How to Start a Home Daycare in Florida

Running a home daycare is a great way to earn money. Each state has its own legal requirements, and Florida is no exception. Setting up the home to provide daycare is important, but there are certain steps that must take place before caring for children.

To Begin

The legal age to get a daycare license in Florida is 18. The person applying must be a resident of the home where childcare will be provided. Read all requirements for home daycare in Florida. (Reference 1.)

Attend 30 hours of Family Childcare Home Training program. A score of at least 70 is needed to obtain a license. There is an opportunity to complete an exam before the training begins. If the exam is passed, the training is not enforced. A certificate will be acquired. (Reference 1.)

Acquire a certificate for infant and child CPR and first aid. Have a first aid kit, and be sure to have emergency procedures in place.

Be sure all pets are immunized and healthy. Have documentation ready.

Business Set-up

Create a substitute plan. This is needed legally and must be written out. State the substitute's full name, as well as his or her address and phone number.

Go to the local child care licensing office of the Department of Children and Families. Ask for an application for a License to Operate a Family Day Care Home. Fill the application out and return it. The application processing may take a couple of months to complete.

Be sure that all hazards, including cleaning supplies and knives, are put up where children can't reach them. Be sure that all safety guidelines are being followed.

Decide who will provide meals for the children. If the daycare provider will do this, the USDA Food Guide Pyramid will be used for the children. Find out whether or not there is a program available that provides reimbursements for food purchased.

Set up a business filing system for things like medical and other records for each child, tax information, and menus.


  • Create menus that can be used for daycare purposes. Keep recipes all in one place. Be sure they are healthy but child-friendly.

    Clean the entire daycare area.

    Be sure the outside play area is child safe and clean. Have a place for trash available.

    Find support. The Florida Family Child Care Home Association is a good place to start. (Reference 2)



About the Author

Shannon Buck is a freelance writer residing in the small town of Milford, Maine. Her work has appeared on several sites including, where she writes The Green Mom column. She has written on many subjects including home improvement, gardening, low-income living, writing and homeschooling.