Starting a home-based business can be an exciting and profitable venture. Having a business that is at home can be a very good alternative to having a job for many different types of professionals. Most of the time mothers are drawn to home businesses because they want to be near their children. However, anyone who wants to have a business should entertain the idea of a home-based business.
While giving a home business thought, it’s really important to understand all the pros and cons of such a venture.
Pros of a Home Business
Start part time – You can get started building a home business in your spare time. Figure up how much time you can work on your business each day and you’re set. If you pick the right type of business it won’t matter when you work on it, as long as you do so on a regular and continuing basis.
Low start-up costs – Sometimes you can begin with virtually nothing, depending on the type of business you start. Let’s say you decide to start a business creating and selling information products. All this takes is time and effort. You may need to hire a graphic designer to create cover art, and an editor, but you can get started free by sitting at the computer you already own and get to writing.
Low operating costs – You already pay a mortgage or rent and you already have utilities and internet, so your operating costs really won’t change at first just because you have a business. You may at some point invest in some extras, but you can keep them lean and mean by only purchasing what you must have.
No commute – Wake up, walk 10 feet and you’re at work. No need to drive to work and spending money on cars, gas and work clothing.
No childcare – Technically you can work on your business while your kids are playing, napping, or with their other parent. This advantage varies depending on the age of your children and the willingness of your spouse to assist.
Flexible working hours – If something happens, you can put off working hours until the crisis is over. No more having to worry about missing out on your child’s sporting events or missing a PTA conference and looking bad at work. You can easily schedule in these activities to your work day.
Professional satisfaction – Running a successful home business can give you the same professional satisfaction you had at a job, only better, because it’s all yours.
Cons of a Home Business
You’re always at work – When your work is at home it can be hard to separate yourself from it. You don’t have a true office with a door that you can shut when you’re off work. Even then it’s still hard to avoid work.
Family and friends may not understand – Once you’re not working a job anymore, your friends and family may often start relying on you to do all kinds of things for them now that you “don’t work.” It may be difficult to explain to them that you do indeed work, at least until you’re profitable.
Undefined working hours – Sometimes when you work from home and switch hours around to accommodate the needs of the family, it can feel like you never get off work, that you’re always at work, and it can get quite frustrating.
Lack of benefits – You will not have health insurance, paid vacations, and other benefits that you get at a job. Of course, if you live in a state or a country that offers health care at a reasonable fee then you’ll be fine. You can build in your own paid days off as you generate more profit.
Loss of social contacts – You’ll spend an enormous amount of time alone working from home. You may start to feel isolated.
Self-motivation needed – There will not be anyone to force you to do the work and no threat of being fired if you don’t. If you’re not the type of person who is intrinsically motivated, self-employment may not be for you.
Regardless of the pros and cons of having a home business, many people choose it due to their life circumstances and make it work for them. Any of the cons can be turned into pros with just a little forethought and planning. Just be aware that it’s not all peaches and roses when working from home. However, it can be a lot more lucrative than having a job if you plan right.