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The Potential Downside to Starting a Home Based Business
by Angela Wu  Copyright

Home businesses are an increasingly popular option for
people seeking a way to earn an income in a way that 
better fits their lifestyle. The benefits of starting 
a home business are often highly praised -- some of 
these benefits include:

 * The flexibility to schedule your day in whatever way
   is appropriate for both you and your business.

 * The independence to make the decisions you think are
   best for your business.

 * The comfort of dressing how you want and working how
   you want, provided you aren't meeting with clients.

 * The tax breaks potentially available to home 
   businesses.

 * The opportunity to build the income you want, rather
   than being paid what an employer thinks you're worth.

Starting a business from home, however, does have its 
drawbacks. It can be a wonderful opportunity but it's 
certainly not for everyone! Consider the following:

 * Time. Although you have the flexibility to schedule 
   your day to a certain degree, the amount of time 
   required to start and build a home business is
   significant. A comment that sums it up nicely is,
   "I get to choose any 20 hours a day that I want to 
   work!"

 * All business involves risk. You may be a wild success
   ... or you may work endless hours, invest a lot of 
   money, and end up with a failed business. There is 
   also the risk that you may grow too quickly and be 
   unable to properly manage your growth. This can lead 
   to unhappy customers and the eventual demise of your 
   business.

 * Financing may be difficult. Due to the risk associated
   with a home business, some lending institutions may
   refuse your loan application or may provide with you
   inadequate funds or a higher interest rate. You may
   have to consider using funds from your "day job" to
   help finance your startup business, personal savings,
   or perhaps loans from friends or family (which may
   create problems of its own).

 * No benefits. Because you will be self-employed, you 
   are responsible for funding and managing health and
   dental benefits.

 * You have to do everything yourself. Most people start
   as the sole "employee" of their fledgling business. 
   As such, you're not just the product designer & 
   developer, but also the marketer, administrative 
   assistant, cleaning staff, customer service rep, and 
   possibly other roles as well.

 * Getting customers. When working from home, you don't
   really have a "storefront" -- and zoning regulations
   may prevent you from displaying a sign in your yard. 
   Even if you could, the flow of traffic through a 
   residential area is not likely to be very high and
   thus it may be harder to attract new customers. It's
   your responsibility as a business owner to find out
   where your prospects gather, how they like to be
   contacted (direct mail, niche magazines, etc), and
   whether you're up to the task.

 * Assumptions about your "free time". Unfortunately, 
   many people believe that "working from home" doesn't 
   really amount to "work" -- and sometimes friends and 
   family may "drop in" or call for a chat while you're 
   working. Some people find it very difficult to turn  
   away "guests", even though they're clearly trying to 
   work.

 * Isolation. Working in an office environment provides 
   you with plenty of opportunity to socialize. In the 
   home, however, you are far more likely to be limited
   to the phone and to email -- and some home businesses 
   have even little need for that. It can make one feel
   "cut off" from the rest of the world and lead to
   loneliness.

 * Lack of support. One common observation from home 
   business owners is their spouse or other family 
   members get impatient with their efforts -- there may
   be a misconception that you're doing nothing but sitting
   around the house, particularly when the business is in
   the startup phase and hasn't yet started to produce 
   profits. 

 * Difficulty separating business and personal matters. 
   Since you're at home, you may be expected to do 
   household chores, watch the children, drive relatives
   around, etc. Family and friends may not entirely 
   understand that you are operating a business and 
   need the time to attend to business matters.

================================================================
Angela is the author of "So You Want to Work from Home!",
an informative report packed with useful tips and resources 
on how to begin a work-at-home career. Pick up your copy 
today at http://homebasedwork.com/report.html 
================================================================


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