Running a small business has its challenges, the biggest of which is usually profitability. Whether you’re a freelancer, or run a small outfit with a handful of staff, the ultimate goal is to keep profits maximised.
So, how can you cut costs, save money and increase productivity? One of the ways to consider doing this is by working from home.
Working from home, is of course an obvious solution, but it can present a few obstacles of its own. So, what should you consider?
1. Do you have the space to work from home?
The first consideration is whether or not you have the space to work from home. Do you have a spare room, a spare corner or a garden?
How much space to you ideally need? Consider the below to decide.
2. What facilities would be required to work from home effectively?
What type of business do you run? Do you work from a computer, do you make things, are you an artist? Whatever you do, certain pieces of equipment will be required and need to be factored into your costings. For example, if you work online you need a computer and a reliable internet connection. You need to be near a power point to power the computer and need a strong WiFi signal or access to a telephone socket nearby. If you create wooden items you will need specific tools, perhaps a lathe, this again creates the need to be able to access to power sockets easily.
Take all of these things into consideration so you can factor in the costs and create the ideal work environment, rather than running into problems that need to be overcome after the fact.
3. The running costs.
Whilst working from home eliminates the cost of additional premises, it does of course, incur its own costs, such as utilities. Some charges are tax deductible. You can find out a bit more about that here.
It is good practice to do some projections. Do this in advance for the tax year ahead. If it is already close to the end of the current financial year then also consider next years. Add in your costings for utilities, equipment, any monthly charges for subscriptions you may require ie accounting software etc and any projected earnings. This gives you some idea of the minimum amount you need to be earning to cover all of your costs and eliminates most of the nasty surprises.
4. What distractions are there in the area you will be working from?
While working from home, may seem like an ideal solution you need to remember that it is more distracting than going to a physical place of work each day. If you work from home close to a television for example you need to consider the distraction that may be posed by this.
Do other people live in the property with you? Will they be there during your working hours? Could they distract you? Consider all of these points when deciding upon the area you should be working in.[adsense]
5. What equipment will be required?
Do you need to purchase physical equipment such as technology, furniture, machinery, stationary, tools etc to conduct your day to day business activities?
Do you have the space to accommodate all of this equipment? Consider the area you have to work with and how you can make it work for you.
6. Do you have to meet customers or clients face to face?
One of the biggest considerations is whether or not you need to meet customers face to face. Are you comfortable inviting clients or customers into your home?
The great news is that there is a solution available that can help you overcome many of the difficulties, if you have a garden or outside space available to you!
Garden rooms come in many shapes and sizes. They can provide the ideal working environment, taking you away from distractions, while keeping you close to home. They provide a dedicated working area, one in which you can plan to have built around your needs and requirements. Whether you need a small office or a home workshop, meeting customers is safer and you can still feel like you are going to work everyday!