7 top tips for starting a home-based business

Operating a small business is about more than just being your own boss - it's also about having the management skills, industry knowledge and long-term vision to grow and succeed.

If you're thinking of joining the one million people in Australia who run a business from home, check out these 7 tips to help you get started.

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1. Download our Starting a business checklist

Our handy checklist contains a series of questions to guide you through the various stages of your business, including:

1. before you start a business

2. when you start a business

3. when you buy a business

4. when you run your business.

Download the Starting your business checklist now!

2. Develop a detailed business plan

Thinking through your business idea carefully and taking the time to research and plan your operations can help you to:

1. clearly understand what you want to achieve with your business

2 .work out and prioritise your main tasks

3. prepare for any obstacles down the track.

3. Seek government and professional advice

If you're just starting out, it's a great idea to get some expert advice and support. Talking to experienced business advisers, accountants, bank managers, or government advisory services can all be good ways to find business guidance.

4. Work out what licences and registrations you need

As a small business owner, it can be difficult to work out what licences and registrations you need, and how or where to get them. Using your home as a place of business may also mean you need to comply with particular state, territory and local government regulations.

To help you get started, try the Australian Business License and Information Service (ABLIS) . You can get a custom report of the business licenses and registrations that may apply to your business by simply entering the type of business you're starting and your business location.

5. Start networking

Networking is an important way to keep up-to-date with business trends and to create business opportunities and relationships. If you're operating a business from home, consider joining a business association or attending events related to your business.

To help you get connected, try:

1. searching Event Finder for a business event near you

2. browsing Directory of government and business associations for industry associations relevant to your business.

6. Set up your premises

To set up a comfortable and safe home business environment, you may need new furniture, office equipment and technology like a phone or internet connection. It's a good idea to first work out your business requirements before purchasing anything.

It's also a good idea to shop around and compare prices to make sure you're getting a good deal. You could also talk to other home-based business owners for advice on setting up a home office.

7. Set up your finances

Managing your business finances effectively is crucial to a successful business! You'll need to consider things like:

1. how the business set-up in your home can affect your tax deductions

2. whether you want to open separate bank accounts for your business and personal funds.

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