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COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL Chapter One: Calculating Your Time-Space Percentage 53 Hours Working When Children Are Not Present In addition to counting all the hours you spend caring for children, you should also include all the hours that your home is used for business purposes when the children in your care are not present. This includes time spent cleaning, cooking, planning activities, keeping records, interviewing, making phone calls, and doing other activities related to your business. Don’t count hours spent on general home repairs or maintenance activi­ ties, such as cutting the lawn, repairing fixtures, or putting up storm windows. You may not count the same hours twice. For example, if you clean the house during the day while the children sleep, you cannot count the cleaning hours because you are already counting this time as caring for children. You may only count these hours if the children you care for are not present. For example, if between 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m. you are preparing breakfast for the children in your care and your spouse is cleaning your home, you can only count one hour toward your Time percentage. If your spouse did the cleaning the night before while you were not conducting business activities, then you can count the time spent doing both tasks. Keep records showing that you spent these hours on business activities and not on personal activities. If you spend one hour cleaning after the children leave, count this hour as business time. If you are cleaning your house in general, count only the time that is associated with the mess created by your business. Mark on a calendar when you do these business activities, or make up a weekly schedule that you regularly follow. Example In addition to the 2,550 hours you spent actually caring for children, you spent 60 hours a month (720 hours a year) on business activities such as cleaning, prepar­ ing meals, planning activities, record keeping, meeting parents, and making busi­ ness phone calls. You add this to your total business hours for the year and get 3,270 hours, which gives you a Time percentage of 37% (3,270 divided by 8,760 hours [24 hours a day x 365 days = 8,760 hours]). Step Two: Calculate Your Space Percentage The Space percentage is how much space you use in your home on a regular basis for your business. You calculate it by using the following formula: # square feet of your home used regularly for business Total # square feet in your home = Space percentage For a room to be counted as child care space, it must be used on a regular basis for your business. Regular means consistent, customary use. Using a room only occasionally for business is not regular use. A room doesn’t have to be used every day to be considered regularly used, but using it once every two weeks probably isn’t regular use. If the chil­ dren in your care sleep in your bedroom for an hour a day, count the bedroom as being regularly used for the business. However, using the bedroom for sick children once a month would not be regular use. If there are any rooms in your home that you use exclusively for your business, refer to the section titled Exclusive-Use Rooms before you calculate your Space percentage. COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL