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Old 04.02.2015, 07:10
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Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

Well, it might sound like a silly question... but since I know how regulated Switzerland is: Are there any regulations that would stop you from starting a business from your home? Any problems with a landlord? Regulatory things to consider?

Given Switzerlands cost structure does a managed office space in Zurich probably cost and arm and a leg, so it would be considerably cheaper to simply rent a flat with one more room...
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Old 04.02.2015, 09:55
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

No problems at a federal/cantonal level that I know of for Zurich, but there are a few things to consider (other than just being distracted into watching daytime TV). The first would be to see what's in the contract with your landlord - they may not allow you to register your business at your home address. The second issue is liability insurance - you might not be covered for holding business meetings at your home address. Both of these can be worked around reasonably easily though.

Last edited by Meester_Paul; 04.02.2015 at 09:56. Reason: Typos
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Old 04.02.2015, 11:44
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

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Well, it might sound like a silly question... but since I know how regulated Switzerland is: Are there any regulations that would stop you from starting a business from your home?
Welcome back to Switzerland soon?
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Old 04.02.2015, 11:54
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

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Welcome back to Switzerland soon?
I am considering it. Simply put: I had a C permit and you can "park" this for up to four years. It has been 3.5 now... so I have to decide soon. While I am right now working in some telco software start up did I spend 3 years out of the 3.5 building up an IT consultancy. Singapore is a very competitive market and I still managed it quite successfully and learned a lot. Most important lesson: Why the heck do I do this for some other owner than myself?!
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Old 04.02.2015, 12:40
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

After reading my local paper, it does seem there are rules to be followed. I imagine you have to register your private company for taxes, and pay your AHV contributions. Then there are the planning laws: are you permitted to run a business in a residential zone?
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Old 04.02.2015, 17:15
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

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I imagine you have to register your private company for taxes, and pay your AHV contributions.
Well, I am aware that there is some paper work to be done to run a company... I have done so before.

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Then there are the planning laws: are you permitted to run a business in a residential zone?
That's what I am interested in. I can of course work from home and since it's office work will nobody technically care - but is there any issue to make it the official address of a company? Could not really find any info online and Switzerland being what it is would I bet that this depends on Canton and Gemeinde...
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Old 07.02.2015, 15:09
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

You don't need your landlords permission to use one of flat's rooms as an office nor to domicile your company at your flat.
Also, you can can deduct the costs for that room from your taxes..

Then there are the planning laws: are you permitted to run a business in a residential zone?
Yes
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Old 07.02.2015, 15:26
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

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You don't need your landlords permission to use one of flat's rooms as an office nor to domicile your company at your flat.
Also, you can can deduct the costs for that room from your taxes..

Then there are the planning laws: are you permitted to run a business in a residential zone?
Yes
-> it would be nice to see a reference, why are there planning zones then?

In Fribourg I could not claim business expenses for the cellar room I used as an office in my privately rented house. It was refused two years running, 1993 & 1994 I wonder why?
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Old 07.02.2015, 15:47
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

Planning zones and a number of further regulations on the issue - simplified - should ensure that businesses which cause a lot of noice, traffic etc don't end up in quiet residential areas. However, none of those have any influence on Treverus's plan to do some paper work business in his flat (unless I completely misunderstood his intentions).

I am not familiar with your set up nor with your tax declaration, so I'd have to guess. Most common issues are a not exclusive business use of the room, merely occasional use.

Source: being a swiss qualified lawyer?
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Old 07.02.2015, 17:07
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

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In Fribourg I could not claim business expenses for the cellar room I used as an office in my privately rented house. It was refused two years running, 1993 & 1994 I wonder why?
Possibly because the cellar room was not counted as 'habitable space' by the tax authorities when they calculated the 'eigenmietwert' of the house.
I don't imagine the landlord would be too happy about changing the classification just to allow you to declare it as a tax deduction.
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Old 08.02.2015, 02:41
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

The tax people never knew it was a cellar, I simply claimed a nominal rent of CHF 200 per month, and it was refused twice.
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Old 08.02.2015, 08:39
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

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-> it would be nice to see a reference, why are there planning zones then?

In Fribourg I could not claim business expenses for the cellar room I used as an office in my privately rented house. It was refused two years running, 1993 & 1994 I wonder why?
Is it possible that laws have changed since then?
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Old 08.02.2015, 12:02
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

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The tax people never knew it was a cellar, I simply claimed a nominal rent of CHF 200 per month, and it was refused twice.
Refused rent or refused your independant status for business.

If you business was legitimate, be it an declared "status indépendant, an Sàrl, (GmbH) or a SA (AG) they cannot refuse a location nor a deduction for expenses. This is assuming you needed and office for your business.

There is absolutely nothing to stop you registering a business at your home address, making one of the rooms to a home office and deducting expenses for this.

1) When you move you will need to pass by Chambre de Commerce to change your business address (Canton Vaud invoices Chf 160.-- for address change)

2) It is an office you have at home for conducting business associated with office activities (excluding those that happen in New Zealandf in glass fronted offices...) so meaning little or no noise would be tolerated, but general office work, typing, filing etc etc ABSOLUTELY NO PROBLEM and if it is legit, you can deduct expenses. In my home office i have a superior audi-visual display system for watching the markets which was put on expenses.

(it's good to watch TV and listen to music too, but this is just something that couldn't be disconnected )
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Old 08.02.2015, 12:12
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

Maybe the question is what are you trying to achieve? If you just want to start a business, then just start it. Who cares? But if you need to do something else, e.g. get it recognised for permit purposes etc. then maybe there are other factors to be considered.
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Old 08.02.2015, 13:01
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Re: Any pitfalls for setting up a business from a home office?

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-> . . .
In Fribourg I could not claim business expenses for the cellar room I used as an office in my privately rented house. It was refused two years running, 1993 & 1994 I wonder why?
If you want to offset against tax, the cost of maintaining an office at home, there is this "FAQ" in the Bundesverwaltung/KMU Portal. See the 9th item in the list.

(German) http://www.kmu.admin.ch/faq/?themen_id=50#faq_anker_130

There is also a stack of documents here about small businesses (German). . .
http://www.kmu.admin.ch/publikatione...x.html?lang=de
including this Startup Guide . . .
http://www.kmu.admin.ch/publikatione..._JjKbNoKSn6A--
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