We’re travelling farther up the East Coast this week with a stop in Massachusetts. Home to the landing of the Mayflower, Massachusetts is a historically rich state that many entrepreneurs enthusiastically flock towards.
What makes starting a business in Massachusetts so appealing? The Bay State boasts a healthy economic environment, an educated workforce, and the community support of other fellow business owners.
Incorporating a business in Massachusetts is not without its fair share of challenges. Some of these include high real estate costs and labor shortages, which can make it difficult for small businesses to stay financially afloat.
The good news is the Massachusetts Secretary of State is available to help entrepreneurs ease their way into small business ownership – and so are we! Keep the following tips in mind before you incorporate your business in Massachusetts.
1. Determine the entity you want to file as first.
Plan ahead before going into business by drafting business plans and getting training and advice on business financing. Once you have the foundation ready, choose a business structure that fits the needs of your small business.
You can file as a sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company (LLC), corporation, S corporation, or cooperative. If you are unsure what type of business structure to file under, you should seek help from a legal professional.
2. Now that you have your entity in place, it’s time to choose a name for your business and file a DBA Certificate.
It’s recommended that you conduct a name search before filing your business to ensure that your name is available for registration. If you plan on conducting business under a name that is different from your own, a DBA registration is required. This certificate can be filed through your local county clerk recorder.
3. You’ll need to file for a tax ID number before you register your business with the Secretary of State.
These are also referred to as Employer Identification Numbers (EINs) and allow your small business to hire employees. You may also use this number to uniquely identify employer tax accounts, instead of using your social security number. An EIN is less sensitive than an SSN, which makes it ideal to use on official documents and face less risk of identity theft.
4. Have you obtained all of your necessary business licenses and permits yet? If not, now’s the time.
Check with your county, state and federal authorities to determine which licenses your business requires before filing. To make this process easy, we offer a business license compliance package, where we complete this research for you.
5. Massachusetts’ Small Business Development Center Network is here for you if you still need help.
The Small Business Development Center is committed to helping Massachusetts business owners improve overall management and business operations. Their offerings include one-on-one business assistance, low-cost training for small businesses, and access to capital.
Need a little more help? The Massachusetts Small Business Development Center Network also covers a few key areas that matter for entrepreneurs. These include business plan development, cash flow analysis, marketing, personnel and organization issues, and conventional and non-conventional financing.
Speaking of capital, funding is actually pretty attainable in Massachusetts thanks to its business friendly community. Check out the state’s list of assistance organizations. Entrepreneurs will find contact information for the Massachusetts Office of Business Development, Mass BizWorks, MassDevelopment, Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation, MassVentures, and more.
If Massachusetts sounds like your kind of state for business, follow their Secretary of State on Facebook and Twitter for all the latest small business updates.
Thinking about starting a small business in Massachusetts? Give us a call at 1(877) 692-6772 or visit us at mycorporation.com if you have any questions about forming a business or the regulations required.