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Old 10-29-2008, 07:43 PM
24,852 posts, read 27,657,103 times
Reputation: 11327


When I first started my business I had nothing. I got a small loan for some junk equipment. I was going no place, so I went back to the bank for more money. I told them what they wanted to hear. They loaded me more money, I did not spend it, I gave it back to the bank in double payments, paid it off early. Then I asked for 1/2 a million. I got it, Bought the good equipment I needed. Paid it off, haven't needed a loan since. Everything is paid for.
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Old 10-29-2008, 08:08 PM
Location: Moon Over Palmettos
5,975 posts, read 15,867,574 times
Reputation: 4933
Con: You pay for 100% of your social security contributions. When employed by someone else, they foot half of it. When business is bad, you can't apply for unemployment.
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Old 10-29-2008, 08:22 PM
24,852 posts, read 27,657,103 times
Reputation: 11327
Originally Posted by bibit612 View Post
Con: You pay for 100% of your social security contributions. When employed by someone else, they foot half of it. When business is bad, you can't apply for unemployment.
I chose not to pay FICA. I save for bad times.
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Old 10-30-2008, 07:26 AM
Location: Waterford & Sterling Heights, Michigan
337 posts, read 748,256 times
Reputation: 328
[SIZE=2]I am not self employed, my opinion is based on observing my husband.
Last year my spouse decided that he wanted out of the corporate world. I though he was out of his mind but I did not blame him because the industry we work in has been in really bad shape for years. He got sick of all the rounds of lay offs, of seen his friends loose their jobs and realized his dream job was not fun and enjoyable anymore.
When you are an employee in a down economy you start to realize that there is no such thing as "job security", "secure job" or "secure income". Based on that he decided to start his own business.
You need to find that niche (of product, service or whatever) that you can provide that no one else can or that you can provide at a lower cost better quality that the competition. That is the hardest part. Then have a good business plan, network with people in that industry (become a member of your local chamber of commerce), become an expert. Educate yourself on the liabilities and the type of insurance you will need.
-You will need to make an investment and be ready to not see a return in a good year or two (at least). Have a good cash reserve on the side for emergencies.
-Be ready to live "poor" for as couple of years as most of your profits will need to go back to your business (for expansion, infrastructure, equipment, etc).
-Be prepare to work 24/7, on holidays, Sundays, all the time during the first couple of years.
-The odds are against you. Adjust your live accordingly. Be prepared for set backs. You may be more exposed to swings in the economy cycle. Be very frugal.
-If you succeed the sky is the limit.
-If you have a successful profitable business you may be able to sell it and use it to start/buy another enterprise and move onto bigger things. As an employee you cannot sell your job since you don't own it.
-There are many things you will be able to deduct that you cannot as an employee. (Get informed with a good accountant).
-As an employee you only have one boss, if he does not like you, you are screwed. As self employed or business owner you may have many bosses (costumers), if one does not like you (does not want your services) you can move on to the next one.
- The satisfaction of employing and in a way helping other people. Here in MI people are struggling and there is a great deal of satisfaction when you have someone that is helping your business get more revenue and at the same time thanks to you that person is able to keep their home.
The risks are high but so are the rewards. Be very cautious, before you quit your job, save, save , save. Have a BIG cash reserve for rainy days. We have seen so many people with good start ups that go out of business because they run out of cash or are not making enough to cover their live expenses. The reality is that at the beginning money will start to flow very slowly so you have to be ready. Nobody gets rich quickly.
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Old 10-30-2008, 07:34 AM
1,577 posts, read 3,031,587 times
Reputation: 518
Originally Posted by Westerner123 View Post
I know self-employment is one of the quickest ways to get wealthy, but what are the pros and cons?
Off hand (I know there's others)

make your own hours
your own boss and rules
no commute or gas costs
don't have to buy work clothes (Work in your PJs or beat up jeans if ya want)
no one on your case about deadlines or typos, etc

your alone
no one to get advice from or get feedback
no one to share a lunch with or talk about what you did this weekend, or the game, etc
in your house 24/7
no friends, family is your only social contact
easier to slack off and be lazy (Work suffers)
lack of privacy if the kids are off school or the spouse is home from work.
no holidays, bonuses, office parties, days off unless you make them yourself.
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Old 10-30-2008, 09:33 AM
4,182 posts, read 5,182,311 times
Reputation: 1716
Perhaps the biggest advantage of being self employed is that you will be above office politics. As an employee, you'll have to play some politics to get ahead, kiss up to your employer sometimes. As the employer, you are above these things. Your underlings will all kiss up to you.
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Old 10-30-2008, 09:54 AM
Location: Grand Junction, CO
3,685 posts, read 3,619,831 times
Reputation: 4652
Originally Posted by Westerner123 View Post
I know self-employment is one of the quickest ways to get wealthy, but what are the pros and cons?
If your whole goal is to get rich quickly there are plenty of schemes you can try. Try watching late night tv. This belief that everybody gets rich quickly that starts a business is total crap, as most will be lucky to make a living the first few years. You also work a ton of hours and must put everything you have into getting it to the point of surviving, most people are not going to have the only perfect product at the perfect time that everybody in the country wants like Bill Gates or Steve Jobs.

as for the pros and cons
You and your clients are the only people you have to answer to no bosses.

You keep all of the profits

Every success of the business feels and is like a personal success.

Once the company is built to a certain point life becomes much easier.

Work is the number 1 thing in your life. To be successful at it, you cannot just take off to go to the kids soccer games or to hang out with your friends.

Money is extremely tight for the 1st year or two, you have to stay disciplined and save money when you make any because there will be times when you make none.

When the company has a set back it is a set back in your life.

There is no one else to blame but yourself when something is done incorrectly, you are responsible for everything regarding the business. even if you hire someone else to do it.

If you do not feel like putting everything you have into your job everyday the company and your life suffer directly.

If the company takes a loss you have to cover that loss somehow.

Off the top of my head those are the big pros and cons. It takes a special breed to really be self employed, and what you find is that most of them do it for reasons other then getting rich fast. The money is often just the scorecard they use to prove their success.
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Old 10-30-2008, 01:37 PM
829 posts, read 2,262,096 times
Reputation: 351
I went to college, graduated, and now have a home improvement business with my stepdad...we do lawn care/landscaping/handyman and repairs/powerwashing/cleanups and removal..etc...Even before college we did this as a side thing after he retired(from the schoolsystem)...I enjoy it, but it is stressful...you can lose business at the drop of a hat to someone who you thought was loyal, mainly with lawn care...We have been at this for a full time deal for a couple years now, and am nowhere close to being rich from it...

any tips from those who have been doing this for a while would be great? driller?
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Old 10-30-2008, 03:21 PM
359 posts, read 989,924 times
Reputation: 174

No worrying about your stupid boss breathing down your neck
No dealing with politically correct losers that you work with
No more following the corporation's policies and procedures
No answering to brain-dead higher-ups
You are the boss and set your standards


Most of all of your cons match up with mine, but that is life as a self-employed employee.
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Old 10-30-2008, 06:20 PM
Location: Sanford, FL
731 posts, read 3,552,536 times
Reputation: 387
Just because you own your own business does not mean you're always in your house if at all. You could be at your company building in an industrial park or something.

I dont work for myself but I hardly take orders. I come into work everyday and get started on what I need to do and end the day with my work done. There are managerial everywhere where I work and I hardly ever am told what to do. Everyone here knows what to do everyday and when to do it.
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