Starting an At-Home Big Money Business
Starting at home has many advantages
When you start a business, like any venture in life, you want
it to have the best chance for success. Starting one from your
home has unique advantages.
You won't be paying rent on a store or office. And probably you
won't immediately need a separate phone with the charges for
installation and monthly service. And you are already heating
and lighting your home. Therefore, you avoid the burden of these
additional monthly overhead costs.
You'll be using many things you already own so you can save money
by not buying a desk, lighting fixtures, a water cooler, or the
other furnishings people generally buy to set up a separate
If you need help with the actual work that's involved, try to get
members of your family to help you (more on this later). And you
can start your business part-time while keeping your present job.
Later as it grows you can make it your full-time occupation, and
if you wish, move it out of your home into larger quarters...better
suited to a business which may be growing by leaps and bounds.
Presiding over your own domain
A man's home is his castle--and it can also be his "gold mine."
There are many people who make a very good living right from
their home. It's comfortable, it's conveniently located (you
can walk to work in about 15 seconds) and you can dress the way
you like. You can arrange the furniture to make a work space
that suits your exact needs and tastes. You can choose the hours
you wish to work and, if you have the energy, initiative and
ambition, you can even be in more than one kind of business!
Working in your home has other advantages; you have no
transportation expenses and you don't waste time or energy
in crowds or rush hour traffic. You don't have to worry about
getting along with a large group of co-workers or finding a
decent place to eat lunch. And you don't have to go out in
all weathers, sleet and snow or broiling sun.
But there are some drawbacks to working at home and the largest
of these is self-discipline. You must learn to discipline
yourself. Everyone who is his own boss has the problem of
utilizing his time and energy most effectively and not wasting
time on pet projects that are not essential to the business.
Self discipline is easier to attain if one goes each day to a
separate place of business because most business premises do
not have the comforts, conveniences and distractions that one
has in one's own home. The danger in working at home is that
the advantage of comfort and convenience can turn into a great
Set up a definite work area
Later on we'll tell you some tips on how to conduct business
in general. But let's first find a part of your house that you
can use as your business or work area. It should be a spot that
is comfortable but away from distractions. Your children deserve
attention but not during your working hours (more on that later)
So set yourself up far from where the kids usually play. Too
close to the kitchen isn't wise because you are too close to
the "food or drink" temptation. A quiet spare bedroom can be
ideal as can a finished basement or garage if they aren't too
hot or cold. You may need an extension phone put there and,
indeed, after your business gets rolling you may want a separate
line just for business.
If you have a spare desk or table that's fine, but a card table
can do for a starter. Adequate lighting is necessary and a
filing cabinet also is a good thing to have on hand. You can
add whatever other business devices and equipment you discover
you'll need as time goes by.
You and your Family
It will be necessary to explain to your children that even
though you are at home, you are, in a sense "not at home," that
you are working. This does not apply to an emergency, of course,
but for nearly all ordinary moments it means they are not
allowed to disturb you. You may even have to lock the door that
leads to your work area.
On the other side, there is the situation regarding other adults
in the household, from whom you might want some help from in
running the business. This has been called the "honey-do"
problem: honey, do this; honey, do that. It's best to come to
some understanding with your spouse (and any other adult in your
home) about just how you are going to handle this problem.
It's quite sensible to desire the help of those other capable
adults because they can take some of the burdens of the
business off your shoulders. However, from both a business
viewpoint and from the human relations viewpoint, it's best to
have a clear understanding with each of them as to what kind of
things they will and should do (answer the phone, open mail,
pack and ship merchandise, etc.) and what they definitely are
not to do make payments to people without your authorization,
make agreements, deals or contracts without asking you).
Such advance agreements can avoid a lot of aggravation and
make everything go much more smoothly.
"Hello, this is Daddy's business"
You must realize that there will be some (charming)
complications to running a business from home and one
of those complications is when a fairly small child answers
the phone for a business call. "No, this isn't the Smith
Company, this is my house" may throw a business associate
calling your "office" for a loop, temporarily. Most people
react quite graciously to this, but it does point up the
advantage of having a business number that rings only in
your work area.
Getting temporary help
There may be more work at times than you and your family can
do yourselves. Your volume of business may be greater on
certain days of the week, certain times of the month, certain
seasons of the year. At those times you may need extra help
to handle the work. Or you might need a bookkeeper or
secretary or clerk one week a month to help you keep up-to-
date on your record-keeping and paperwork. When you need
such help, the most convenient way to get it is to hire
someone through an agency that provides temporary workers.
Manpower and Kelly Girl, for example, are two of the best
known agencies in this field. Hiring though such an agency
has these advantages: they will send a person who has the
skills you require which means you won't waste time training
the person. The worker they send understands that the job is
temporary and won't make you uncomfortable by asking to be
kept on permanently.
And, because the worker is employed by the agency (not by you)
the agency takes care of the worker's payroll records, tax
deductions, insurance coverage, fringe benefits, and so on.
You are free from those responsibilities.
The right business for you
When selecting a home business you should consider these
* Is the service or product you intend to provide already
easily available in your area? If it is not available and
if there appears to be a need for it, these factors are in your
Consider all the things you own that might be used in some way
as equipment for your business: a car or truck, a typewriter,
a mimeograph machine, and so on. I you can use them, it will
greatly lower your starting costs.
* Is it a business that suits your personality and tastes? One
that you feel good about, that fires your imagination? It
should be. Enthusiasm can be a priceless ingredient in the
formula for success!
Home businesses that work
You must, of course, choose the home business that is right for
you. There are many books that will give you long lists of
potentially money-making businesses for you to consider. A
relatively short, but highly recommended, list of potential
business ventures will be found in another of this series of
reports entitled 37 Instant Moneymaking Part-time Businesses.
Handwriting analysis by mail. A great little business to
operate from home. First off, study up on the subject; it
isn't too difficult to learn, and it's interesting. You will
find lots of books on the subject at your local public library.
Once you've started studying, you can start placing some small-
space ads, in local papers, and in literary-type magazines,
psychology magazines, and wherever else you think you can find
the people interested in having their handwriting analyzed.
Then you just sit back an wait for the letters (and checks,
money orders and plain old cash ) to roll in. Be sure to
keep a record of how much you get from which ad (by using a
key, such as changing your middle initial in each ad), so
you know which pull best.
After you get more confidence in making rapid analyses, you
can even give personal consultations in your home if you want
to do this.
Guaranteed lucky four-leaf clovers. It used to be that people
thought they would be lucky if they found a four-leaf clover
when they were walking in the fields. Now some smart farmer,
who must also be a good businessman as well as a skilled plant
biologist, has figured out a way to get exclusively mutants,
so he can supply unlimited four-leaf clovers.
You can cash in on this handsomely by buying a quantity of
them and embedding them in clear plastic (casting resins and
instructions can be obtained at any hobby shop), in the form
of key rings, brooches and paperweights (or anything else you
The real gimmick comes in the merchandising of them, because
you should advertise them as guaranteed lucky genuine four-leaf
clovers, with the slogan "If you don't get lucky in the next
year with this genuine four-leaf clover, we'll give you your
money back". Within a year most people have at least one good
thing happen to them, so you will probably get very few requests
for money back. Instead, you are likely to have lots of
satisfied customers who feel that now they have finally gotten
lucky, proving that the four-leaf clover worked! With this
approach, and an attractive small-space ad, you ought to do
well with four-leaf clovers.