If you work from home, or are thinking about it, you’ve probably come across one or more of these myths. Get the real story about working from home here.
Don’t believe everything you read or hear. Much of it is a little bit of fact wrapped around a whole lot of untruths. We assembled some of the top home-based business myths and put together the real truth.
1. You don’t need an office
It’s your home, right? You can work at the dining room table, on your couch, on the patio, or sipping coffee at Starbucks. The truth is that the successful home-based workers have an office just like they would in a traditional setting. They wake up, get ready for work, take a lunch break, and work hard in their office the rest of the day. If you don’t treat your work with the discipline it deserves, don’t expect to compete with those who do.
2. A good meeting has to be face-to-face
Not anymore. Video conferencing allows highly productive meetings to take place on sophisticated platforms or Facetiming on your iPhone. If anybody still holds onto this old myth, it’s probably not worth your time trying to talk them out of it.
There is a bit of truth to it, however. If you have local clients, taking the time to meet them for lunch is still valuable. There’s still that intangible trust that comes from being in somebody’s physical presence.
3. It’s harder work than in a traditional office
Home-based business owners sometimes like to compare their workload to the traditional office employees to gain the legitimacy they deserve. Every successful business owner works hard regardless of where they do it—at home, in a traditional office, or at a construction site. It’s just different types of hard work.
4. Your schedule is flexible
Home-based workers’ schedules are more flexible because they own the business but an owner working in a traditional office has a flexible schedule too. What’s more important is the fact that even if you don’t have a boss, you have customers and they demand service that meets certain deadlines. Those deadlines often take the flexibility out of home-based workers’ schedules.
5. Clients won’t take you seriously
It’s true that some customers don’t want to work with home-based workers but most will. Everybody has preferences on the type of business they find trustworthy. You won’t win all clients as a home-based worker but you can certainly win enough.
6. Other than overhead, there is no financial incentive for working at home
Overhead is a pretty big financial incentive but home office deductions, office supplies, software, mileage, travel, insurance premiums, telephone charges, and childcare are a few of the potential tax deductions—just like a traditional office.
7. Family will lower your productivity
You can’t make a living as a home-based worker if you’re trying to babysit your children but there are ways around that. Your hours could be after they go to bed and before they wake up; you could get a babysitter, and the business could remain part-time until the kids head to school every day.
And let’s not forget that a traditional office has its massive share of distractions as well. The overly social office mate, just to name one.
8. There are virtually no startup costs
For some businesses that’s true. Consultants, for example, may have next to no startup costs but specialized work requires specialized equipment that costs money—sometimes a lot of money.
9. It will never be more than part-time income regardless of how hard you work
It used to be difficult to make a full time living as a home-based worker but today, the playing field is level. To earn a comfortable living in any field, you have to invest time to gain experience, invest money into education, and a whole lot of sweat equity. It doesn’t matter if you’re at home or at an office, the way to succeed is to out work your competitors.
10. You can get rich quick
People still fall for these myths. You can still see plenty of advertisements for work at home businesses that make $30k per week. That’s statistically not going to happen. Aim for a comfortable living and don’t fall for anything that doesn’t hold up to the rules of common sense.
11. An online business is purely passive income
Any successful Internet marketer would laugh at that statement. Sure, sales happen when they’re sleeping but the amount of work it takes to build a successful Internet business means they probably aren’t sleeping much anyway. Internet marketing is a tough business that requires a whole lot of work and a little bit of luck. Only after an extraordinary amount of work will they begin to see some passive income but they’re already hard at work figuring out how to sustain it. There’s no rest when you’re in the Internet business.
12. I can charge less because of the lack of overhead costs
You’re not losing as much of your overhead costs as you think. When you work for yourself, you still pay taxes and you’re responsible for the complete share of your Social Security and Medicare payments. You also have retirement, the full cost of healthcare, licensing, education, and those vacations with the family that produce next to no income.
Don’t fall for the myths. If you want to know the true picture of a home-based business, ask somebody who has found success doing it. Don’t believe everything you read.