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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all! I'm quite new to the forum, but have done most of my homework about operating and managing a tshirt business. But I can't seem to be able to find any information about where I can operate my business. I live in NYC an like most people live in an apartment. I honestly can't afford an office to rent or warehouse. I have space in my apartment but don't know the laws about running my business in my apartment. I want to be legit and have all my permits and licenses what can I do? Can I run my business in my apartment and still be legit? Thank you, any replies will be appreciated.
 

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Hey all! I'm quite new to the forum, but have done most of my homework about operating and managing a tshirt business. But I can't seem to be able to find any information about where I can operate my business. I live in NYC an like most people live in an apartment. I honestly can't afford an office to rent or warehouse. I have space in my apartment but don't know the laws about running my business in my apartment. I want to be legit and have all my permits and licenses what can I do? Can I run my business in my apartment and still be legit? Thank you, any replies will be appreciated.
Do you mean work in your apartment or do business in your apt. Work means you simply do what you do and take the merchandise you may make someplace to ship. Doing business meand haveing people come to your apt or deliveries made there. You building management may be the first to talk to. Then Your city license dept. Other tenents may not want to know that you have equipment that might be hazard to their well being. many of us work out of out homes which is easier then apt. I have had many members here write me and tell me they work out of their apt. None has said they had a problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Badalou! Yea, What I meant to say was that I would simply be doing my tshirts in my apartment and than selling them elsewhere. I just wouldn't want my license application and trademark application to be rejected due to my business being done in my apartment. Thanks again Badalou!
 

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Thanks Badalou! Yea, What I meant to say was that I would simply be doing my tshirts in my apartment and than selling them elsewhere. I just wouldn't want my license application and trademark application to be rejected due to my business being done in my apartment. Thanks again Badalou!
some of these presses have loud buzzers when they stop. I had my smoke alarm go off as well. Now I make sure my cealing fan is on when my press is on. You wouldn't want that to happen in an apartment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I think I'm going to have to rethink my strategy, Thanks Badalou
 

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Yea, What I meant to say was that I would simply be doing my tshirts in my apartment and than selling them elsewhere. I just wouldn't want my license application and trademark application to be rejected due to my business being done in my apartment. Thanks again Badalou!
Your trademark has nothing to do with your apartment.

Your license is a different matter. You need to apply for the license and they will tell you if there are any issues with being in an apartment. In my city, you have to submit a zoning application prior to filing for a business license and in my case the inspector came out to my house to make sure I wouldn't be generating traffic or noise. Even after seeing my equipment operate and my assurances I wouldn't be generating traffic, I'm still waiting on his approval. Maybe I was supposed to bribe him. :confused:

Your other concern is your lease agreement and if there are any restrictions about operating a business from your apartment.
 

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Leon. I don't want to advise you to break the law.I will say,I would start in my aprtment and get things going.If your line takes off you will be able to afford othe space. I would not ask anyone about zoning or rules. I would get my state sales tax license and start selling product. I think it 's easier to follow your dream if you don't others put barriers in your way. If they don't what your doing,then they can't say your not allowd to do it. IMHO. .... JB
 

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I got caught working out my house without a business license. I had to pay a $200 fine plus the license. And when you go for a license they will ask what type of business. I operate a INTERNET sales business. So that license was different then a brick and mortar business.
 

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Yeah, I was actually in business a few months before I realized I needed a license from the city. I know that sounds stupid but our state has a 1-800 number to call when you open a business and they tell you everything you need to do ... they explicitly told me twice that I did not need a business license for the type business I was operating. Eventually I called the city to ask.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Leon. I don't want to advise you to break the law.I will say,I would start in my aprtment and get things going.If your line takes off you will be able to afford othe space. I would not ask anyone about zoning or rules. I would get my state sales tax license and start selling product. I think it 's easier to follow your dream if you don't others put barriers in your way. If they don't what your doing,then they can't say your not allowd to do it. IMHO. .... JB
Thanks a lot JB, I was thinking of doing that...but was a bit worried of getting caught. But I know I can operate my business from my apt. without getting caught....I just don't want to have a guilty conscience. LOL. Thanks again JB.
 

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Thanks a lot JB, I was thinking of doing that...but was a bit worried of getting caught. But I know I can operate my business from my apt. without getting caught....I just don't want to have a guilty conscience. LOL. Thanks again JB.
I used to live in a community that was very controlling. I had my shop set up and all my neighbors were oblivious to what I was doing. I accomplished this by not getting my supplies shipped to my house. I got a mail box and had all business related items go there. I lived there 5 yrs and nobody was ever the wiser. The best way to keep a secret is to never tell anyone. .... JB
 

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But I know I can operate my business from my apt. without getting caught....I just don't want to have a guilty conscience. LOL.

Sometimes you need to 'adapt' rules and regulations to get you to where you need to be. For example the buzzer on a press timer only makes a noise if it is set. Packed tees can be put in a sports bag, so nobody knows what you are coming out of the building with. It's all about being inventive. ;)
 

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Reading this thread from start to finish - we start here:

I want to be legit and have all my permits and licenses what can I do?
And end Here:

olean said:
Thanks a lot JB, I was thinking of doing that...but was a bit worried of getting caught. But I know I can operate my business from my apt. without getting caught..
Dear olean,

If you really are interested in being legit, then you should consult someone who knows what it takes to do biz in NYC specifically, like a lawyer, accountant, and/or your local Small Business Development Center.

I won't comment much on the second quote except to say that if you proceed to break zoning rules, and bypass permits and regulations, please try to remember, not all rules are established to "keep you from succeeding". I'll give you an example:

Like Rick, I had to contact my municipality (most of us do) to have our business approved to operate it in a "residential zone". There is a reason for that for that rule. To protect property values, and I for one am glad for it. I would not be happy if someone started a "junkyard" across the street from my house.

Other rules help ensure safety. If you bypass the regulations, please make sure the outlet you plug the press into is rated for the amps, as well as grounded. Do not bypass the grounding mechanism. You don't want to endanger yourself or the other tenants. You will need to know what "they" would have checked if you bypass the safety regulations, and check them carefully yourself to make sure you are all safe.

You may be surprised and find what others have found, it can be easy to get a license for your type of buisness.

Here is an older thread for you on a very similar topic. Why not read it and see how it turned out for this fellow?

http://www.t-shirtforums.com/heat-press-heat-transfers/t50355.html#post296929

Here is a link to find your local Small biz dev center, they will know what you need to operate at your location, they are a free resource to you:
Small Business Administration - sbdc_locator_map

No matter what you decide, best wishes to you in your endeavors, and be safe above all.
 
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