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Paying your parents or relatives for daycare?


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#1 Feral Becky

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:17 PM

I did this when my kids were young. I used a combination of formal day care and my mum plus one other relative at times when I worked. I payed them the going rate for daycare at the time. I just thought it was a business transaction.

Friend said she had never heard of anyone doing that.

Have you or anyone you know done it?

#2 Mrs Lannister

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:19 PM

My friends mum would only babysit if she was being paid for it

#3 treefalls

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:21 PM

QUOTE (LindsayMK @ 06/12/2012, 09:17 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I did this when my kids were young. I used a combination of formal day care and my mum plus one other relative at times when I worked. I payed them the going rate for daycare at the time. I just thought it was a business transaction.

Friend said she had never heard of anyone doing that.

Have you or anyone you know done it?

No, but it had been suggested to me by someone (as we're not eligible for the rebate on daycare and are still on the waiting list)... I thought it sounded like a good idea. Whatever works for you and your family, OP. Did you have any specific concerns about it?

#4 Marchioness Flea

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:21 PM

Most people I know seem to think grandparents are free childcare with no lives of their own. Yes, I'm talking about 2 people in particular!
If I was expecting my parents to look after my child on a weekly or daily basis I'd offer money. They might not accept it though!



#5 Libster

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:22 PM

My SIL will be paying her Mum to look after her daughter when she goes back to work.


#6 Gudrun

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:23 PM

I've never heard of it but I am interested in the debate about whether the government should give grandparent child-carers some sort of payment.

#7 Guest_Sunnycat_*

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:23 PM

I offered to pay my mum but she won't accept money. In fact she was quite horrified that I suggested it. I said i would just transfer money into her account and she said if I did pay her she'd end up putting the money in DS's bank account.

My friend pays her MIL $50 pw but not her mother.

My parents have said they enjoy looking after DS and see it as spending time with him so don't want payment, they also don't need the money and want me to save. My parents would never in a million years accept money for looking after DS, but they are funny with money anyway.

ETA: my parents have DS 2 days a week. Dad actually takes both days off work to spend quality time with DS. He has said that he was never around for my brother and I and he sees this as a second chance and doesn't want to miss out on DS's childhood.

Mum said she does it to help me out and it's in no way a chore for them to look after DS. They said they see it as me doing them a favourite.

I was going to put DS into daycare one day a week next year but mum won't let me because she doesn't want to give up her days with DS.

Edited by Sunnycat, 06 December 2012 - 08:30 PM.


#8 lozoodle

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:25 PM

My mum babysits a few days a week for me, but she wont let me pay! She wanted to do it, I never actually asked, and she is no longer working so i am not sure if that makes a difference.

But anyway seeing as she doesnt take money, i try and do lots for her. when she goes away i go and look after the house and her cats for her, if im out shopping i will grab things that i see are useful for her that she may need (particularly stuff for use with the kids) and give them to her, i make sure i buy her an extra special birthday or christmas present, and little bits here and there.

its hard because i am so grateful as she is an amazing help to me and my kids have such a wonderful relationship with her as a result, but i do feel bad like i am burdening her.

#9 Feral Becky

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:25 PM

QUOTE (MelbChick @ 06/12/2012, 09:21 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
No, but it had been suggested to me by someone (as we're not eligible for the rebate on daycare and are still on the waiting list)... I thought it sounded like a good idea. Whatever works for you and your family, OP. Did you have any specific concerns about it?



I am quite a practical person and I never wanted to have something hanging over my head in the future. It was a choice I gave mum, if she didn't want to do it, I was happy with the daycare, but she was happy to do it. She got a bit of pocket money and I am sure the kids loved it.

Of course I didn't pay if we went out etc, just for work.

#10 BetteBoop

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:28 PM

QUOTE (me3922 @ 06/12/2012, 08:19 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My friends mum would only babysit if she was being paid for it


This is my MIL. We used to pay her $120 per day to look after DD. She still had the nerve to use our phone to make long distance calls and save her laundry up to do at our house.

I would prefer to pay a total stranger with some qualification in child care. A disinterested relative whose affections can be bought isn't in anyone's best interest.

#11 Feral Becky

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:28 PM

QUOTE (Gudrun @ 06/12/2012, 09:23 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I've never heard of it but I am interested in the debate about whether the government should give grandparent child-carers some sort of payment.



Interesting.

I just gave mum cash in hand.

#12 matt1972

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:29 PM

QUOTE (Gudrun @ 06/12/2012, 09:23 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I've never heard of it but I am interested in the debate about whether the government should give grandparent child-carers some sort of payment.


I find that debate unfathomable.

#13 Libster

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:29 PM

QUOTE (Sunnycat @ 06/12/2012, 09:23 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My parents have said they enjoy looking after DS and see it as spending time with him so don't want payment, they also don't need the money and want me to save. My parents would never in a million years accept money for looking after DS, but they are funny with money anyway.


I am so jealous! My parents would never offer to look after my kids on a regular basis which is their choice, but it doesn't stop me from being jealous! biggrin.gif lucky you! original.gif

#14 ~chiquita~

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:29 PM

My MIL looks after DS a couple of days a week. There is no way she would let me pay her for it, she loves spending time with him.

#15 Hot Pies

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:33 PM

No, we have never payed either sets if grandparents money for caring for our children. They each take my 2 girls one day a week. They offered to care for our children before they were even born, if I felt that my children were a burden on either set of grandparents I'd find alternative care. Maybe it's a cultural thing, but its just how our families like to help each orher. My grandparents cared for my siblings and I while my parents worked, our parents are helping us out and I'll gladly care for my grandchildren when/if the time comes.

