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Neighbours and Your Home-Based Business

By: Rachel Newcombe - Updated: 24 Jun 2010 | comments*Discuss
Neighbours Home Based Business Craft

If you’re intending on working from home and running a home based craft business, then you may need to consider the point of view of your neighbours.

Many people working from home wouldn’t think twice about doing so and the last thing on their minds may be their neighbours. But if you’re going to be running a craft business from home which involves the use of any potentially noisy equipment, or are likely to have clients visiting your home, then it may be a good idea to consider the needs of your neighbours too.

In the worse case scenario, your neighbours might not take too kindly to suddenly hearing lots of noise during the day or of finding the road outside their home chock-a-block with cars. Ideally, you don’t want to face problems from your neighbours or complaints about your business, especially if it could result in you having to move premises or alter your plans. So although it’s one more thing to think about, it’s a good idea to put yourself in their shoes from the start and see if there are any issues that could be a concern and how you could avoid them.

Noise Issues

If you’re going to be making some types of crafts, then machinery and equipment may be involved. If it makes the slightest bit of noise, then it’s important to consider if it could be a problem. It may be fine to you, especially if you’re used to it, but if you’re working in your home, garage or shed and have neighbours directly on the other side of the wall, then it could prove to be a bit noisy to them.

Apart from going around to your neighbours house and seeing how the noise sounds from their side of the wall, it may be worth seeking the views of friends and seeing how they react to it. Try and get as honest as an opinion as possible. If you think it could be, or runs the risk of becoming, an issue, then why not see if there’s a way in which you could minimise the noise or if there’s somewhere else you could place the equipment? Noise-proofing your workspace may seem a bit extreme, but if it could reduce the risk of noise concerns, then in the long-term it would be to your advantage.

Parking and Client Visits

One issue that can cause problems for home-based craft business owners is when there’s a need for client visits. When clients visit non-home-based businesses, it’s never too much of an issue, but it becomes so when it’s necessary to visit residential areas.

Depending on where you live, and whether you’ve got a huge drive and heaps of private parking space, it may be necessary for your clients to park on the road outside your home. If this is an already busy road, main road or small cul-de-sac, then parking could become a bit of an issue. Some neighbours are fine about other cars parking outside their house, but others can get a bit uppity and cross to either see or find other cars parked in their space.

If you’ll only have the occasional visitor, then it’s probably not too much of a concern. But if it’s likely to be a regular occurrence, you’ll either need to sort out some viable parking for your visitors or have a word with your neighbours. There’s no guarantee that they’ll be happy having cars outside – and if they’re not, it could get really awkward for you – but it’s a tricky situation and you don’t want to make it worse than it is.

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