An article by Guest Contributor Tina Martin
Photo By Mivoi Kuhar on Unsplash
The home office may be a great place to create and manage the family budget, pay household bills, place online orders, or keep the family calendar of appointments, but not every home office situation is ideally set up for full-time work productivity. Things can get even trickier if you anticipate in-person client visits. Having that home office entrance separate from the rest of the house typically projects an air of professionalism — and privacy — that many will appreciate. The dedicated, separate space also removes potential stickiness from your IRS home office
If you need ideas on how much to invest in your garage-to-home-office transformation to
maximize your home’s value, an experienced real estate agent like Jason Gelios can help.
Being more productive in an optimum home office could lead to a business expansion later, so you want to be poised to get the best value out of your existing home, whether it’s for resale or accessing a home equity line of credit for your growing home-based business.
Clean, codes, and comfort
Many garages do double-duty for their homeowners, housing not only vehicles but also yard
equipment, bicycles, and other seasonal items. Your first order of business will be to declutter
and find a new storage solution for what you wish to keep. Consider donating items still useable and in good shape or put on a garage (yard) sale. Be sure to check your municipal codes to see if you need a permit for the sale.
Speaking of codes, you’ll also want to ensure that your garage is in good condition and meets your local building codes. This includes any electrical wiring already installed. Your ordinances may require that you add windows or even that you replace your garage with other covered parking options.
While you’re assessing building codes and compliance, now is also a good time to think about your legal business structure, in addition to your physical one. Many small businesses opt to form a limited liability company or LLC. This popular structure grants you limited liability to protect your personal assets and tax advantages — all while leaving you with less paperwork and greater flexibility than other corporations. There is no uniformity among states as to business formation regulations, so you’ll want to verify the formation process. You can have an attorney do the work for you or you can form your own LLC Michigan online by using a formation service.
If your garage space needs work to get it up to code or you’d like to add on more space, consult with design and build professionals who can help you gauge what you need against what would be ideal. For example, it may not seem like a big deal now to not have an adjacent bathroom, but you may regret not having it later if you host clients. Add a small kitchenette and the renovated space could be billed as a charming guest space if you sell your home later. Be sure to also insulate and install whatever heating and cooling options work best for your climate for optimum year-round comfort.
Decorate, then deal
Once your space is ready, it’s time to add the color, décor, and details that make it your own
and reflect your business’s brand and personality. Peruse online marketplaces and secondhand stores for good deals on quality “new-to-you” office furniture — you will likely find décor that’s functional and tasteful but that doesn’t break the bank. If your space allows, consider adding a small sofa for guests or even for you to take a reading or relaxing break during the workday. There are many highs and lows to being an entrepreneur, and you’ll likely experience several from each end of the spectrum. It helps to have a comfortable space to help you weather the challenges and savor the victories.
Now you’re ready to move into your newly transformed home office and make dynamic business deals! Get the most out of the space as much — and for as long — as you can by taking your business as far as it can go in that space. And remember: When you’re ready to expand, connect with Jason Gelios for your refinance or home selling options to help you continue on your entrepreneurial journey.
Tina Martin is the writer behind Ideaspired.com. Click here to reach out to her.
Jason Gelios is a Husband and Father. After that, a Top Producing REALTOR®, Author of the book Think like a REALTOR®, Creator of The AskJasonGelios Real Estate Show and an Expert Media contributor.