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Home Biz Notes

Seasonal Home Businesses

by Mary Emma Allen on November 26th, 2006

Some people operate their home business seasonally and are open or online only during specific times during the year. This is an advantage of a home business. You aren’t paying rent and other overhead on a business location for which you’ve had to take a year’s lease. Thus, you don’t have those expenses during the seasons you decide you aren’t open.

These factors came to mind when I received an e-mail from an online quilt supply shop owner. She mentioned she was having special Christmas sales on her fabrics and other supplies. Apparently she sells only Christmas related items, so closes her shop after the holiday season, then opens it later in the year when she’s acquired new stock.

Where I live in New Hampshire, the summer months are busy with tourists visiting the lakes and mountains regions. Thus many shops (whether in the home or otherwise) that appeal to these travelers are open only from July through Labor Day. Some stay open until after Columbus Day weekend which is “foliage” season here.

At one time I supplied quilts and related items for a craft cooperative very popular with tourists. It opened from late June through Columbus weekend. Called “The Red Schoolhouse,” it was located in a renovated one-room school. Throughout the winter months, I’d work, between my other orders, on quilted and patchwork items to sell there in summer. When my mail order business evolved (before the days of the Internet and online businesses), I had less time to make extra stock to place in the Red Schoolhouse. However, it still remained a seasonal outlet for me.

I think of a seasonal business, raising and selling Christmas trees, a farmer operates just outside the town where we live. I drove by yesterday and saw they have trees ready to sell. You also can cut your own Christmas tree here, which my daughter and son-in-law do with their children. (In fact, they visited today and tagged their tree to cut in a couple of weeks.) Of course, the farmer is busy raising the trees throughout the year, but the selling season is short, between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

A friend who has an accounting business is particularly busy from January through the end of April due to “tax season.” Those who own a truck with a plow find the winter/snow season their busy one for that type of work.

Many year-round home businesses have bursts of sales during particular seasons, whether holidays or simply due to the time of year and an influx of travelers to the area. Do you have a business that lends itself to making more of these occasions? Or do you have a talent you can use during a particular season? Learn to focus on seasonal sales as well as year-round ones with your home business.

POSTED IN: Advantages, Personal Experience

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