Home daycare centers are small businesses that can be profitable and fun. Some people start these types of businesses because they want to find a way to stay at home with their own children, but still bring in some form of income. Others simply enjoy teaching and playing with children, as well as prefer to work out of the home. If you are planning on opening a home daycare center of your own, be aware of the many things you’ll need to get this type of business up and running.
Most U.S. states require home daycare providers to complete some form of training, go through a background check and meet state licensing regulations for health and safety. However, home day cares that only service two or three children may not have to meet these strict regulations, according to BabyCenter. If you want to start a large home daycare, you may even want to consider gaining accreditation from the National Association for Family Child Care. This type of accreditation can cost more than $400 and take up to three years to process. No matter what size of daycare you are planning to open, check with your local, county and state authorities to find out your specific certification and licensing requirements.
Even if you are only starting a small home daycare business, you’ll need to create a business plan that includes details about your overall business plans and ideas. For example, you should decide which age groups you plan to service, as well as how you plan to get new customers and clients. Determine if you’ll need to hire additional staff to care for your clients, or if you can handle it by yourself. Other important components of your business plan may include your daycare’s policies and procedures, such as your hours of operation, vaccination and sick child policies, payment terms and emergency protocols.
Space and Equipment
Depending on the size of your home daycare and the number of children you plan to care for, you’ll need to designate several areas of your home for your business. According to Fab Job, you’ll typically need to set up both indoor and outdoor play areas, office space, an eating area and a childproof restroom. Make sure you have safety structures in place to prevent child injuries as well. If you have pets, you may want to designate a separate area for them to spend time in during the day. You’ll also want to make sure you have enough cribs and high chairs if you’ll be servicing infants or toddlers.
While some people think of home daycare centers as extended babysitting services, many parents choose providers based on aspects, such as learning and stimulation. According to PowerHomeBiz, many mothers look for childcare providers that offer some form of preschool education system. In order to compete with larger facilities, you can feature reading times, craft activities and other development activities at your home daycare.
- Boy in playroom image by Pavel Losevsky from Fotolia.com