It may be hard to believe, but millions of people make a living with their own businesses every day. In fact, about 30 percent of the American workforce is either self-employed or working for someone who is. That’s almost 15 million people. That’s a lot of folks who are out there proving that what you might think is impossible can absolutely be done. So, what makes them different? Possibly just the fact that they have figured out what you are about to learn: You can start a home-based business without going broke.

Choose the type of home-based business you will start

The first step in building a business is to assess your strengths. Find out what you’re really good at and where you struggle. For example, if you have a knack for writing, then why not try your hand at freelance writing? You can get started on platforms like Upwork or Textbroker, and then move on to landing private clients who will pay you what you’re worth. Or if you enjoy staying healthy and reading up on the latest fitness trends, you might be good at owning your own supplement business. You can source your products from a trusted vitamin manufacturer and set up an online or brick-and-mortar establishment to sell your products.

Traits of successful entrepreneurs

But figuring out the type of business to start is just the beginning. People who work successfully at home also have a few character traits in common. For example, most of them are good at motivating themselves to get the job done. They are also probably good at planning ahead and setting goals. Of course, just because you might be weak in some of those areas doesn’t mean you can’t succeed with a home-based business. It just means that you’ll have to work on improving those areas before you decide to become self-employed.  

Create your business plan

Planning ahead means creating a detailed strategy for your business. Your business plan doesn’t have to be formally written, but the more information it contains, the easier it will be for you to follow. In the course of your planning, you will need to find things out such as licensing and other legal requirements you might have to adhere to. Home-based businesses also have specific tax guidelines they have to follow, so it’s important to speak to an accountant before you begin collecting any revenue. Many outsourced accounting firms can meet your financial advisory and tax-planning needs.

Bootstrap your business

The best way to ensure that your business won’t bankrupt you is to bootstrap it yourself. Bootstrapping simply means starting your business with very little capital. This means you probably don’t get a small business loan or use much of your own capital. You will start very small and put every dime you make back into the business until it’s profitable enough for you to draw a salary. Of course, this means you will likely be building your business a little more slowly than you could with working capital. But it also means that if your business goes bust, you’re not indebted to anyone, and you haven’t lost your life savings. Bootstrapping can be done with almost anything, but it’s easiest to do with a service-based business where little capital is required in the first place.

Starting your own business is rewarding, but it can also be extremely stressful. The best way to keep that stress to a minimum is by having a solid plan, sticking to what you’re good at, and staying with your day job until you turn a steady profit.

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