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river parishes
Member since Sep 2010
6377 posts

re: Anyone own a woodworking side business?
Cottage (home-based) business 101, free of charge:
—incorporate with the state; generally speaking, you will be a sole-member LLC, which means you are a business of 1. Cost is pretty cheap; you can do this yourself online, or if you’re not tech or gov docs savvy, go to your local attorney who shouldn’t charge you more than $100-$200. If he/she does, go find someone else.
—file with the IRS to get an EIN (basically like a business’s SSN). You need an EIN in order to file your eventual federal taxes.
—open a business bank account (go to your local credit union, as CUs will offer micro business accounts usually free of charge after the initial joining fee)
—set up your business books (I like Quickbooks online, there are many other free/low cost accounting programs, including easy cloud based ones). The better versions allow you to take pics of receipts so you can go paperless, at least on the expense side.
—get an occupational license from your parish. $50 or so, depending on where you live. It will ask for your EIN, etc.
—your local zoning may also require you to get permission to operate a home-based business; this might require some paperwork/forms with your local planning & zoning office, a small fee, and putting a sign in your front yard for 10 days.
—once you begin selling, you need to pay local and state taxes. This is easy: you can file monthly or quarterly, using an online system. You put in your sales, and the taxes is calculated for you The parish and state will suck the funds right out of your bank account, easy peasy.
-use some sort of electronic point of sale system (like Square) or at least spreadsheet to keep track of sales so you can easily file your taxes.

Does this all seem like lots of work? It is. But once everything is set up, keeping up with things isn’t too bad.

But govt fees and taxes pay for roads, bridges, schools, libraries, fire departments, and other good things. So go legit and pay taxes on what you sell.

Or just barter. LOL.
This post was edited on 3/8 at 8:11 pm

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