#16 cinnabubble

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:33 PM

I reckon the ILs saved SIL and her husband about $30K over the last five years in daycare substitution. The ILs are getting heartily sick of it. I think family and ongoing daycare responsibilities don't mix well.

#17 Harlekijn engel

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:34 PM

Mum and I are in discussions about whether she might look after DD on a regular basis next year.  I've offered to pay her for that.  She hasn't given me a definite answer about accepting money; I suspect she would like to be able to say no, she'll do it for love, but I also know that she and dad have had a rough couple of years financially and could probably really use the money.

#18 Pompol

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:34 PM

I pay Mum $50 a day for caring for DD. She does not like it, and at first I had to really force the issue, but at the end of the day she needs the money. We negotiated this rate, I started at $95 (day care cost here), she started at $0, we agreed on a rounded up version of the daycare rate after CCR (which we obviously don't get with her care). Truth be told, she is easily worth twice this and I really wish she would take it, as she cares for DD 1:1 and we have had no seperation anxiety etc, and she also helps with housework here and there.

Prior to this, with my first born when she literally refused to take a cent, so I put money away for a year and then sent her on a holiday. At the time we were also saving for a house deposit and she kept telling me her looking after DS was her way of contributing to our "establishing a home" when she couldn't help with actual money, but would have loved to. Once the house was safely purchased though I booked her flight and accomodation, and it was too late for her to refuse  wink.gif

I agree with you OP - and even it is if not a business transaction, then surely an ethical responsibility (in my case anyway). Because of her I have earnt dollars being able to return to a job very quickly after both children - knowing my tiny babies were being cared for so beautifully and personally. I could not sleep at night not doing something for her, even just a gesture of thanks like her trip.  

My sister, on the other hand, also uses my Mum's "child care services" and does not offer any money in return. I couldn't do this in good conscience, my sister doesn't have a problem with it. I also have a friend who's mother and aunt both took her children 1 day/week each for some months, no remuneration at all.

So, I think both scenarios do happen, it really depends on the circumstances & personalities involved?

Edited for clarity

Edited by Pompol, 06 December 2012 - 08:35 PM.


#19 Feral Becky

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:39 PM

I agree with you Pompoi. Also what happens if another sibling wants to use the free services.
Call me hard but I always consider practicalities over love, hehe.

#20 Feral_Pooks

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:44 PM

Mum would be the perfect carer for DS and she is living on a government payment, so yes, of course I would pay her.

#21 Guest_Sunnycat_*

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:45 PM

I don't think there is a right or wrong answer. My parents have said they don't want to look after DS full time so i would enver insist tht she take him more days than she is hapoy doing. And I'm not using them so that I don't have to pay for childcare. My parents travel a lot so I have to make arrangements for these days and if mum ever can't take him then its no problem.

Mum has said that I am her daughter and this is what family do for each other, however, she wouldnt do it regularly if she didn't want to and if she struggling financially then I would make her accept money for it.

But just because I don't pay her doesn't mean she is used and taken for granted. :/

#22 winkywonkeydonkey

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:46 PM

I pay my mum $20 a day which is not much but it covers the kids food and petrol. She would not accept anymore than that .

I was previously not paying her and the guilt was eating at me.

#23 Overtherainbow

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:48 PM

We've paid before but pay childcare amount - amount we'd get for rebate.  Parent was grateful to receive any money, we were out of pocket the same amount and kids scored a grandparent.

I only use family occasionally and tend to pay in other ways.

#24 ekbaby

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:52 PM

For me it depends on whether the relative needs/would benefit from the money (including whether they are limiting their own opportunities to earn money by looking after your children).

My parents have a lot more money than we do, and don't need any more. My mum would spend $50 on an impulse purchase without even thinking about it, whereas $50 would be half of my younger sisters weekly food budget, or a big chunk of her rent.

With mum and dad I am more concerned about whether babysitting is impacting too much on their life and making sure I'm taking the amount of help they are happy to offer, and not much more. I know my mum doesn't want to look after my kids for a full day or more every week and that is fine with me. She's spent many years caring for her own children, is still working part time, and helps us all out a lot in other ways. She's said she might be happy to do it one day a week, but I know her heart isn't really in it, so I wouldn't ask it of her. Occasional, flexible and short-term babysitting she is very happy to do though. We don't live near them ATM so they probably do this every 2 months or so, we never offered money for this but sometimes cook dinner for her when we get back, or buy takeaway, or bring her cake or something.

My younger brothers and sisters have more of a need for money, so if I ask them to babysit while I am working, I offer to pay them- especially if it's in the daytime when my sister could be picking up another shift at her own work. They often refuse the money, but sometimes (when they have been going through a tighter time financially) they have happily accepted it.

ETA: Sunnycat I get what you are saying about your parents being happy to do it and being upfront that they don't want to do it full time. As my mum has been upfront with me that she wouldn't want to look after the kids on a regular day a week basis, I feel that when she offers to babysit or says yes to a couple of hours here and there, she is being genuine and not feeling used, because I think we have the kind of relationship where she can say "yes" to the things that work for her, and "no" to the things that don't.

Edited by ekbaby, 06 December 2012 - 08:58 PM.


#25 ekbaby

Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:53 PM

double post

Edited by ekbaby, 06 December 2012 - 08:54 PM.





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