Retired - Live Your Passion Through a Personal Franchise

By: Andrew Van Valer

With today's technology and the Internet, there are almost endless home business opportunities for retirees and other people over age 50 to take advantage of. If you own a computer, and have broadband access to the Internet, you can start a variety of businesses
from home and enjoy the income and flexibility of being your own boss and owning your own business.

I've spoken to many retirees - and other older workers who are frustrated with their current job or career - and many have never dreamed of owning their own business. They felt it was to difficult, challenging or scary. Yet they know that a business out of their home can provide extra spending cash, finances for living expenses or the security of having a residual monthly cash flow. What they don't know is how easy it is to setup a Personal Franchise business out of the home, apartment or RV now. This is a great time for seniors - or people of any age for that matter - to start a business out of your home or RV.

In a recent visit to the Santa Clara Senior center, we started talking to a few people about the possibilities of living their dreams they were going to do anyway by spending their current savings and showed them how to start a business using their passion and not spend their saving but create income. They were so excited. One was going to travel around the US in hos RV selling a health product and green gas additive that improves your mileage by 15%.

I've also talked to people who want their own business, but they didn't know where to start. There are so many home business opportunities out there, and unfortunately, some of them are thinly-disguised scams intended to part you from your hard earned money. Deciding what you want to do, what you can afford - both in time and money - and what's a legitimate opportunity can be a daunting task for people of any age. Especially if they are not used to it.

One obvious place to start is the Internet. Selling a product or service from home or RV, over the Internet, is one of the fastest growing home business models of the Twenty-First Century. One huge advantage of the Internet is the ability to attract customers from all over the world - not just in your local area as in a traditional home business. Almost everyone has bought or sold some something on Ebay or Amazon or one of the other large auction websites, and thousands have turned Ebay into a full time business. All you need is a source of products, a digital camera, a computer with broadband Internet access, and a desire to make money from home to get started.

Another advantage of an online small business is its flexibility. With the Internet, you can set your own schedule and work your own hours. You're not tied to working regular business hours, which can be a great advantage for retirees or anyone else who seeks flexibility in their schedule. You can work on your business in the morning, go fishing in the afternoon, and work some more in the evening if you like. Or even take several weeks and go on a business trip (vacation) sharing your product or service without worrying that your customers will go somewhere else while you're gone.

If you're not interested in selling physical products online, you can also offer a service over the Internet. Large self-employment websites like Elance.com allow people to bid on projects like writing or web design, and then deliver the work via Fax or email, without ever meeting the client in person. Once you build a reputation for quality work, and a reliable client base, you'll probably get as many offers as you can handle in a very short time.

Another option for older entrepreneurs is to offer products or services to other seniors. Because of your own experiences, you are more likely to know what other seniors might need or want. Products for retired and senior citizens you might consider selling include knowledge (articles and books), items relating to travel, entertainment, health, lifestyle, nutrition, and family. An Internet business could also provide any services that could be delivered or arranged electronically and would fulfill the needs and desires of seniors or retirees.

Using their RV as their mobile office, some retires are working with their next RV stop to book the entertainment center for an hour so that they can present their product or servce to the the temporary residents. In some cases, this will allow them to deduct all their expense including mileage and make a great income.

As for spotting potential home business scams, start by being very wary of any "opportunity" that requires you to pay an up-front fee to get started. Never send money to a company claiming to put you to work from your home. Any legitimate employer isn't going to charge money just to hire you or to get you started. Don't send money for work at home directories or start-up kits.

If you have doubts about a prospective employer or work from home opportunity, ask to see their references. Request to see a list of other people that have done work for the company in the past, then contact those people and ask them to share their experiences with the company. Always avoid any company that's unwilling to provide these type of references.

Never give out your personal information in an email. This is known as a philshing scam, and many of these emails are made to look very legitimate. Delete any email that's not addressed to you personally, and that has links in it asking you to sign into another website, or give out your bank account information, passwords, social security number, or other personal information.

This is the time you should be enjoying your life to the fullest!

To your success.

Retirement
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