Starting a Home Based Business – Checklist – Part 1

The Internet is full of home-based business offers and packages and some of them may be good, but in many cases the earnings promised are inflated and the cost of the all the materials, books, tapes, seminars, etc on the high side as well.Home Based Business should be built on a genuine interest, passion or skill
The best way to start your own business is out of your own passion, something you are really good and know a lot about, something that perhaps has been in your family for a while like a special skill or knowledge. Building a business is a long-term commitment and staying in business an even longer one, so be sure you have the staying power a true interest in what you do gives. Enough said about that. Let’s turn to the practical side of starting a home based business. There are tasks you need to accomplish and a checklist is always handy to have.Business Expenses
Keep meticulous records of everything you spend on your business, from the planning stages all the way through the actual start of business operations. And even then don’t quit, but then you will probably have some of it automated by a bookkeeping/accounting program.A Good accountant is a Must
Find a good accountant as soon as you start thinking about your business. And make sure you cover both the accounting and tax side. In many cases those two functions are combined by practitioners who offer a “one stop shop” for small businesses. I personally don’t think it’s ideal. Your best bet would be to get really good tax advice from someone who does only taxes and then really good accounting advice from someone who specializes in small business accounting and financial statements. This way you will know what is deductible and what isn’t, what the best legal structure for your business will be and you will end up with the best set up for your bookkeeping system from the get go. There is nothing more painful and costly than trying to unravel an accounting mess made at the beginning. But if you do not unravel it, you will never really have a clean starting point for your business Balance Sheet.Set up a Deductible Home Office
This part of your living space must be used exclusively and regularly for business. If it isn’t, it won’t qualify as a tax deduction. Make sure it’s not a den where your child also plays video games.Once you decide where that home office will be, measure its square footage and calculate it as a percentage of your entire home or apartment. That will be the ratio you can use to calculate the business portion of all your utility bills.Check Your Zoning
Look into what your neighborhood or apartment complex requires for a home based business set up. Some of them can be very strict.More about starting your home based business in Part 2.

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