My Small Shop Tips, Tricks and Jigs #3: Home-Based Shop Realities and Considerations

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Blog entry by Ryan Bruzan posted 04-24-2011 04:43 AM 2612 reads 0 times favorited 0 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Workshop/Time-Efficiency: Where is it? Part 3 of My Small Shop Tips, Tricks and Jigs series no next part

I recently introduced my two cents in a group called Home Based Professional Shops. Since I can’t even remember, every time I’ve heard the phrase “home based business,” I would think things like Medical Billing, AVON and Mary Kay, etc., but for some weirdly odd reason, I never thought of me as a home based business owner. It never really dawned on me that there are a lot of other hard-working men and woman whose place of employment is their home, whether full-time, part-time, hobby or whatever. I’ve had my fair share of rented spaces intermingled with home and garage shops. Please allow me to share some of my experiences.

Working out of my home shop offers tremendous control over managing unnecessary expenses. For smaller projects, I can prepare all parts for later assembly and keep them confined in a climate controlled environment outside the working area until assembly and then immediately to install. If I need more space due to project size, there’s always plenty of monthly rental facilities around for temporary overflow. I love to build large 3-dimensional creations, but I’m just a handyman with a great big hobby that others like to partake of. What a blessing!

Living in an associated community can be quite challenging (but I know better now than I did 10 years ago when I was considering my business of choice). I’ve learned to keep my neighborhood exposure to a minimum even though some neighbors take notice; that doesn’t seem to offend them as they, too, have been hit by tough economic realities. I rarely have customers out to my house. I remember a customer who had a salon in her basement; people always in and out and this was a classy and associated neighborhood.

I keep my small trailer in the garage. The only way I see any obtrusion is with neighbors to the immediate left and right; they can see my covered walk-out “materials storage facility.” I keep it minimal and tidy and covered with outdoor drapes, but definitely cannot be seen from the street.

A small shop has a fair share of pros and cons, but overall, it has great leverage, too.

Currently, I am thankful to have a 15’ by 55’ working area, even with it’s 93” ceiling height. To whom it concerns, I’ve seen some of your shop photos and videos here on LJ and it is amazing to see the varieties of ingenuity and excellent use of space.

I’d love to someday enjoy a small piece of country land with a few auto-turrets at the four corners, but until then…

Home Based Professional Shops is a group created by “America’s Woodworker” Scott Boschetti. The group is located at Sawdust Soup.

-- No matter how many factors go into thinking about a project, there is always one important new discovery to be made.

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