Tips for Starting an In-Home Daycare

With most families feeling the need to have two incomes in today’s economy starting an in-home daycare is a great option for moms who want to earn an income while staying at home with their kids. Starting an in-home daycare is fairly easy, and doesn’t require too much in upfront start-up costs, however there are some tips you will need to take in order to be successful as an in-home daycare operator.

Decide Your Hours

The first thing you will need to do is to think seriously about the hours you are going to be able to watch kids. Will it be first shift, second shift, or third shift? What you need to remember is that when you agree to watch children you are obligating yourself to being at home during those hours. This is something you need to think really hard about and make sure that you understand the time commitment you are making.

Look Into Local Laws

Some areas of the United States have very strict rules about running a daycare out of your home while others are very lenient. Be sure to check into all of the local laws in your area before getting started. For example, when we lived in Tampa, Florida you had to be a licensed in-home daycare operator to post a childcare ad in the local newspaper, and post your license number in the ad.

Gather Supplies

If you have a young child at home you may already have most of the supplies that you will need for your daycare on hand. More than likely you will need a high chair, Pack N Play for naptime, a baby swing, and age appropriate toys. Depending on the number of children you are going to be watching though you may need more than one of each item.


This will require a little bit of research on your point since the cost of childcare varies drastically depending upon the area that you live in. In some areas you can expect to get paid $60 per week per child, while in other areas you will find childcare costs average up to $200 per week per child. To find out what the appropriate rates are in your area you will need to call around to different daycare centers in your area to find out what they are charging. You will also want to make sure that you call around to other in-home daycares to make sure that you are competitive.

Advertising The next step you will want to take is to advertise your new in-home daycare. You can advertise your daycare by posting flyers at local businesses, by placing ads in the newspaper, and by placing ads online. Several in-home daycares even go as far as to create a website for their daycare to let prospective parents know a little more about them.

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