5 tips to help you save tens of thousands when opening your nursery

Save Money Opening Your Nursery

Save money opening your nursery - open a nursery on a budgetHave you ever wanted to open your own nursery?

If you have tried to open a nursery or looked into it, you will probably be aware that opening a nursery can be expensive. 

The cost of opening a nursery can reach well over £100,000, especially if you plan to purchase your building.

Despite these high costs many new nurseries open each year.  This is because the UK’s nursery sector is booming, and if you love children and wish to turn your passion into a business you may well consider this sector as a viable option. 

And guess what?

Opening a nursery doesn’t have to be expensive!

I opened my first nursery for roughly £10, 000 (check out the bonus tip at the end to see how I done this).

You could do the same.

These five tips can help reduce your costs by up to £50,000.

So, that you can still open your nursery even if you don’t have a big budget. 

Don’t let a lack of finances stop you from achieving your dream of opening your own nursery.  Many of the people I’ve helped to open a nursery, do not have the biggest budget to open up. 

No. 1 – Negotiate a rent free/ mortgage free period

This is underused by most people as it can be daunting to ask for something for free.

However, from experience a lot of landlords and mortgage providers are open to the suggestion, and there is no harm in asking.

A rent-free period or rent abatement is the suspension of rent that you, as the tenant, would otherwise pay at the start of the lease. Here, the landlord does not require you to pay rent for the premises until your business is up and running.

When negotiating the lease/ mortgage for the building you can ask the landlord or mortgage provider for a rent/mortgage-free period at the beginning of the contract to help you to undertake necessary building works.  Before you start getting an income.

This becomes easier to negotiate if you are planning on a long lease.

This is usually between one and three months, though can be anywhere up to 6 months.

Potential Savings: £15,000

No. 2 – Buy resources second-hand

When buying equipment for your nursery, you don’t need to open up your nearest nursery catalogue and spend tens of thousands.

A lot of resources can be brought cheaply from local schools or nurseries.  It’s advisable to check some out.

I managed to get a lot of good quality robust chairs, tables and outdoor equipment from my local school who was just doing a remodelling.  All for free.

You can also find some good resources from sellers on eBay, Amazon or Facebook selling groups.

Top tip – find out if any nurseries have recently closed down and buy some of their resources in bulk.

Potential Savings: £5,000

No. 3 – Register with Ofsted as soon as you have your building

Usually, it is advised to wait until all your building work is done and you have secured all your equipment before registering with Ofsted.  This is because when Ofsted visit you, your building and nursery have to be completely ready – as if you were to open the next day.

Though, Ofsted can take up to six months to register a nursery once the application is complete.  This could lead to a situation where you have to wait a whole six months, paying rent, gas and electricity on a building just waiting for Ofsted.

Therefore, I advise to register with Ofsted as soon as you get your building.

This gives you the chance to do all the building works etc whilst your application is being reviewed.  If Ofsted do wish to visit early and the works are not ready, you can delay them by up to 16 weeks.

Also, if there is anything that needs changing in your application it gives you a chance to do this without causing extra delay.

Potential Savings: £15,000

No. 4 – Pay nothing for your recruitment, human resources, accounting and marketing

A lot of nursery owners spend thousands per quarter managing their recruitment, human resources, accounting and marketing.

This is because many lack the confidence to do it themselves.  You may also be in this position; I was too when I first opened my nursery.

However, once I learnt how to do it myself, I realised how simple it was.  If you take the time (which isn’t that long) to learn these systems you can save so much money, not just on opening, but for as long as you run your business.

I teach all of this in the full course ‘Open Your Own Nursery In Just 6 Months Without A Massive Budget‘.  It covers how to hire staff, how to pay HMRC, pay pensions, register your business & pay tax and how to create your website.  Plus, lots more.

So, if you want to learn all of that I suggest enrolling on the course.

Potential Savings: £10,000

No. 5 – Stagger your recruitment

This one is more obvious, but can be overlooked due to the task of planning your opening.

So I must remind you – don’t hire all your staff straight away.

When you first open you are unlikely to have sold out all your nursery places (you aren’t expected to be full until at least 9 months after opening).  This means you do not need to hire all the staff needed as if you were full.

You can stagger your recruitment as you grow.

Hire just a few staff at the beginning and as you get more children in hire some more to cover the increased demand.  Planning your recruitment correctly in stages can save you loads in the long run.

It also helps you extra time to mould the staff into your ethos as there will be less to manage.

Potential Savings: £5,000

Overall, although it can cost upwards of £100, 000 to start your nursery.  With these tips you can start your nursery for much less (under £30,000).

If you are looking to start your own nursery, register below to enrol on the free course.

Bonus tip – open a nursery from your home

This is how I started, when I opened my first nursery. I only had a few thousand pounds to start my nursery and this just covered purchasing resources needed to open up.

To do this, I simply converted my front room into a nursery room and I was fortunate enough to have a garden.

Running a nursery from home is different to being a childminder. 

The official name of it is Childcare on Domestic Premises.

There are certain things you must do to differentiate yourself.

By being a nursery in your home you follow similar Ofsted guidelines and regulations as a nursery.  This makes it easier to move to your own building when you can afford one, as you don’t have to register under a new registration and Ofsted will approve your application much quicker.

Fortunately, I have done a course which takes you through the complete steps to opening your own nursery.  From how to register with Ofsted to how to hire staff.  If you plan to open your own nursery in your home you can enrol on the course here: Open A Nursery From Home Course

Learn how to set up your own nursery and all the costs involved by enrolling on this free short course

How to open a nursery free starter guide

Take the free course on ‘How to open a nursery’ to learn how.

In the course you will learn:

  1. How to budget for your nursery
  2. How much it costs to start a nursery
  3. How to create your first business plan
  4. The other steps involved in opening a nursery

To get started on the free course simply enter your email address below:


After registration you will be redirected to the course, where you simply have to click enrol at the bottom of the next page.

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