tuition as a "security deposit" at the time of enrollment. It gets applied to our final month of tuition (our center requires one month notice to leave and tuition is billed monthly.) We also paid a $100 registration fee upon enrollment and have to pay the same fee each September. However, they are holding dd's spot until I return to work in March and have not asked for us to put down any additional money to do so. We do have a very close relationship with our center and I do not believe the toddler room is full right now, so those could also be factors in why we were not asked to put down any additional money.
I think a month's tuition would be a reasonable fee to hold a spot in a great center that may not have an opening later, but it sounds like they are asking you to put two months down. That seems a bit steep to me. I would think the one month deposit, as it is non-refundable (knowing what infant care costs in our area), would be enough to tie anyone down to a spot. I would probably call a few other centers in the area to see what their practices are regarding this issue. It may very well be common practice in your area.
02-06-2004, 01:32 AM
We only had to pay the registration fee of $50 to hold dd's spot. We registered in March and she started dc in August.
we had two daycares.
first one had a $50 nonrefundable fee to hold the spot plus pay 2 weeks tuition as a deposit which you could use for your last 2 weeks in the program.
second had a $25 fee for being on their waitlist. when our name came up, we didn't have to pay anything right away (they gave us two weeks to start so we could give notice at our other spot) but i don't think they would have held the spot for us since the waitlist was so long.
PREGNANT! EDD 6/9/03
mama to Jack 6/6/03
02-06-2004, 03:49 PM
The three day cares we left deposits at all had different requirements. One of them required $100 non-refundable deposit, payable towards tuition when the spot opened up. Number two required us to write a check for the first month's tuition, but they didn't cash it until the spot opened up. Number three required a non-refundable $50 wait list fee. We signed up in December, DD started in August. FWIW, the two that had non-refundable deposits were corporate owned, fully licensed. The other one was just a day care center that a mom had started up, and it had grown into a big center---she opened up a second center a few years ago.
mommy to Kiki 4/18/03
02-06-2004, 05:53 PM
My first daycare had a $60.00 non-refundable deposit to hold a spot. Her current dc is university run had only 5.00 deposit, BUT won't hold a spot. If you want a March slot and the spot opens in Feb. you had better snag it! Then you have to pay the entire tuition for Feb. too. Otherwise you may have to wait until Aug or Dec. to get a spot.
Karin and Katie 10/24/02
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