How to Start a Business in Florida?
Why Florida is Best to Start a Business?
Florida is one of the strongest economies in the United States. Local businesses in Florida are supported by the presence of beaches, sports facilities, theme parks, and events that attract a lot of visitors to help strengthen the local businesses. Other incentives for starting a business in Florida are listed below.
- Low tax burden
- Relatively lower home prices
- It is a strategic location for internationalizing your business
- Access to capital
- Popular seasons
- Florida has cities with a lot of potential.
Step by Step Guide to Start a Business in Florida
Step 1: Decide on a Business Structure
You have three options to choose from when deciding on your business structure.
Limited Liability Company: your business will be a separate entity with an easy management system that does not require officers or directors.
Corporation: your business will be a separate entity whose structure consists of directors, officers, and shareholders. If you want to start a large company that wants to raise funding, this is your structure choice. You can go for a professional corporation if you want to start a professional business for lawyers, doctors, architects, etc.
Sole Proprietor: this structure will not provide you with liability protection, and your personal assets will be at risk if the business goes into debt.
Step 2: Pick a Business Name
Be very careful during this stage because choosing the wrong business name may result in many legal and business problems. To settle on a good business name, you need to do the following.
- Cover the basics: your name should be easy to pronounce and unique. Practice [pronouncing out loud to get a feel of it.
- Search the Web for any potential conflicts, especially in your local jurisdiction. If you intend to go national, ensure that your name is unique, even to those cases where a name is used but not trademarked.
- Do a trademark search: search with the US Patent and Trademark Office to find out if your name has any potential conflicts attached to it. You can also choose to use Google at an advanced level to do a trademark search, or pay trademark specialists to do the name search for you.
- Search for availability of your name: search the Florida Department of State Business name database. Be sure to search spelling variations, misspellings and plurals as the state rejects a name that is too similar to another. Such rejection will send you back to the drawing board, wasting your valuable time.
Step 3: Register Your Business
After choosing your business structure and choosing a business name, you need to register it by filling the correct paperwork at the Florida Department of State. The paperwork processing may take two to three days for online filling and three to five days if you send a mail. The waiting period may, however, increase during peak periods. For a corporation, you may need a registered agent to do the registration process for you.
How much does it cost to start a Business in Florida?
To start a limited liability company in Florida, you first need $100 as a fee to file Articles of Organization at the Florida Secretary of State’s office. An additional fee of $30 is charged if you need a certified copy of the Articles of Organization. You will part with e $5 to get a Certificate of Status, also called, Certificate of good standing in other states. A Certificate of Status is a written verification to prove that you’re your limited liability company is authorized to do business in Florida. A certified copy of the Articles of organization or Certificate of Status are sometimes necessary for business transactions.
Best 5 Business Ideas in Florida
Drive-In Movie Theater
Many older people would like to relive their childhood by visiting drive-in movie theaters. Be sure to target your menu and movie selection to older customers’ taste. You should aim at broadcasting sound over radio waves to be received by car stereo systems. To improve your customer experience, you need to have a concession stand, a playground, and an arcade.
If you have a passion for music and love to discover new and original brands, you need to consider starting your record label. The internet has made it easier to start a small independent label and generate a response. You can then find an equally appreciative audience and present your newfound talent.
Assisted Living Facility
Do you like caring for the disabled and the elderly? You can start a housing facility for senior citizens and those with physical and mental problems. Through assisted living, patients get a communal environment to live in and enjoy. You can hire professional caregivers to give round-the-clock assistance to people who cannot take care of themselves at home.
Vehicles break down every day in Florida, are illegally parked or left stranded. If you start a tow truck business, you will help transport these vehicles to impound lots, repair shops, homes, and other locations as directed. You could also offer emergency roadside assistance.
A boutique is smaller than the regular retailer clothing shops. If you start a clothing boutique in Florida, you will help create a more intimate environment for clothing customers in Florida. Your boutique will meet the needs of customers who are very specific in their clothing styles. Many clothing customers in Florida tend to stick to their styles. You are, therefore, likely to attract and retain customers with relatively more ease. Your boutique’s success will be highly dependent on the recommendations and satisfaction of the first few customers that you will attract.
Most customers in Florida need gasoline for their vehicles. Apart from gasoline, your business could also offer drinks, food, and convenience store items. It was recently discovered that Florida’s gas stations collect up to $89 billion annually from such additional products.