Join Date: February 10, 2010
Im not sure of your actual business plan, so these are some random things for you to consider...
When you speak to the county and city officials about your future business, also make sure to ask if there are any other home based businesses. If there are, were they allowed without restrictions, or did they have to obtain a waiver, zoning variance, etc. Also, ask if any are grandfathered, and if so, the cut-off date, and a reason why. Get as much in writing if you can. You may already know, but take a ride around your area, looking for businesses that are operating from a persons home. They may not be that obvious, but with alittle work you can gain some information there.
We all have heard the news stories about some childs lemonade stand being shutdown by local officials due to the lack of a license, etc. In some places, any type of "for profit" venture is considered a business, and are required to have a business license. Many of these "for profit" ventures sell items such as cosmetics, home/personal items, craft stuff, and the like. The catch is with these, are that "people are selling these products in order to make a profit for personal income." One of the popular brands list its sales people as "(brand name) Independent Business Owner." There are some exemptions in some areas for the MLM strategy which some of these fall under. The only other exception that I know of is for fundraising involving a non-profit, such as a school, religous orginaization, etc. Other then the actual product, there is little difference in a home based retail business. Keep in mind what they are doing, as are what you have discussed generally falls under retail. So also look for any businesses that may be operating in violation of the local regulations. Make a note of these and ask why are they allowed to continue in business if they are in violation of any local regulations.
Also, are you going to just sell/transfer firearms, or also sell other items as well? You may want to consider, and come up with an unserved niche that your business can fill prior to talking to the local officials again, so you can better describe and know what you are going to be doing with the business. Possible niches may include a catagory of hunting or sport, such as turkey hunting, or IDPA. Both of these usually require other items, in addition to a firearm, to participate or be successful in.
You may need to mention the amount of traffic you except on a regular basis. If you are expecting a hoard of regular customers, and you are in a normal neighborhood, the local officials may not be comfortable. If you mention that its for special orders/transfers, you can honestly state that you are going to have a low to limited volume of traffic.
Now...Why did I mention all the above? Most people who try to start a home based business stop at the first "No" and give up. The best thing for you to be is armed with knowledge of whats going on, and learn how the system works in your area. Sometimes the local officials will object to your request at first glance, but if you are well informed, you can cite examples of current home based businesses that are in operation and compliant, you can help to better your own case. These are small things that most people who start this fail to do and understand how it can really affect them.
In the end, the more homework that you do at this level can help you to avoid any issues locally, or at least be knowledgeable enough to support your stance if you run in to a problem.
One last item for you to consider...When you go about this, you are working on gaining knowledge so you better understand the local situation in regards to setting up, and operating a home based business. It is wise not to go about gaining this information in a way that can be confrontational. Work with in the system, and know whats going on at this current time. Dont try to work against the system unless it is a last resort.
Keep us posted. If you to run in to a hurdle, feel free to run it by some of us here for advice.
Last edited by Fishing_Cabin; March 28, 2012 at 04:20 PM.
Reason: additional information