Post a new topic
    17 Replies Latest reply on Mar 22, 2010 12:11 PM by amspcs

    Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?

    smshelton2010 Newbie

      Hello everyone,

      My husband and I are looking into starting an online business for wedding favors from our home. A good majority of these favors will be edible and I'm curious to make sure we aren't missing anything. Is there a good place to get an overall list of the forms/licenses that we would need to have filled out. There are so many difference licenses or permits I'm not sure even where to start. Because our business will be online I don't want to fill out un-needed forms, but I also don't want to miss something that will bite us later on.

      I know this question is kind of vague but I'm just looking for overall advice on what we need here. Any advice??
        • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
          alytus Scout
          hello : )
          i started an on-line buisnes last year, all you really need to do is
          1 register a name in your home county administration building
          2 register the buisness name on-line with your state and with the fed so you can pay taxes
          3 get a buisness account with paypal or a bank so you can trans act money
          thats it ... have fun !
          1 of 1 people found this helpful
          • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
            phanio Pioneer
            There is a gentleman on this forum - his name is Doug but goes by 'thesologuide' that could help you get your business off the ground. He is really astute and knowledgeable.

            Your state should also have a secretary of states office that can advise you on the licenses you need.

            You might even find a SCORE office in your area as they are free to use and can help you with local issues.

            Business Money Today
            www.BusinessMoneyToday.com
            • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
              Tracker

              Sandra:

               


              You have three options for finding the appropriate forms and agencies to register your business with:

               

              • 1. BizFilings.com
              • 2. LegalZoom.com
              • 3. Going direct to your city, county, state and federal agencies

               

              I recommend using either BizFilings.com or LegalZoom.com. Both offer a service whereby they will provide you with a report including forms and agencies that you need to register with based upon your business type and location - basically accomplishing the third option for you so you don't have to run around trying to find the right answers. The last time I checked BizFilings.com, they had this service available for $99. When I used it, I received my report in three business days.

               


              Upon receiving your report, you will need to fill out the forms and submit them with payment (if applicable) to the various agencies. Please let me know if you have any other questions.

               


              I hope this helps.

               


              Doug Dolan

               

              The Solopreneur's Guide

               

              http://thesologuide.com/

               


              PS - Phanio, thanks for the recommendation.
              1 of 1 people found this helpful
                • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
                  smshelton2010 Newbie
                  Thank you for the referral to the Bizfilings.com but I'm having a little trouble understanding what I need to file as the business type as.S Corporation, C Corporation, LLC, Limited Partnership, or Limited Liability Partnership; there are so many options here I don't understand which one would be best. It will be just my husband and I, with the part time help of a friend of the family, as needed. Is there any advice you can offer about what business type would be best to choose here??
                    • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
                      petercalka Wayfarer
                      > {quote:title=smshelton2010 wrote:}{quote}
                      > Thank you for the referral to the Bizfilings.com but I'm having a little trouble understanding what I need to file as the business type as.S Corporation, C Corporation, LLC, Limited Partnership, or Limited Liability Partnership; there are so many options here I don't understand which one would be best. It will be just my husband and I, with the part time help of a friend of the family, as needed. Is there any advice you can offer about what business type would be best to choose here??
                      > {quote:title=smshelton2010 wrote:}{quote}
                      > Thank you for the referral to the Bizfilings.com but I'm having a little trouble understanding what I need to file as the business type as.S Corporation, C Corporation, LLC, Limited Partnership, or Limited Liability Partnership; there are so many options here I don't understand which one would be best. It will be just my husband and I, with the part time help of a friend of the family, as needed. Is there any advice you can offer about what business type would be best to choose here??
                      It would be much easier to ask your accountant, or attorney to ask to do that,.
                      Just look around, it should very affordable.
                      Same time i think you should start with deep research in thee field you want to enter.
                      There is many stores on line and they do not sell much.
                      Out of million items on E Bay only few percent really sells.
                      Better get some experience in how to work on E bay .
                      Do not invest in any programs, just look around , ask
                      and you will find many attractive offers
                      peter
                      • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advic
                        ChaoticFate Newbie
                        Hey there...

                        You are wondering what entity to choose for your business. Any one of them will work, each of them have different benefits. I for one would always chose to incorporate, just so you aren't held liable for anything. Here is just a few key notes to the benefits of incorporating, there are many others.

                        Tax Brackets
                        • S corp, all the corporation's income flows right onto the 1040 returns of the shareholders, pushing them up into higher tax brackets.
                        o Shareholder-employees draw salaries, reported on W-2s and subject to FICA tax. Corporate profits are passed through to their personal returns on form K1, taxed as ordinary income but not subject to FICA or self-employment taxes.
                        o Shift income to lower bracket shareholders. You can give shares in the corporation to children or other lower-bracket beneficiaries so that their share of profits is taxed at their lower rate.
                        • C corp, has it's own progressive tax rate structure, ranging from 15% on the first $50,000 of net income, to as much as 39%
                        o For 2009, a married couple's 15% tax bracket ends at $67,900 of taxable income. It then jumps to 25%, almost double the rate. However, if you consider that the couple's C corporation has its own $50,000 15% bracket, their overall combined 15% bracket has more than doubled to $117,900.

                        Income Taxed
                        • S corp, the shareholders are required to pay income tax on their share of the corporation's income whether they take any money out of the corporate account or leave it in there.

                        More Deductions
                        • Section 179 expensing election is more lucrative for owners of C corporations because they can literally multiply their total deduction by splitting their purchases of business assets among their different business entities. The deduction for net rental losses is magnified by using a Corp because it can use rental losses to offset all operating income.
                        • With an S corp, the section 179 deduction is limited to just the one amount. An S corp's rental losses are subject to the restrictive passive loss rules.

                        Fiscal Year
                        • C corps, can end their fiscal year at the end of any month. Toward the end of your personal fiscal year (12/31), you bleed off some of your taxable income to your C corp by paying it for something like rent or marketing services. In January, your corporation can pay it back to you. Near the end of the corp's fiscal year, bleed its net profits out by paying yourself. Sometimes income is never taxed; or if it is, we make sure that it is taxed at the lowest rate possible.

                        Employee Benefits
                        • Deductible by the corp and tax free to the employees.

                        Double Taxation
                        • The biggest fear of C Corp has to do with double taxation, where after-tax earnings are distributed to shareholders as non-deductible dividends. This is rarely a problem with small corporations because there are plenty of ways to pull money out of the corporation in a manner that is deductible, and thus only taxed once.
                        o Compensation - wages or consulting income
                        o Interest payments
                        o Lease payments
                        o Royalty payments
                        o Contributions to retirement accounts

                        Hope that helps a little...

                        To Your Success,
                        --JIM
                    • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
                      jmjdirect Newbie
                      Good Luck. It seems like you have it covered in the department of licenses:) We may be able to help you down the road with promotional or marketing ideas. www.jmj-direct.com

                      We also have a process/product with is great for small and large business alike for communicating, follow up, referrals, etc. It also can be a revenue stream

                      Take a look and try it for FREE www.sendoutcards.com/clauss

                      Let meknow if I can be of any assistance.

                      Onec again. Good Luck.

                      John
                      1 of 1 people found this helpful
                      • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advic
                        cschmitt11 Newbie
                        You definitely want to get advice from reputable people. Check out gosmallbiz.com and look at what services are offered. If you have any questions feel free to contact me. chrisschmitt1@gmail.com
                        • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
                          vnavguys Tracker
                          I will throw in one bit of interesting advice that most do not think about. Do you know your copetition? I say that because I know the guy that has the number one wedding favors site on the planet, and he is a brutal competitor. I am not trying to discourage you in any way, I myself compete with a 900 lb gorrilla, but I do have an edge and know how to work it to my advantage. Just so you know, the number one spot does about 28 million in sales a year. But they are experts in SEO, advertising, marketing and importing. Just something to think about.
                            • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
                              smshelton2010 Newbie
                              Thank you everyone for all of the insightful responses. I will definitely be checking out the Bizfilings.com or Legalzoom.com for the form package mentioned. And on a side note, vnavguys, if I may ask who are you referring too, being the biggest in the business. I am aware of numerous didn't favor companies that we would be competing against, but our product will be a few different things, outside of the standard favors. Everyone here has really helped us tremendously and we will definitely remain in the community here. This is a great resource!
                            • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
                              Newbie
                              Check with your State first for licensing. I assume your wanting to file a business name? You'll want to inquire about business name filing and sales tax for your state.
                              Don't let the paper work or forms scare you, it's not bad.

