Thinking of starting a childcare business

A registered childminding service

Childminding can be very rewarding; you will be your own boss and run your business from your own home. 

As a registered childminder you will:

  • Be able to care for your own children at the same time if you have a family 
  • Offer the children you care for a happy stimulating environment 
  • Provide learning opportunities and influence how the children in your care develop 
  • Work in your home, choosing the hours you work and the services you provide 
  • Meet other childminders in your area and get to know your local community 

What does a registered childminder do?

As a registered childminder you will look after one or more children under the age of 8 for more than two hours a day, usually in your own home, for payment. As a registered childminder you will work to National Minimum Standards, and be inspected by the Care Inspectorate Wales (CIW) to ensure you provide a safe and stimulating environment for the children that you care for. You will usually be self- employed and running your own business.

A childminder must meet the CIW National Minimum Standards (attached at the bottom of this email) before registration can be granted.

Although every day will be different, a typical day may include:

  • Visiting a park, library or playgroup 
  • Arranging fun and stimulating learning activities, such as dressing-up or creative play 
  • Providing meals and snacks for the children, involving them in food preparation 
  • Taking children to and from school or clubs 
  • Working with other local childminders to organise group activities

Before you can start working as a childminder caring for children under 8 years old in your home, you will need to be registered by CIW as it is illegal to care for children under the age of 8 in your own home for more than two hours a day for payment without being registered (unless you are a blood relative of the child)

With effect from 01 October 2012 the registration process for childminding in Pembrokeshire has been as follows:

  • Attend a briefing session arranged by the Family Information Service (FIS)
  • Enrol on to the CYPOP 5 course: Understand how to set up a home based childcare service with Pembrokeshire College
  • Attend all sessions of the CYPOP 5 course
  • Compile and complete your portfolio of evidence following the assessment criteria for the CYPOP 5
  • Attend a pre-registration workshop for help and guidance on: Creating your childminding prospectus, Writing policies and procedures, Documenting evidence for registration
  • Attend a 12 hour Paediatric First Aid course
  • Submit your application to the CIW
  • Have an enhanced CRB check, health check and references taken
  • Have a home visit by a SIW inspector
  • Apply for a Start Up Grant from the Local Authority
  • Contact the FIS to inform them you are about to start childminding

Frequently asked questions

Is it expensive to get started?

As a new childminder in Wales, you may get help from the Childcare Partnership within the Local Authority, who currently support the cost of the PACEY ‘Tools of the Trade', which has many benefits including 12 months public liability and membership of PACEY.

How many children can I look after?

The maximum number of children for whom a childminder may care for as follows:

  • Six children under eight years of age.
  • Of those six children, no more than three may be under five years of age.
  • Of those three children, normally no more than two may be under 18 months of age, although exceptions can be made for siblings.

Please note: Your own children are included in the ratios

Do I have to live in a big house?

You do not need to have a big house and garden to become a childminder. You do not even need to own your own home.

How much can I charge?

It will be up to you to set your fees. 

What does the future hold?

Childminding is a dynamic and evolving career so once your business is up and running, there are plenty of courses and training opportunities that will help you develop your knowledge and confidence. 

There are several childcare qualifications you can work towards, from basic introductory training right up to degree level!

When you start out, you will need to attend the recognised pre-registration training course for new childminders: Understand how to set up a home based childcare service (referenced on the Qualifications and Credit Framework as Children and Young People Optional Unit 5 - CYPOP 5) in conjunction with Pembrokeshire College and learners can go on to attain Level 3 diploma in Childcare Learning and Development. As well as learning relevant aspects of childcare, this knowledge based unit supports the development of policies and procedures relevant to registration and the basic business skills to set up a home based childcare service.

What is included in the Start up grant?

You can apply through the Childcare Partnership for a Start Up grant which consists of:

  • PACEY ‘Tools of the trade' 
  • 12 months' public liability insurance and membership of PACEY
  • Cashbook and attendance register 
  • Accident/incident/medication book 
  • Childminding contracts 
  • Child record forms 
  • Fire blanket  

Can I study for the CYPOP 5 course online?

Yes, PACEY offer the CYPOP5 as an e-learning course, where learners can undertake the course at their own pace and at times that suit them. The e-learning course costs around £190. This price includes VAT and all registration and assessment charges.

Further information on the CYPOP 5 e-learning course is available by emailing:

ID: 1773, revised 14/03/2023