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Children

Childproofing Service

Help parents feel good about letting their children loose in their homes.

Entrepreneur

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Business At A Glance

Childproofing Service

Startup Costs: Under $2,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Franchises Available? Yes
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

If you could see the average home from a baby’s point of view, youcould find all sorts of trouble to get into–electrical outlets andcords, poisons in cupboards, interesting plants to eat and more. Sincemost of us adults don’t go around on our hands and knees, we don’t seethese potential hazards–or realize other home dangers like scaldingwater or reachable plastic bags.

According to the National Center forInjury Prevention and Control, each year between 20 percent and 25percent of all children sustain an injury severe enough to requiremedical attention, missed school and/or bed rest. And with nearly 4million births in one recent year, there are plenty of babies around.You can avert catastrophes with a baby-proofing service. You’ll tourhomes, installing safety latches, catches and other safety devices andalerting parents to potential hazards like poisonous plants and othermaterials.

The advantages to this business are that you can work from ahome base, you can start out part time, and you’ll provide a needed,appreciated service. You’ll need a strong knowledge of what kind oftrouble babies and small children can get into and how to avert it.You’ll need good people skills to work with parents, some of whom maybe on the overanxious side. And you’ll need the confidence to installchild-proofing latches and other safety devices while mom, dad andassorted grandparents are hovering over your shoulder.

The Market

Your customers will consist mostly of parents and grandparents ofbabies and toddlers, but you might also target businesses that findbabies on board–look for ones that have children’s play areas set upin a corner so toddlers can play while mom, for instance, shops orvisits the doctor. Place ads in local papers and get yourself writtenup in local publications. Send brochures to pediatricians. Introduceyourself to business owners and leave brochures. Go on a local radiochat show to talk about baby-proofing.

Needed Equipment

You’ll need basic tools like screwdrivers, wrenches and a cordlessdrill, as well as a tidy supply of baby-proofing devices. And sincethis is a business that hits about as close to customers’ homes andhearts as possible, you’ll want to be sure to carry liability insurance.

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Children

Puppet Shows

Get kids away from the TV by putting on puppet shows.

Entrepreneur

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Business At A Glance

Puppet Shows

Startup Costs: $2,000 – $10,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

Jim Henson’s puppet creations made himmillions, so why can’t yours? Starting a children’s puppet show serviceis a fantastic way to own and operate your own business. Children can’thelp but be fascinated by puppets. Spending a few dollars to purchaseor make your own puppets and a portable stage can be the beginning of arewarding and moneymaking business venture for you. To get business,simply design some fliers and distribute them to local children’sstores and daycare centers. Try to stay with current and popularchildren themes for your puppets and puppet shows, such as spacecreatures and dinosaurs.

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Children

Doll Making

Hand-crafted dolls can bring joy to children and profits to your business.

Entrepreneur

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Business At A Glance

Doll Making
Startup Costs: Under $2,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Online Operation? Yes

Business Overview

It may not seem like it, but doll making and repairs is a giant segment of the craft and toy industry. To reinforce this, simply visit an antique shop that specializes in antique dolls or a retailer of new custom “one of a kind” dolls, and you’ll soon see that the prices are out of this world. A doll-making business can be started from home on a part-time basis. You can sell the dolls you make through retail accounts, kiosks, mail order, craft shows and the internet.

This is an enterprise that requires very little in the way of startup investment, and the ongoing monthly overhead is also very small. Once you’ve sharpened your skills in doll making, you can proceed to antique doll repairs. Some of the antique dolls can sell for as much as $500 for the “real” thing and $300 for replicas. To get started, find out if doll-making classes are available in your local community.

If they’re not readily available and you master these skills, you could also begin holding your own how-to classes to earn additional income. Don’t forget that in the doll world, all of these creations need accessories, houses, cars, clothes and other doll friends, so your only limit is your imagination.

The Market

Doll and antique collectors

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Children

Shopping Mall Play Centers

Few kids love a long day of shopping. Give parents some much-needed relief with a play center.

Entrepreneur

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Business At A Glance

Shopping Mall Play Centers

Startup Costs: $10,000 – $50,000
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

Millions of parents go to shopping mallsevery day, usually with their children in tow. While shopping can be aterrific family outing, sometimes a break from the children whileshopping can also be a pleasant experience. Starting a shopping mallplay center business can fill a couple of demands. The first, ofcourse, gives parents a fantastic place to drop off their childrenwhile shopping, the second is that the business can be built into asuccessful and profitable venture, which is exactly what you want tohear if starting this type of business is a consideration for you.Establishing a children’s play center in a mall will take carefulplanning, especially for legal and liability issues. However, there isa real potential to generate a six-figure yearly income from a shoppingmall play center for the owner-operator of the business enterprise.

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