Working Mamas: Can we talk about daycare costs for a minute? — The Bump
March 2017 Moms

Working Mamas: Can we talk about daycare costs for a minute?

What are you lovely ladies paying for childcare?  I am in the process of telling my current sitter that we're expecting another, and I'm trying to come up with something that seems fair for her but doesn't force us to sustain life on Ramen Noodles.  I know this is hugely related to the type of care and where you live, but I can't help but feel curious!  Talk dollars to me.


Re: Working Mamas: Can we talk about daycare costs for a minute?

  • GoldenTMamaGoldenTMama member
    edited July 2016
    Thanks for starting this topic. I don't actually have any knowledge on dollar amounts since I will be a first time mom, but this is something I am very interested in learning more about. My DH and I both work and we hope to get some help from our parents, but we know we will need at least some outside help. 

    @hippiemama Do you and your SO both work full time? Is your current sitter full time? I'm curious about what other full time parents do. 

    Edit: words
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  • Baby room for us is $210 per week. Not the cheapest around, not the most expensive. I feel like we get a fair deal.

    And now I have a craving for Ramen...mmmm!

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  • I ended up not working with my first child and being a stay at home mom because the cost vs what I was making just didn't make sense. I didn't want to work just to pay for daycare when I could be spending that time with my child. That was 8 years ago. This time around I'm not sure if I will continue working. I work a full time job and run my own business. I think I will decide during my maternity leave if I will go back or focus on expanding my business where I will have more flexibility. 
  • I pay 80$ a day for 2 kids in an in-home daycare. It is totally dependent on location. 
  • I paid an in home sitter $190/week til DS was 2 1/2 then put him in a daycare for $175/week. I live in a small town in MI so I think our costs are lower than many areas

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  • I'm in Ontario, Canada, Not sure if you can possibly find something similar where you are but we have a government subsidy program. It goes based on your income, they pay a portion of childcare costs if your net household income is in a certain bracket, the higher the bracket the less they pay. When I applied for it I wasn't working as much so the cost I pay for daycare goes up yearly but I pay about 500$ a month whereas without subsidy it would be closer to 850-950 monthly.
  • We live in eastern WA where the cost of living is decent compared to the east side of the state where everything is expensive (i.e. Seattle). When my little guy was an infant, it was $975/month and now that he's a toddler, it's $670/month. My husband complained about how expensive that was until I told him what friend who lives in Fort Worth, TX pays for their 2 kids: $2500/month. Her and husband are both attorneys so they can afford that steep price, but once my husband heard that he shut his mouth with the quickness.

  • Haven't sent a kid to daycare yet (potential FTM here), but I have scoped out local options. Going rate in my area for an infant is around $170 per week. 

    Me: 27 - DH: 33

    Married: June 2011

    TTC #1: January 2016

    BFP #1: February 22nd 2016  MC w/ Misoprostol: March 21st 2016 -Blighted Ovum

    BFP #2: July 6th 2016  EDD: March 15th 2017

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  • @GoldenTMama  Yes we both work full-time outside of the home, and we’re both back in school as well.  How’s that for pushing one’s mental stability to the max?  Our sitter has LO from about 7AM until nearly 6PM.  I hate leaving her all day, but I do love my sitter.  She has been with her since I went back to work after her birth and I really can’t imagine trusting anyone else the way I trust her.  DD is in ballet (baby ballet, there is very limited forced coordination and lots of dancing around adorably in tutus) and goes to church daycare for socialization with larger groups.  This year, our sitter will likely take her to pre-school for a few hours a day a couple of days a week as well since she’s turning 3.

    We pay her $250 a week, as we have since she started there at 12 weeks old.

    After pricing things out, the daycares around us (in the burbs just outside of Chicago, not IN it thank god or we’d be paying twice what we do now) are looking for $378 for a three year old and an infant.  I'm more than happy to pay her that, but I'm curious what she's going to ask for.

  • DD goes to a home daycare near our house 3 days per week. It's $43 per day for her - but, infants are $53 a day. There is no way we will be able to continue doing this when a new baby arrives, nor do I want to put a new baby in daycare that many days. DD will be starting kindergarten in September of 2017, but she will be getting out of school before I can be home from work . I'm going to ask my work to let me go part-time, and work only 24 hours per week. Hopefully, we can figure something out for the days I do work.
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  • Care for an infant for me would have been 1300 per month (dc area). Thank goodness for my mom!!
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  • @hippiemama oh my gosh, you guys are super-parents, going to work and school and raising a little girl! Sorry to keep asking you more questions, but how did you find your sitter? A company or a referral from a friend/relative? 
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  • @yaeger07 is that the cost PER child?!?

