How To Start a Successful Home Daycare

No one will deny it: It’s hard to make a living these days. Many modern families have both the mom and dad working to bring home the bacon, but this can be quite tough, if not impossible, when you have very young kids at home. So why not turn this into a business opportunity? By setting up a Home Daycare, you get to do three things: You do the parental community a service by taking care of their children while they are away working; you get to be with your own children during the day; and you get paid doing it! Follow these tips below to see how you can go about setting up a successful home daycare.

  • Do a self-check. Ok, before you throw out the welcome mat, step back and answer some tough questions.
    • “Do you like being around children?” Easy to answer when you’re around your own children whose personalities most likely match yours and who you can nurture and discipline as you please. But try imagining yourself in a roomful of kids all day, each one wanting your attention – the picture might change a little.
    • “Do you have enough space?” Does your house have a big enough enclosed area where you can gather kids around for activities? Do you have a yard where they can safely play in the sunshine?  Is your home child-proofed?
  • Get the law on your side. Do the necessary inquiries to find out the requirements to set up a home daycare center. These will differ according to the state you’re in. For instance, in some states setting up a home daycare will require a license, while it is not necessary in other states. Some might limit the number of children you can have at any given time.
  • Get some training. You might think you’re the best mother in the world, but it takes a slightly different set of skills to run a home daycare center. First aid, children’s nutrition, and child development skills are just some of the skills you will need in running a day care center.
  • Set your ground rules. Be clear with your day homecare policies: from pricing to payments, meals to curriculum, draft this in writing and make sure every parent reads and understands it before they drop off a child. In fact, most parents won’t have time to be told what’s in a brochure so go ahead and say it out loud on your first meeting.
  • Purchase toys and supplies. Children will be doing a lot of activities; in addition to child-proofing your home, buy your supplies such as mats, tables, utensils, glasses etc. in thrift shops or garage sales so you can get a good price. Get your art supplies in a specialty shop – aside from getting vivid colors, your supplies will last longer, which will save you quite a bit in the long run.
  • Advertise! Print out a well-designed flyer and distribute in the neighborhood – at the park, the Laundromat, outside Church. For your first clientele, tap the children of your friends and let the circle grow from there.

Indeed, running a home daycare is not all fun and games. You will need a lot of patience and creativity. Limit the children you take in to just a few to give you time to adjust. Always treat them as if they were your own. After all, they do pay your salary.


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