Should you launch your new business from your coffee table, or is your startup money better spent by renting office space somewhere in Calgary?

Working from home can be detrimental or beneficial to your budding business. It all depends on the type of business you plan on running, not to mention your lifestyle goals. Here are some considerations to make when deciding where to base your business.

Are You Starting Your Own Business for Lifestyle Reasons?

Many people find creative ways to work from home to break free from the nine-to-five lifestyle. If your goal is getting out to the mountains, you are likely pursuing the kind of work that can be done from your living room.

Home-Based Businesses Have Lower Startup Costs

Some professions that are well suited to working at home include writing, programming, graphic design and arts and crafts. Home-based businesses are very cost effective to start and typically have low overhead. An at-home copy-editing business needs little more than a laptop, phone and Internet connection. A business that sells handmade crafts on the Internet only needs to purchase material, equipment, and a camera to photograph items.

Home-Based Businesses Provide Tax Advantages

If you’re working from home, you will be able to count a portion of your home expenses (including rent, mortgage and utilities) as a business expense. Depending on the nature of your work, car expenses might also qualify. Speak with a local accountant here in Calgary regarding tax-deductible home expenses so you can make the most out of filing. Receiving a tax-break on your housing costs can be tremendously helpful while struggling financially in your business’s infancy.

At-Home Business Means At-Home Distractions

It’s not all fun and games working at home. Rather, it can be too much fun and games when you should be working. New businesses take a lot of mental energy. A house full of children, roommates and even a well-meaning spouse can destroy your focus.

Dedicated Workspaces are Better for Startup Teams

If you’re starting a new business with a team, sharing a dedicated workspace promotes communication and synergy. People experience more productive working relationships when they share face-time. If you’re not engaged in a one-man show, shell out for shared office space to help your business grow.

An Office Promotes Work-Life Balance

Many people opt to work at home so they can spend more time with loved ones or doing hobbies. However, what people don’t realize is that it can be really hard to stop working when your office is in your living room. Rather than ignoring your kids while you type away madly on the computer, rent an office space. That way, you can physically and mentally check out of work.

How to Make the Right Choice

Choosing where to base your business largely depends on three things:

1) Your lifestyle goals: Is your goal to work at home, or to get rich by any means necessary?

2) The type of business you’re starting: Is it possible in a home environment?

3) Your ability to focus in a home environment: Will working at home make you an ineffective business manager?

There isn’t one right answer. Rest assured, businesses are flexible. If one thing isn’t working, you can always change. If working from home is sabotaging your aspirations, rent an office. If the office seems like a waste of money, set up shop at home.

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