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HOW DO I START MY OWN HOME CARE AGENCY?

Aug 25, 2020
If you are serious about starting your own home care agency, there’s a lot to consider. You must have the right qualifications and experience, but you’ll also need to have the ability to manage a team, deliver quality care and run a business. 
 
In this article, we look at some of the things you’ll need to think about when setting up a healthcare agency.   
 

Why Should You Start Your Own Home Care Agency?

 
The UK has an ageing population – average life expectancy is increasing. This has heightened the demand for domiciliary and private care. 
 
Although the NHS goes some way to meeting this demand, there is plenty of opportunity for independent businesses. In fact, the industry is worth over £7billion per year. 
 
If you have the passion, experience and drive to create a quality care agency, then you could find yourself with a highly successful, profitable and rewarding business. 
 

How Much Does It Cost To Set Up A Home Care Agency? 

 
As with most businesses, you will need to invest quite heavily in the early days. Although you may save on office costs by working from home, you will still need funding for salaries, training, systems and marketing. 
 
If you are unable to fund this through your own savings or private investment, you may be able to secure a start-up loan or business loan from your bank. They’ll usually want to see a business plan before they agree any loans, so there’s a bit of work to be done, even before you apply. 
 
Fortunately, because of the proven demand, you are at a slight advantage when compared to some types of business. 
 
The cost of starting your business will depend on several factors. For example, if you already have a good network and have some experience in marketing, you may not need to spend as much on advertising or outsourcing. If you decide not to take on permanent office space, this will again save you money. 
 
However, trying to cut corners too much or take on too many roles yourself could impact on the quality of service you deliver, so you’ll need to be realistic. 
 
That’s why a business plan is the best starting point. If you understand what your pricing will look like, what capacity you’ll have for clients and what the rough costs will be, you’ll be able to work out what level of investment is required. 
 

How To Start Your Own Home Care Business?

 
As mentioned above, your business plan is the starting point. You need to identify your business model. 
 
Will you focus on a particular geographical area? What services will you offer? Will you specialise in a specific type of care? How quickly do you plan on growing your business, and how will you manage that? 
 
Another critical step is deciding on a registered manager. This doesn’t have to be you as the business owner, but if it’s not you, then you’ll have to factor in a salary for whoever you delegate it to. They will be responsible for day-to-day operations and ensuring compliance, so they must have the required qualifications. 
 
Once you have a business plan and registered manager in place, you’ll need to implement effective systems and processes. These will need to cover recruitment, HR, compliance, marketing, operations, accounts, training, logistics, record keeping, complaint handling, safeguarding and many other aspects of running a safe home care agency. You’ll also need the right equipment, uniforms and software as well as the correct insurance. 
 
While it may sound overwhelming, it’s important to remember that you don’t have to do everything alone. There is plenty of help and support available, and once you have adequate systems in place, it’s just a case of maintaining and improving on them. 
 

How To Secure Contracts For Your Home Care Business?

 
A key element of your success will depend on the contracts you secure. If you don’t have any clients, then it doesn’t matter how good your team or systems are, you won’t be successful. Fortunately, there are several ways you can market your business. 
 
Your local authority can be a great starting point as they often allow private companies to tender for contracts. You can also try local networking and registering on regional directories and forums. 
 
Creating your own website and advertising both online and locally can help you attract private clients directly. You can build a website for a relatively low cost, and many social media platforms are free to use, although you can also invest in paid advertising. 
 

Help And Support Getting Started

 
As we mentioned earlier, it can feel overwhelming starting a home care agency, especially if your experience is in delivering care, rather than running a business. 
 
But don’t let the list of tasks put you off. If you are passionate about quality care and are willing to work hard, then the pay off will be worth it. 
 
And you aren’t alone. 
 
Healthcare Business School was founded to help people just like you. We want to fill that demand for quality healthcare services by empowering more healthcare professionals to start the businesses they’ve always dreamed about. 
 
So if you do want to start a home care business, let us help. Enrol in one of our value-for-money, start your own business courses where you’ll get a greater insight into how to get going. Not only will this help you decide whether starting your own home care agency is right for you, but it will also make sure you understand everything that’s involved. 
 
Alternatively, if you know 100% that this is what you want to do, then our 1-2-1 coaching might be just what you need. Your dedicated, experienced mentor will guide you through each stage of the process, from identifying your business model to winning new contracts. 
 
If you have any questions about starting a healthcare business or our services, then get in touch. 

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