Starting your own business at home has an undeniable charm about it. You are your own boss. You have flexible working hours. Your expenses are low because you do not have to pay rent for office space. In spite of all of this, not everyone is cut out for running a successful business from their home. Making it a success requires thoughtful planning and hard work.
Pay Attention to Legal Processes
Starting your own business is a real game changer for your career. Even though there may be an air of informality about the whole process, you still cannot ignore things like business licenses, tax registrations, and state and local government permits so that you are operating legally. You also might check with your homeowners association for any restrictions.
Plan Your Workspace
In most cases, you can deduct 100 percent of office-related expenses from your taxes for things like the purchase of a printer or work computer. Other items are prorated based upon your office size. These are items like your rent or mortgage, utility bills, and insurance. Some people working from home skip their earned tax break due to concerns about triggering a tax audit. This is unlikely.
To qualify for the deduction, your workspace must be exclusively used for work on a regular basis. This means that your spouse cannot install that new exercise equipment in the office, and your kids can’t play games on your business computer.
It will also be crucial for you to make a list of all equipment you might need for business functions. For example, if you plan on going in to the gaming industry, game launcher software will be necessary. You may need to install a variety of programs on your computer to make your home job easier.
Increase Your Tech Skills
When you are working for yourself, no one is available to call when you need tech support. Consider taking a computer course. There may be one available at your local community college. Become proficient in needed computer programs like word processing applications, spreadsheets, or web-based meeting programs.
Develop a Work Schedule
Finally, one of the most overlooked aspects of starting a home-based business is managing your time. There is no boss looking over your shoulder and cracking the whip. You will need to be self-disciplined and manage your time carefully and efficiently. Set daily work hours and try hard to stick to them.
Ultimately, the determining factor in the success of your business will be your own drive and determination. The dream of a home-based business can become a nightmare if you do not develop a plan and pay attention to details.
Emma is a freelance writer based out of Boston, MA. She writes most often on health and education. When not writing, she enjoys reading and watching film noir. Say hi on Twitter @EmmaSturgis2