Whether you're currently working for an investment firm and looking to branch out on your own or just interested in working in the industry, starting a home-based investing business can be a great move for those with an eye for good finances. While starting any business can be a big undertaking, there are several simple steps that you can take to get you on the road to running a successful, home-based investing business.
Get registered. In order to provide investment advice in exchange for a fee, you must register with your state. Depending on your experience and certifications (or lack thereof), you may need to take an exam. You'll also need to pay a fee to complete the registration. If you're not already licensed, you will need to do that as well. You can learn more about becoming a Registered Investment Advisor, including detailed license and registration information, at Registered-Investment-Advisor.com (see Resources).
Set up shop. Before you can do business, you need to have a business. Get busy choosing a name, registering with the state, setting up a home office (making sure that your home is zoned for home-based business operations), and acquiring any software or computer equipment needed to service your clients. At the very least, you'll need a working computer, a phone line, high-speed internet access, a filing cabinet, and a desk that is dedicated to your home-based investing business.
Create a business plan. A business plan can help you map out your road to business success, help you hire new employees, and be a reference for you to turn to when your business hits bumps in the road, among many other things. A formal business plan is also needed if you plan to seek investment capital to start your business. Learn more about creating a business plan at the Small Business Administration (SBA) website (see Resources).
Grow your client base. No new business will survive without clients to pay the bills and keep it afloat. You can get clients a variety of ways, including setting up a business website, creating business cards to hand out to potential clients, attending online and face-to-face networking events to rub elbows with people who might need your services, and telling everyone you know about your new business venture--including your family, hairdresser, and dry cleaner. You never know who might need investment advice.