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The Perks of Running a Home Business
February 20, 2019
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The Perks of Running a Home Business

If you’re considering starting a business, you must decide if you’ll run it from home or an outside location. According to the Small Business Administration (SBA), 50 percent of all small businesses are home-based. While home businesses are most likely to be in the retail, professional, scientific, and technical services industries, companies with many types of products can be managed from home.

In this post, we’ll list six perks of running a home business, so you can decide if it’s right for your company.

What are the Benefits of Running a Home-Based Business?

1. Save on Overhead Costs

Overhead costs are the ongoing costs of running a business that aren’t associated with producing your product or service. Many businesses try to reduce overhead costs, so they can increase their profits, and working from home can save money on overhead costs such as building rent, utilities, and insurance.

In fact, according to Global Workplace Analytics, a typical business saves $11,000 per person each year by letting their employees work from home. Even if you don’t have employees, this could allow you to save money.

2. No Commute

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Americans spend 50.2 minutes a day commuting, and that doesn’t include time for parking and walking to your office. If you work five days a week, that adds up to 4.35 hours per week or 200 hours per year. Running a home business could give you more time to devote to your business or provide a better work/life balance.

3. Extra Tax Deductions

Business owners can deduct their home office on a Schedule C, a form where you report business loss or income. Per TurboTax, the office space must be exclusively used for business and be the principle location of your business or a place where you regularly meet clients. You can also deduct or partially deduct, maintenance expenses, home utilities, interest and property taxes, and rent or home depreciation costs.

Before taking any deductions, it’s important to always check with a certified tax professional because tax laws are constantly changing.

4. Comfortable While Working

Running a home business means you don’t have to adhere to a certain dress code or anyone else’s rules. There’s no one stopping you from wearing sweatpants (as long as you’re not seeing clients), listening to your music without headphones, or leaving dirty dishes on the table. You can also have your dog in the office with you, resulting in reduced work-related stress. Ultimately, it allows you the freedom to choose your working environment.

5. Increased Flexibility

While small business owners generally have more flexibility than traditional workers, business owners who run their businesses from home have even more flexibility. It’s easy to do laundry or dishes on your lunch break, or make a fresh salad at home, instead of eating out.

Research from DeskTime found that the most productive people work for 52 minutes and break for 17 minutes. A home-based business allows you greater flexibility in what to do with those breaks, increasing productivity.

6. Fewer Startup Costs

Many people want to start businesses, but don’t because of high startup costs. Running a home-based business drastically reduces startup costs such as building rent, insurance, and equipment. For instance, if you want to open a bakery, you could save thousands of dollars by using the kitchen in your home, instead of renting out a space. After your business is established, you could then choose to move into a commercial space but running the bakery from your home in the beginning allows you to get started without exceeding your budget.

Conclusion: Check with State and Local Laws First

Even if you decide you want to run a home-based business, state and local laws might prohibit it. Some residential areas have restrictions on advertising, parking, and permitting, and may require you to operate your business in a separate building. To ensure your business is compliant, get a copy of the ordinances that apply to home occupations from your local municipal building, and ask a lawyer about state and federal regulations.

Fora Financial

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Fora Financial is a working capital provider to small business owners nationwide. In addition, the Fora Financial team provides educational information to the small business community through their blog, which covers topics such as business financing, marketing, technology, and much more. If you’d like to see a topic covered on the Fora Financial blog, or want to submit a guest post, please email us at [email protected].