If you have chosen a career path that leads you directly to your own front door, then you are not alone. In fact, many people work at home and earn a full-time income, which allows them to keep a close eye on their children, create flexible schedules and save significantly on the cost of commuting. Whether you’re a veteran home worker or you are just starting out, keep the following tips in mind to help turn your job into a career:
Define a space for your office. When you work at home, a room that’s free from distraction is a must. You may choose to convert one of your bedrooms into a home office or you may have a library that will serve as the perfect place to set up a quiet work area. Whatever your preference, it’s important to define your office space as one that’s not located in a high traffic location of the house.
Promote your business. As someone who works at home, you may be operating on a limited budget in the beginning. Whether your funds are tight or you simply believe in stretching your dollar, try your hand at free publicity. You can promote your business with press releases distributed online, to magazines and local newspapers. In addition, you may also be able to snag some airtime on the radio if you agree to an interview and your business is one of interest to the general public.
Make a schedule and stick to it. Just because you work at home doesn’t mean that you cannot separate the two. Believe it or not, you can still divide your home and work life even when the two are located in the same space. In fact, it’s extremely important that you learn to do this in order to avoid the feeling of always being at work. You can help to make this possible by setting a schedule and sticking to it. First, decide whether you wish to work part-time or full-time and then figure out the hours that are most convenient for you. If you develop a ‘whenever’ schedule, you may find yourself feeling torn between something that you need to do and something that you want to do. By having defined work hours, you will know when you are free for leisure and, best of all, you will have the time to enjoy it.
Keep accurate records. For tax purposes, it’s important that you keep all receipts for business transactions. This includes purchases of office equipment and furniture, supplies and accessories. If you have trouble keeping up with all of your receipts, store them in your office in a box with the word ‘receipts’ written in clear view for easy access.
Purchase individual health insurance. If you are self-employed, it’s up to you to purchase your own health insurance plan. While many people who work for an employer have this benefit provided to them as part of their employment package, you will be faced with having to search for coverage on your own. The good news is that health insurance for self-employed individuals is not difficult to find. In fact, many major insurance companies offer this type of coverage and can provide a quote via the telephone.
The information contained in this article is designed to be used for reference purposes only. It should not be used as, in place of or in conjunction with professional business and/or financial advice relating to the operation of a home-based business. For additional information on this topic, consult with a business advisor or financial planner in your area.