Running a business from home

It’s usually ok for you to work or run your own business from home, but please let us know about it first.

You’ll need to tell us:

  • the details of your business
  • the hours, level of noise and if it might affect your neighbours
  • about any vehicles that you use in the business.

What counts as a business?

We’ll consider it a business if you produce something or provide a service that’s for someone other than you or your family, and you’re paid for it.

What do we consider when approving a home business?

When you let us know about your home business, we’ll check to make sure it won’t:

  • break any planning laws
  • breach our anti-social behaviour policy
  • disturb your neighbours.

You also need to tell your local council, as you may need a licence or their permission, and please check you have the right qualifications and any legal permission.

What types of businesses are usually permitted?

The following businesses are most likely to get permission:

  • childminding
  • using part of your home as an office
  • hair or beauty treatments
  • cleaning services.

There are plenty of others, so please get in touch to find out.

When won’t we grant permission for a business?

If your home business isn’t suitable, we’ll write to you and explain why. This includes, but isn’t limited to, businesses that involve:

  • vehicle repairs
  • cold calling or doorstep selling
  • animal breeding or running a kennel
  • taxi firms, courier or delivery services
  • storing hazardous or controlled materials, or heavy machinery
  • a business with lots of clients visiting your home
  • sales or products that may cause offence.

Advice to help set up your business

There are lots of organisations that can help you set up your own business:

Do you need to declare the income you receive?

Yes, you must tell HM Revenue and Customs about your income. You will have to declare your profits and register and charge for VAT. If you don’t you may be committing tax fraud.

Could running a business affect your benefits?

Any income you get from working or running a business could impact your benefits.

We’d suggest contacting the Department for Work and Pensions for advice before you get started.