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CM's Advice please on a "posh shed"

(18 Posts)
RosieGirl Sun 12-Jun-11 10:56:31

Following mum2bless's thread on juggling home/work life. I have been minding for 8 years and have started to struggle overall. I have been looking for another job in the outside world, but so far have had no luck and due to personal circumstances don't think it will be the answer.

My own DD's are now older 9 and 14 and during recent school holidays it has been quite difficult as they want to be able to play the Wii, watch DVD's, and have their own bits out, friends around, especially my 9 year old who has tonnes of polly pocket, but a tiny bedroom so isn't allowed her own stuff out, which is causing tension. My DH has never really liked my job and works long hours, doesn't do any housework, doesn't like coming home to toys everywhere, especially now our own are older, so I find myself working all hours god-sends trying to keep our home tidy.

After visiting a fellow minder who has a very large house, and a separate area for minding, which at the end of the day she shuts the door and walks away, made me think - boy I would love this.

We have a large garden, would it be allowed if I looked at a really good "log cabin" style shed, fully insulated etc, and worked from here, so I could "go to work" in a morning leave my own home and return when finished? Would parents like this?

I am probably being daft as I think the cost would be massive and the groundwork's, electricity, fitting, it is really just a passing thought at the moment but any advice would be appreciated.

KatyMac Sun 12-Jun-11 11:01:01

I looked at this - the toilet was the issue

Do it, slightly less lavishly & put your children in it - that way OFSTED can't complain

MollysChamber Sun 12-Jun-11 11:02:37

The cost would be massive.

MovingAndScared Sun 12-Jun-11 11:04:11

as a parent i wouldn't like this all that much - as I am looking for homebased care -and that would feel more like a nuserey - and if you had children in there I think you would need a loo, and running water - and what about when you gave them meals etc
but you could look into one for your DC to have some of their own space maybe -as that wouldl't need a much stuff eg no loo etc - normally called garden rooms - some threads on property section on here
my childminder normally has fridays off at the moment -and puts all the toys/highchair in her shed on the thursday or fri night

Hi Rosie,

I did almost exactly what you are talking about and it is fab! It didnt cost the earth either. Basically, it is a large summerhouse (21 feet by 13 feet) in the garden and I use it as a play room. It has all my toys, parent board, display boards etc in it and parents and Ofsted loved it! I had my inspection in May and she only had lovely things to say about it! We have a small house and I was battling for space and this was the only solution as an extension would have cost a small fortune. It has electricity but no loo or running water. Ofsted didnt bat an eye at this as I still use the lounge for some of my minding and all meals and she was more than happy with this. I keep a small collection of toys in a basket in the lounge and it means my house is tidy. Also, it is a real wow point with parents who have visited too! I needed a good selling point and I believe this was it! I am now full and looking to maybe employ and assistant as I get regular enquiries. I have been informed that 3 childminders in my area have had to close due to lack of business, I am finding the opposite! If you want more info, want to see the photos, costing etc...send me an email, I am more than happy to help!

It doesnt look or feel anything like a shed, more like a lovely cottage in the garden! I still use my house for sleeping though. I dont think I could do ALL my minding in it but I certainly do 75% of it in there. What is great is that I have all my paperwork in there so it isnt cluttering up the house.

pippin26 Sun 12-Jun-11 12:14:02

Thing is I am sure there is something about it becoming a 'different' type of business (environment) when you have a designated/separate area for childminding.

KatyMac Sun 12-Jun-11 12:56:30

Looking back at my records OFSTED said at the time (about 2004/5) that it would have to be attached to the house

minderjinx Sun 12-Jun-11 13:09:21

My kids have a "posh shed" den which gives them somewhere to keep stuff and leave games out and so on without the little ones interfering with them. I thought that would be easier than trying to move the childminding out of the house, but we also have a separate playroom in the house, so I can just close the door on it all at weekends.

Rules must have changed. Ofsted have been here and said nothing like that. I also have a letter from Ofsted stating I can use the summerhouse for childminding.

RosieGirl Sun 12-Jun-11 13:36:57

Thanks for all the replies. Space is an issue in our house, I already have a 8x10 shed to store toys, a large wardrobe in my office to store jigsaws etc and tons of boxes for art and craft stuff and sometimes don't feel the children benefit from all the equipment I have as I can't physically get it in my house and still have space to live. And although I understand the feeling about my kids having a shed/summerhouse, It doesn't cover the issue of my house still being one big play room, not being able to have nice furniture of my own (bought new dining room chairs recently and are filthy within days), and I wouldn't put an expensive Wii in a summerhouse. I think for family relations it would be hard as it looks like I am putting childminding children above my own.

I could still use my house for the toilet (downstairs next to back door) it could still be registered for use (cooking, baking etc) and maybe for extreme weather issues. But all the toys could be left out and more of them, I wouldn't need sofa's to take up space, would look at lots of cushions and beanbags, and the general wear and tear would be avoided. I felt that a lovely summerhouse with the doors open onto the garden permanently would be a lovely feature. Children bring their own lunches anyway, (I already have a mini-fridge in my garage which I could utilise) and I am looking at stopping dinners as, again it has got out of hand, cooking dinners for 6 children in a small house, 1 veggie and 2 special dietary requirement, is taking up so much time, costing a fortune with rising fuel and food bills.

Like I said this is really a very initial thought and will have to do lots of proper homework and question my parents, get costs, speak to ofsted etc.

I would be really interested to see what you have done gardenpixie.

RosieGirl Sun 12-Jun-11 13:40:59

I have sent you my E-mail gardenpixie, would be grateful for any info.

ThePrisoner Sun 12-Jun-11 14:04:03

The option I went for when my own children needed their own space (pre- and early teens) was to convert our garage into an extra sitting room, with TV, DVD, music/games stuff etc. They were able to have friends home during the school holidays, had a nice room to do homework/revise in etc., and weren't obliged to use their bedrooms. We were obviously lucky enough to have a garage adjoining the house to be able to do it in the first place.

We had the loft partially converted (just to have a floor and lots of shelving) to store lots of childminding toys and equipment that had previously been in the garage. Other stuff was put into a new shed in the garden.

Despite this, my house still looks like a carbon copy of Toys'R'Us and Office World put together, there is never enough room for everything.

anewyear Sun 12-Jun-11 14:15:14

Talking to myself really, but we have a 'posh shed', it was only just finished middle of last summer so we havent really used it properly for its intended purporse as a summer house, it sits there doing nothing most of the time.
Im just wondering if Ofsted will register it, to let the kids sit in, out of the sun during the summer etc..

RosieGirl Sun 12-Jun-11 14:16:27

Garage is only a concrete old knackered thing (full of DH's crap including a car that he is one day going to work on!!!!!) no loft as live in 16th century cottage, girls already live in roof space, which is why space is difficult, they can't even have shelves on their walls.

I don't think I would be able to use it 100%, so would still use my main home, but think if not too expensive could take a large burden off the house.

I think that is what Ofsted liked so much about my summerhouse. She said it allowed for free play. I keep the doors to the summerhouse open and children can move freely from there to the garden.

trish3717 Wed 15-Jun-11 12:57:55

Hi garden pixie, could you send me some pics of you posh shed, i have had a conservatory built which I have been using but with a growing family i think we need that space for ourselves now, a posh shed would be ideal, could you let me know rough costings too please, sorry to hijack xx
Trish 3717

Hea1her Mon 19-Nov-12 09:38:57

Hi garden pixie, could you send me some pics of your posh shed too as this is exactly what I'm planning on doing! Another apology for hijacking...sorry! Thanks so much. Hea1her x

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