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Virtual assistant

Telecommuting and remote work has become quite popular, and with it, the demand for virtual assistants has also increased. A virtual assistant basically handles all of the tasks that a secretary handles, including document preparation, meeting preparation, and the like. If the task can be handled online or remotely, then it can be handled through a virtual assistant. This is one of the more popular home-based businesses because all a person needs is a telephone and a computer with internet access. Additionally, it is unlikely any state or local law, or HOA or Lease Agreement restriction could limit someone from working as a virtual assistant from their home. If you are offering your services to multiple clients, rather than a single employer, you may want to make your Administrative Services Contract.

Freelance graphic designer or writer

If you can write clearly or do graphic design, setting up a home-based business as a freelancer is simple. All you really need to get started is a website, clients or an account on a freelance site, and you can get started with working at home. Like the local requirements for being a virtual assistant, you are unlikely to face limits on working from home, unless you have clients frequently visiting your home. However, if you are claiming some specialization that requires certification, you may need to obtain that certification. Also, if you are planning to work with your own clients, it pays to get the right contract for your creative work.

Transcriber or transcriptionist

Despite recent technological advances, transcription services remain in demand. Sometimes known as transcribers or transcriptionists, this particular home business revolves around turning audio files and written notes into properly typed transcripts. In a few states like California, there may be licensing required depending on the subject you transcribe. Medical records, for instance, as well as government records, require certification and privacy consultations to ensure that you comply with state and federal privacy laws. If you are running your own independent service, you may want to use a Writing Contract to get the terms of your work clearly defined with your clients.

Hair stylist and cosmetologist

Personal interaction, attention to detail, and a knack for making people look beautiful may all point toward hair styling and cosmetology as the ideal home business for you. The licensing requirements in most states depend on the kind of work you plan to do. Obtaining a basic cosmetology license can be done within a matter of weeks, and it will allow you to handle most services. In states like Indiana, the legislature is considering removing licensing requirements for basic services. Remember, though, that more advanced services, such as waxing, tattoo services, and the like, require separate licensing. Running your own business where your clients come to you, especially out of your home, however, carries risk. You may want to consider registering a separate business entity to help protect your personal assets, as well as securing the right insurance.


If you're good with numbers and well organized, being an accountant could be a profitable home-based business for you. In some states, you do not have to obtain special licenses to serve as an accountant, though in states such as New York or California, you will have to obtain additional certification and training to work as an accountant either at home or in an actual office. In all states, however, you will be held to the professional accountant standard. Depending on the services you are offering, making an Accounting Contract can ensure you get paid and your clients know what to expect.

If you're ready to get started with your new venture, registering your business as an LLC or corporation can be a smart move to help protect your personal assets. If you have more questions about running your own business, reach out to a Rocket Lawyer network attorney for affordable legal advice.

This article contains general legal information and does not contain legal advice. Rocket Lawyer is not a law firm or a substitute for an attorney or law firm. The law is complex and changes often. For legal advice, please ask a lawyer.

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