I want to start a home daycare!! Any Mom Advise???

[deleted account] ( 21 moms have responded )

I have two daughters, 3yrs old and 8mths old and have always wanted to be a stay at home mom. Unfortunatly; we can't afford for me to do that unless I can also work from home. I have decided I want to start a small home daycare for about 4 kids not including my own two. I will teach on the A Beka program, have play activities, register with the statem etc. My girls are in daycare for about 12hrs a day because I work very far from home and my husband is a coach. Any adivise from any of you moms with home daycares???? Or anyone who has had your kids in home daycares???

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Dawn - posted on 02/25/2013

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Hello! I am taking the plunge and hopefully starting a private home daycare. I have been reading everyone's posts and thank you for sharing both pros and cons.
One thing I am pretty sure of is that I create a contract for the parents and myself to sign. Do any of you have a sample contract you would like to share so that I can get a few ideas. I would appreciate it and any other advice you would like to provide.
Thanks!

Teresa S - posted on 10/23/2012

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i want to become a day care worker iam only have 2 more years to work with the schools and iam only 49 i also want to saty home to help watch my grand kids so what do i have to do to become a day care worker

Michelle - posted on 01/08/2009

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Hi Stephanie.....I'll tell you from my experience.....I started my oldest in home day care 9yrs ago and loved it.  She only watched my son and one other so I knew he was getting the personal attention he needed.  She was super sweet.  But when it came to toddler age my son overtook her sweetness and we had problems.  She actually broke down in tears over my 2yr old which scared me.  So I quit my job after 7yrs.  We also needed my income too so I started my own daycare.  It was great because I actually made more money than when I worked.  Some parents claimed the money and some didn't.  My big suggestion is to create a contract with all your rules concerning sickness, money, and time off.  That way no one gets taken advantage of.   I did this for 3 yrs with 2 of my own plus 6 others.  Sounds like a lot, but kids love schedules.  Definitely wear and tear on your home too.  Write back if you want any more advise.  Good luck.  Michelle

Mina - posted on 04/04/2013

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I think you should go for it, I getting to do the same thing in 2 months time!

User - posted on 01/07/2009

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In regards to whether or not the industry is stable, I would say if you live in a young neighborhood, meaning there are young families, and if you go with the government licensed daycare that provides subsidy spaces, you should not have any problems filling your spaces on a constant basis. My daycare provider has a list of children waiting for a space.

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Larenas - posted on 02/02/2009

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my advise is to be smart about who whcih kids you take in. if the child is mean, disrespectful, etc...your kids will pick up bad habits from them. if the parents will work with you it is different, but some parents do not socialize their kids and so what you try to teach them in your daycare is not encouraged at home. taking care of kids that socially get along the way you raise your kids to be can really be rewarding. but you don't want to be pulling your hair out and watching your kids pick up bad habits. hope this helps. i don't want to sound negative...i loved doing it when my daughter was growing up...but i watched kids being raised as my daughter was being raised so it was fun. my friend took in anyone ... and she was really miserable. good luck.

Kristi - posted on 01/08/2009

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i have a 19 month old son and i have been doing home day care since he was about 6 weeks. I love it even through the challenging times. the most important things i've learned are to make sure you find some alone time with your own child to avoid any jealousy, and keep the kids you are caring for close to the same age as your own. right now i am watching a 17 month old during the day and with the 2 babies during the day things are great but once i pick up the 7 year old after school more behavior issues start between the babies that have been getting along great all day. it makes it far more challenging! besides if the kids you watch are close in age to your own it's more like playmates and they entertain themselves!

Kristi - posted on 01/08/2009

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i have a 19 month old son and i have been doing home day care since he was about 6 weeks. I love it even through the challenging times. the most important things i've learned are to make sure you find some alone time with your own child to avoid any jealousy, and keep the kids you are caring for close to the same age as your own. right now i am watching a 17 month old during the day and with the 2 babies during the day things are great but once i pick up the 7 year old after school more behavior issues start between the babies that have been getting along great all day. it makes it far more challenging! besides if the kids you watch are close in age to your own it's more like playmates and they entertain themselves!

