3 Important Insights on How to Run a Small Business From a Small Apartment

No wonder over 27 million entrepreneurs are trying to master the art of how to run a small business from their home.

small business owner packing a shipment to send to a customer

The image of starting a business is one of promise and hope. You’ll be able to do what you love: when you want and how you want it. Sounds like the American dream, right? No wonder over 27 million entrepreneurs are setting up shop nationwide, trying to master the art of how to run a small business from their home.

However, the reality may not always be so rosy. There are legal issues to worry about and a work-life balance to achieve, not to mention the long, grueling hours. And if you’re doing it all in a tiny, rented apartment - well, that can make matters more complicated.

individual learning how to run a small business from their home shipping a package to one of their customers.
Photo by Bench Accounting on Unsplash

Expert Texan has you covered if you’ve been looking to master the entrepreneurial lifestyle while working from a small space. Keep reading for more.

Find the right workspace to run a small business

A critical task in a small space is the designation of a workspace. Identify a corner, spare room, or nook that you can convert into your new working area. Prioritize hidden storage solutions to keep your area clutter-free and invest in the basics - ergonomic furniture (your back will thank you later). You may also want to move unused furniture and items to storage, so you have more space for inventory if needed.

Set up a room divider or screen to switch off from work mode and into home life if possible. The most significant benefit of being an entrepreneur is making your hours, so don’t forget to make time for me-time to keep yourself happy, productive, and focused. Setting up a routine, prioritizing downtime with friends and family, and practicing hobbies will all ensure that you’re not working those 70-hour work-weeks entrepreneurs are notorious for.

Legal Liabilities

You’ll also need to ensure that you’re up to date on the legalities of running a home-based business. For example, many landlords may not want you to rent if you plan to operate a business. In this case, it will be critical to be upfront about your intentions and seek approval from your landlord so that you don’t have any hurdles along the way.

man contemplating the legal liabilities he has to consider when he decides to run a small business from home.
Photo by Jason Strull on Unsplash

Some municipalities and neighborhoods also regulate home-based businesses. Thus, to stay on the safe side of the law, be sure to obtain the necessary permits and licenses to carry out your activities. Reviewing local zoning laws thoroughly will also be required - and remember, you can contact your zoning commission or board to get a variance or waiver! According to U.S. Small Business Administration, this will allow you to operate out of your apartment without any legal ramifications down the line.

Image and Branding

According to Harvard Business Review, loyal customers are the hotticket to keeping a business successful. If you’re planning to entertain potential and current clients in your space, you need to be set up with the right image.

Think long and hard about your services and industry - and what your interior needs to convey about your brand. Dependable, luxe, chic, sophisticated, reliable… design is your best bet to communicate these messages effectively.

For example, if you offer premium services, an old and faded couch or chair will not convince your clients to invest. A quick repair may be the best choice rather than investing in expensive new furniture.

clean and presentable furniture is essential when you run a small business from home.
Photo by Kam Idris on Unsplash

An easy way to do this is to look up ‘upholstery cleaning services near me’ and evaluate suitable companies online. You can then meet with a company to get a quote and discuss the project. Just keep in mind that item size (an oversized couch can cost anywhere between $1200-$3500), fabric, and custom elements will all impact the overall price.

Working from a small apartment does come with its advantages. You’ll be able to build capital while keeping your outgoing resources low. You’ll also be able to divert critical funds to more critical tasks with the best office ever - your home! So sit back, relax, and genuinely enjoy this space (and business) that you’ve built from the ground up.

Marketing & Advertising Your Apartment Business

One of the questions that often comes up regarding running a business from your apartment is whether or not you can get listed on Google Business Pages (or, Google Maps).

If your business offers any type of physical interaction in your area, yes, you can get listed on Google Business Pages.

AND, you don't even need to display your physical address!

learncontentseo.com ad for growing your brand without spending a dime on advertising

For example, if you operate a cottage goods home business (cottage bakery, for example), you can list your business on Google. You can simply select the "service area" where you're willing to deliver or meet customers for delivery of your product(s).

You will need to provide Google with your physical address when first setting up your account, because they send you a postcard with a code on it to verify your listing.

However, once you've verified your listing, you can select the option to hide your physical address and only show a "service area".

This is something that a lot of locally operated home-based businesses (including businesses run out of small apartments) don't take advantage of - but you should!

Google Business is an incredibly powerful tool that - when used properly - can get your product or service in front of potentially thousands of customers per month.


Texas is one of the best places for small businesses to thrive! At ExpertTexan, we highlight and help local businesses through articles, podcasts, business content, and more - all so that you can make the most of your entrepreneurial journey!