I have a question for all of the home bakers/ cake decorators. My question is are you able to do the home business on a full-time basis and rely on it to the point where you do not require a 2nd job? To follow with that quesiton I was wondering how long did you do both jobs before you decided it is safe enough to rely only on your home business? The reason I am asking is basically because I have started doing my business about 4 months ago and it seems to be getting busier as the months go but I afraid to quit my 2nd job but would really like to focus soley on the cake decorating business. Any advice or opinions ?? I would appreciate it so much.
Even though business is picking up, you WILL have slow months or times with nothing on your books, thus no income from cakes. If you feel comfortable with that, then you need to decide.
Good Luck with your decision
I have a liscensed home bakery and work a full time job. I wouldn't even consider quiting my full time until cake money = regular job money every month for atleast 1 year. Some months I have enough large orders to make the same (summer and fall), but other months (winter and spring) I am swamped but the orders are smaller. Not too many weddings in the winter in NE Ohio.
For me personally, I would love to quit my day job and just decorate cakes but I am not willing to make my husband (and myself to a certain degree) sacrifice the life and life style we have made for ourselves my bringing in less money. I love decorating cakes, but I love even more a two week long (mid winter) and a one week long (late summer) paid vacation every year. We couldn't do that if I only brought in cake money.
I can definetely fill you in on this one. I worked construction with my Dad for the last 13 years. When we bought our house 2 years ago, we decided to put a licensed bakery in the home so that I could be legal and really see if I could make a true go of my business. At this point, I couldnt' advertise, etc. Also, my dad was wanting to retire, and do smaller jobs, and build his woodshop. So I knew I was goin to be out of a job basically anyway. So this was the perfect time to just jump in and do it. I have relied on my cake income since March of 09'. I realize that it takes about 3 years or more to really get your business to take off. I also live in the country, so that is another strike against me. In my first 9 months of business, I make a little over $7,000. I know that's not much. But for me, I was just thrilled to be getting orders, and weddings too. I don't have that many bills, and like I said, I am not the main bread winner. So that is a big factor as well. Another thing that is very valuble to me is the fact that I am home everyday when my daughter gets off the bus, supper is always on the table, my house is always clean, I get some time to myself during the day, so I can devote some time to my daughter when she gets home...and I actually enjoy going to church on sunday's because I don't feel selfish about having to keep that sunday morning to myself anymore. I don't know if I will ever make as much money as I would a regular job..every person is different. I look at IndyDebi, and Leahs, and they definetely have made a go of it. I always just tell myself if I get to the point where I have just two weddings a month, and the rest of the month is just birthdays, and showers cakes, etc. THat is good enough for me. That's the thing. Everyone is different, and there are even some people who don't even take money for their cakes! (nutts) And like the others have said.....you will always have slow months, weeks. and others weeks you will want to tear your hair out because you will be so busy. TO me .......there is no way any of us can tell you when to quit your 2nd job for your cake business......because that's the thing about owning your own business.....it's totally reliant on the economy, which is totally unstable.....it really is just taking a chance and seeing if it will work. Good luck to you. I wish you the best! Mindy
Aww, Mindy, thanks for the props.
I did this caking thing after I early retired (age 46). We also have a B&B (obviously a home biz). DH early retired (age 52). We both went back to school, me for pastry and him for Art History. Several years later, he's a professor, I'm a chef.
I only give you this story to say that if it doesn't work out at this stage of your life, it may work out later. It may work out now. But the main thing is, is this crazy economy, have $ in the bank. Have a way to buy health insurance and by that I mean a spouse/partner who works and can get it through an employer, because purchasing it on your own is $$$$. Don't put yourself in a position to HAVE to depend on your cake biz. At least not at first. It will take 2-3 years for it to make enough $ to be able to pull $ out for yourself.
I grew up in a family biz.. I started another biz in '92 and made a success of that. However, this economy is like nothing I've ever seen.
If you're got a "real" job, bank all the $ you can. Live like you didn't have it and just bank $. You'll need it later for either your biz or a comfortable retirement.
I opened my business last summer. I have a home bakery. I built a separate bakery in my home for my business. I have always considered the first 2-3 years will be next-to-nothing as far as how much income my business will be able to pay me. I am growing by leaps and bounds, but with all the start-up costs for a new business, most of my profits have been absorbed back into the business. So far this year, I've been able to pay myself about $500.00. My husband has a job we live off of, and while I have recently quit my "real" job to focus solely on my cake business, we did that very thoughtfully and carefully and I held out at that job until the last minute that it was becoming too time consuming to run my business (the business side of this is waaaaay more time than the decorating side) and now I'm focusing all my time on my business. Again, we have planned that the first couple of years will be very little money actually coming into our bank account from it, but once I get all of the start-up costs paid for and big expensive purchases made and don't have to put all that money into some of these things, then I know I will slowly be able to start increasing my paychecks to myself. There's no way we could depend on this as our sole income, and even with my husband working, things are tight, but we have both agreed to sacrifice a little bit so that in a couple years I can be contributing more equally to our income and be much happier doing what I love than at the job I had before, which I loathed. Think about the transition realistically. Don't jeopardize your income situation, but if you really want to do this, there is a level of sacrifice that has to be made. Good luck!!!!