The District of Central Saanich would like to support you in starting and operating a home-based daycare. If this is what you are planning, please see below for important actions to take. This guide has been provided to support development of home-based child care in our community. It’s important to remember that the regulations around operating a home-based child care are set by the Government of B.C. and may change. If you are using this guide, it is your responsibility to ensure that details provided remain relevant.
DETERMINE IF YOUR PROPOSED LOCATION IS SUITABLE FOR A HOME-BASED CHILD CARE
There are several municipal bylaws and regulations that are important for home-based daycare operators to understand and follow. A good first step is determining if your location is in a Land Use Zone that allows in-home child care. The table below includes all zones where this is a permitted use (up to eight children in care as allowed by provincial regulations for this type of childcare). See the Zoning and ALR Map to determine the zoning of the specific property where you plan to operate. The suitability of your location can be confirmed while applying for a business license (see section 5 below).
Land Use Zones Allowing In-Home Child Care – District of Central Saanich
Small Lot Residential Two Family
Historical Artifacts Agriculture
Residential Carriage House
Comprehensive Development Zone 3
Rural Estate (Water)
Comprehensive Development Zone 5
Rural Estate (Variable Lot Size)
Comprehensive Development Zone 7
Comprehensive Development Zone 9
Rural Estate Residential
Large Lot Single Family Residential
Medium Lot Single Family Residential
Residential Attached (Ground Oriented)
Small Lot Single Family Residential
Single Family Residential Infill
Zero Lot Line Single Family Residential
Residential Two Family
DECIDE ON WHICH TYPE OF HOME-BASED CHILD CARE YOU WOULD LIKE TO OPERATE
There are three types of home-based child care in BC. In all cases, the person providing care must also be the license holder, and if caring for their own children under the age of 13, they must be included in the group size calculations. There are also varying levels of education required for the licensee/operator. With the exception of License-not-required, maximum group size includes the operator’s own children and the age of the operator’s children may affect maximum group size as outlined in the Child Care Licensing Regulation.
Type of Child Care
Maximum Group Size
In-Home Multi-Age* (Licensed)
(or a sibling group)
(or a sibling group)
*There are other limits on the numbers of children in care based on the ages of children being cared for in these types of child care. See the Child Care Licensing Regulation for details. If there is any discrepancy between the Regulation and the information in this document, the Regulation is correct.
CONSIDER LICENSING YOUR CHILD CARE
A licensed child care enables caring for more children and an increase in overall income. Island Health Child Care Licensing is the agency that approves and monitors licensed child care on Vancouver Island. Licensed child care facilities may also be eligible for funding support, such as Start-Up Grants and Child Care Operating Funding through the Province of B.C.
Their guide to assist planning a licensed child care (Steps to Obtaining a Community Care Facility Licence: Child Care) applies to all types of licensed child care. The licensing office should provide support for completing the steps involved. Reach a Licensing Officer by phone at 250-519-3401. Other resources that support licensing, as well as development and operation of any successful child care, can be found below under Resources For Starting A Home-Based Child Care Business.
LICENSED CHILD CARE FACILITIES AND ELIGIBILITY FOR PROVINCIAL SUPPORT
Licensed child care operations, including Licensed Family and In-Home Multi-Age facilities, may be eligible for start-up or operating funding through the Province of B.C., depending on funding availability. Contact Child Care Licensing to discuss programs that may be applicable to you. Potential funding programs available to licensed facilities include:
IF YOU ARE PLANNING A LICENSE-NOT-REQUIRED CHILD CARE, CONSIDER REGISTRATION
License-Not-Required child care providers may choose to register with the local Child Care Resource & Referral program. By doing so, providers can access support, information, training, and resources aimed at enhancing program quality, with a small number of requirements meant to support safe and effective child care. For more information see Victoria Child Care Resource and Referral.
WORK WITH THE DISTRICT OF CENTRAL SAANICH TO MEET ALL MUNICIPAL REQUIREMENTS
The District of Central Saanich encourages the development of home-based child care facilities. Once you have determined that your proposed location permits home-based child care and developed a plan for you’re the type of child care you would like to offer, applying for a business license will begin a conversation with the District to support meeting all requirements, including:
- Obtaining a business license
- Obtaining any other applicable permits required for starting or operating your business. Depending on your residence and plans, this may include:
See the following resources for business licenses and home occupation regulations:
All child care providers are required to follow any applicable laws and regulations regarding the operation of a business. If you are unsure about the requirements for your business, please see the provincial business resources located below.
RESOURCES FOR STARTING A HOME-BASED CHILD CARE BUSINESS
Further District Resources
Provincial or Regulator Resources
District Staff Contacts
Business License Officer