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By Thea Theresa English

Things you should consider when deciding to work from home

Thanks to the Internet and other new career options that have developed in recent years, it is now possible to work from home on a part-time or full-time basis. However, there are some drawbacks as well as benefits of working from home; consider the following factors before making the decision.

Not all loved ones will understand

There are some people who will not understand your decision to work from home. They might suggest that you seek out traditional employment because your home-based job is off to a slow start financially. But you just have to ignore the comments and keep striving for success if you believe this is right for you.

Some boundaries will need to be set

If you have children and a spouse, it will be a challenge to set your office hours at home. One thing you can do is talk with your family about your home office hours and the set times you have in place for working on assignments. Your spouse or older children can watch the younger children while you are working. Keep in mind that interruptions will happen from time to time, so you also need to consider this.

You're still on the hook for taxes

Even if you are self-employed and work from home, you still have to deal with taxes. You would be responsible for filing several self-employment tax forms every year; it would be wise to meet with a tax consultant who is knowledgeable about taxes as they relate to self-employment. Working from home also gives you the opportunity to take advantage of certain tax breaks. Your tax consultant can advise you on which home office deductions you can make to reduce your tax burden.

Advantages of working from home

We have seen some of the challenges of working from home, but now we will discuss the benefits. You save money on gas and that long commute to the office. You can set your own working hours, and this makes for a better work-family balance. You can still have effective conferences, thanks to services like Skype and other forms of webcasting. Finally, there is the potential for increased income.

Tips on working effectively from home

Understand which duties are expected of you from your employer. It also helps to dress as if you ready for a productive day of work. Carve out a room in your home that will be used only for work, and you can put your working hours on a sign to hang on the office door. Take breaks, as this keeps you from being too isolated in the office. You might also want to leave the house from time to time for fresh air.

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