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Old 10-25-2010, 07:42 PM
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Default Question Concerning Opening A Hourly Based Facility

I am looking into the viability of opening a hourly based drop off center in South Florida.

Now I would love whatever help and advice anyone could provide, but I am not looking for a crash course in all things child care, nor do I want someone to give me a business plan. (not that I would delete the e-mail ) I have long been a part of a business owners forum with another industry and I understand the frustration with people coming around and trying to get all of their "research" done in one spot and without any effort.

I used to live in Tulsa Ok and I worked from home so there was little need for outside child care, but every once in a while I would utilize a hourly center for date nights/heavy cleaning or whenever it was necessary. The facility I used was only licensed for part time care, but for my purposes it was never even close to a problem. When I first thought about the idea I only thought in terms of part time care, but in my research I noticed a number of the hourly care centers also have full time services so I am looking into the differences licensing, space, services, and any other things required. (legal, or service based)

So, I said all of that to say this. I am wanting to start looking at commercial real-estate just to get some numbers to kick around and was wondering what kind of space considerations I should be looking at? I did contact a company (kidspark) for some information about possibly franchising and I was told that in Florida you are required to have outdoor space, she also said 3500-4000sqft was their average space. I have notice all the local facilities have outdoor areas, but I didn't think it was a requirement, it just made sense for a full time facility, so I am adjusting my search to include stand alone buildings with an outdoor area. I also do realize most of my space needs will be predicated by the number of kids I plan to accommodate, I'm just having trouble translating my "vision" into a sqft number.

Also I was thinking about adding electronic game/educational systems to my services because my son loves his stuff, but I have noticed most centers don't have many electronic choices. Is this a cost consideration, an overall unnecessary item, a "fighting for it" problem, or a different issue. (or do more places do it than I realize)

I was going to wait until I had a few more specific questions to ask, but I really wanted a kick-start to my research. But I will do some more research and ask more specific questions once I have more specific things I need answered.
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Old 10-25-2010, 08:02 PM
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Start with the licensing regs for whatever state you are in. Most have the required square footage required for the number of children served.
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