Choosing a child care provider is a big decision. You want your children to be safe and secure when you're not around.
Ashley Wiley is expecting a baby girl this October. And she's already started the search for a child care provider.
"I've looked at in-home daycares, I've looked at church facilities," Wilery said. "I've looked at daycare facilities. Not really knowing yet what we are going to do. I've gotten quotes from all three, so we are still trying to make a decision."
Angie Says: You need to start your search for child care much earlier than you probably even imagine. About the time that you're telling all your family members that you are expecting is really when you should start looking for child care because there's likely going to be a wait list. You also need to be prepared that you're probably going to have to give a deposit as well so just know exactly what you have to do, but starting early is going to alleviate the stress down the road."
Before you start calling around, create a list of qualifications, sort of like a job description.
"We're working for a combination of three things for a daycare: price being one of the things as well as safety for our child and also location," Wiley said.
Decide what qualities are important to you. Are you interested in years of experience? Level of education? Number of other kids in the facility? They are all good questions to ask.
And finally, the ultimate test. If you already have children, have them meet the daycare provider, and see how they interact.
Angie's List says once you have found quality child care, your job is not done. You need to stay involved and constantly assess your child care arrangement. Spend a few minutes each day to talk with your caregiver about your child and ask your child what he or she does during the day.