The truth about starting a home based business

Starting a business from home can be an ideal way to work around family commitments and a busy lifestyle. Not having to go out to work might be the ultimate goal for you but, there are some fundamental steps you need to take.

Starting a home based business should be filled with excitement and optimism, but without knowing the real truths behind it, it could all go wrong. The potential pitfalls of entrepreneurship should always be on your mind when it comes to planning your business. If you haven’t taken the time to think about what it’s really like to work from home, keep reading so you can be fully prepared as you start your own business venture.

Before anything, make sure you do an accurate search for your business’s name and clear the trademark. If you find someone else using the name, consider paying a service for a comprehensive name search so you’re not going to encroach on one another’s trademarks, or find a new name – the last thing you want to do is to have to change your name after you’ve started doing business. As a home-based business owner, it’s your job to check on local permits as you may need a business license, zoning rules and building requirements for a workshop or home office.

Raising capital for your business will be tough, and usually serves as a financial eye-opener for many entrepreneurs, especially those who think business ownership leads to quick profit. The reality is, for most business, the first few years will be spent getting everything up and running. You’ll spend more than you’re generating in revenue, and you probably won’t see a pay check for several months. You’ll rely heavily on your personal savings for a little while when it comes to basic living expenses at the beginning.

However, you might be simply thinking, finally some peace and quiet, no distractions to keep you from getting work done but in actuality, the absence of the usual office interactions can come as shock to those used to busy office environments. Isolation is the single biggest problem when it comes to running a home business and is a lot more serious than some people think. Over time the lack of interaction with other people can take its toll on your energy levels. To avoid being burnt out due to working from home, integrate physical and social activity into your routine and be sure to plan lots of face-to-face client meetings too.

Many of us hate commuting to work and while working at home saves you from traveling every day, it doesn’t mean you can effectively start and end your workday sooner. Without a commute, you might be tempted to spend more time working. Not only will you be more inclined to work because it’s near, you also don’t have that break between travel. Take a 45-minute desk break every day, even if you’re still engrossed in your work mentally.

On the other hand, there are home-based business owners who initially have a hard time getting down to business, finding it extremely difficult to be productive and put billable hours in a day when at home. If this is you, devise a routine, billing work on certain days and giving yourself a structure.

All in all, take the time to prepare yourself for home-based entrepreneurship at all times to alleviate any stress you may have, carefully think everything out and ensure everything works out just how you want it but remember…it takes time.

Melissa Thompson writes about a wide range of topics, revealing interesting things we didn’t know before. She is a freelance USA Today producer, and a Technorati contributor.