September 20, 2010 |
Dear Karen : My home-based business sells $25,000 annually. My clients want credit card payment options, but is that financially viable? Answer: Here's the real question: Can you afford to lose current and prospective clients because you don't accept credit cards? Fees, which will probably run 2% to 4% per transaction, can be built into your pricing structure, says Paul Nisenbaum, a credit card consultant with PaymentMaven.com. "Setting up your business to receive online credit card transactions will involve some initial paperwork, but once your system is in place, it is not complicated for you or your clients," Nisenbaum said.
October 13, 2009 |
Tom McCauley didn't plan on making house calls when he started in the music business. As a recording engineer, McCauley made a good living working out of the many commercial studios that had grown up throughout the Los Angeles area to serve the music, film and television industries. But with the advent of software that allows high-end recording from a personal computer, the 53-year-old Sherman Oaks resident has traded the quasi-industrial atmosphere of the commercial studio for his customers' garages or living rooms.
March 2, 2009 |
For many of the millions of Americans who lost their jobs over the last year, the next step is starting a business. And many of these enterprises are being launched out of the entrepreneurs' homes. Owners of new home-based businesses find there are pros and cons to running a company out of a spare bedroom or den. The upsides include a more flexible lifestyle and big cost savings.
September 8, 2008 |
Dear Karen: I read your recent column about business valuation calculators. Are the online calculators useful? Answer: Determining the market value of a small company is both art and science, said Steve Garber of FTI Consulting. "A well-developed online business valuation calculator can properly model the science piece of the valuation puzzle but cannot properly incorporate the art -- or human judgment and experience -- part of the analysis," he said. An online calculator can provide a ballpark figure for internal use. But plugging numbers into a formula will not capture the full value of a company, Garber said.
September 1, 2008 |
Scrawled across the corner of her bathroom mirror are the words entrepreneur Sheri Varela tries to live by: "Do what you love." That message helped inspire her to launch a T-shirt business last month that sells tops for women decorated with messages such as "Breathe" and "Attitude Matters." Money has been tight for the home-based business, Sheri Baby Inc. So when Varela heard about a free legal service for small businesses offered by USC, she snapped up a spot. "I needed to get some assistance so I could protect my company as best as possible," said the Valencia resident, a former mortgage broker and onetime teacher.
July 23, 2006 |
Question: I want to start a business at home, but my landlord refuses even to listen to my request. Why would he care? How can I change his mind? Answer: Since there are hundreds of home-based business possibilities, the landlord may be wary of what yours might bring, including outside visitors, noise, parking problems and stress to neighbors. Other concerns might include insurance claims, increased costs for utilities, fire and safety issues and that the business violates the law. Why the fuss?