Can a Small Home-Based Business Make it in Today's Economy?

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Today's economy, which is struggling to come up out of a deep recession, while at any moment running the risk of a full on economic depression, has been going through a major shift that has had deep and negative impacts on the livelihood of people all over the world. Small, home-based businesses have been the life raft that has rescued many families from the brink of disaster after millions of job losses, foreclosures, and bank failures.

After facing the challenge of not being able to find a new job in this new economy, many people have turned to home-based businesses to help keep them afloat only to find that they can replace and exceed the income that they earned in a traditional job.

According to MSN Money Central, "more than half of all U.S. businesses are now run from kitchen tables, extra bedrooms, basements and garages. Home-based businesses make a $530 billion contribution to the nation's economy each year." What makes these businesses so appealing is that they do not take a major financial investment to start and they can be run from home with just a computer and an Internet connection in most cases.

With all of the resources available on the Internet to help support small, home-based businesses, the prevalence of social media, which makes spreading the word about your business so easy for the non-marketing expert, and easy access to outsourcing via freelancing job sites, making a small business profitable is within the reach of those who are focused and success oriented.

One important aspect of finding success with a home-based business is choosing something that you are passionate about. When you are pursuing something that you already have a passion for, it is easier to remain committed to it through those beginning stages when it can be in danger of going under.

Several major corporations got their start during challenging economic times including well-known companies such as, Fed-Ex, Trader Joe's and General Electric (GE). During time of great challenge there is always opportunity. Those visionaries who can seize those opportunities are the ones who will find a way to prosper despite the current economic climate.

Here are a few tips for making the most of a small, home-based business startup:
  • Plan for success
Create a business plan. Visit your local small business development center (in the U.S.) and get free advice about your startup.
  • Make sure your location is legal
Some municipalities have zoning restrictions that apply to where a business can be located. Check your city zoning laws to see if your location is compliant.
  • Keep proper records
Be aware of the current deductions that you can take when you operate a business from your home. Read, IRS Publication 587, Business Use of Your Home, which can be downloaded from
  • Remain focused
An acronym for focus is: Follow One Course Until Successful. If you keep trying different things you will never know which one might have worked out.

So, in answer to the question, "Can a small, home-based business make it in today's economy?" the answer would be a resounding, "yes!" and these small businesses will continue to grow and thrive as the job market continues to flounder.

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