Know These Hidden Costs While Running Small Business

Everyone has a dream to start or run a business of their own. A strong entrepreneurial spirit is necessary to start a business, and an even greater mind is required to keep the business running. A business can’t last for long if you run out of financial resources. The first thing that should be on an entrepreneur’s mind is to get educated on all the costs that go into running the business they want to run. A fair budget could help you a lot, but there are many hidden costs involved in running a business that can quickly take you down.

The Underestimated hidden costs:

Office space and utilities

Office space is considered to be one of the top priorities of a small business owner, but the real question they should ask themselves is if the space is actually necessary at this stage for the business. Most start-ups tend to start at a home office, but sometimes zoning and other regulations might not allow you to function smoothly. Hence, some start-ups should also consider renting an office space that is more official and professional.

One thing you must keep in your mind when you rent an office space or purchase property is that you should consider how much space you need right now and how much space you will need when your business starts growing. Sometimes, temporary office space may be all you need. Utility costs of handling an office will also eat at your budget. You could also consider leasing an office space, as most leased spaces include utility costs as part of the agreement. Look into all options before you decide to operate from an office space, and also look for various techniques that could help you reduce your utility charges.

Permits, licenses, and dues

Permits and licenses are things you may need to run a business in your community, and these expenses are rarely one-time expenses. You should factor in the costs of the renewal of these permits. You should also keep some money aside for membership dues for the local chamber of commerce and professional groups, as these groups will help you get good exposure. But be mindful of the groups you decide to join, as the membership fees of some high-end groups might slowly come back to bite you. Look for various perks they give you as members of their group, perks like business-related discounts on insurances, loans, credit card fees, supplies, training, and more.

Employees and Benefits

Employees are the meat and potatoes of every business; they are the ones who can impact the potential of your business. Your budget should factor in all the employee benefits, salaries, personal and medical leave, health insurance, and training costs. You must give them a safe and clean environment to work in, and pay them fair remuneration for their work, or else it may lead to multiple resignations. It is a known fact that it costs about one-fifth of a worker’s salary to replace them. Provide them perks; it will help you retain good employees. There is no need for these perks to be pricey, they could be something as cheap as flexible working schedules and casual dress codes, although these may seem pretty generic, they do a lot to improve employee morale. You should also not forget to consider the premiums for the insurances of your employees in the budget.

Equipment maintenance and upgrades costs

The costs of the equipment that you require to run your business should be known to you, but some may forget the smaller equipment costs that are present in the mix. Most people have a tendency to forget about office equipment like computers, copiers, printers, papers, scanners, chairs, and desks. And you must also set aside some money for maintenance and replacement of said equipment.


Insurance checks are the most important checks that you will be writing every month. At the bare minimum, you’ll still need employer liability and public liability coverage. It is also a good idea to carry insurance for negligence, property, illnesses, injuries. These hidden costs may not seem that much, but they are crucial to running a good business, you’ll also have to regularly negotiate your premium prices with your insurance providers.

Professional services

Most people forget that running a successful business isn’t all flowers and sunshine, you will have to hire professionals to do the job right. Legal and accounting fees that a small business has to pay annually may be in thousands of dollars. Legal professionals can help you handle all legal disputes you may face, and accounting professionals can maintain your records like no other. These costs to hire these professionals are very high, but it usually goes under the radar of the business owners.


The pointers that have been mentioned above are just some of the hidden costs that a small business owner might not be aware of. Hence, it is smart that you read up on every aspect of the business that you decide to step into. These hidden costs might not seem that much at first sight, but they eat away at your budget. But, these are just some roadblocks along the way that you will have to go through to become a successful businessperson.