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3.9 out of 5 stars
3.9 out of 5 stars
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on 17 October 2015
a great starting point
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I found this to be a solid and easily understandable overview of running a business from home. The tone is nicely pitched nicely between user friendliness and serious business discussion, giving you an accessible insight into what can be a very demanding process. That said, though, even at a beginner level it is lacking in some fairly critical areas.

There are very good chapters on accounting, tax, creating a sustainable income and legal issues (and I found all these to be very useful and informative); likewise there is also good reading on planning (with one caveat--see below!), pricing, the internet and attracting customers. Overall I found it to be an inspirational read that helped me to understand most of what I need to know at this stage, without bogging it down with so much information that I lost confidence.

However... There is nothing on getting a bank loan (though it does give other suggestions on how to build startup funds--such as crowdsourcing, credit union loans and grants etc.); and there is only around a page and a half of information on how to write up a business plan (which is no more useful than a WikiHow article). These are areas I would also have appreciated a proper explanation. Given there is a fairly long chapter on managing your home and business life (how to resist the fridge and avoid interruptions etc!), I found these omissions to be a bit annoying! I wouldn't have minded, if it wasn't for the more important stuff being left out.

That said, though, you'll struggle to find a more accessible guide that is specifically tailored to running a business from your home. I've also read through the FT guide to running a business and found this to explain things much more concisely. It's definitely worth reading, especially if--like me--you find the idea of running a home business daunting.
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Mercifully, unlike some of the Dummies books, this one is aimed at the UK market albeit at times its American origins come through. This is obviously essential when it comes to discussing tax and legal issues. It is a straightforward, readable guide, covering the basics but in a very shallow way. I found the first part of the book to be a waste of time - it looks at the ways in which a business can be established, what sort of home-based businesses there are, etc - I already know what I am going to do. I had assumed the book was aimed at those just about to start their own business, rather than those thinking about doing 'something'.

Overall I wasn't impressed by the book. I have a business background based in finance so many of the financial and legal aspects were familiar to me. The information in the book is basic to say the least - there is far better and more comprehensive information available for free from various business and government support websites - and could lead readers up the wrong path. I thought it was hilarious that more space is devoted to selling a business than to say, VAT, which is likely to be an issue much sooner that the sale of a business is. The tax chapter overall is very weak (this was my specialist area for many years so the easiest for me to comment on). Whilst I fully appreciate that the book is not intended to provide a comprehensive overview of home business taxation, I was surprised that, having mentioned the dangers vis a vis business rates of using part of your home exclusively for business purposes, no mention (that I could find) was made of the capital gains tax implications that arise in the same situation. In the section dealing with business structures (sole trader v limited company) there is no mention of the possibilities of using a limited company to reduce national insurance costs by paying dividends instead of salary. This is a pretty basic planning point so its omission seemed very odd to me.

A lot of the rest of the advice is very basic or states the obvious e.g. you should minimise costs (now I would never have thought of that on my own!)

I wouldn't recommend this book - you can get better information on the practical aspects of setting up a business from a myriad of online sources (government and small business websites like Businesslink, accountancy websites and open tax forums).
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I have been really impressed with this book. As it gives all the back ground for how to start a home business.
What I like the most is that this book is written with the UK reader in mind.
So many for Dummies books are based on United States laws, tax, culture etc.
This book is not. The tax discussed, websites and so on are UK. HMRC and tax is clearly explained.
Another book section that is very helpful is chapter 1 "Where the heart is".
This chapter deals with why someone who wish to start a home business and if they are suitable. A good read that does focus the mind on if a home business is something the reader will wish to do.
If the decision is yes this book then moves onto the different types of business that can be run from home there are also examples of suitable work.
Stock, websites and achieving a sustainable income are also shown.
I have read this book twice now, as I am looking to start my own home business in a few months and have read many books on the subject - I have found this one to be the best, the writing is clear, eveything is explained well.
A great buy for anyone planning there own home business.
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VINE VOICEon 15 April 2014
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Although this book in the for dummies series had some useful nuggets of information I was, on balance, disappointed with the title.

My favourite part of the book had to be the chapter entitled "balancing your business and your life”. This was a useful title and had some useful information although I would have expected it to have more detail and depth.

There are also a really effective list in each of the sections of the subjects that should be investigated in more detail before you start your business.

I suppose the downside of this book is that it’s nothing particularly new and innovative. Most of the information can be found free of charge on various websites and in much more detail.

If someone is thinking of starting their own business, I would suspect that they would know either their areas of expertise or their passion and hence the nature of their future business. The book contained many ideas of businesses that could be pursued which baffled me a little and stopped much of the information being too detailed. I know this is a Dummies book so shouldn’t be too in depth but I personally didn’t like this aspect.

