How To Obtain a Home Occupation Permit

Working from home is a very convenient and lucrative enterprise for many people. Running a business from your home, you don’t need to spend money on travel costs. If you have your office right in your own study room, the only fuel you will be burning is the calories that you ate at breakfast. Yet, just like any other business, operating a home business still needs to comply with regulations, especially with policies set forth by local licensing authorities. In many cases, you will need to register for a business license. In addition, you will need to apply for a home occupation permit before you can start making money at home. What is the permit for? The permit is for the government to make sure that the business you are running at home does not involve contraband and is not putting the neighborhood’s security or health at risk. In this article, you will learn how to secure a home occupation permit for your home business.

The process of acquiring a home occupation permit is very easy, simple, and straightforward. Local regulations may specify what types of businesses are allowed to be run from your residence. In the District of Columbia, for example, you are allowed to set up a general office in your own home. You can use your residence as a tutorial place for a maximum of five students at a time.

You can also use your home for a sewing business, art work production, computer programming, hair and beauty salon, clinic, and/or private practice of your health care profession. So that you will know whether your area allows your particular business to be located in your own residence, you need to check with the business licensing and local planning department. Usually, you will need to apply for two types of permits. The first is your business license—this is needed for you to run your business (regardless of where your principal location might be). The other is your home occupation permit—this is needed for you to run your business from home.

Prepare to pay for filing fees. You will be charged for your business license application. You may also be charged for your home occupation permit application. To speed up your filling out of the paperwork, be ready with your business name, the type of business that you will be having, the kinds of activities that will be performed in the conduct of your business, the specific areas in your home where you will be performing those activities (work area), the total area of your home (in square feet), and the percentage of the work area from the total area of your home. In many cases, you can only use up to a quarter (25%) of your total home area for business purposes.

Take note also of the prohibitions enforced for home-based businesses. Many localities prohibit the posting of advertising and marketing materials outside your residence. Adding more parking space may also be disallowed, as well as the delivery of products to your home using commercial vehicles. Visitations by customers in your home may also be prohibited. So, you better check whether your home business complies with the prohibitions.

After submitting your business license and home occupation permit applications (either by mail or in person), you should keep copies of your applications. Once your application is approved, you can start operating your business. Otherwise, you may need to review your application and make changes so that your application complies with the restrictions.

Many people run lucrative businesses from their own homes. You probably are one of those who want to do the same. Now that you know how to start, nothing will stop you from making your moneymaking boom.


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