It’s easy to list the advantages of running a home-based business: low overhead, no commute, and creating a more flexible lifestyle.But when you live and work under the same roof, there are also are a number of disadvantages to contend with. Here are some tips to help you.

Emergency funds Don’t begin your business with delusions of overnight success. You’ll need funds to tide you over while your business grows and becomes profitable. Put some money aside to tide you over until you do start earning revenue.

Cash flow It’s not enough to simply watch your cash flow — the money going in and out of your business — you’ve also got to manage it. This means looking to the future, planning and scheduling your projected cash inflows and outflows, billing quickly, staying on top of money owed you, and paying attention to the money that goes in and out of your business.

Customer contact How you communicate with your customers isn’t that important; what’s important is that you do it! Stay in touch with email newsletters, mailings, or a blog. These methods remind your clients and customers that you’re around when they need you. You can even call them to let them know about a sale, a new service you are offering, or just to ask if there’s anything else you can do for them.

Handle the receivables You work hard for your clients, and you deserve to be paid for the work you do. Never feel guilty about asking for what you are owed. Always be firm but fair, and you will engender respect and loyalty in your customers.

Watch the expenses One common pitfall for new home-based entrepreneurs is running out of money early. Get expert advice on subjects like minimizing taxes, forecasting your startup costs, and having enough cash in the bank.

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