Start a Child Care Business

 


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You may start your child-care business either as a small home based operation with little investment or with large, commercial centres. The decision to keep the business very small, or to grow into a big establishment with millions of dollars as yearly revenue is entirely yours.

This business also offers you great flexibility in terms of deciding the age group of children you want to look after, the number of hours you want to work, the services you provide like transportation or field trips etc. It also requires a sense of responsibility and serious commitment from you because the safety, well being and overall development of children in your care depends on you.

Skills required:To run a child-care service business successfully, you should be energetic, business-minded, professional, a good role model, have a pleasant personality and tolerance for stress. Most important, you should enjoy being with children.

Start up costs:The start-up costs of a child-care service business depends upon whether you are starting the business from home or from a commercial location. If you are starting from home your expense may range from $500 to $5,000. However, this figure may be close to $100,000 if you are planning to start at a business location. You may have to meet following expenses initially:

  • Licensing fees for advertising
  • First Aid/CPR certification and kit
  • Liability insurance
  • Comfortable Chairs
  • Bedding safety devices
  • Educational toys
  • Disposable changing pads and gloves
  • Antibacterial cleaners
  • Sanitary storage for used diapers
  • Outdoor play space, make-believe props
  • Music system
  • Colours, pencils and other miscellaneous art and craft materials

Kinds of services:Based on your preferences and community needs you may decide which of the following services to offer:

  • Full-time care during traditional weekday hours
  • After-school care
  • Non-traditional hours like very early mornings, evenings, overnight care, weekends
  • Drop-in or on-demand care
  • Part-time care
  • Age-based care
  • Transportation services

Fees:The fee has to be competitive, reasonable and affordable for the parents in your area without being unfair to you. While calculating the fee, you should consider the following costs you incurred:

  • Labour and material costs
  • Overheads
  • Profits
A fourth significant factor determining the fee for a child-care service business is the maximum number of children you can accommodate which is often limited by state laws. You can always open more centres in nearby areas to increase your client base and income once you have understood these points.

Marketing:Your marketing materials should look professional and convey your existence and the quality of your service. Though a simple word-of-mouth is a good technique, you may hire a graphic designer and/or professional writer for your marketing package. Consider these questions/ points while formulating your marketing plan:

  • Potential customers and their number and location
  • What are they currently doing for child care?
  • Exactly what new can you offer as compared to your competitors?
  • How can you persuade them to bring their children to you?
  • What kind of image do you want to project?
You must design colourful flyers and hang them at places where they are likely to be noticed by young working couples. You should also consider placing weekly or fortnightly ads in local newspapers. Ideally, these ads should be printed on weekends so that a large number of people may notice them. There is no harm in giving discounts to those couples who refer their friends to your centre. This will add to your overall business.

Funding:You definitely need outside funding if you want to open a child-care services business in a commercial location. For this, you will have to draw up a business plan that should stress the viability of the business. A good idea would be to hire a consultant to help you draw up the business plan, and also to help you in our negotiations with a local bank.

Chris Navi I am a true freelance internet advertiser who dabbles in website design. You can check out resources for having a profitable child care business at my website http://www.getpaid2workfromhome.com/child-care-service/ Also check out the 10 best places to advertise online that are completely FREE at: http://www.advertisesmallbusiness.com/free-online-ads

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