Types of childcare

Childcare with friends

If you are caring for the children of one or more friends in your own home or someone else’s home, you may not have to register with Ofsted if:

  • no money or payment changes hands
  • it is for three hours or less per day, and some payment is made

Ofsted defines payment as a ‘payment of money or money’s worth’ but does not include the provision of goods or services; it means payment for or towards the costs involved in the childcare, such as a contribution to heating and lighting, or paying for food or repairs to the place where the childminding happens.

If you look after someone’s child in their home you may not be required to register with Ofsted. This includes caring for children of up to two sets of parents in one or both sets of parents’ homes. However, you need to register as a childminder if you look after the children of three sets of parents in any or all of the parents’ homes.

For more information or if you are not sure whether you should register or not please contact Ofsted on 0300 123 1231 or email them at enquiries@ofsted.gov.uk