Florida is known as a fantastic holiday destination the world over. Millions of local and international visitors flock to the sunshine state every year. The state is also a great place to start a business. Whether you are thinking of moving your business to the state, or are considering putting the entrepreneur hat on for the first time, Florida will be perfect for you.
The best thing about starting a business in Florida is that there is no state income tax. This means that you get to keep more of your profit in the account. But that’s not all. The state also offers a lot of financial incentives for particular businesses. If you are looking for a revenue-friendly place to start a business, you won’t find any better place than Florida.
One of the best places to start a business in Florida is Lake Nona.
If you need help starting your business in Lake Nona, FL please call us at 407-502-2400, or email us at [email protected].
Why Start a Business in Lake Nona, Florida
Located near the eastern beltway of Orlando, Lake Nona is a sprawling community with bustling businesses and growing residential areas. The population of the community that is spread over a 7000-acre land has grown from just 1,500 in 2000 to more than 50,000 today.
Lake Nona is attracting a large number of businesses due to its excellent infrastructure. Plans are under way of development of a 100-acre Town Center. The defining master-planned community will consist of a 3.8 million square foot space for retail shops, hotels, and restaurants.
The place is best for starting up almost any type of business. Setting Lake Nona as your home base will provide you with many opportunities that will help in turning a great idea into a profitable business. With the right motivation and preparation, you will be able to set your business on the path to long-term profitability and success.
Now that you know the various benefits of setting up a business, let’s find out how to open a business in Lake Nona, FL. Starting a business in Lake Nona, FL is not that hard. However, you need to know the resources and steps required to open a business here. Without the knowledge, you will find difficulty in getting started.
Once you read through the information given here about how to open a business in Lake Nona, FL, you will more confidently transform your passionate business idea into a practical business reality.
How to Open a Business in Lake Nona, FL
Step 1. Evaluate your Commitment Level
The foremost thing that you should consider when starting a business in Lake Nona, FL is to be realistic about your level of passion, motivation, and experience about the business idea which you wish to implement. These are the main ingredients to success.
Step 2. Create a Business Plan
The next step in how to open a business in Lake Nona, FL is to create a business plan. A business plan is a roadmap that shows how will initiate and execute your business idea. The plan is required for seeking investment, securing financing, and entering into partnerships. It will also allow you to gain specific knowledge about the industry, including the opportunities and threats.
One UPS Store Small Business Survey had found that around 36 percent business owners had stated that taking the leap or committing to the business plan was the hardest of starting a business. However, the sooner you commit to the business plan, the more likely you will get a head start and establish a strong market base.
You will know how you can utilize your strengths and overcome the weaknesses to reduce the threats and make the most of the opportunities. A business plan will help you gain a deep understating of the market. You will know the potential roadblocks and also the solutions to get around them.
The business plan outlines how you can make your business idea a successful reality. It allows you to establish priority and allocate resources in the most efficient manner. The plan has many components that relate to different aspects of the business such as finance, marketing, staffing, and other operations. The plan specifies who are the target customers, which products and services you will sell to them, and what marketing channels you will use to promote your goods to them. The plan also specifies the sources and use of the funds.
Let’s take a look at the main components of a typical business plan.
The executive summary outlines the main business concept. It contains a summary of the business plan. The component introduces the business idea to the public. Here, you outline the business scope and the timeline of profitability of the business. It’s important that you take time in crafting this section as it will determine whether prospective investors and creditors continue reading the plan till the end or reject the plan.
Details of the Product and Services
The next important part of the business plan is product and service details. In order to grow and achieve success, you need to offer your customers products and services that have clear benefits. You need to offer something that solves the need of the customers better than your competitors. You should tell how your offering will help customers in solving a problem.
The problem itself should be difficult or significant for the customer who is anxious to solve soon. You need to describe in this section how your product or service will save time, save money, improve the quality of life, or boost productivity. You need to provide compelling reasons to the reader why selling the product and service represents a tremendous business opportunity.
In this section, you evaluate the environmental factors which might affect your business including the political, economic, social, technological, and legal aspects. This is also known as PESTEL analysis. In light of the environmental evaluation, you craft a marketing strategy for the business. The marketing strategy should clearly mention the target markets and give a detailed account of the channels that will be used to promote the products and services to them.
You need to show how you plan on acquiring new customers. You should tell what marketing technologies you will use for promotional purposes. The marketing strategy should outline whether you will rely on traditional or digital marketing mediums. Will you rely on TV and newspaper advertising or social media marketing? Will you make use of search engine optimization? Will you reach your market through content marketing? These are some of the questions that should be addressed in the section.
Finance is the lifeblood of any organization. Without a healthy cash flow, a business won’t survive for long. That’s why this section makes the biggest impact on whether investors or creditors will accept or reject the plan.
The financial strategy section should show the inflow and outflow of cash. It should project the financial position of the company in the form of cash flow summary, profit and loss statement, and balance sheet. Consider making a 3-year financial statement that provides an overview of how the company will fare financially in the future.
You need to break down the expenses that will be incurred in producing goods or providing services and the cost margin which is expected. Also, the section should depict the sources of income and additional funding. You should mention whether you will seek funding in the form of the short or long-term loan.
Investors highly value prior experience and success in handling similar business. It gives them an indication of whether the management team consists of a group of winners that have a strong desire to make the business a success.
