The best thing about running a home-based business is that you don’t need to commute. However, if you aren’t good at setting boundaries it can feel like you are always at work. This is especially true when your home-based business starts to take over your entire home.
Just because this happens to other entrepreneurs doesn’t mean that it happens to you and here are some tips on how to move your home office out of your home.
1. Have a Plan
Moving your home office is not something which can be decided to do at the drop of a hat. To do it right you need to make sure the move does not disrupt the normal operation of your business. After all, you are the wearer of many hats and the time spent moving your office should position you for continued success.
As such, you will want to develop a roadmap for how the move will go. Will you need to inform your clients and suppliers of your new mailing address? What furniture and fixtures will you need? This even includes questions you never thought you’d ask, such as where will you get your cubicle shelves?
From a more practical perspective, you will also need to work out how will the move affect your phone and internet services, what files will you need to take with you and even the date and time for the physical move.
Granted moving your office out of your home is a sign that your business is growing. However, there are a lot of questions to be answered and this means taking your time to develop a game plan before you start moving the pieces around.
This even includes waiting to start packing up your home office before you’ve got everything in place as this can quickly turn into a mess as half of what you need to run your business is boxed up.
One way to lessen the burden of the big move is to not try to move everything at once. Rather focus on what you need to run your business for the first day, week, or month and then move the rest over time.
Sure, your better half might be antsy for your business to move out of your home completely but trying to do it all at once can lead to a sense of being overwhelmed.
2. Protect Your Most Sensitive Documents
This cannot be reiterated strongly enough. While many of us are going paperless, odds are that you still have some important documents in your home office. These could include business licenses, copies of customer contracts, or even your tax returns.
Before making the big move, you want to make sure these documents are identified, cataloged, and possibly even scanned. Doing so will ensure that you have everything organized as this will make it easier to ensure everything is where it belongs after you settle into your new office.
Beyond this, you might also want to think about how you transport these documents from your home office to your new digs. If you just have one or two file cabinets, then it might make sense to transport the documents by yourself.
However, if your business is paper-intensive, then you might want to work with a moving company which specializes in transporting documents. While this will add to the cost of your move, it also means that the documents will be insured while they are in transport and given the sensitive nature of what you are transporting, it is better to be safe than sorry.
3. Secure Your Office Equipment
While you probably have a bag for your laptop, what about your desktop, server, and printer? Given that you only get one chance to move your office, you want to do it right and this means securing your office equipment.
If you have the original packaging, then you can use this to box up everything. If not, then you will want to get boxes, bubble wrap, and tape to pack everything up for the move. It doesn’t matter if you are moving around the corner or across town, you want to make sure that everything is packed correctly.
Also, make sure that you pay special attention to all of your cables and extension cords as these items can easily go missing when you are packing and unpacking everything. One best practice is to label your cables and then either pack them with the equipment or have a special box with all of the utility cables you’ll need to run your office.
Moving out of your home office is a sign that your business is growing, but you only get one chance to do it right so use these tips to ensure that your office move does get in the way of the real work of growing your business.