You need to make sure you have all of the necessary office equipment to start and run your own virtual assistant business.
The great advantage of a home office is the cost savings. Renting an office space can be very expensive and really eat into your profit in the early days. Setting up a home office is much easier and cost effective than renting, but you do need to make sure your home office is fully equipped.
Another great thing about a owning a business is your office equipment is a home based business tax deduction.
Be sure to factor in your home office needs when developing your business plan.
If you already own most of this equipment and it’s in good working condition, your set up costs can be minimal. If you are lacking in this area, you will need to make an initial investment in your business.
While you want to save money as much as possible, you simply cannot cut corners on certain things.
Running a business from home using the internet requires efficient and reliable office equipment. In the early days of starting a business you cannot afford to lose clients because of unforeseen equipment failures. You also do not want to be unable to provide a service because you lack the equipment and capability.
Here is a list of Office Essentials:
- Internet capability – a high speed connection is best.
- Fax capability – there are affordable online programs available.
- Affordable long distance phone service
- Writable CD ROM
- A Good monitor – remember you will be looking at it for a great deal of time.
- Good printer (preferably with a scanner)
- External hard drive or good backup system
- Power surge protectors
- Comfortable chair and desk – you need to avoid repetitive motion injuries.
Some home office equipment options:
Those are the essentials, but there may be other things you will need depending upon what types of services you plan to offer.
- Headset with microphone
- Fax machine if you don’t use online fax services
- Networking and router capabilities
- Home office 800 phone number separate from your home phone.
One cost effective way to set up a phone and fax system is through RingCentral.
What is nice about this service is it eliminates the need to buy a lot of equipment. You don’t need a separate fax machine and fax line, or an expensive phone. You don’t need to pay for an extra phone line for your 800#. This service has no setup fees, no hardware required, instant activation and no contract to sign. Try RingCentral Online FREE for 30 days.
You don’t need to run out and buy the most expensive computer, especially if your budget is tight. If you don’t know much about computer hardware, you may want to work with a consultant. Keep in mind the computer salesman may try to sell you a new, expensive computer with added features that you may not need. Don’t pay for something you will not use.
A refurbished computer can be a viable option as well. I have used the Dell Outlet store. There are many good computer manufacturers, I have had great success with Dell computers for years and their outlet store can save you some money. These refurbished computers come with limited warranties as well.
Do your research and figure out exactly what you need to do your particular VA service.
Get consulting help if you need so that you do not waste any money, but spend enough so that you have fast, reliable equipment to start your new business.