A growing business is always a good thing—unless it’s taking up the entire house. If it’s time to upsize your property to fit your work and personal life, follow Photos by AG’s guide to finding a new home and settling in.
Home Buying Considerations for Business Owners
If it’s time to upsize your property to accommodate a work-at-home business, try these tips.
Respect the Buying Process
Buying a home as a self-employed business owner can be complex, and not every lender makes the process easy. You’ll need to submit paperwork (often more than once), share account balances, and respond quickly to lender inquiries.
As Money Geek explains, self-employed applicants might encounter challenges when documenting funds or meeting debt-to-income ratios. Self-employed tax deductions can skew your net profit, possibly limiting your buying power, and income records need to show stable earnings.
Do your research and work with a lender you trust for advice (and hard truths).
Narrow Down Possible Homes
Choosing the right home can take time, but knowing what you want expedites the process. Begin with a list of must-haves for your new place; if you considered making updates to your home before moving, start there.
Basics like the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, square footage, lot size, and location should top your list. With a pre-qualification amount in mind, start a tentative search with your parameters.
Remember that pre-qualification is similar to pre-approval, says Consumer Finance, even though lenders might use different terms. Neither document guarantees you a loan or an exact mortgage amount. When you are ready to make an offer, your lender will finalize (and adjust) the figures.   
Select the Right Coverage
When you mortgage a home, insurance coverage is a requirement — but not all policies are the same. Homeowners insurance, for example, limits coverage to the home’s structure and any theft or injury on the property. To protect your home’s systems and appliances, a separate policy is crucial.
A home warranty covers systems like electrical, heating, cooling, and plumbing, plus appliance repairs. Renew your contract yearly to safeguard against equipment failures and keep your home comfortable and safe.
Home Business Operations: What to Think About
Working out of your home, especially during a move, requires smart preparation.
Manage the Move
Transplanting your business is simple if your work involves a laptop and an internet connection. If you stock products, need equipment, or require a professional video conferencing setup, moving could be a challenge.
Streamline the transition by setting up your office before the rest of the house. Establish high-speed internet service at your new place before shutting it off at your previous home. If you’ll be painting rooms or replacing flooring, prioritize the office space.
Then, you can work while fixing up the rest of the house and settling in.
Equip Your Home Office
Though some professionals need a lot of equipment, others may require only the basics. Think about the essentials you’ll need, plus furniture or technology that will make your work tasks easier.
For example, a work surface is a necessity. But if you work on a laptop, a laptop stand may be preferable to an adjustable desk with a monitor shelf. Similarly, a chair is likely a requirement, but comfort and ergonomics both play a part.
The right home office setup fits your lifestyle, space, and industry, and your productivity depends on getting it right.
Push for Business Success
After a big move, maintaining momentum in your new workspace might not seem so challenging. Over time, you might find that it’s time to level up. Sharpening your skills with a business degree is one way to continue growing.
Develop your professional skill set with a degree in management, communications, business, or accounting—and do it remotely. An online program means no commute and flexible scheduling; this may help you reach business goals while furthering your education.
Whether you plan to work or work and study from home, the right house will give you and your business room to grow. With this guide, you’ll be ready to take the leap as soon as the perfect home comes on the market.
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