Sherry - posted on 01/08/2009

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Just be aware it's hard work taking care of someone's kids. I worked for a small daycare that a friend owned. It was very rewarding and I'd love to own my one someday with my sister, but my friend couldn't handle the stress of bills and parents so eventually closed down. Apparently, it's very expensive to run that kind of business too. From your home might be different though. She had transformed a little house into a 5 room facility. I worked in the baby room and actually named my son after a baby that I took care of then. Good times.

Becky - posted on 01/07/2009

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First keep in mind that it's like any business, you have expenses and need the income to cover it. That will help you figure out what you are looking for to do in the daycare industry. I was a working mom until my daughter was 9 months old and we finally relized that I could stay at home without working, but didn't want to have to pinch pennies so I started my own daycare. To start off with I only had 1 kid for 10 months. Now I'm booked and only in my 2nd year of running the daycare. I take both full time and part time because I still get the income and still have some quiter days to spend more time with my baby. My hardest thing to remember now that I'm home is that these kids need my attention more than that sink of dishes needs to be washed and more than that load of laundry needing to be folded. I love being home and enjoy taking care of other people's babies. Sometimes though I know I need to get away for my sanity and my family's too. I would recommend that you and your husband set something up for you to go out at least once a month without your kids to enjoy some adult time. I live too far from the big town of Fargo to participate in MOPS and other groups like that but I know that I have permission from the parents to drive into town if I wanted to (not likely to happen with 3 infants and a 2 year old) but that would be another way to get some adult time.



Infants are most likely the ones that will need daycare because big company daycares and center fill up so quickly and an infant is normally considered so until 2 years of age. Around here we have also lost 5 center daycares in the last 2 months. (all in part to poor management, not due to lack of need) I've thought about doing foster care also but I have a child limit in my house since I'm not licensed and I'm not sure I would be willing to love those kids day in and day out only to have them taken from me permanently. With the day care at least I know the kids are going home with mom and dad and I will see them again.



Good luck with your business and enjoy every minute you get with your children because they need and love you more than they will ever be able to tell you.

Marcie - posted on 01/07/2009

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I am not a daycare provider but I do use a private home sitter and I can tell you that I would choose this route for my child any day over a large, company owned day care place.  I just loved it for my children when they were VERY young since you know your sitter can give them more personal attention and love while you are at work.  I would also sit down and think do you want to watch children on a full time/part time/ or both? By that I mean some people only need someone part time (a few days a week)..  IF that is that case, then you would need to make sure for the days you dont have them, you have someone to backfill space in.  My sitters always charged me for the days my kids are there and did not charge me for the days my kids were not there.  That helped me out a lot but you need to decide if you are okay with that?  Again, this is your business and you need to think about things like this...Do you want parents to bring snacks for the kids or will you take care of that?  How about any special needs kids...will you take those who are medically compromised?  Good luck to you!  Parents who need sitters like you are so lucky that people like you are out there!

Marcie - posted on 01/07/2009

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I am not a daycare provider but I do use a private home sitter and I can tell you that I would choose this route for my child any day over a large, company owned day care place.  I just loved it for my children when they were VERY young since you know your sitter can give them more personal attention and love while you are at work.  I would also sit down and think do you want to watch children on a full time/part time/ or both? By that I mean some people only need someone part time (a few days a week)..  IF that is that case, then you would need to make sure for the days you dont have them, you have someone to backfill space in.  My sitters always charged me for the days my kids are there and did not charge me for the days my kids were not there.  That helped me out a lot but you need to decide if you are okay with that?  Again, this is your business and you need to think about things like this...Do you want parents to bring snacks for the kids or will you take care of that?  How about any special needs kids...will you take those who are medically compromised?  Good luck to you!  Parents who need sitters like you are so lucky that people like you are out there!

Liz - posted on 01/06/2009

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Every industry has its peaks and valleys, My suggestion is to stash away money just in case. It depends on what age range of kids you want to watch. If you are comfortable and want to care for babies I think then maybe "yes" it is fairly dependable. If you don't want to care for babies then it may take awhile to get a client base. I always get lots of inquires from parents looking for childcare for their babies. But at this time I only care for children 2yo+. So it can be hard at times to find the clientele, but if you market well you should be okay. I register with the local childcare agency that keeps a database for parents of licensed childcare. I always keep a running post on craigslist, I have made fliers and gone door to door and put them along with business cards in peoples mailboxes, if put brochures up at local coffee shops and any other place that has a bulletin board, you can also become part of your local mothers club. You may also want to look into participating in your local childcare subsidy program (if you have on in your area). I don't do that but it may be something that you can do if you find that you are not getting as many inquiries as you would like. Also try to set up a website with pics of your place. Hope this helps. good luck

[deleted account]

Thank you all for your comments and advise! Keep it coming! My husband is a coach so the teacher avenue is the way I was going to go because that will give me the large client base to choose from. I will have holidays off with my husband and kids but plan to only take a week or two off in the summer and that way I can capture the teacher/parents that want to teach summer school, etc. I want to know from all of you who have or have had home daycares: Is it something that is steady, can I count on it to be there long term? I am coming from the apartment management industry and just am uncertain because the apartment industry is stable but not stable with one company; you have to hop companies a lot because owners buy and sale the properties so often now. I realy am hoping that home daycare will be steady....what is your advise????

Samantha - posted on 01/06/2009

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I just sent for a package to start a course for child care management. I love kids, and and I think it's a field I could do really well in. I don't know much, but I will soon! :)

Jackie - posted on 01/06/2009

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My suggestion would be to advertise in the schools, I did daycare for a couple of years and my clients were teachers so I had summers off with my school-aged children. I was a manager for a company and commuted a hour each way....it was amazing on how much I missed out on and didn't even realize it! I loved the kids and would do it again in a heartbeat!

Christine - posted on 01/06/2009

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i do it,go to school of you want the real money,if not then you just gotta make a good contract...

Raylene - posted on 01/06/2009

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Hi there, I've been doing Family Daycare for 6 years now and I love it. It can be a bit isolating at times, especially when you first start out. I started a playgroup and now have a great circle of carers who gather at my place, with their little ones, once a week to get some adult conversation. Be upfront about your expectations from the parents and let them know what they can expect from you and you shouldn't have too many dramas. The parents can be more of a challenge than the children. Good luck.

Liz - posted on 01/05/2009

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try going to the circle of moms group "moms who work in childcare" I also operate my own licensed family childcare in CA. I care for 5 kids (including mine) 2 days a week and 4 kids 3 days a week. I love it. It makes sense for me. financially and as a mother. I am in the process of expanding my license from small (6 kids) to large (up to 12) Good Luck

User - posted on 01/05/2009

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I love that you want to find a way to stay home with your kids. I used to run a licensed daycare from my home. It is a great way to stay home and make some income, but there are a few things you should consider, that gave me reasons to quit doing daycare and I went into fostering children which also allowed me to stay home and help kids in need. My issues with daycare was that I did not think I would get lonely, with having no adult conversation for 12 hours a day. That there are no coffee breaks in which to refresh yourself, and nap time does not always exist because as you know kids are unpredictable.My biggest issue was the parents that assumed I was a glorified babysitter and that I was not an actual bill that needed to be paid, who did not appreciate the fact that i took care of their children. For me, these were big issues. On a good note, I really did enjoy the kids that I cared for, and they loved me and I loved to see smiles on their faces. But, in the end, I love my 4rver kids that I have gotten through fostering and it gives me way more freedom to be the mom I want to be.
I have also had my kids in a home daycare, and I have nothing but rave reviews for her, but having had a daycare, I truely appreciated her. Good luck with your decision, may it be the right one for you.

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