How to Start a Family Day Care - Opening & Grants

March 28, 2021


If you’ve ever wanted to start your own business in childcare with the added benefits of working from home, then operating a family day care business may be the answer! With the childcare centres being in high demand you can start your own family based care facility and start helping other families with their childcare needs. However, there are a few steps that need to be followed and several guidelines that must be adhered to. In this short article we’ll give you a brief rundown on some of the requirements of opening and operating a family day care centre in your own home.

Many parents love and prefer a family day care because it allows for a more intimate and nurturing environment for children. It can benefit children who struggle in larger groups or need more individual attention. A homely atmosphere can help children feel more comfortable and secure.

Many parents love the diversity in a family day care since it allows children to learn about and experience different cultures.

Family day care is also a good option for children with special needs, as the smaller setting and individual attention can be beneficial for children that require additional support.

Are you ready to start a family daycare centre?

If you’re not sure how to open a family day care centre, or are interested in how to become a family daycare provider, then we can take you through the steps involved. The information we have in this article is offered as a general guide, and there may be specific requirements that need to be followed depending on what state you live in. 

In any business, including family day care, you're going to have expenses, therefore you’ll need to know, how much money can you make from family day care? Although it depends on your exact area and how many families will take up your services, and how many children you’re able to care for. Family day carers are limited to an intake of seven (7) children at any one time, with a maximum of four (4) if they are under preschool age. However, for less experienced people you may be more suited to looking after fewer children until you gain more experience. The amount of money a person can make is variable, but you could expect $45,000-$70,000 per year. Many people decide to do family daycare as a way to offer something back to the community rather than to make money.

How to start a family day care

When considering how to open a family day care, you need to make sure that you are fully qualified and can meet the guidelines of the state that you live in. For most areas, you’ll need at least a Certificate III in Children’s Services as well as training that covers First Aid, Asthma management, and Anaphylaxis management. You can also check The Department of Education, Skills and Employment website for any additional information in regards to the training required. 

When booking a course, it's important to know the difference between paediatric first aid and a standard first aid course. Skills Training Group explains, "paediatric courses are meant to support children under the age of 16 while first aid at work courses are designed to care for coworkers that are of age."
Before operating your service, you need training that covers paediatric first aid. The training typically includes information on how to respond to various emergencies, such as choking, burns, fractures, and head injuries. It's recommended to check with the local government or regulatory body to ensure the course is recognized and accepted in your state. It's also vital to note that the paediatric first aid certificate needs to be updated regularly, and it's a good idea to check the expiration date and renew it before it expires.

Before you start caring for children, you’ll also need to complete a few personal and business-related concerns, including: 

  • Having appropriate Public Liability Insurance
  • Complete a Police Check
  • Complete a working with children check
  • Completed a first aid certificate
  • Obtained a medical certificate
  • Supply activity materials
  • Have a good range of suitable toys and games for activities
  • Inspect the family home for any safety issues
  • Purchase or supply suitable playground equipment
  • Provide standard equipment in relation to running your business, including:
    • Mobile and landline phones
    • Computer equipment
    • Record keeping processes
    • Suitable internet connection
    • Appropriate banking
    • Email accounts

It’s also important to note that as you’re running a business all taxation and business-related expenses will need to be covered. If you’re not able to provide these or are not sure of the requirements, then you seek help from other people who are skilled in these areas.

Grants for family day care providers

When thinking about how to open a family day care agency, you can look at some of the grants that are available from many government agencies, and private operators, and see if you can meet the guidelines. Family care needs to be accessible to all families, as it’s an important part of the family unit, as such there have been grants put in place to support those that may not have easy access to it. This includes support for isolated families, families with special needs children, indigenous families, and many others. Grants for child care centres are brilliant for helping to support providers and families that need access to these services. If you’re considering operating your own family day care, then looking out for a family day care start up grant can help you obtain the funds required.

Consider looking up the Community Child Care Fund (CCCF). This national funding program is designed to increase the affordability and accessibility of child care for families.

Next steps to becoming a family day care provider

If you’re looking for how to become an approved child care provider, you need to apply through the Department of Education, Skills and Employment. They can show you the appropriate path to take and teach you how to become a family day care provider in NSW, QLD, VIC, or any other Australian state.

While there may be many steps involved and it can seem to take time before you can become qualified, the rewards of operating your own business and providing vital services to your community can be extremely rewarding.

Once you've become a family daycare provider, make sure you get in touch with Toddle to organise your listing on the website.

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Toddle is the most comprehensive child care finder in Australia, on a mission to make parents’ lives easier.