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Posted by: Nefra Germain, 9 Oct 2016 9:41PM
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Working from a shed!

Hi My friend and I are contemplating setting up in her garden using a summerhouse type set up. Has anyone done this that can offer any advice? Where there any permissions needed from the council or anything like that? We'll be doing massage, reiki and crystal therapy. Thanks


Maureen Abson
11 Oct 2016 8:15AM

It may very much depend on your local council and any by-laws for your area. It can be influenced by signage, size etc so it's a tricky one to give a straight answer to. Speaking to the council is probably the safest option. This article has some useful info re the financial side of it, worth considering as you could end up liable for business rates (but these could be offset) -and you''d need to consider things like music licenses if you were going to be playing music in a separate building. https://www.gardenaffairs.co.uk/blog-offering-inspiration-expert-advice/running-a-business-from-a-garden-office I suspect there would be paperwork involved but it would be worth it in the long run if it gives you an ideal work space and an 'in nature' space for your work. Hope it goes well!
Nefra Germain
11 Oct 2016 9:49AM

Thank you. I have already contacted the council. The environmental health team have come back to me to say we don't need any licences, and they've passed my email onto planning to see if we need to apply for planning permission or change of use. I have asked about business rates, but they've not come back on that yet. I'll have a read of the link later, that's great. Thank you very much.
Amanda Clegg
11 Oct 2016 5:11PM

If you already use a room in your house, and that's ok with your insurance co. I'd just stay under the radar! Don't want to go down the business premises/rates route!
Maureen Abson
12 Oct 2016 8:01AM

Great on not needing the liecenses etc, even if they do end up charging you business rates it should be a very small amount and there is a national scheme to encourage small businesses that means you should be able to get the money offset, from memory it's anything up to about £4,500 that you get small business relief on so even if was charged it should just be 'on paper' (I suspect it makes the councils look good that they are supporting X number of small businesses) rather than in actual money spent. Sounds like a great adventure!
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