Are you getting ready to jump? Here are few things to think about. Home-Based Business Top Tips
Remember To Check The Permits
If you run a little business out of your home, you sometimes need tax registrations, business and administrative licenses, and permits from state and local governments to do business legally. Check to see if the idea is okay with your homeowner’s association. There might be rules about it.
Talk to the experts at SCORE, a non-profit that gives free business advice, for help with questions like these. The U.S Business Administration is another place to help you learn about licenses and other things. In the AARP small business centre, there are also articles and tips.
Update Your Coverage
You should add an insurance rider to your homeowner’s or renter’s policy if a customer or delivery person falls on your steps. Most homeowners’ insurance policies don’t cover home-business owners much.
A rider might cost about $100 a year for every $2,500 of extra coverage. The extra cost would depend on what kind of work you do, how much insurance you want, and how much inventory you have at home that you want to protect from being stolen or damaged.
If you need more protection, you can get a business owner’s policy, a package of insurance that covers your business property and protects you from liability if clients come to your home. Most of the time, these plans cost between $500 and $3,500 per year.
Each state has its own set of restrictions regarding the types of insurance that may be supplied to home-based businesses. Look up your information at the Insurance Information Institute, a trade group for the insurance industry and a clearinghouse for information.
Don’t Ignore The Internal Revenue Service
You will have to pay governmental taxes on your business income every three months instead of just once a year on April 15. Depending on your business, you may also have to pay state and local taxes on your income and business.
Choose A Exact Place To Work.
You should be able to deduct 100 percent of costs directly related to your home offices, like buying a work computer or printer toner.
The other kind of home office expenses you can deduct from your taxes are “indirect” costs that are split up based on how big your home and office are. Things like your mortgage, rent, insurance, and utility bills fall into this category. People who work from home often don’t take advantage of the tax break because they’re afraid the write-offs will lead to an audit. It’s not likely.
Set Up A Work Schedule
It’s easy to let work take up all of your time when you’re awake. You have to be disciplined, good with your time, and start things independently. Set work hours for each day and do your best to stick to them. This is easier to say than do, but getting burned out won’t help your business.
Find A Mentor
Working alone can be lonely. Sometimes you’ll need to ask a professional for help. Look for a mentor among the people you know in your field. It can take time to build this relationship, but it’s worth it.
You could also find a colleague who works online. PivotPlanet is an online mentoring service that lets you have a one-on-one phone and video chats with its expert advisors. It’s meant to help shape a relationship that can grow over a series of sessions that can happen at regular times or when needed. Rates for these meetings range from $40 to $125 per hour.
Do Not Skip The Human Touch
Functioning from home can make it hard to build relationships with coworkers and meet new clients in person. Try to get out of the home daily for lunch or coffee with potential clients or coworkers. And go to conferences for your field. At the very least, try to make a phone call once in a while instead of sending an email or text.
Join the LinkedIn party that is related to your business and your clients. Post and comment on other people’s posts. This will show off your knowledge and make you feel like you’re part of a group.
Get The Word Out
Learning to market yourself is one of the most important keys to success. In addition to a LinkedIn page, you might also want to set up pages for your business on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter. Check out your competitors’ networks to see which ones they use for business. Photographers, for example, often show off their work on Instagram, while people who sell things like jewellery and glassware like to use Pinterest.