Moving from home base to 'real' office
I notice that Neophyte (fellow blogger) has taken the plunge and moved from a home based office to a 'real' office (See Neophye's blog here).
Like many accweb members I too work from home and haven't found the take up number of clients too bad but like Glennzy (who commented to Neophyte's blog) I am wondering whether the type of client that working from home attracts is only looking for cheapness as they think costs are low etc etc. Also that they think you are there at their beck and call... whenever ... and expect an answer immediately. I know its called 'giving a personal service' but sometimes they take it too far. I dont have the problem that Glennzy said he had of clients just 'dropping in when passing by' but I do think he is right about a separate non home office giving a good impression.
I find I am at the other end of the scale from Glennzy in that he found it difficult to work at home. I get up and go straight into the (exbedroom) office and am working there all hours. I do stop at 6pm but find that I am increasingly working at the weekend so there's no 'cut off' point. What puts me off from getting a separate town based office (apart from the additional cost, of course), is that I don't really want to have to get in the car to the nearest town which is 20 mins drive away, get stuck in traffic and possibly have to spend a fortune in parking.
But the blog made me think. I have a client who is UK resident but works abroad a lot of the time. She has taken a virtual office in London for a nominal amount a week to at least give the impression that she is London based plus it's somewhere to take in any post as her home is rented out. I wouldn't want post redirected (no one sends by post nowadays and the number of letters will reduce even further with MTD on the horizon) and I already have a separate office phone number (although nearly all my clients make contact by mobile). It's the separate office address that I'm interested in.
So with that in mind I've just spent a couple of hours searching the internet for such things as 'virtual offices' in my locality. The result of my search is that I found a Regis office about 15 mins drive from my house in a very modern Business Park. I had heard of Regus but hadn't realised that they were so close to my home base. They offer a variety of services including hourly office rental for meetings. The website says you can 'plug in and work' and the picture of the offices gives a very good impression. Plus parking is free.
I've put in for a call with them tomorrow for the Professional Address service first off to see what they say.