Did you know that North Carolina is a great place to start a company? According to Forbes Magazine, North Carolina has the second-lowest startup costs in the country. Are you thinking of starting a new business? Here are some great tips on how to begin the process.
Define Your Idea
You need an idea that best fits your personal needs and interests. In other words, does it make sense to start a business involving sports merchandise when you have no interest or knowledge in sports? Your business also has to represent you and how much time or effort you are willing to put into it.
If you’re looking for a business that is mainly hands-off, you may be interested in looking to be an investor instead.
If you’re not sure where to start, just begin with brainstorming around your interests and needs that you or other people may have around those interests.
Make A Plan
You shouldn’t just start doing business and “wing it.” You need a plan that includes things like sales and marketing, people, finance, and product development. It’s also usually a good idea to have several months’ cash in savings to start a company, if not more, since most businesses take 1-2 years to break even and start paying the owner.
You also need a reason for the product. Does your merchandise serve a purpose in your community? Do you have enough people interested in your product to legitimize the need for your company?
You need to have enough credibility to launch your company, financially and interest-wise. Several business experts argue that beginning under an “LLC” title is the best way to begin. They are much easier to work with and have some major tax incentives. To start a company, in North Caroline and under the LLC title, costs about $75, give or take.
EIN and Finances
An EIN, or Employment Identification Number, is a number (like a Social Security Number for your business) that you will need to be assigned to do many business financial tasks, such as open bank accounts or credit cards, apply for a line of credit, and more.
You’ll also want to keep business bank accounts separate from personal accounts, for ease of bookkeeping as well as to keep your personal assets as protected as possible in the case of a lawsuit.
Permits and Insurance
You may need permits, depending on the type of your business.
Another way of protecting your business is with the proper insurance. You will most likely need Worker’s Comp (once you hit at least 3 employees), General Liability, and Professional Liability, as well as others. Your company might need others, depending on nature.
FYI: You will want to consult an insurance professional and business formation attorney during this process. You may need additional permits and licenses, especially if you intend to hire more than 3 people on your staff. Once again, this depends on the nature of your business.
Now is a better time than ever to start a new business in North Carolina. With the proper planning and a great business attorney at your side, you can set yourself up for success today and into the future with your new venture.