What do Apple Computer, Hershey Chocolate, Mary Kay Cosmetics, and the Ford Motor Company have in common? They all started out as home based businesses. Over half of all U.S. businesses are based out of an owner's home. Starting a home based business has many rewards and challenges. This guide provides resources that will help you learn more about working out of your house, starting a home-based business, and managing your business within the law.
What is the Community saying about Home Based Business?
Before You Begin
- Small Business Start-Up Assessment
Are you ready to start a business? In less than 5 minutes, this assessment tool will help you understand your readiness for starting a small business.
- Can You Live Where You Work ... And Work Where You Live?
Find out what's like to live and work in the same space, and read about experiences of other home based business owners.
- Home Based Business ... Is it For Me?
Learn about several factors to consider when starting a home based business.
- Starting a Business in Your Home: Weighing the Pros and Cons
Consider these factors before you begin a home based business.
Starting a Home-Based Business
- Small and Home Based Business Virtual Resource Library
Get resources to help you start, run and manage a home based business.
- How to Set Up a Home Based Business
Checklist of things to do when starting a home based business.
- Business Plan for Home Based Businesses
Provides a comprehensive approach to developing a business plan for a home based business.
- Zoning Laws for Home Based Businesses
Learn how your local government's zoning ordinances may affect your home-based business.
- 10 Steps to Starting a Business
Learn common steps required to start a new business.
Buying a Work-at-Home Franchise
Home based franchises are becoming more common, but buyer beware! Some "work at home" franchise opportunities are schemes to get your money.
Visit the Franchises and Business Opportunities Guide for more information about evaluating and buying into franchises and related work-at-home business opportunities.
Financing a Home-Based Business
Federal agencies do not provide grants for starting a home-based business. However, there are a number of low-interest loan programs that help individuals obtain startup financing. Visit the Loans and Grants Search Tool to get a full list of grant, loan, and venture capital programs for which you might qualify.
Marketing a Home-Based Business
- Home-Based Business - Market Your Product
Learn how to successfully market your home based business.
- Small Business Self-Employed One-Stop Resource
Official IRS gateway to tax info for small business owners.
- Business Use of Your Home
Learn about deducting expenses for business use of your home.
- Business Expenses and Tax Deductions
Learn how to deduct business expenses on your income taxes.
- Social Security Guide for the Self-Employed
Information on how to report your earnings.