Tired of working for somebody else? Dreaming of the day you can become your own boss? Sounds like you might be interested in opening up your own home service business. A service business is going to require you to do a lot more work outside your home even though it’s a home business. For instance, if you want to become a dog walker or errand service, then obviously your work is going to take you outside but the bulk of your marketing, bookkeeping and other support will happen on your schedule in your home. Sounds like a great plan. Before you dive in, you might want to consider these helpful do’s and don’ts for starting your own service business.

The Do’s

  • Understand the needs of the neighborhood. A successful service business addresses the needs of your immediate neighborhood first with the potential to expand beyond that zone. If you have a lot of elderly neighbors who need help with errands, then setting up that type of business would be ideal. On the other hand, if you live in hipster-ville, then you might not find a lot of success. Take the time to figure out what your neighbors really need and build on that.
  • Learn about taxes and government regulations. To do a home business right, you need to register and follow the rules. Flying under the radar to avoid paying taxes can come back to haunt you. It is better to keep everything above board in order to insure your success.
  • Hire bookkeeping help. If numbers aren’t your thing, then you can find someone who loves crunching the figures. Having a bookkeeper taking care of your income and taxes will free up a lot of your time for marketing and the actual work. You might be able to handle the books when you start but set the goal of hiring help ASAP. You’ll be glad you did.
  • Set up a work and marketing schedule. Handling the actual work of your service business will be the easy part. Finding the new customers will be the challenge. That is why you need to dedicate time each day to marketing. You’ll need a web site, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media accounts dedicated to your business. If you’re already on those sites, then it will be easy to get your friends to “like.”

The Don’ts:

  • Quit your day job… at least not right away. You’re going to have to find a way to make your home business work alongside your regular job at the start because you don’t want to lose your only source of reliable income.
  • Ignore your competition. No matter what type of home service business you’re setting up, somebody else is already in that business. That’s not a bad thing because you can learn a lot from looking at their web site and reading their customer reviews.
  • Go it all alone. Starting a home based business is a big step. It can be very rewarding but also very challenging. Make sure you ask for help from your friends and family as you go through the start-up phase. Just getting the emotional support will be a huge benefit.

Are you thinking about starting your own business?