Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

CARE San Diego mission is to:

  • Increase the number and access to quality child care slots.
  • Help stabilize child care businesses by being a friendly landlord to child care providers.
  • Increase the wealth of child care providers by sharing any appreciation profits with providers who buy their property from CARE San Diego.

You will be leasing from a friendly and helpful landlord that understands the needs of child care. CARE San Diego is committed to helping you grow your business and serve more children and families.

At this time, CARE San Diego is only leasing to active licensed child care providers, who have been operating for at least two (2) years. 

To be eligible for CARE San Diego you must be an active licensed provider and in operation for at least two (2) years. License status will be verified.

CARE San Diego aims to increase the availability of child care slots in the region. Therefore, we are looking for child care providers who will be able to serve more children and families by moving into a CARE San Diego property.

Yes, at this time CARE San Diego is only available to licensed child care providers providing services in San Diego County.

If you are willing to operate your child care business in the designated ZIP codes, let us know in your interest form, but we may prioritize residents of the target zips.

If you want to move into any of the zip codes, then we invite you to fill out an Interest form.

Having an ITIN does not impact eligibility, we are just looking for providers who already live in those zip codes or are willing to move into those Zip codes.

CARE San Diego leases its properties to child care providers. If you already own your home, you don’t need to move to a rented property.

CARE San Diego tenants must serve at least ⅓ of the families enrolled with a monthly income below the San Diego County median income. If your families don’t currently meet this requirement, you will have the opportunity to share with us your plan to welcome lower-income families once you move into a CARE San Diego property.

California law doesn’t allow CARE San Diego to require you or its tenants to hold a child care liability insurance. However, we strongly encourage you to hold a child care liability insurance to protect you and your business.

We review submissions daily. You will receive an email within 3 business days with information about the next steps.

To become a CARE San Diego tenant candidate, you will be asked to complete several steps. Your information will be collected via digital forms (Jotform). We do NOT request any personal documentation such as paystubs, bank statements, W-2s, or lease agreements to be submitted via email or text. The only time you will be asked to bring documentation in-person will be to your Financial Discovery Session. CARE San Diego cares about keeping your information secure at all times.

Providers who meet all need, quality, and capacity requirements as determined by the questionnaire, interviews, verifications, and documentation will be invited to become a CARE San Diego tenant candidate. Not all CARE San Diego tenant candidates will match with a property.

Yours! CARE San Diego will be your landlord, but it will be your child care business.

Selected candidates will be invited to become a CARE San Diego tenant with the opportunity to purchase the property after two (2) years.

After two (2) years of leasing from CARE San Diego, you may have the opportunity to purchase the property, subject to federal limits on how many properties we can sell each year. If there has been an appreciation in the value of the property while leasing, CARE San Diego will apply half of the appreciation to the purchase price to help make it more affordable for you.

CARE San Diego is a new initiative currently raising funding from investors. As soon as funds are secured, we will begin to purchase properties. We got a boost from Congresswoman Sara Jacobs and the County of San Diego — $1 million in federal funds were secured to help pay for the property renovations.

No, we aim to find properties that closely meet the needs of candidates.

Yes, we will make sure this property meets licensing requirements.

If you are selected as a CARE San Diego tenant candidate, we will notify you when there’s a property that appears to be a match for you. If you like the property and lease rate, we will discuss the timeline for renovations, licensing, and occupancy, which will vary depending on the property. If you have a time consideration, such as the expiration of your current lease, it is important that you share this with us during the screening process.

No. CARE San Diego will review your interest form and follow up with an interview, license status verification, and reference check to determine if you meet the CARE San Diego tenant candidate criteria. However, not all child care providers who are approved as a tenant candidate will match with a property. Availability of suitable properties will be based on the amount of funding available, the availability of suitable properties for which we can charge affordable rent, and other market conditions.

Your lease with CARE San Diego will state that you must be operating child care services while renting the property. Therefore, if you decide to end your child care business you will have to relocate.

A real estate investment trust (REIT) is a company that owns and operates rental properties. REIT pool money from numerous investors to invest in real property.

There are no fees to complete an interest form or become a CARE San Diego tenant candidate.

We will review together your child care business earnings and expenses, as well as forecast your business growth to determine your lease amount.

Mission Driven Finance is an impact investment firm dedicated to building a financial system that ensures overlooked businesses have access to sufficient, affordable capital.

No, MDF doesn’t provide loans only supports child care property with real estate: property match, renovations, and leasing services as a landlord.

We are on track to purchase the first property in November 2023, but renovations will still be needed.

If your income changes, make sure to contact us to reevaluate your rent affordability in a CARE San Diego home. Our goal is to offer you a property that you are able to afford.

In this first phase of CARE San Diego, we have 10 candidate tenants.

After a provider accepts a property match, they will sign the lease and a $500 holding deposit will be requested. Two weeks prior to occupancy, a security deposit and first month’s rent will be requested.

The purpose of the holding deposit is to ensure that provider is committed to moving in once renovations are complete. The holding deposit will be counted toward our security deposit payment which will be due before move in day.

Yes, the initial rent will be discounted for the first 6 months.

Rent amount will vary depending on the property prices, market rate, and renovations, but our goal is to purchase properties that are affordable for providers. When purchasing properties, we are taking into consideration the rent affordability threshold of the CARE San Diego candidates.

Providers will get a chance to view the property within a week of matching with it. Whether it is under construction or not, we will share the vision for the renovations with you and help you imagine the ideal child care property it will be when completed. If the provider likes the property, then they will be asked to accept the match, sign a lease, and make a $500 holding deposit.

Property matching takes into consideration the information you provided in your real estate questionnaire- the number of bedrooms needed, the zip codes you said you were willing to consider; and your rent affordability threshold that was determined during your financial discovery session. As we get closer to starting the property match process additional information will be sent and a webinar may be hosted.

Have other questions?

Contact us at (619) 427-4411 ext. 1250 or by email at


CARE San Diego is administered by: