Are you one of the approximately 1 in 7 Canadian workers who are self-employed ? Self-employed workers are a diverse group, one that includes everyone from tech entrepreneurs to mobile yoga instructors, gig-economy drivers to freelance consultants, crafters and creators.
Working for yourself can be as rewarding as it is challenging. One of the ways to set your small business up for success is to create an office HQ that is appropriate for the scale of your work – and ambition. If you’re still using your kitchen table to run your business from, stop. Now is the time to carve out your own dedicated office space. Here’s why… with an added tip on how to access renovation financing.
Having a dedicated work space entitles you to Canada Revenue Agency tax deductions including a portion of your utilities, maintenance, property tax and mortgage interest. But under CRA rules, this is only the case if the home office is your primary work space, and/or it’s the primary location where you meet clients and customers.
All this to say: your kitchen table won’t qualify! But consider repurposing your guest bedroom into a home office, renovating your garage into a workshop or finishing your basement into a studio. A work-from-home reno is one home improvement that you’ll be glad you did, come tax time.
Another benefit of having a dedicated work space in your home is the ability to stay organized and focused on your tasks. Trying to stay organized and focused on specific tasks in a shared, mixed-use space can be a daily challenge.
To use the kitchen table example again: imagine trying to work on a specific project using multiple files, spreading out across the table, only to have to pack up in mid-day because someone needs to make a meal. Or misplacing important papers because another household member stacked them incorrectly when they used the table. Or finding food stains on client paperwork because… well, it’s a busy kitchen.
A dedicated home office provides room to spread out without intruding into shared family space, and to set up organization systems that keep files safe and secure. And when you close the door at the end of the work day, you can re-set your frame of mind to home time – which can be a challenge if you see a stack of projects waiting on the kitchen counter.
Recent events such as the COVID-19 pandemic have pushed even more Canadians into work-from-home arrangements . Videoconferencing has gone mainstream and many workers are familiar with the routine of trying to set up enough distractions to ensure their children don’t wander into camera view. Or, furiously tidying up so their colleagues don’t see a messy backdrop!
A dedicated home office space ensures you’ve always got a professional-calibre backdrop for those video calls, not to mention minimal background noise, and easy access to any files you may need.
When you’re ready to create a more efficient work-from-home space that works harder for you, reach out to 8Twelve Mortgage. Our team of mortgage brokers can access renovation financing solutions to make your home office, workshop or studio dreams a reality. Our Mortgage Strategists are specialists in mortgage refinancing, reverse mortgages, renovation loan products and the lowest HELOC rates.