                              You can also check LegalZoom.com, think I saw that referenced on other posts.

                              I would then research your market for a good keywords and domain name. Use a keyword in your domain!

                              You can start by checking out your competition. It will give you a good idea on keywords and you can narrow down your niche market from there.
                              • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
                                Nilabiz Newbie
                                Hi SMSHelton2010,

                                I have a similar story like you. I would like to start jewelry online business and not sure about the forms/license to fill out. I was just wondering if you have done yours yet and if you could share your experience with me. Would you mind telling me?

                                Thank you so much!!!
                                  • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
                                    petercalka Wayfarer
                                    I do believe that you do not need to do anything , as long as you do not hire employees.
                                    You will need to file taxes and report your income, same time focus on building your store.,
                                    Avoid all courses, you have tons of free stuff about know how on to start and keep going, and make money.
                                    Best way is start with drop shipping company to limit your investment
                                    Peter
                                      • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
                                        bpfinance Adventurer
                                        OP and nilabiz,

                                        The first decision you have to make when determining what type of liability is involved in your industry. Since I'm not entirely familiar with your industry, I cannot give you very specific advice right now, but LLCs and corporations were designed to protect owners and officers from liability not related to torts.

                                        There are also tax differences. Corporations are significantly harder to maintain in terms of tax regulations, and for small companies, it is often prohibitively difficult to maintain a corporation, especially regarding the payroll system. You can set up an LLC and it would be taxed using form 1065 (the same as if you created a partnership for you and your spouse). There are tax benefits to S Corps though, and it is difficult to go over everything in one post, but if you need help, let me know.

                                        If you decide to set up a corporation or llc and decide to have one of the online companies complete your filings, you still need to have someone go over everything with you and assist you in drawing up bylaws (in case of corporation) or an operating agreement (in case of LLC). If you operate the company incorrectly or the bylaws are set up incorrectly, the corporate veil could be pierced and the liability protection you gain from an LLC or corporation is essentially forfeited.

                                        If you need help with determining your type of business entity or determining which forms need to be filed, feel free to contact me.
                                    • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
                                      businesstips Newbie
                                      I would advice to first understand the field that you want to by doing your research on it. Then Decide the other aspects. All the best!

                                      http://www.smallbusinessessentials.net
                                      • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
                                        Henderson Wayfarer
                                        there's a couple on twitter trying to start a cup cake business...they are taking donations now and will credit folks cupcakes based on the size of the donation when their store opens. Their cup cakes are gorgeous!
                                        • Re: Newbies starting an online/at home favor business..Advice?
                                          amspcs Ranger
                                          Hello Sandra,

                                          Requirements differ from locality to locality, and state to state. So you really should seek out knowledgable advise from someone who understands the requirements in your area of Humble TX, which may or may not be the same in another area.
                                          I know lawyers and such can be very expensive, so I think some good places to start looking for affordable or free business advsie for your area would be any or all of the following: An SBA (Small Business Associate) office, a local SCORE office, or
                                          perhaps even the business school at a local college or university--I know the Houston area has all of the above. On line businesses and home based businesses can be a little tricky, so you need to tread carefully in terms of issues such as sales tax, occupational licenses, etc.so you need to get some really good advise before you make a mistake that comes back to bite you in the future. BTW, your business idea sounds really interesting, I hope you do very well, speaking as one who has been involved with getting three kids married off.. And I hope you'll give our website a quick review when the time omes to set up your online payment processing system--I'd appreciate the opportunity to work with you on that end as well. Good luck.

                                          AMSPCS
                                          amspcs@juno.com
                                          www.MerchantServices-help.com