Thursday, August 18, 2005

On-Guard …

According to the Small Business Administration, today more than half (53%) of the small businesses in the U.S. are home-based. Entrepreneur magazine estimates that $427 billion is generated each year by home-based businesses. That is bigger than General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler combined. According to IDC, home-based businesses create an estimated 8,500 new jobs daily.

So, it’s pretty much can’t-miss? Not so fast. Last time we talked about FTC warnings about some of the scams going on. Let’s go back to the FTC for some more words of caution.

Many ads promising work-at-home riches omit the fact that you may have to work many hours without pay. Or they don't disclose all the costs you will have to pay.

Countless work-at-home schemes require you to spend your own money to place newspaper ads; make photocopies; or buy the envelopes, paper, stamps, and other supplies or equipment you need to do the job. The companies sponsoring the ads also may demand that you pay for instructions or "tutorial" software. Consumers deceived by these ads have lost thousands of dollars, in addition to their time and energy.

Questions to Ask

Legitimate work-at-home program sponsors should tell you - in writing - what's involved in the program they are selling. Here are some questions you might ask a promoter:

What tasks will I have to perform?
(Ask the program sponsor to list every step of the job.)

Will I be paid a salary or will my pay be based on commission?

Who will pay me?

When will I get my first paycheck?

What is the total cost of the work-at-home program, including supplies, equipment and membership fees? What will I get for my money?

The answers to these questions may help you determine whether a work-at-home program is appropriate for your circumstances, and whether it is legitimate.

You also might want to check out the company with your local consumer protection agency, state Attorney General and the Better Business Bureau, not only where the company is located, but also where you live. These organizations can tell you whether they have received complaints about the work-at-home program that interests you.

But be wary: the absence of complaints doesn't necessarily mean the company is legitimate. Unscrupulous companies may settle complaints, change their names or move to avoid detection.


jbv's Competitive Edge 


Blogger Jmaximus said...

I have never seen one that wasn't a scam. If you want a home biz, you have to do it yourself.

8:37 AM  

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