RealtyBizNews - Real Estate Marketing and Beyond
Real Estate Marketing & Beyond
Home » Real Estate Resource » Coaching » 5 Key Legal Considerations When Starting a Home-Based Business

5 Key Legal Considerations When Starting a Home-Based Business

By RealtyBiz News | October 18, 2023

Embarking on your journey to start a home-based business can be thrilling. Imagining the freedom and the potential success is certainly enticing, but setting up is not just about furnishing an office or creating a product. 

It involves adhering to legal stipulations that govern how businesses, including home-based ones, operate. Navigating through these directives may initially seem overwhelming, but understanding them is integral to ensuring your venture thrives without falling foul of the law. 

This article will help you better understand these regulations by exploring key legal considerations when launching your home business.

1. Nationally Required Business License

Earning the right to operate your business starts with securing a valid, general business license. Acquiring this permit is mandatory, irrespective of your business scope or classification. 

Think of it like a badge that declares, "I've obtained clearance from the necessary municipal or county authorities to run my business in this location."

Example: Home Bakery

For instance, you might be preparing to set up a home-based bakery. While the smells wafting from your kitchen may entice neighbors and friends, you'll need a general business license before commercially selling your goods. 

The specifics will vary depending on your location's zoning laws and tax office regulations. Just remember, this foundational step is crucial for all businesses - even those as comforting as cozy home bakeries!

2. The Need for Professional Licensing

Certain professions call for professional licensing, which is an extra layer of authorization specific to your business type. This license reflects that you adhere to industry standards and possess the necessary skills to deliver your service safely and competently.

Example: Home-Based Real Estate Brokerage 

Assume you're planning to set up a real estate brokerage from the comfort of your home. The allure of directly connecting buyer and seller without an office setting appeals to many. 

However, irrespective of where you manage the operations - be it at home or in a high-rise office building - having a state-issued broker license is essential. 

Your clients' trust primarily stems from this legal requirement that validates your ability to handle their real estate concerns professionally.

3. Maintaining a Healthy Business Environment: Health & Safety Permits

Health and safety permits are vital for businesses where customers or clients visit your home. This isn't commonly required if you're strictly online, but if you’re storing inventory at home that can pose potential risks, an inspection by the local fire department might be unavoidable.

Example: Brewery

Consider the case of brewing the perfect SMaSH beer at home, for instance. Your splendid blend could gain popularity fast, bringing customers to your doorstep for pickups. 

Operating this kind of business from home means you'll have to secure health and safety permits not only to keep risky situations at bay but also as a prerequisite to ensuring a safe and protective environment for your customers.

4. Making Your Presence Known: Consider Sign Permit Regulations

When you decide to put out a sign to advertise your home business, it's crucial to comply with local ordinances that regulate the size, type, and location of business signs. Be aware that restrictions also often apply to lighting.

Example: Home Counseling Centre 

Perhaps you've established a counseling center in your home. Displaying an outdoor sign could assist clients in identifying your location more easily. 

However, depending on local regulations or even homeowners association rules if applicable, obtaining a sign permit before hanging anything up might be essential. 

Therefore, taking into account such legalities proves meaningful when making yourself known to potential clients without breaching signage rules.

5. A Sales Tax License and Its Importance in Your Home Business

In some regions, a separate sales tax license might be necessary besides your local business license. This license affirms your authority to collect sales tax from customers, which you then turn over to the state or local government.

Example: E-commerce Store

Imagine starting an e-commerce store from home. While the internet provides a borderless marketplace, the requirement for a sales tax license could still apply. Contacting your local department can help pinpoint whether you need this extra license on top of a normal business permit. 

Ensuring this clarity upfront is crucial because missing out can lead to serious consequences later as running a business without proper taxation measures is usually frowned upon by authorities.

Stepping Into Legality: Wrapping it All Up 

As romantic as the notion of starting a home-based business is, overlooking key legal aspects can lead to undesirable repercussions. Keeping these considerations in mind isn't just about creating a compliant business; it's about building a solid foundation that fosters sustainable, welcomed growth.

Follow Us
Find topics in marketing, technology, and social media for realtors, and housing market resources for homeowners. Be sure to subscribe to Digital Age of Real Estate.
Follow Us
  • Sign up to Realty Biz Buzz
    Get Digital Marketing Training
    right to your inbox
    All Contents © Copyright RealtyBizNews · All Rights Reserved. 2016-2024
    Website Designed by Swaydesign.
    linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram