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5 Questions to Consider When Moving to a Home Office

5 Questions to Consider When Moving to a Home OfficeBy Christy Schutz

My husband and I are in the midst of moving our business and transitioning our traditional office space to a home office. Basically, we weighed the pros and cons (and ultimately the costs) of retaining our leased space and it just makes the most sense to move our operation home. As a result, I am learning some important lessons that might help others as they consider whether a work from home option would work for them. Here are five questions to answer before moving your business home.

1. Do you have the technology resources needed to accommodate your business?

Our business needs an internet connection, dedicated fax line, and at least two phone lines (that can roll over to the next line should the first be busy). In addition, and most importantly, we have to keep our two toll-free numbers. The toll-free numbers were the deal breakers! Our business has legacy (we have been in business for 73 years), so changing the numbers would have adverse effects on our customers’ ability to reach us. Facilitating these changes at our home was harder than it might seem and ended up being the most complex part of our move.

I’d recommend you map out what you must have, and then call up your local provider to talk over the options. Depending on your provider and the area you live in, there may be some services that are not available to residential customers that you cannot live without. Scope this out early in the process so you can determine whether or not the move is feasible. (more…)

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Adding Additional Services Can Increase Your Income

Adding Additional Services Can Increase Your Income By Cathi Nelson

As a work at home women, you’ve likely developed many skills that can be added to your existing businesses. Thus, if you’re looking to increase your income, consider adding a niche. Offering a more specialized service can expand your clientele, diversify your company, and increase your income. For example, if you are a massage therapist, consider learning and adding nutritional counseling, or if you’ve developed strong social media skills, offer these services to help businesses.

In particular, professional organizers are finding that offering a photo organizing service is a way to reconnect with past clients and meet new ones. Even if you have no prior experience with photo organizing, the Association of Personal Photo Organizing can teach you the skills you need to please your client.

I interviewed three professional organizers who found that adding photo organizing to their businesses helped them expanded their existing network of clients.

Here’s the inside scoop from three established professional organizers.

Standolyn Robertson – Professional Organizer – 15 years

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How to Beat Summer Slow Down

How to Beat Summer Slow DownBy Dawn Berryman

Summer tends to be a slower time of the year for business. This can be disheartening if you own your own business and rely on the income for your family. However, just because orders aren’t rolling in doesn’t mean that you can’t be productive. Summer is a great time to catch up on some projects that you’ve been neglecting or work ahead for the coming months.

When your children are home from school, it can present additional challenges to working from home. That in itself can make the lightened workload less noticeable. However, I’ve outlined some ideas here that will help you stay productive while also balancing the extra time with your kiddos.

1. Write.

Chances are, if you’re like me, you don’t feel like you have enough time to write new content for your website or blog. Summer can be a great time to catch up on the blog posts that you’ve been meaning to churn out and stock up some content for the busier months of the year. We all know how important fresh content is to SEO and making your site more viable. You can take your laptop to the park and write while your kids play or maybe while they take their afternoon nap. (more…)

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Funding Your At-Home Business

Funding Your At-Home BusinessBy Deborah Sweeney

Funding for any kind of small business is challenging. Though, it can be daunting to ask for money when you know you’ll be running the entire operation from your domicile. But I’m here to tell you to get that thinking out of your head! If you’re not spending money on office rent or paying a large number of employees, there’ll be less money to borrow, and, ultimately, less money to pay back.

Here are four ways to gain the funds you need to open up your at-home business:

Put a lot of thought into your business plan.

Just because you’re not in a formal office doesn’t mean you get to draft up a casual business plan. Investors will always feel more comfortable giving money to a strong, well thought out business plan. A good investor shouldn’t care about the type of office you’re in, they should be concerned with your short-term and long-term goals, and how you plan on meeting those goals. Simply do a quick Google search for “Business Plan Templates” and take your pick. Fill it out thoroughly, and give it the time it deserves. Not only is a good business plan a great tool for gaining investors, it’s a great tool for keeping you as the business owner on track and striving for your starting goals. (more…)

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Something More Important Than How Much You Are Paid . . . and Seven Ways to Improve it

Something More Important Than How Much You Are Paid . . . and Seven Ways to Improve itBy Diana Schneidman

What is more important than how much you are paid for your freelance, work-at-home assignments?

Many people would say “nothing.” After all, for a person trying to make a living, what you are paid is darned important.

Some would give a more spiritual answer. Perhaps self-fulfillment is more important. Doing work you love. Making the world a better place to live in.

I can’t argue against those values. Work is about more than money. But for the purpose of this article, I’m going back to the financial side of it.

So here is my answer as to what is more important than how much you are paid. It’s how quickly you are paid.

Sadly, the waiting time for corporate payment to self-employed, work-at-home freelancers is often much longer than it used to be. Payment far too often stretches out for interminable periods . . . or at least what seems far too long if we need the money for food, rent, and other necessities of life. Sometimes payment never shows up. As time extends and the funds never appear, we suspect we will never get paid. (more…)

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