How to Utilize Your Home to Reduce Business Overhead Costs
Most entrepreneurs already know that the real American dream is to work out of your home. After all, the number of home-based businesses in the U.S. has swelled to a whopping 38 million, as an increasing amount of work-from-home opportunities emerge.
With more flexible hours, ability to scale up and down quickly and studies proving that those working out of their home are happier in their professional and personal lives than those in an office, the benefits are more than convincing.
However, from a purely financial perspective, I’ve found that the greatest advantage of owning a home-based business is being able to substantially reduce overhead costs. At Screenmobile, we’ve put years of experience into improving our home-based business model, helping franchisees make the proper arrangements ahead of time and knowing the right questions to ask. While owning a home business has endless benefits, one has to first know how to take advantage of them. To make the most of home-entrepreneurship, there are a few things to keep in mind when trying to maximize the use of your home.
Utilizing Your Home – Inside and Out
Owning a home business will cut obvious overhead renting costs, but an additional way to utilize your home as a work space is to make the most of tax benefits. Home business owners can deduct a percentage of payments as business expenses, including property taxes, utilities, repairs, maintenance and most importantly, one’s mortgage. Many of our Screenmobile franchisees take advantage of their garage space to house inventory and materials rather than renting a small industrial warehouse. Additionally, the trailers and trucks that we use are designed to fit in a standard two-car garage to take advantage of this space even further. It’s a simple tactic but at the end of the day, operating out of a garage can save at least five to six hundred dollars a month by avoiding the rent fees at a small industrial warehouse.
Of course the other room to maximize in your work space is the home office. By working with an internet-based operating system, a home office can be included as part of your business expenses. Our franchisees find that it’s ideal to use their offices for scheduling, dispatching and receiving calls. Those who plan on working from home should also keep in mind that thinking outside the box and maximizing your space shouldn’t stop within the walls of your home. If you have additional property and a little creativity, you can utilize your land even further. With a mobile screening business like ours, franchisees naturally grow and are in need of additional warehouse space for the busy seasons. Making the most of their property, some owners have built a separate shed, garage or office. One of our successful owners in Knoxville has a house on 8-acres of land and now runs his business out of a barn that he built. Once again, since it’s already being paid as mortgage, along with your garage and home office, this can be written off as a business expense on your tax return.
The Franchisee’s Home Checklist
Thanks to the long list of home business benefits and the growing demand for niche mobile services, franchisees are eager to ditch the office and start their business at home. However, potential owners should consider just a few important questions about their home space to know if it can accommodate running a business. First and foremost, it’s crucial to check in with one’s home association so that they can run a business without restrictions or have a truck or trailer without additional expenses. Some communities don’t allow a vehicle with a branded wrap to park in front of the house. Furthermore, don’t forget to make sure there are no delivery restrictions at the house. It’s a wise idea to plan ahead for inventory and equipment, especially if city laws state it must be stored out of sight. Finally, keep employee space in mind and make arrangements for where they can work and park their car. A small business can often start at a home, but as it becomes more profitable, it’s important to organize room for growth.
With these pointers in mind, those that are equipped to run a business out of their home have much to gain. Not needing a brick and mortar location equates to a smaller franchise investment and lower expenses overall, making work-from-home opportunities highly attractive to those of almost any background. From a franchisor’s perspective, we’ve experienced plenty of recent growth that has shaped a promising future for home-based mobile businesses. Ironic as it may be, those with the right skill set don’t always have to look far for a great opportunity- it may be right in their house.
Scott Walker is the CEO of Screenmobile, the largest mobile screening franchise in the country. With over 91 locations in 25 states, Screenmobile specializes in the repair, replacement and installation of window, door, porch and patio screens, retractable screens and much more.
For more information about franchise opportunities with Screenmobile, please visit http://franchise.screenmobile.com/