Did you know that child care accounts for 7.8% of a family’s monthly income?  Parents may more than often need to take their children to daycare when:

·         There is the unavailability of house helps.

·         They face disappointments from house helps.

·         They need to pursue and take care of their jobs.

Due to the busy lifestyles of many parents, the daycare business will always be in demand. There are a number of things you need to consider when starting a daycare business.


Factors to consider when setting up a daycare business

1.       Location

Location plays a huge role in the success of a business. In the case of daycare, it should be in a place that can be accessible to many people. Most parents will consider that which they pass on their way to and from their workstations because it is more convenient for them.


2.       Licensing

Licenses prove credibility and it’s one way of instilling trust and reassuring the parents. Here are a few licenses you will need as a new business owner:

·         County Business Permit License. The charges of this type depend on the location and the size of the premises. Prices could range from ksh4000 to ksh15000.

·         Public Health License. This type is to check if the environment is conducive for children. License charges average ksh3000.

·         Individual Health Certificate. The employees need to provide this certificate to ensure they are in good health and not at risk of spreading diseases to children. The charges average ksh1500.



3.       Space

Of course, you need a place to host your kids. The room should have ample space for the kids to run around and play together.

Hygiene is also very vital in an environment with kids. From the bathrooms to the kitchen, ensure that they are clean because that’s where the children will be in and out of all day long.

4.       Staff

Once you are done choosing the location, getting the license, and picking a room, now it’s time to employ people who will be taking care of the kids. Every child needs individual attention so make sure you have enough staff to look after the kids.

In addition, checking the staff’s qualifications is not necessary but it will make you stand out and win more clients. Some of the qualifications you should be looking for are:

·         Trained teacher.

·         First aid giver.

·         Communication skills.

·         Empathy and compassion.


5.       Facilities

These are the required equipment to run a successful daycare. It is good to have enough of these to ensure every child feels considered. These may include:

·         Play area: Bouncing castle, swings, slides, toys, TV.

·         Sleeping area: Mattresses, bed sheets, blankets.

·         Kitchen: Cups, plates, cooking pots, microwave, fridge.


6.       Meals and snacks

It is imperative that children receive proper nutrition throughout the day. There are three policies that you can decide on when setting up a daycare center. You should also discuss with parents to choose which best suits their children:

·         All children to carry their own food and snacks.

·         Food and snacks are provided in the daycare.

·         A combination of both, i.e. Children to carry their food, and the daycare will provide snacks.


7.       Extra services

Offering extra services will make you stand out from the competition. Offer services that are needful and will save the parents time. Services like:

·         Free medical checkups

·         Hair plaiting

·         Barber

·         Birthday party celebrations



8.       Opening and closing hours

Time is everything. Considering the parent's needs when deciding when to open and close will always put you a step ahead.

·         Open early for parents who need to go to work early.

·         Close late for parents who work late at night.


9.       Pricing

Undercharging will not necessarily bring you more clients nor will overcharge make you lose clients. If the extra services are really important, parents will consider paying above average.  Offer your clients the following methods to choose from when paying for the daycare:

·         Hourly

·         Daily

·         Monthly


Last but not least, do proper marketing for your daycare business. Marketing is what will determine the success of your business. When marketing, it is always a good idea to state what makes you different from the other daycares. Let the potential clients know what makes you stand out from the rest. This could be by:

·         Offering free daycare days.

·         Giving discounts for referrals.

·         Wall painting and board designing.


As long as there are parents seeking child care, there will always be a demand for it. When you exclude the licensing part, you will realize that starting a daycare requires zero capital. It just requires your time.

Author: Jennifer Nyawira