Business is flourishing so much that 38% have now outgrown their home working space and need to think about expanding their business, by considering alternative options such as additional storage space or a potential office move.
However, a study commissioned by Big Yellow Self Storage, found that while business confidence is booming, many micro businesses are still apprehensive about expanding beyond the home.
Concerns about location, along with the costs and risks involved in committing to an inflexible, long-term contract, associated with moving to an office or traditional warehouse, meant that these apprehensions were especially evident for the 36% of micro business that keep their stock at home.
Rachel Bridge, SME expert and author says: “We are seeing a spike in entrepreneurial spirit with kitchen table start-ups and online traders taking the plunge and starting their own businesses.
“According to official figures, the number of people working from home has risen to three million in the past decade and they are not only starting their businesses from scratch, but also growing them successfully.”
Despite this rise, 57% of home-based start-ups went as far as to say they have no intention of outgrowing the home. For SMEs running businesses from their kitchen tables, moving into an office or traditional warehouse could involve costly overheads and with that come financial risk should the business not take off or stock requirements fluctuate. It’s no wonder entrepreneurs are confining growth to the size of their home.
When Big Yellow Self Storage asked former home businesses about the drawbacks of operating a small business from home, 76% admitted that, in hindsight, working from home encroached on their personal lives; not being able to ‘switch off’ was the biggest difficulty along with stock physically taking over their living space, causing friction with partners. Clearly it’s not just a question of space, but also has psychological impacts and affects relationships.
Anthony Chenery, Big Yellow Self Storage spokesperson adds: “We’ve found that currently 41% of home businesses are nervous about expanding out of the home despite the increase in confidence.
“Many small businesses don’t even realise that self storage is an option. Rather than being tied into to lengthy commitment with traditional warehouse space, stock can be put into self storage to free-up space in the home. Location needn’t be a worry with our 76 stores in easily accessible locations across the UK. You have the benefit of storing for as little as seven days and there is no tie to long-term contracts so there is no financial risk. Plus you are able to upsize or downsize as and when required. In addition to this, we offer a selection of useful services such as accepting deliveries and arranging couriers on behalf of our business customers which save both time and money. Plus Big Yellow offers extended hours opening for businesses that need to use their unit when reception is closed.”
Flexibility is key for SMEs and it is possible for them to trade onerous long term fixed contracts for a lower cost, lower risk approach. Big Yellow Self Storage offers such a solution. Keeping your stock in self storage facility means the growth of your business is no longer restricted to the size of your home. Not only this, you will be able to create a divide between your professional and personal life, which is key to achieving a work life balance.