LPM Staff

The idea of a home-based business

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You see the ads all over the Internet, enticing you to click on the link and claiming you can make mucho dinero working at home. They seek out stay-at-home moms, envelope stuffers, or mystery shoppers. Admit it. You’ve been tempted by these ads, haven’t you? So have we. Just go to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) website, and you’ll find most of these get-rich-pronto schemes are just that.

This is not to say that home-based businesses are all scams. As a matter of fact, they’re everywhere in the U.S., from the most rural towns to the densest metropolises. As the economy has made job security a questionable concept, more people are starting home-based businesses.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2002, almost half of the nation’s businesses were operated from home, and more than half the owners used their own money to start the business. They also generated about $102 billion in annual revenue. The top industries for home-based businesses were professional, scientific and technical services, construction, and retail trade, and other services (such as personal services, and repair and maintenance). Of those businesses, 45 percent were Hispanic-owned firms and 56 percent were owned by women.

Chances are good that these numbers will significantly increase in the 2010 U.S. Census. In a failing economy, people turn to home-based businesses as a viable option. They’ve had enough of their 9-to-5 job, want more control of their time and personal freedom, and get tired of answering to a boss they don’t like anyway.

Passion for your product

“Tobacco, alcohol, and skincare products sell more in a down market,” claims Cirina Palacio-Culberson. When she decided to start selling Arbonne products from home in the late 1990s, her incentive was to get the skincare products at a discount and make a little extra money to supplement her income as an operating-room nurse and physician assistant.

Although her 20-year career was fiscally successful, she was working what felt like 24/7. When the job starting to physically wear her down, Cirina realized she had to make a change. Twelve years later, she’s an executive national vice president for Arbonne International and driving a Mercedes.

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