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Author gives advice on working from home

Retirement is too far away.

You can see it from your work desk. It’s tantalizingly close, filled with sun and sand, golf and travel, but it’s oh-so-unreachable. Yes, you have a job you’re happy to have. No, you don’t want it forever.

So how would you feel being your own boss? Making good money, doing something you love, having flexibility to travel, learning new things? If you think you’re too old for that, you’re not — and “Start Your Own Home Business After 50” by Robert W. Bly explains why.

One of these days, you’d love to be able to throw the alarm clock away and forget work. You hope to retire sooner, rather than later — which means, of course, that money (and lack thereof) is a definite concern.

And you’re not alone. Bly says the number of workers age 55 and older is projected to grow by nearly 50 percent in the next 3 years. Stretching retirement dollars has never been more important — which is where this book comes in.

The first step, Bly says, is to decide which of your former jobs you enjoyed and were good at. If nothing in particular sticks out, what hobbies would you like to develop into “an expert-level gig?” Can you freelance, or do consulting? Would a former employer make a good client? Use your experience (an advantage you’ve got over younger workers) to winnow through the possibilities.

Next, decide if the business is for you. Do your strengths mesh with what’s needed to run things properly? Do you have stick-to-itiveness enough to stay focused and work solo? Are you prepared to do your billing, tech support and other necessary tasks, or would you hire someone to do them? Can you market yourself and promote your new business? Do you need financing (the availability of which is another advantage)?

Once you’ve figured out the details, then it’s time for launch, but Bly says there’s one thing to remember first: “Make yourself happy. When you do,” he says, “those who care about you will eventually be happy for you.”

Someday, you’ll retire and you’ll get to do the things you love. So why not make money doing them, with the help of “Start Your Own Home Business After 50.”

Beginning with a handful of home business opportunity ideas, author Robert W. Bly offers plenty of sound advice here, including food for thought to determine if the endeavor is viable. His words are encouraging, but cautious, and he doesn’t forget to warn his readers of the pitfalls in becoming an entrepreneur. That kind of balance is great to see, particularly if you’re on the fence about business-ownership or are just starting to think about self-employment.

There’s a little bit of annoying repetition in this book but, overall, it’s a valuable tool for anyone who needs to plan for the future or just wants a good change of pace. If that’s you, then “Start Your Own Home Business After 50” is a book you won’t want too far away.

“Start Your Own Home Business After 50” by Robert W. Bly c.2013, Quill Driver Books $16.95 / $18.95 Canada 204 pages

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