If I maintain a spot for a child, I require that a contract and fee agreement be signed, not only for insurance purposes, but to be available to care for your child on a regular basis. I do have "no contract" options (policies and procedures and fee agreement will still apply), but the rates are higher and I cannot guarantee an open spot when your child needs care.
I get this all the time, even though I'm in line with what other professional providers in the area are charging. I am a professional daycare provider, not a babysitter; this is my passion and my sole source of income. The trust parents give to those who care for their children is extremely important to me, and I take it very seriously. I provide healthy, nourishing food, I maintain memberships to local attractions that we visit frequently, and provide fun, safe toys for everyone. My home and vehicle are insured for my childcare, and I have a legal and tax paying business, which means parents of children in my care can not only pay with their dependent care FSA, but can claim what they pay as a deduction on their taxes! I use a childcare software that will record payments and offer an end of year statements for your convenience. I consistently keep my numbers well below the legal limit (6 children including my own not of school age, and no more than 3 children under 2 years old) to ensure that your child receives adequate and one-on-one attention they crave and deserve.
No. While that may allow me to accept more children, I prefer to keep my numbers low. It would require that field trips stop, neighbors be notified (and asked if they are for/against it), and could mean remodeling that I prefer not to do to my home. I simply find it to be too much red tape and only hinders the creativity and freedom that being unlicensed allows us. However, I do have some state certifications, and continuing education that licensed providers are required to have.