At WiseGEEK, we're committed to delivering accurate, trustworthy information. Our expert-authored content is rigorously fact-checked and sourced from credible authorities. Discover how we uphold the highest standards in providing you with reliable knowledge.
When starting a home-based business, it is very important to determine the legality of a home-based business start-up, to talk to a lawyer and insurance agent about protecting oneself against legal liability, and to make sure that enough time and money are available to invest in a business. While being able to work from home is a dream for many people, the reality is that laws as well as family dynamics and personal mind-set can make starting a home-based business stressful and risky. By taking the time to do research and consult with appropriate professionals, a person has a better chance of making her business successful.
One of the biggest challenges to starting a home-based business is that of zoning laws. In many places, home-based businesses are strictly regulated and may, in some cases, actually be forbidden. Even in areas that are generally friendly to home business, some types of ventures may require special licensing or may simply not be allowed. For example, home-based daycare centers may require special licensing and safety modifications to a home. In many areas, food-related businesses cannot operate out of private homes. By finding out about these restrictions before opening a business, entrepreneurs can save themselves a lot of time, money, and embarrassment.
When an individual starts doing business out of her home, she opens herself up to various types of liability. An attorney can help a small business owner legally organize her business in order to protect herself from lawsuits or personal liability for company finances. In addition, an insurance agent can advise a home-based business owner on the types of insurance that can protect him and his family. For example, in many cases, homeowner's or renter's insurance will not cover business-related incidents, so obtaining home business insurance is usually a good idea.
For many people, working without a boss in their own home is a unique experience. It can be difficult to develop the self-discipline necessary to maintain a regular work schedule and to also ensure a good work-life balance. Just as it can be easy to neglect work responsibilities in favor of watching television or surfing the Internet, it is also possible for somebody to become overworked by constantly needing to attend to business even during what is supposed to be family time. When starting a home-based business, the entrepreneur ought to consider establishing a regular work schedule as well as deciding on a portion of his home that can be used as work space. This can allow him to separate his employment from his family and personal life, thus reducing stress on both himself and his relationships.