Easy Guide To Home Based Business
“Break the chains from the mundane and set up your own business” they said. If the New Year is presenting you with the same old thing over and over again, then why not consider a change of pace? If you’ve been considering buying a business or setting up your own, that you can run from home, you’d be joining nearly one million people currently doing the same in Australia. In fact, did you realise that Sunshine Coast has the second highest number of home-based businesses in Australia (highest number is amongst Sydney’s northern beaches area).
Working from home can offer flexibility and convenience, and can often be a great opportunity to start a new career and reinvent yourself. Or it can offer you the flexibility to truly create a work/life balance and have more time for your family.
However, you can maximise your chance of success by ensuring that you understand the risks and government requirements that apply to you, such as taxation, business finances, insurance, council approval and licensing requirements. It is better to take a little bit longer in preparing the business model before you open the doors, rather than find out later that you have unexpected expenses for being non-compliant or through plain ignorance of your obligations and requirements. The extra time taken into the research and planning stage of your operations, will aid in creating a competitive advantage whilst also helping to secure the future of your business and ultimately, it’s success.
A successful home business requires an owner who is able to handle a wide variety of issues or smart enough to know their core skills and outsource the rest. In many cases, identical home-based businesses can have different levels of success due to different approaches to planning.
If you’re starting a home business, developing a thorough business plan is the best place to begin. To develop your business plan, you need to consider these points about operating from home:
- Is your home the best location for your business? If you will have numerous clients visiting, then living on a farm may be a disadvantage.
- Can you conduct the type of business you want under local council regulations?
- What are your legal obligations?
- What are the town planning requirements of your council?
- Will you need parking?
- What signage can you have?
- Will you need staff or outsource everything?
Check out what licences and registrations you may need here.
Networking is also an important way to keep up-to-date with business trends and to create business opportunities and relationships so, if you’re operating a business from home, consider joining a local business association. There are plenty around i.e. BNI (Business Network International), Chamber of Commerce and various other groups. Even if you are not keen on networking, it will give you a starting point and hopefully the start of a database.
The impact of your business activities on the surrounding residential area, particularly pollution, energy use and parking, can all require special permission. Depending on your type of business, you may need special permits relating to zoning, signage, noise levels or health issues. Above all, be aware of the impact it may have on your neighbours and keep them on your side – maybe offer them a discount voucher to come to you.
DON’T BE FOOLED ABOUT THE BENEFITS
It’s tempting to think that running a home-based business involves a few hours on the computer in the morning, a swim/walk at lunchtime, maybe another hour in the office in the afternoon before an early finish. However, if your business is to be anything other than a mildly diverting sideline, you will have to put in the work. Set a strategy for your business at the beginning, be firm about how you are going to operate, and have an in-depth business plan. And consider outsourcing – it’ll save you time and valuable money.
“About half of all new establishments survive five years or more and about one-third survive 10 years or more. As one would expect, the probability of survival increases with a firm’s age. Survival rates have changed little over time.”