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Running Your Business From Home - Do Any Regulations Apply?

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Author: Naz Daud

Are you running a business from home? Did you know that you may need planning permission? Here are some questions that you need to ask yourself:

Is your house mainly used as a place to live or is its primary purpose as a business premises?
Does running your home business create a lot of traffic?
Do you have many visitors coming to your home?
Do you have business visitors at unsociable hours?
Are you altering the property in any way by extending it or making structural changes?
Do you employ any staff in your home?
Does your home business create any noise or smells?

For most home businesses whereby the house is only used as a place to receive and make outgoing phone calls no planning permission is required in most cases.

Make sure that you keep your business equipment in a separate room and keep this locked when you are not using it so that it does not cause a hazard to other members of the household.

Ensure that all your wiring and electrical equipment does not pose a hazard especially to small children. Do not overload electrical sockets as this can create a fire risk. Remember to have smoke alarms fitted throughout the house and especially in your office.

If you employ staff and meet a lot of people at home than you need to check with your local authority if this is permissible. They might ask you to make some changes so that your house is deemed safe as a place of work.

Your neighbours might start objecting if you turn a quiet suburb into a busy area with a lot of people coming and going. On the other hand if you receive very few visitors then they are unlikely to object.

A typical example of where you definitely need to check with the local authorities first, is if you run a child minding business from home. They will need to inspect your property and may ask you to make some improvements so that it is deemed to be safe for the children.

Another example of a business that might be deemed to cause a nuisance to the neighbours is if your work involves a lot of noise or smells. A joiner who bangs away with his hammer and tools could easily upset the people who live next door.

Working from home has many advantages including lower start up costs and money / time saved travelling to and from work. By checking with your local authority first and taking out adequate home business insurance you can avoid problems later.

About the author: Naz Daud is the Founder of the CityLocal Internet Business Franchise Opportunity.

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