Every business needs an idea, and every idea needs space to grow. Space can be virtual or physical. It can be as small as a locker or an entire office with a good seating capacity. It all boils down to the nature of the business. The first thing that comes to your mind when you hear the word office is space. But the new age office is different. It does not always require physical space or address to carry out operations.
A business address is the principal place of operation used to communicate with clients, vendors, and customers for legal matters and to receive delivery of parcels and inventory. Most of the businesses start from the home or maybe a space in the garage. Many small business owners face this dilemma if they should get a separate business address. In this article, we will answer this question as well as discuss some of the most cost-effective ways of getting a business address.
Can Your Home Be a Home to Your Business?
If you are a small-business owner or an entrepreneur, you can use your home address as a business address since it is the easiest, cheapest, and most convenient thing to do. You can do many things from the comfort of your homes, like receive mails and parcels and store small stocks (for e-commerce business). Moreover, it is free. Any other business address would entail a rent.
However, using one’s home address as the business address is not the wisest thing to do. If you enlist your home address as the business address, this information is available for public use. This can create safety as well as privacy issues for you and your family members. There are other less privacy-invasive ways to get a business address. These include:
- P.O. box
- Digital/virtual mailbox
- Co-working space
How About a P.O. Box for a Business Address?
If you do not want to use your home address as a business address, a post office (P.O.) box is the next best cost-effect alternative. Getting a P.O. Box from the local P.O. is one of the oldest ways of getting a business address.
A P.O. box is a box with a number at the P.O. You can lock and access it at your convenience. You can give this address to your clients, register this address, as well as get mail at this address without any worry. You can opt for a small or a big P.O. Box, depending upon your business requirements. The charges of a P.O. box will vary according to its size. Usually, there are no extra charges for picking up the mail.
You need not worry about loss, theft, or robbery of your mail or parcels even if you get a few days late in picking them. People who live near a post office will gain the most from this as they need not travel long distances to check their mail.
However, a P.O. Box is not a good option for people who stay far away from the P.O. as they have to travel every time they want to check and collect their mail. Further, you can only visit P.O. during its working hours.
You Can Also Use Digital/Virtual Mailbox as Business Address
Working out the limitations of a P.O. Box, there is a new virtual or digital mailbox that keeps up with the nomad life of business owners. Companies that provide this service scan with the first page of the paper mail and email you the images. You can then decide whether you want the mail sent to you physically or get it shredded. You get this service along with a physical street address. However, some virtual mailbox service providers charge extra for forwarding the paper mail to you.
The advantage of getting a virtual mailbox is that you can check your mail online at any time of the day or night. You can access your mail from your phone, computer, or tablet. You can forward the mail which contains important documents such as passport, driver’s license, bank details, or credit card. You can also store mail digitally for future use.
The Co-Working Space-A Bridge Between Traditional and New Business Address
If a business requires networking, then renting a co-working space is better than operating from home or mailbox. A co-working space or shared workplace is an official building or space where you can rent a desk or a cabin to carry out your business operations.
Renting a co-working space is cheaper than owning or renting an entire office. Since co-working spaces are owned by a different company, you need not worry about maintaining the space. You get a fully functional office with state-of-the-art facilities like meeting rooms, work desks, cafeteria, and WiFi. You can host your clients, hold meetings, workshops, and events from the co-working space.
Renting a co-working space is a good option for a solopreneur, a small or start-up business, or for people who do not like working alone at home. Nowadays, many entrepreneurs and small businesses are opting for a co-working space to conduct their business.
What’s Your Business Address?
A small business starts from home before switching to any other business address. This gives the business an ample amount of time to stabilize and streamline its operations. Once the business has enough cash flows, the entrepreneur can consider changing the business address away from his/her home. You should never rush such a decision. Take your time and evaluate all the options.
If required, visit a co-working space, check a P.O. Box and speak to a virtual mailbox service provider. Compare each option with your business needs and select what is best for you. You can change it later as your business grows.
Contact McCay Duff LLP for Experienced Advice on How to Grow Your Business and the Related Tax Implications
McCay Duff LLP can help identify the most appropriate and cost-effective business address for you. The business advisors at McCay Duff LLP can help you identify all the steps required to support your growing business. Contact us today by phone at 613-236-2367 or reach out online.