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Assessing New York City for Your Business—And Your Life
Today’s current and aspiring entrepreneurs, accountants, and bookkeepers care more about the work-life balance than ever before, and for good reason. According to The American Institute of Stress (ASI), job stress remains solidly in first place for Americans.
This isn’t just significant to employees; worker stress is a financial drain to businesses, as well. This makes it critically important for business owners to locate, or relocate, to an environment that is not just supportive for businesses but also ranks high on quality of life for its residents.
New York City has all of the perfect elements that can provide a great place for business and way of life. That’s why isupportsmallbusiness.org put together this list of suggestions, because removing even one element of stress from your shoulders leaves more time for life’s priorities.
Surround yourself with support in NYC
Even in today’s online world, a solid local customer base is important for your business. Many people prefer to “buy local” to support those businesses that employ locally and invest in the local community. That support is not the only consideration, however. Opportunities to find mentors, coalitions with other business owners, and advising resources are also important for business owners, particularly new entrepreneurs. It can help them weather the downturns and share the successes by then mentoring and supporting others. New York City prides itself on being host to many organizations that proudly serve its entrepreneurs, including:
- NYC Small Business Services
- Entrepreneurship Assistance Center
- New York Professional Advisors for Community Entrepreneurs
- Business Mentor NY
Fishing in the NYC talent pool
Don’t think that needing access to a highly qualified and educated talent pool only applies to the new business owner; even if you are relocating an existing business, you can’t assume, nor expect, that all of your current employees will uproot their lives and their families to move with you. You’ll also need to hire additional employees as you grow locally. For recruiting, or for your relocating employees who may want to further their education or have local options available for their children, some of the local public and private educational institutions include:
- Columbia University
- New York University
- Cornell University
- Fordham University
Cost of living considerations in NYC
Considering how much it costs to live in New York City is important to factor into your financial planning so you can adjust your salary offerings accordingly, and navigate your business runway before needing to find additional capital. New York City’s overall cost of living is quite a bit higher than the national average, driven mainly by high housing costs.
Relocating employees may want or need to rent an apartment or house while they get a feel for the city and explore neighborhoods, or wait for the seller's market to cool off. The good news is that even though rents have been rising, they are still lower than many other popular cities, with availability in a variety of neighborhoods. Prospective renters can use online search tools to narrow down their options based on features and amenities.
The quality of life intangibles
Employees consider many other things in addition to a city’s cost of living; in fact, many are willing to pay more for some necessities, like housing, as a trade-off for living in a vibrant community that provides access to things they enjoy, including low- to no-cost activities like outdoor recreation. New York City’s diversity, selection of exciting restaurants, and climate are among the reasons people enjoy living and working there, including proximity to attractions that appeal to all ages, such as:
- Central Park
- The Metropolitan Museum of Art
- Empire State Building
- The National 9/11 Memorial & Museum
- Statue of Liberty
Remember, what appeals to employees and their families applies to you, as well, so consider your family members’ varied interests—and your own—as you’re examining what New York City has to offer.
Checking the NYC business essentials
Once you’ve settled on New York City for your new business venture or your business relocation, you’ll need to create a checklist to help you organize your endeavor. Below are some essential tasks you’ll need to take care of.
- Select a business name
- Make a business plan
- Select a business location
- Create the desired business structure, such as a partnership, corporation, or limited liability company
- Register your business name
- Reserve your domain name
- Get state and federal taxpayer identification numbers
- Find funding resources
- Check licensing requirements in your city or county, such as required licenses with the county health department for a food business, for example
- Set up local business bank accounts
- Get business insurance
You’ll also need to create your marketing collateral, such as business cards, letterhead, and your website. To do this, creating a logo is essential. You can design your custom logo quickly and easily. Just choose a template, customize the graphics, color, and text, and then download it to use. The right logo for your business is the essence of your business branding—it’s what helps to make it memorable and easily identifiable to your customers and clients.
Making the move to NYC
Once you’ve found the perfect location for your business, you have to find a place for yourself. And you have options on where to live. If you want to buy a home, the current median sell price is about $765,000 according to PropertyShark.com. If you prefer to rent first to get a better feel for the area before buying, there are plenty of rentals to choose from, with more than 8,000 apartments available in NYC alone. Also, you can save yourself a lot of hassle by hiring professional movers. Simply search online for a reputable moving company and browse their ratings and reviews to make sure you’re getting the best deal.
New York City’s aura of balance
You’ll want your business to be where people want to be, and the New York City area definitely fits the bill. And remember, as you’re setting priorities for where to start or relocate your business, include your own personal reasons. Starting a business off with a well-balanced and happy workforce, led by a similarly content business owner and their family, is an important ingredient in the successful entrepreneur’s recipe for success.
At isupportsmallbusiness.org, we believe that we can do more by coming together and creating a platform that will truly help local small businesses across our amazing country, for FREE. Contact us today to learn more!