Home-based businesses make sense in today’s global economy. Almost unlimited access to the Internet makes it rather easy to create a business. Finding a business idea that will provide a much-needed service that is in demand can sometimes be a challenge, but if you enjoy helping children and adults learn, becoming an at-home tutor might be the right choice.
You might wonder if you have what it takes to become a tutor from home. You should like communication. If you prefer not to speak to others, you might want to rethink this option. You should like the age range of the students you plan to tutor. If you are uncomfortable with small children, you might want to teach other grade levels, and vice versa. You should feel confident in being able to explain to your students how they should tackle the subject that you are tutoring in. If you are not very good at a subject being tutored, you might not be helping your student by taking them on as a client.
There are pros and cons in any business, and the same is true for tutoring. Some pros to think about for tutoring are setting your own rates that many parents are happy to pay when they see great results for their child, a flexible schedule that allows for you to deal with other responsibilities in your life, and a great feeling knowing that you are making a difference in your students’ lives. The cons of having your own tutoring business include having to deal with all the expenses and taxes of running your own business, needing transportation to go to your tutoring appointments, that it can be slow to find students at first, most students will need tutoring during the nights and weekends, and there is the possibility of lulls in this business as it can be seasonal.
You may want to determine a tutoring specialty that you will market towards as your niche. You may want to work only with elementary and middle school students, certain subjects like math or Spanish, test preparation, and even special needs students. At this step, you will want to examine what you will feel comfortable teaching with your current knowledge level. For instance, a tutor that never went past Algebra probably would not be comfortable with helping students at a higher level. Teacher certifications are not necessary to tutor, but any education or experience that you have in the subjects that you will be tutoring can be great for marketing.
As a small business owner, even out of your home, you will be responsible for all aspects of running a business, including taxes that an employer would usually pay. You will want to name your business. You can open a sole proprietorship or partner up with another individual. You may even want to consider forming an LLC or another type of business to protect your interests. Depending on your state and local laws, you may need to obtain a business license or permit. The U.S. Small Business Administration can be a good tool for more information on how to set-up any small business.
Pricing is probably one of the hardest parts of any business. You do not want to go so high that your business is passed over for cheaper alternatives, like your local high school student looking to make some extra cash, but not so low that you are working for peanuts. At this stage, it may be helpful to do a little homework on the area you are planning on servicing to see how much other tutors are charging. You may find some tutors are willing to tutor students for $15 an hour, but tutors in large cities may be charging $200 an hour.
Remember that your niche may come into play with your rates. You may be willing to tutor a middle school student in basic Spanish at a lower rate, but a high school student in Spanish II at a higher rate. You should also take into account how many tutors in your area tutor in the same subjects that you do, as that might make you have more competitive rates whereas you may be able to charge more if you were one of a few tutors.
Now that your business is set-up, it’s time to find some clients to tutor. Flyers are a great way to get started with your tutoring business. Look for any areas of your local community that allow for them to be placed. You can include your contact information, credentials, subjects you tutor, and any other pertinent information to help clients come to you. Places like your local library, local college, and other student rich environments are good to target. You can also set up your own website, advertise through the local paper or Craigslist. After a while, you should be able to start getting referrals by word-of-mouth.
Being an at home tutoring business owner can be fun and rewarding as long as do your homework.
RichTutor.com sells complete business systems and supports tutoring businesses and freelance tutors worldwide. If you are still wondering how to become a tutor, contact us today at richtutor.com for a free consultation.