  • @mcdonald-bailey ditto. I went back to work after my DD was born, but left 7 months later. When we filed our taxes that year, I realized I was working for pennies - we thought we would get tax exemptions for daycare/having a dependent etc, but with me working we were put in a higher tax bracket and all of my money was basically gone. 

    Agreed with PP, totally area dependent, ours was relatively cheap at about $800 a month for an infant (started at 6 weeks).
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  • @GoldenTMama Don't be fooled - we're holding on to our sanity with a death grip.

    We actually found our sitter through  We interviewed a ton of people and originally were only meeting with people who would provide care in our home, but I randomly came across my current sitter, decided on a whim to meet her and knew instantly that she was THE ONE.  She has four kids of her own and previously worked in a daycare so there was nothing she hadn't seen.  As a first time mom of a borderline colicky baby, she saved me from many a panic attacks.

  • I'm a FTM, but @yaeger07 this thread is making me want to cry too.  I'm in NYC and daycare costs in my neighborhood for a year-round program for an infant are 30k/year...and I'm having twins.  They have discounts for multiple kids, but it's a pretty slight discount...

    I have to assume it would be cheaper to pay a full time nanny, but I'm interested to hear how much more nannies typically charge for 2 kids vs. 1.  It can't be double...can it? 
  • @anonellis

    My wallet hurts for you, girlfriend.

  • Southern California, both places I've researched that my co-workers use are $1300 a month for one infant. Slightly better once we make it to toddlerhood. Ugh :( 
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    BFP in June 2016; EDD March 2017.
    Samuel born February 2017! 

  • I already know that my MIL is going to want to keep our baby...that's just not going to happen.

    Between the smoking and all of her health problems that make her unsteady (she recently fell and sprained her wrist and broke a couple of fingers...she's also fallen and broken her ankle) she is not going to be the caregiver...

    I believe there's a center right next to my office that gives discount to us...I just need to see if they're good and if I'll trust them...
    Me (37) Hubby (39) Married since 4.2009
    EP:  2.17.2016
    DS:  3.4.2017

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  • We live in NJ but I commute to NYC every day for work and bring DS with me. We're fortunate enough to have found a wonderful woman who does daycare out of her home. She's fully licensed and certified, bilingual, makes her own baby food, and does the most wonderful activities with him!

    The best part is that I pay hourly, and only for the time that he's actually there, unlike some daycare a that expect you to pay for full time whether the child is there or not. She's $7/hr, and DS is usually there four days a week. Depending on my work schedule and what time I pick him up in the afternoon we usually pay roughly between $600 and $650 per month.
  • @anonellis and @Scarlett830 I work and commute to NYC with DH every day (we actually work together). I am SO LOST about how to find daycare. There are waitlists and things from what I hear, and you can't really get a quote without going to the places. I really want to do NYC daycare because if there were a problem we would be nearby. Any tips on sites to look at/places to search? Also, Scarlett, the prices you are paying are great! I expected it to be MUCH more $$ that gives me hope!! 

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  • When my son was an infant, we used an in home daycare and paid $10 an hour. My husband is off Wednesday and Thursday and goes in to work late on Monday and Friday. We still paid about $1000 a month. I'm expecting to pay about the same for this little one. We need a sitter 20-25 hours a week. My older one is in preschool this year and we are paying $1600 a month. Luckily he will be going in to kindergarten when the little one will be starting daycare.
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  • meq124meq124 member
    Where I am it was upwards of 26k a year. I ended up staying home after she was in daycare for a few months for other reasons, but it's crazy.

    Another thing to consider is wait lists. One of my coworkers gave me the heads up to look early, and when I was 8 weeks pregnant (hadn't even had my first US yet) most daycares had a wait well over a year out. It was insane. We ended up putting a deposit on daycare before we had told any of our family about the baby. But I would definitely advise those is larger cities (*cough* greater Seattle area *cough*) to look early!! 
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  • @irishrose54 I unfortunately don't have any tips. My mom works for a public school and happens to know our sitter, so she recommended her to us. We didn't even interview or look into anyone else!
  • I'm in the SF Bay Area and I stopped working because childcare for DD was going to be about $1800 a month for infant care dropping slightly at 18 months. Plus with DH's travel schedule I would have had to pay someone to drive her to daycare a few days a month or take that time off. It just wasn't worth it. 

    Our sitter is is amazing I have her from 9-2 Friday's only and she is $20 an hour for one kid.

  • @Scarlett830 That is so awesome!!! I am sure we will find something but we also have to contend with the whole not knowing the person/place at all. Sigh. It will work out though,  I'm sure...

