Home-Based Business Owners: What to Know Before Upsizing Your House


Now that you've decided to start your own business, it's clear that your old house no longer cuts it. Whether you need a bigger home office, faster internet connectivity, or business-friendly zoning, a move is on the horizon. Before you buy or build a house, Premier Appraisal Valuations invites you to use this guide to answer your questions about moving your home-based business.

What should you look for in a house for a home-based business?

If you’re starting a new business, you may have come to the realization that your current home simply doesn’t have the space for a home office. Moving to a larger house could be a smart investment for your business! Before you begin house hunting, you can prioritize a few other essential tasks that will need to be taken care of if you want to form a business entity.


Forming a Wisconsin LLC will qualify you for specific tax benefits and grant you limited liability as a business owner. Should you decide to form a Wisconsin LLC, you’ll need to research the filing fees and requirements for your state first. In addition, you should make sure that the name you plan to use for your entity is not already in use - if it is, take some time to brainstorm a new name!

What should you look for in a house for a home-based business?

What makes a house ideal for a home-based business? The answer depends on the nature of your business, but these are factors to consider as you search for your next home:


Starting a home-based business could be an opportunity to move away from the city and secure a lower cost of living, but not if your business relies on local traffic. Consider whether clients and vendors need access to your business when choosing a location. Also, keep in mind that if a home is deemed "as-is," this means that should you choose to purchase the home, you're required to accept it regardless of its location faults. Flood zones, geological defects, airport flyover zones, and restrictive deed covenants are just some examples of "as-is" conditions you could face with the chosen property.


Zoning is another important location consideration. While many home-based businesses tend to fly under the radar, any business that draws traffic or requires signage must comply with local zoning ordinances.


The right home should not only have a home office and storage but afford plenty of privacy from high-traffic living areas. This may include a separate entrance or a separate structure entirely, such as revamped shed or detached garage.


If clients will visit your home office, it's also important to consider accessibility. In general, single-story homes with open concept designs offer the greatest accessibility. You should also consider making other accommodations such as widening doorways, rearranging furniture to allow for more space, and installing a ramp if there are stairs.


Finally, any home-based business needs a fast and stable internet connection. Broadband internet availability isn't consistent across the country, making this an important factor to consider, especially if moving to a less populous area. If possible, connect to the seller's router to perform a speed test. If that's not possible, call internet service providers and talk to neighbors to verify high-speed internet access before you buy.

What should buyers know about real estate during COVID-19?

The pandemic has led to a surge in homebuyers who want dedicated office space and other work-from-home amenities. As a result, buyers searching for a house suited to a home-based business should expect a competitive marketplace. Some business owners may opt to build a home instead. While building is a surefire way to get exactly what you want without bidding wars, expect to spend more and wait longer before your new house is move-in ready.


The pandemic has also changed the process of buying a home itself. For example, you may face limitations on home tours or may be allowed to digitally close on a home in order to support social distancing. Ask your real estate agent about the restrictions and best practices for keeping yourself and sellers safe.


There's a lot at stake when buying a house for a home-based business. You not only need a pleasant place to live, but you also need a productive place to work, too. Instead of going it alone, reach out to a real estate agent who knows the local area inside and out. Before too long, you’ll be settling into your new home and your new business will be a go.