Fortunately, there are many programs available to help with discount childcare. Whether you're a parent trying to figure out how to afford childcare or a provider looking to help potential parents, it's essential to know about these programs. Keep reading to learn about where to find a discount on daycare.
Not everyone is fortunate enough to have a government assistance program to help with child care costs. Some families earn too much to qualify for government aid, and others are unaware of the government aid and assistance for which they may qualify.
However, you can check a few programs to see if you qualify.
State Child Care Assistance/Child Care Vouchers
Some states, like California, have only income-based criteria. In California, you are automatically eligible for a childcare subsidy if you earn less than a certain amount.
If you're unsure about your government assistance eligibility, contact the state child care office. They can provide you with specific information about the child care assistance and child care vouchers available to you.
Early Head Start/Head Start
Early Head Start and Head Start programs help children from birth to preschool. Both programs provide health and developmental screenings, family counseling, and social services. These programs are often accessible to low-income families or families with children at risk.
Most states have Pre-K programs for children who need extra help before formal schooling. The programs are usually free and can get used by any child with a disability or at risk.
Military and DoD Fee Assistance Programs
Military families can qualify for a government-funded subsidy to help cover the cost of daycare. The National Child Care Service Program (NCCSP) provides subsidies to military parents to help with the cost of daycare. Military families must enroll in the program and have their child care provider sign up for it before any assistance can be provided.
Most employers offer some sort of employee benefits package. Some provide a pre-tax flexible spending account for out-of-pocket health and dependent care expenses.
These benefits can help save money on daycare and other care costs.
Employer Assisted Dependent Care
Some employers also offer childcare assistance programs for their employees. While the amount of money employers help with varies, it is always worth a phone call to your employer's HR department to inquire about their programs.
Other Employer Benefits
A dependent care flexible spending account (FSAs) allows you to pay for your child care expenses before taxes are taken. The money is deducted pre-tax, and you can put aside as little or as much as you want per pay period.
High school students
High school students in most states can receive assistance with daycare costs. Look for state programs that offer free care, discounted care, or reimbursement programs that pay back after each day your child attends.
College or University Child Care
Some colleges and universities have scholarships and financial aid available specifically for parents. Students who are parenting may be eligible for financial assistance that helps with child care.
In addition, many states, cities, counties, and other organizations offer financial aid and assistance to qualified parents who are looking for help with their childcare costs. State childcare options often provide assistance to working parents and parents in school.
If parents don't qualify for the above options, there are still avenues they can explore. Some daycares will offer their programs.
Sliding Fee Scale
Some daycares will offer a sliding fee scale, which means parents pay on a sliding scale based on their income. This is an excellent choice for families that make too much to qualify for assistance but not enough to pay the total cost.
Some daycares will offer a variety of financial assistance options to parents who are suffering from financial burdens. Many daycares have specific income-based programs, and some offer scholarships to those in need.
Be creative in your search for help. Don't be afraid to ask for assistance.
Some child care facilities will offer a family rate for parents enrolling multiple children into their facility. These rates are typically discounted from the usual per child price, which can significantly affect monthly costs.
Thoroughly research any benefits or discounts offered by a daycare. Make sure that discounts are available for the entire year, not just as a short-term promotion.
Many child care facilities will offer military discounts to parents who are veterans. Other locations offer a military discount for parents who are serving on active duty.
Parents may qualify for a tax credit based on childcare expenses. These credits have a cap, but the amount of the credit will vary based on income.
Additional tax credits are available for single parents, low-income taxpayers, and those who pay for work-related expenses. Research the tax credits available in your area, and determine if you are eligible for any of these programs.
Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit
The Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit is a credit for childcare costs paid to qualified care providers. The credit is based on a percentage of the annual cost of care for one qualifying toddler or young child.
The Child and Dependent Care Credit is limited to $4,000 per qualifying child or $8,000 for two or more qualifying children.
Earned Income Tax Credit
The Earned Income Tax Credit is a federal income tax credit program that was created to help low-income taxpayers and those who work but do not make a lot of money.
The credit amount varies from year to year, but it is typically based on the number of dependents, income levels, and the number of working hours. The tax credit is free money, and it is usually available to parents who are employed and have a low income.
Find Discount Childcare
Child care costs are high, and many families struggle to find a way to pay for child care. Fortunately, several government and employer programs and benefits can help with discount childcare. Armed with this information, you're ready to find a great childcare provider to help you afford the cost of childcare.
Are you a childcare center looking for ways to save money and pass on the discount to parents? Schedule a demo of our software today and find out how it can help you save time and money.
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