How to Start a Child Day Care Business 1-2-3
If you enjoy being around children, and you want to work in your local neighborhood – or even at home – running a child daycare business could be your ideal career. A daycare can be a fairly straightforward business to start, and your days are likely to be filled with lots of down-to-earth fun – not your typical job. No wonder this is such a popular field to get into. But what does it take to get started – and to be a success?
Of course there are the basics to starting a day care, which are discussed below, but you also want to consider how you can make your business more enjoyable for both you and your clients. Would you prefer to work day times, evening or weekends? Do you want to work with smaller groups, or hire several employees? What age of children do you want to cater to? Do you want to provide additional services for parents that they can’t find at other day cares. Describe your ideal business and daily routine – your success will largely depend on how much you enjoy your business.
Over the years, the need for child day care services has grown. There are more families with both parents working full-time jobs, and there is a growing number of single parents in the work force who are unable to be with their kids throughout the day. The demand for child care has increased – which is great if you are entering the field – but with that demand comes parents with a greater awareness of health and safety issues – so you want to make sure that you’re prepared before you enter this business.
So how do you actually go about starting your child day care business?
- Learn your business – Research child day cares in your area – what activities do they offer? What features do parents want from a day care and what are their concerns? Interview successful day care business owners or invest in a basic day care business start-up guide that shows you how to plan daily activities, set policies and procedures and determine prices to charge clients. Understanding the “business” side of day care before you start will make your business much easier to run.
- Find your customers. Since people want their children in the care of someone they trust, referral marketing is the quickest and most effective way to bring in new customers. Word-of-mouth advertising can work fast, so alert everyone you know, and get involved in community volunteer activities, so more people get to know and trust you. Creating printed brochures and business cards will also give you a professional image and help build trust.
- Make a quick call to your local government office to find out which licenses or permits you need, and they can give you instructions on how to apply. Talk with an insurance agent and banker (you can get referrals from other local business owners or friends) to get helpful tips on insurance requirements and basic business management that will save you time, money and hassles in the long run. Even if you don’t plan on setting up a large company, it’s worthwhile to meet with knowledgeable advisors who can alert you to important business information you may not know.
Running your own child day care business can be very rewarding – for you, the children and the parents. With a day care, you can start small, and grow at a pace comfortable to you. Learn as you go and have fun with it – after all, it’s YOUR business!