I also got the impression that this book might have originally started life as a book called Starting a Small Business for Dummies which has then been edited so that it concentrates on home based businesses.

I think that, with a great number of small start-up businesses that start as home based, beginning with limited funds, the reader would have been better served if more of the book had been devoted to topics such as creating markets and using new technology for organising your business with less on aspects of copyright trademarks patents and types of business which you could start.

Perhaps this book is best suited to someone who wants to see if running their own business is for them rather than someone who has already decided to pursue their dream business idea. As it stands, I would suggest a more detailed book on the subject you’re interested in would be a better use of your money.
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on 15 April 2014
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is the guide I would have liked to have read when I started my own home business a few years ago. It asks the reader to assess whether it's worth them starting at all, and takes them through to getting fully up and running. Unlike many business start up books, there is a decent amount of attention paid to getting the work:life balance right as well as the mechanics of what's needed.

Like many books of this nature information is lacking in some areas in order to keep things readable and encouraging. For instance business planning is sketchy and deserves much greater attention as getting this right is a key factor in ensuring business success.

Read this book to assess whether starting your own business is for you, then if you really want to go for it, then follow it up with The Financial Times Guide to Business Start Up 2014: The Most Comprehensive Annually Updated Guide for Entrepreneurs (The FT Guides) This guide is updated every year and I've found it really useful for getting to grips with tax, accounting and legal matters.
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VINE VOICEon 26 March 2014
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
As with all of the "Dummies" books this is a perfect introduction to the subject. Setting up a small business can be a veritable minefield. My wife has recently been through the process and so this book becoming available now proved to be perfect timing. It explains, in simple terms, all the "dos" and "dont's" of establishing a business, advertising and marketing, tax and legal issues, book keeping, etc. It was so well written that even I could understand it. The proof of the pudding is in the eating they say and in this case its true, as having access to this book has really helped my better half to get her business up and running. Highly recommended!
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VINE VOICEon 17 April 2014
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
As the future is uncertain for so many employees some are looking to be their own boss, myself included. The thing with the "...for Dummies" series is that it is always informative in a plain speaking way, straightforward, cutting through the business-speak nonsense that pad out other books purported to help (which instead usually confuse and bog down the reader by using 50 words when one will do).

This won't make your business successful but as a handbook it should set you on the path and indeed, decide whether or not that path is for you.
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VINE VOICEon 16 April 2014
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
An invaluable source of information and ideas set out in an easy to access format. Any concerns I had that this would be a US version were immediately allayed. It's jargon free, not without humour and even inspiring at times.Still not sure I'll ever be brave enough to run a home business but I'm better informed and even more respectful of those who go it alone than ever before.
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Starting a Home Business For Dummies
After I was made redundant in 2007, I ran an Industrial Chemical consultancy business from home until ill health ( and cash flow problems caused by the Icelandic banking crisis) brought this to an end in 2009.
Roll forward to 2014 with better health ( or at least seems to be stabilised) ,I am now looking at possibilities of revisiting self employment from home. I have found the Dummies range of books that I have purchased ( Computers , cameras , software) extremely good – if somewhat “ American” in style.
I have seen many books covering “ start up” and running of small businesses - how well does this book give any possible ideas , financial considerations and any legal implications to be considered.
So to this book –
It starts with a critical self analysis which anyone contemplating working for themselves should do – Do you think you are fit mentally and physically to run a business yourself – not everyone is!
Running a business from home is attractive as it allows for working around family life , is generally lower cost ( own premises) BUT it does require a special kind of commitment – this is all spelled out.
It proceeds to the advantages / downsides of setting up a new business , the possible legal structures , tax ,monitoring of business ,sourcing of finance , use of the internet etc. It also cover possible business ideas and gives examples of successful start ups.
It is not only logical ( with some necessary repetition) , it is also firmly UK based - its quoted personal tax band allowance (944) shows it is firmly up to date as of the tax year 2013-4
In a book of this size it covers the basic nuts and bolts of creating a business from scratch ( or buying one) but it also gives copious and excellent links to government bodies , industry bodies other areas of necessary help . It also shows how the latest technologies ( Internet , Social media etc) can be used to run / enhance a business.
( There is an intrinsic assumption – probably essential in this day and age – that modern technology will be used in the promotion and marketing of any products or services)
There is a “ cheat sheet” ( compressed summary) online at [...] and it is claimed that there is also bonus content at for the book at [...].
At the time of writing of this review ( mid March 2014) this latter link is not working.
Apart from this glitch , I like the book a recommend anyone considering setting up a home based business to read it before committing to it.
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