Starting a daycare is an exciting adventure and a great career move for daycare providers. We asked the OwnADaycare on Facebook members, “If you had to give a new daycare provider or family daycare business owner one or two important tips, what would they be”? Our veteran daycare owners provided their best tips for new daycare owners:
- Make sure that clients pre-pay, get a deposit, and create good contract, but most of all have a good social outlet for yourself. You will burn out quicker if you don’t get out and talk to grownups often enough.
- 1st off Check your state sex offender list. I recently had to shut a facility down because I did not know a registered sex offender lived close by and I lost all my clients before i could legally do anything and the law protected him because he had lived there all his life, also if you are going to rent a building make sure that the building is up to code.
- Stick to your policies across the board. Remember, 15 minutes turns into 30 into 45 and so on … So enforce the fees and provide stellar service.
- Remember, you do NOT work FOR your clients, you PROVIDE a service TO them. Get your contract agreed with a settling in period which works both ways. ENJOY!!!
- Make a plan and stick to it. Take time off. Don’t be afraid to voice your opinion. Never forget it’s your house, your rules and it’s OK to say NO once in a while! Most of all, remember it’s a blessing to do this for a living and you are touching the lives of not only children in your care, but in the families lives that trust you.
- Everyone wants something for free! And the daycare provider will be the first place they try to get it! Parents WILL try to take advantage of you! Put your foot down, stand firm in your policies and don’t let your families walk all over you!
- Try not to OVER ENROLL!! Providers get caught every time!! Get a good feel from parents too! If your gut instinct is bad, stay away from enrolling that family!!!
- Don’t lower your rates out of fear of not getting children. Don’t forget to take time for yourself and your family!
- Have a contract, don’t expect the parents to remember all of your rules….just remind them if they break a rule. If someone asks you for something extra (later hours, transporting their child to school, whatever) tell them to give you some time to think about it and take 24 hours to think it thru. If you decide you can do this for them, tell them that you can do that for now but if it doesn’t work out, you’ll have to stop doing it.
- It’s your business make sure that neither the parents nor the kids try to take over. Remember if you do for one there all going to want you to do for them.
- Be friendly with your families, but not friends. It’s too hard to stick to your policies and enforce rules when you get too friendly with your families.
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