The truth as to why childcare is costing parents so much | Mollard Property Group
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The truth as to why childcare is costing parents so much

Within today’s mainstream media, we know the left side of the political divide would have you believe that childcare operators are making a fortune out of Mums and Dads. However, before you jump to the same belief, let us examine some realities.

The first reality is, the Local State Government with all their clever academics (who have never set a foot outside the protection of a government salary) write all the rules that the rest of us have to make work and then they charge us for their unrealistic, academic, dreamy, idealist demands.

An example of this is the over-regulated building requirements, to such an extent that to comply with building a childcare Centre within 15km of the CBD adds hundreds of thousands of dollars to the development costs.

For example, to build a Centre in Hawthorn the land costs are circa ten times the cost of land out in Cranbourne. Unlike Cranbourne where you can build lower-cost construction and put cars on-site at grade, in Hawthorn due to the cost of the land you need to build a basement car park to accommodate an unrealistic number of cars that in fact remain empty for 90 per cent of the day.

The second reality is, the Government insists on totally unrealistic allowances for outdoor play space. To put this into perspective they want the same outdoor space allowance for a baby as they do for a five-year-old. This problem is compounded in that they cannot understand that not all children are or need to be in the playground at the same time. There are sleeping hours, there are different age groups. Their idealist concept is that children should be able to wander outside at any moment they decide. Whilst this is a wonderful idea like a lamb lying with a lion, it never happens.

Common sense has always been known to evade academics and this is a classic example.

This academic idealistic rationale adds up to millions of dollars in extra development costs within the inner-suburban areas, which means the operator must pay substantially higher rental fees to accommodate these unnecessary regulated requirements.

A more sensible approach to outdoor play space would be to make allowances for all children over 18 months only. The assumption should be then set at an allowance of 50 per cent of the children being outside in the elements at any one time. Time in outdoor play space should be managed by the operator of the childcare Centre, not a regulator. Simulated outdoor play space is acceptable (via a waiver) within the CBD, however once you get 500 meters outside the CBD this regulation changes. Why..? – a sensible person would ask.

If this regulation along with appropriate parking requirements were changed, the cost of development would be substantially lower, however, this is not the end of it, high cost causing regulations go even further.

The third reality is, new staffing regulations now make childcare a staff intensive business, putting a massive strain on the cost to run such a business. For example, for a child under the age of three one staff member for every four children is required.

TV presenters are always making comments on matters they have zero facts or understanding of, the truth is, it is the Government that is the cause of the high daily fees we all need to pay.