Household name businesses like Apple and Microsoft started their journey from a garage. Today, they are among the top companies in the world. This just goes to show that humble beginnings can grow to become giants, as long as passion and dedication are present.
Whenever you think of starting a business from home, the first thing you need to pay attention to is general liability insurance. This is essential as it will help you give your business an added layer of protection and security in the event something goes wrong, or an accident takes place. Knowing that you have this level of protection will help give you peace of mind and allow you to concentrate on your business endeavors.
If you have a dream of being your own boss and running a business, but cannot afford to pay for an office space yet, you can as well begin the journey by starting and running your business from your home. In fact, there is little or no difference between running a home-based business and running a brick-and-mortar business. Plus, it is cheaper too.
6 Simple Steps to Running a Small Business from Home:
Here, we look at a few tips for getting started with your dream of business ownership.
1. Come up with the right business idea
The home-based business ideas that succeed is the one driven by passion, not one of the get-rich schemes you read about on the internet. This means that for your business to succeed, it has to be something you are willing to put the time and effort into. You cannot do this unless it is an idea you are passionate about.
If you don’t already have a business idea, the first step is to come up with one. This is likely the hardest part. Fortunately, there are tons of articles online that can help you come up with a business idea.
Common business ideas emerge from the skills and interests you already have, so explore those first.
2. Register your new business
Once you have decided on a business and you are sure it can work from home; the next step is to make things official. In New Zealand as well as other countries of the world, you are expected to register your business before you can start operations.
Registering your home-based business apart from being a legal requirement in most cities is also for your benefit. If you register your new business as a limited liability company, it protects your personal wealth from any liabilities your new business may encounter. This way, your personal funds cannot be used to pay business debts.
During the registration process, you will learn about the legalities associated with your industry. This includes associations you are expected to belong to, taxes you are expected to pay, fees, permits, and so on. Every city has its own unique requirements so you may want to involve a lawyer so that you don’t make any mistakes.
3. Create a dedicated office space in your home for your business
Even though you are running a business from home, it is no excuse to make the home unlivable for others in the house. To avoid any conflict, it is a good idea to create a dedicated space in your home for your business. You don’t want to be working on the dining table and have your baby mess up your documents and records.
Just like the founders of Apple and Microsoft, you too can convert your garage into your workspace. You can also convert the spare bedroom or even the basement. In fact, there are lots of places in a house that can be converted into an office space. All that matters is that your business tools and equipment are separate from the rest of the house.
If space is a problem, especially if you plan on selling products, a smart idea is to rent a self-storage facility away from the house. There are facilities like these in different parts of Auckland, such as West Auckland storage units, where you can rent a unit for warehousing inventory and business records.
4. Define your business schedule
It is easy to get carried away nursing a new business growth that you abandon your other responsibilities around the house. This can cause problems with the rest of the family. To create a proper work-life balance, define your business schedule. How many hours every day will you spend on your business? This will help tremendously if you have family engagements and other outside responsibilities.
You should also decide on the number of days you will be working each week. Discuss your plans with other members of the family and ensure their support before going ahead. This way, they will know when your time for work is on and not to disturb you.
5. Setup business insurance
Your homeowner’s insurance may not cover your home-based business. This means that you may need separate insurance for your home-based business or an add-on coverage, also known as an insurance rider.
Talk to your insurance provider about your plans to start a business at home and find out what their terms are. You may be able to get a better deal as an existing customer than if you go elsewhere.
There are two types of insurance you should consider for your new business: General liability insurance that protects you from lawsuits and a business owners’ policy (BOP). A BOP protects you from lawsuits and also covers damage or loss to your business equipment.
The terms of cover vary by insurance provider so talk with your agent to find out what your policy covers.
6. Start selling
Finally, whether you are selling products or offering services, your business needs customers, and it is your job to go and look for them. There are several ways to do this. You can leverage your network and start by selling to your friends and family members. But that will not be enough to grow your business. So, you should also consider reaching out to people that need your business from outside your sphere of influence.
You can print flyers and hand them out to people in the neighborhood. Be active in community activities and let them know what you can do. Also, take advantage of the internet. Use social media to connect with and engage potential clients.
Once you can get the first few people to believe in your business offerings, it gets simple from there.
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