A recent article in the Huffington Post detailed the traffic congestion in various North American cities. Vancouver was found to be the worst city out of all major cities reviewed.
The study goes on to say that the average commuter spends 11.6 days a year on their drive to and from work. This is getting worse each year with a 2.8 per cent jump over the same period last year.
As someone who commuted for over 20 years, I know the feeling well. The amount of time spent behind the wheel, but not actually driving, was incredible. This impacted my energy level in the evenings, my weight (I ended up drinking coffee and snacking for some of the commute) and my overall enjoyment of my workweek.
It is no wonder that Home Based Franchises are a major growth area for Canada and the U.S. The appeal of working for yourself is substantial. It allows you to be your own boss, be in charge of your destiny and write your own paycheque. However, with many businesses, that “freedom” comes with a heavy burden, the commitment to capital to open your own business, renovate it and maintain the lease.
Many Home Based Franchises give you more freedom than that. You can operate out of the comfort of your home, without the capital requirements of a leased building or heavy start up expenses. You can start your day without that terrible commute and invest the time you would have spent commuting building your business or hanging out with your kids.
BuzzFeed has an article on the 25 Excellent Reasons Why Everyone Should Work From Home (of course they do). It is a fun read with a combination of humorous reasons and some very practical reasons.
Here are some tips to use when researching to determine what type of business to get into:
A) Select the type of work you want to do, not the industry. Are you more interested in logistics, marketing and sales or working with your hands?
B) When reviewing options for Home Based Businesses, be aware that many are great opportunities, but may not be scalable. This means that you are doing the work yourself so earning more money means working longer hours.
C) See if you are a fit with the franchisor. The business and industry are important, but so is the franchisor and how you connect with them.
D) Understand what the capital requirements are. If you are risk-adverse, not in a position to provide liquid cash for major investments or simply prefer the thought of working at home, Home Based is likely for you. Looking at a potential return on investment is also a good approach.
The value of working from your home, and avoiding that horrible commute, cannot be measured. Regardless of our financial situation, we are all given the same amount of time each day to spend. Being in control of how you spend it can be an amazing gift.
Brian Bazely is co-founder of Driverseat, a vehicle transportation company.