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  • I don't have any kids yet, but I've done a lot of research in preparation.  Here in the Portland area it ranges from like 800-1000/mo average.  Some of the more high end centers can range up to 1500/mo for full time infant care.  We've budgeted $1000/mo
    Married: 7/9/15
    Me: 37, DH: 36
    Started TTC #1: 9/2015
    Preliminary labs/testing @ 6 months: TSH, A1c, progesterone, prolactin, SA, HSG all normal
    BFP: 5/19/2016, M/C: 5/29/2016
    BFP: 6/22/2016  EDD 3//6/2017

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  • @hippiemama unfortunately, yes. it's horrible. DH and I started saving 6 months before we even started TTC.
    DD #1 April 2017
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  • @irishrose54 I've only taken a quick preliminary look, but I started by stalking my neighborhood blog and some neighborhood parents Facebook groups.  I live in a Brooklyn neighborhood filled with young kids so there are a lot of resources out there about daycare and stuff.  Depending on where your offices are, there might be similar websites for local parents? 
  • We paid a sitter to come to our house while i worked $300 a week was about 50 hours a week. We live in Hawaii and daycares averaged 1500 a month with 6 month waiting lists.
    Me: 35      Hubs: 27
    Married: 07/04/13
    BFP #1: 8/14/14, Baby Girl born 4/16/15
    BFP #2: 6/21/16, Baby Girl born 2/11/17
    BFP #3: 1/26/19, EDD 10/8/19
    Fur Babies: 2 Cavalier King Charles Spaniels (Piper and Mia)
  • @anonellis I was doing google searches which sort of led to dead ends. I didn't think of Facebook groups I will stalk out some. Thanks for the tip!

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  • meq124 said:
    Another thing to consider is wait lists. One of my coworkers gave me the heads up to look early, and when I was 8 weeks pregnant (hadn't even had my first US yet) most daycares had a wait well over a year out. It was insane. We ended up putting a deposit on daycare before we had told any of our family about the baby. But I would definitely advise those is larger cities (*cough* greater Seattle area *cough*) to look early!! 
    A million times this!!! The worse advice I ever received when I was pregnant was to take my time looking for a daycare since I live in a smaller area. I posted a question on Facebook asking if anyone had any recommendations for daycares and I think I was about 2 months along. A few people made snide comments about me looking so early and made me feel stupid about it. When I got closer to my due date I started looking again and was uber pissed off to find out that there was a year long wait for places. Jump on it now!

  • kelizrkelizr member
    We had to price it out when my husbands shift was going to possibly change. In PA, we were paying $125 for a full day and 90 for part time. Fortunately, we didn't need that and now have family 2-3 days and a sitter the others. We paid $25 (I took care of her when she was little and she was just looking for some spending cash) for three hours a day, part of which was naptime so she could do her course work. I'll have to up it for two but I haven't decided if I'll have her still with an infant. Need to think that one through because she is on the younger side. I've paid the same with other college students who are family friends and it has worked out fantastically with all of them.

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  • I'm in a college town west of KC... we're paying $185/week for our 2-year-old. Infants are $225/week, but I think we get some sort of discount for having both kids in the same center. It definitely hurts.
    married to M since 6.13.09
    T - 3.3.14
    A - 2.24.17
  • I've got to start looking,  I'm hoping to start working next fall while I do my bachelors.  I stayed home with DD but I need to start working or all my school has been for nothing.  I may see if my sister in law will watch them on her days off and maybe I can work part time.  Around here daycare is around 250 a week. 
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  • I have totally been thinking about this a lot lately. Like a few others here, I commute into NYC from the burbs. I usually leave home at 6:45 am and I'm not back until after 8. Most of the day cares around here close at 6:30, so I may need to look into options in the city, or H and I will need to discuss his shift- he works days right now and gets home around 5 but if we went local he would need to decline all OT. 
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  • After reading you guys posts, I will never complain about childcare costs again. I don't know how some people do it.

    Luckily my mother in law keeps our 8 month old however we do pay her. We also looked into daycare recently as we want to send her at some point so she can socialize with others and the average price for babies is 125$ per week.

    Bless you all.

  • From reading this post I decided to do some research in our area. I found one that I like online and called up there. It is $240 a week per child. We are expecting twins and will get a 10% discount. I told her I was due in February (my due date is March 19th but with twins expect it might be earlier) and she said that we needed to get a tour and reserve spots ASAP....I'm glad I read this thread this morning!
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  • I live in the Seattle area and the going rate for 2 is about 12-14/hr. We pay someone to come to our home for 12/hr for 11 hour days. Being a Nurse that works 12 hour shifts we need to longer days that a lot of daycares don't accomodate. It ends up costing us about 1200/month. I believe where we live is pricier than a lot of regions in the US. 
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