post icon

Childcare Pricing Guide

Are Your Childcare Services Priced Correctly?

No two child care centers are the same, but all child care centers are businesses. Be sure that you’re charging childcare or preschool tuition at rates that are not only fair to families, but also fairly compensate your staff – and you!

Whether you’re running a childcare business, a preschool, or an aftercare program, your tuition and fees should be priced with three things in mind:

Give Yourself Some Wiggle Room

Consider these tips that will help you to better prepare your budget:

    struggling with math

  1. It’s unrealistic to expect to reach 100% enrollment or to collect 100% of tuition for a full house. You might not be able to fill all of the space in your classrooms, or you could miss out on subsidy payments if children don’t attend consistently. Cover yourself by only counting on receiving 70% of what you’d expect to receive at full capacity. Year after year, you’ll have a better idea of what to expect.
  2. Consider charging part-time childcare or preschool tuition at up to 50% more than full-time tuition (use this calculator to determine what that increase could look like). Why the upcharge? Because you are losing out on tuition that would have been paid by having a full-time child.

Worksheet: Let’s Calculate Your Expenses

Use this worksheet to break down the yearly cost of your care by operational costs, salaries, and those little things that can easily be overlooked so you can price your services confidently with your expenses in mind. Just plug in your numbers, and we’ll calculate them for you. By the end of this worksheet, the number calculated will be a rough estimate of what you can expect to spend this fiscal year.

Disclaimer: Before making any big changes to your finances, you should consult an accountant or financial advisor.

quote from Kyley on postcard

Scoping the Competition

I’ve conducted my market survey by reaching out to other local centers to compare childcare tuition and pricing.

Their full-time tuition, by age group, is as follows:

Their part-time tuition, by age group, is as follows:

Keeping the Lights On

The cost of my center’s rent/mortgage per month is $

The average cost of Summer/Fall utilities per month is $

The average cost of Winter/Spring utilities per month is $

The average internet bill per month is $

Yearly total: $______

Paying Your Staff (and Y-O-U!)

I know my state’s staff-to-child ratio requirements. This is how many full-time and part-time staff I need for daycare, preschool, and aftercare, along with their average yearly compensation:

Daycare Staff

Full Time

The number of full time staff is

The average yearly salary per staff member is

The average benefits allocation per staff member is

Part Time

The number of part time staff is

The average hourly wage per staff member is

The average weekly hours worked per staff member is

Preschool Staff

Full Time

The number of full time staff is

The average yearly salary per staff member is

The average benefits allocation per staff member is

Part Time

The number of part time staff is

The average hourly wage per staff member is

The average weekly hours worked per staff member is

Before & Aftercare Staff

Full Time

The number of full time staff is

The average yearly salary per staff member is

The average benefits allocation per staff member is

Part Time

The number of part time staff is

The average hourly wage per staff member is

The average weekly hours worked per staff member is

Personnel

This is the amount of other personnel needed, including me, and their average yearly compensation:

Center’s Director

The yearly salary is

The benefits allocation is

Administrative Staff

The number of full time staff is

The average yearly salary per staff member is

The average benefits allocation per staff member is

Housekeeping Staff

The number of full time staff is

The average yearly salary per staff member is

The average benefits allocation per staff member is

In total, I can expect to pay:

$______ for Full-Time Daycare Staff
$______ for Part-Time Daycare Staff
$______ for Full-Time Preschool Staff
$______ for Part-Time Preschool Staff
$______ for Full-Time Before & Aftercare Staff
$______ for Part-Time Before & Aftercare Staff
$______ for Part-Time Before & Aftercare Staff

Yearly total: $______

Supplies & Equipment

Classroom Supplies

Consider charging an activity fee so your teachers can continue making each day fun without having to reach into their own pockets.

$per month

Supplies for Everything Else

Toilet paper, cleaning supplies – think about all the little spills and accidents!

$per month

Furniture

Whether you’re new to the game or you have experience with running a childcare business, you’ll always have to consider the cost of buying and maintaining changing tables, pack and plays, mats, etc.

$per month

Diapers

Whether you rely on parents to provide their child’s diapers or you have a diaper plan, you’ll always need to have diapers on site.

$per month

Snacks/Meals

Meal plan or just snacks? Either way, you’re forking over funds to cover the costs of those.

$

Technology Equipment

From computers to key fobs, tech can get expensive!

$per month

Books

Provide your own or ask families to bring their favorites.

$per month

Yearly Total: $______

Administrative & Professional Fees

IT Services

Things get glitchy with your network or computers, who will you call?

$per month

Legal

Having expert legal advice is important when you’re running a business, whether it’s to review policies, help with filing licensing and business documents, or even to help you collect a debt.

$per month

Accounting & Taxes

That annual pain-in-the-wallet! What have you typically owed in previous years? Did you hire an accountant? Average these costs and enter it here.

$per month

Insurance

Its’s important to protect yourself, and running any kind of business without it is a bad risk.

$per month

Licensing Fees

You won’t be in business long without the licenses you need, and renewing them each year is one of the most important things you’ll do.

$per month

Yearly Total: $______

Miscellaneous Expenses

Child Care Management System

How do you keep track of all of those families, invoices, vaccinations, and attendance? A child care management system isn’t just a convenience to you. Your smooth operations and easy billing are a convenience to parents, too!

$per month

Other Software

Accounting software, Microsoft Office, or G-Suite? Keep track of what it costs to keep your records and communications organized on your computer.

$per month

Field Trips

Factor field trips into tuition so you don’t have to track down parents for yet another payment.

$per month

Marketing Costs

Print ads, referral programs, and refrigerator magnets. Don’t forget what it costs to bring in new families!

$per month

Communication Tools

Sending letters? Using a mobile app? If the methods of reaching parents has a fee associated with them, make a note of it here!

$per month

Transaction Processing Fees

You can either absorb these yourself or you can charge parents a convenience fee.

$per month

Other

$per month

Call this your contingency fund for all of the little, expected things that come up when you’re running a business.

Yearly Total: $______