Prospective investors and creditors will also be interested to know about the background of the management. They will want to know whether the experience of the management aligns with the business idea. The will be interested in knowing how the capabilities of the management will help in executing the strategies that are mentioned in the business plan.
The information about the management background will help the fund providers to know whether the management will act as a good steward of the invested funds. The management information should not just be a copy of the info included in the resume. It should be customized to align with the business goals and strategies. It must show how the accomplishments and educational background of the management will help in the success of the business.
You can find out many online resources that tell you how to create a custom business plan. One great resource is Florida Trend where you can find out various articles that tell how to structure the document. You will find a lot of resources and information on the site regarding setting up your business in the state.
Another great online resource where you will find lots of information to create a custom business plan is the Small Business Administration website. The federal agency provides support to small business owners. The Business Planner tool allows you to create a business plan for free. You can create a professional business plan by following the step-by-step process. You can save the business plan online in a secure SBA business database. In this way, you can safely work on the business plan without any fear of deletion or unauthorized access. You can also work on the business plan at your own pace and save as the plan develops.
Step 3. Register Your Company
The third step in how to open a business in Lake Nona, FL is to register your business. You can register your business with the Florida Department of Revenue. Registration allows you to legally collect taxes from the customers.
You need to submit certain information to register your business. The information required for registration depend on the type of business. Some information that you might be required to submit without your application for registration includes:
- Legal Entity Type
- Legal Name of Entity
- Federal Employer Identification Number
- Date of organization, fiscal year end, charter number
- Owner/Officer Name(s)
- Owner’s Social Security Number **
- Physical Address of Business Location
- Owner’s Address
- Owner’s Telephone Number
- Signature of owner/officer
You can register with the Florida Department of Revenue online or download an application form (form DR-1) and mail it through USPS.
Corporate entities should register with the Florida Department of State’s Division of Corporations. The department is nicknamed as Sunbiz. You should register with the department of you want to set up your business as:
- Limited Liability Company
- Profit Corporation
- Non-Profit Corporation
- Limited Partnership
- Fictitious Name Registration
You should check online resources to know about each of the business types. Once you have decided on the business type, you should register your business to legally start conducting business in Lake Nona, FL.
Step 4. Obtain Employer Tax Information Number
The fourth step in how to open a business in Lake Nona, FL is to obtain an employer tax identification number (EIN). You can obtain EIN from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). You can apply for the tax number for free. Application for the tax number can be made online, or by fax, mail, and telephone. The last option is applicable for persons who do not reside in the US. If you are registering through fax or mail, you need to download and fill Form-SS4.
Step 5. Apply for Business Tax Receipt
Most businesses in Lake Nona have to obtain a business tax receipt. The tax receipt should be obtained from the Orange County Board of County Commissioners (BCC). The business tax is imposed on all businesses that operate within Orange County and the municipalities.
The business tax receipt remains valid from September 30 to October 31. After expiry of the tax receipt, you must renew it. A penalty is incurred for each month after the tax receipt expires. Maximum tax limit is 25 percent.
Step 6. Obtain the Required License and Permits
An important step regarding how to open a business in Lake Nona, FL is obtaining the required license and permits. Different businesses require different licenses and permits. The required certification depends on the industry and business model.
Following are some of the permits that might be necessary for operating a business in Lake Nona, FL:
- Electrical contractor permit
- Roofing contractor permit
- Plumbing contractor permit
- Mechanical contractor permit
- Gas repair contractor permit
- Media/Movie production permit
- Zoning permit
- Site and roadwork permit
- Environmental permit
Additional permits may be required when the business grows in scale. You can find out about the required licenses and permits by visiting the Orange County Government website.
Step 7. Obtain the Required License and Permits
An important step regarding how to open a business in Lake Nona, FL is obtaining workers compensation insurance. The insurance is mandatory for all businesses operating in Florida that have at least four part or full-time employees. The business owners do not count as employees in the state.
In addition, businesses that use trucks or cars must carry a commercial vehicle insurance. The Florida Office of the Insurance Regulation is responsible for regulating all insurance policy regarding vehicles.
Step 8. Get the Required Funding
Once you have performed the preliminary work of setting up your business, you should obtain finance for your business. Registering a business is important before you seek funds as the investors and creditors can verify your presence.
You can obtain funding from different places for a business in Lake Nona, Fl. Small businesses can obtain funds through crowdfunding platforms, a line of credit loans, and SBA loans. Large corporations can register with the SEC to offer shares to the public. You can also obtain specific loans such as fleet loans, equipment loans, and real estate loans.
Apart from selecting the right source of finance, it is important that you select the right bank account to store the funds. For business owners, the appropriate bank accounts for storing the funds include business checking account and business savings account. These accounts are specially tailored by the banks to suits requirements of businesses.
After reading about how to open a business in Lake Nona, FL, you will have an easy time registering your business. Now it’s up to you to transform your dream into a reality. Keep in mind that in order to succeed in Lake Nona, FL, your motivation for making your business a success should be high. Just finding out how to open a business in Lake Nona, FL is not enough, you also need to determine how you can make your business a success.
The good thing is that Lake Nona, FL has a business-friendly climate. The business taxes are low while there are no personal income taxes. Also, the high-quality infrastructure and facilities benefit businesses as they can keep the operational costs low. By keeping costs low, businesses have excellent opportunities of earning above average profit from operations.
If you need help starting your business in Lake Nona, FL please call us at 407-502-2400, or email us at [email protected].