Officeless: What You Should Know

Now is the time to realize your entrepreneurial dream. After all, you don’t need much. Just a laptop, some WiFi, and the ability to work whenever wherever, right? It’s all about the freedom to set your own hours, travel the world, relax and live life the way you want.

Well, not quite.

There are many, many advantages to going officeless, but there are some drawbacks to consider too. Before you trade in the 9-5 to start your anti-cubicle, commute-free life, know that:

The Officeless life is Hard on Extroverts

If you are a social person, going from seeing your co-workers every day, having lunch with your team, and chatting around the water cooler to working alone at your kitchen table is very difficult. Humans crave interaction and attachment. Don’t underestimate how lonely working from home or on the road can be. Even if you are enjoying travels in a new country, are you forming meaningful relationships or are you meeting people briefly before hitting the road again?

It’s Surprisingly Difficult to Travel and Work

Whether you are working in an office or working unconfined, a job is a job. That means there are expectations, people counting on you, and deadlines to meet. You need to be reliable and that can be difficult when traveling the world. Time changes, access to WiFi (last time I checked, sprawling beaches had little WiFi access), travel delays and more can not only affect your work hours, they also affect the quality of your work. The deadline for an important project where you are collaborating with others won’t wait because you are mid-flight. You must plan very, very carefully – and be prepared to spend many hours of your travel time actually working.

You are Not Your Own Boss

The biggest draw of freelancing is being your own boss. However, that is a myth. Instead of one boss or manager, you now have several. Each client is your boss. They are paying for your time and expect results. You are the manager of your own time, not the boss; and as any freelancer will tell you, you have truly escaped the 9-5. Now it’s more like 6-11.

The Tax Bill is Your Responsibility

One of the biggest mistakes entrepreneurs make when they go officeless is forgetting to account for taxes. When employed, the accounting department took care of your deductions. Now you have to figure that out along with remitting GST/HST/QST, calculating mileage, and documenting write offs. And you have to submit all that paperwork to Canada Revenue Agency and Revenu Québec in a timely manner.

We Can Help with One of Those Things

When it comes to the bookkeeping, you can rely on AF Accounting. We work with entrepreneurs at every stage, from startups to corporations. With individual services such as year-end accounting and tax advice, to a full suite of services like our virtual CFO, from cash flow and budgets to cloud accounting with Xero, we have what you need to help you make the leap to your office-free life. We even have special accounting software for Amazon sellers.

Taking the Leap?

Despite the drawbacks, many people successfully transition from office life to an officeless one. It takes a lot of work, planning, and managed expectations but when done right, it can change your life for the better. If taking the leap, talk to AF Accounting to see how we can help you reach your goals faster.

Curious about calculating your own payroll deductions? Read this next.

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