Starting a business?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by firecat1981, Jul 17, 2011.

  1. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

    Ok lets try this again.

    Lets say someone wanted to start building a small boat (powered or unpowered), what is required?
    I mean what is legally required, not supplies and tools?
    What business liscenses, tax stuff, insurances....Also assuming I started with unpowered crafts, what USCG stuff is needed?
    any insite is appreciated. thanks
  2. Brett

    Brett > PRO STAFF <

    USCG hull tank testing is fun to watch, links on line.

    All the different insurance adds to costs.

    State of Florida has a starting point...

    County occupational licenses are part of it.
    Don't forget inspections by building and fire department.

  3. noeettica

    noeettica Well-Known Member

    Finding an old body shop that went Titz up is a good start

    Industrial Park ...

    You have the FD background so that's a big help

    Have a quarter mill to throw at it (that you can afford to loose :-( )

    Set up an LLC Do a fictitious name ... (borrow some one's articles and modify them to suit your buissness model)

    Do a Long serious look before jumping in ... Not many boat builders left :-(

    Firecat Boats LLC has a nice ring ...
  4. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

    I guess for full production boats tank testing is important and needed, but what about guys who build smaller one off boats? how do they do it?

    Also do you need to have a human powered vessel tested, since it doesn't even need to have a HIN or FL#'s?

    I would be doing it as a home business, if I started, so overhead would be kept to a minimum at first. Most boat builders go under cause they don't give the public what they want, or can't do it at a price point they need (that's why gheenoe and ankona are doing well).

    Brett that website is a start, but the language is greek to me. I wish there was a written list of what is needed.
  5. noeettica

    noeettica Well-Known Member

    Only problem doing it at home is Zoning , HOA's etc

    You should just build a prototype and see what kind of interest it generates ...
  6. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

    Remebering from some of your photos I think your HOA might have something to say about a garage business (assuming you have one from your pics).

    It is not good that you don't understand Greek. Everything you will need to know about how to start a business and the legal requirements is on there as well as

    The other part that you will never find is the part about how to run your business. Inventory, cost accounting, taxes, manufacturing tax, marketing, sales, etc.

    Most people who start an undertaking such as this are overwhelmed in time and give up. There are a few that do become successful but not many.

    I certainly do not want to discourage you from obtaining a dream but there is a lot to know about running a business. I think you also know I am a big proponent of the small business owner.

    Start educating yourself and got get it.
  7. The_Skiff_Shop

    The_Skiff_Shop Well-Known Member

    Typically you need to be zoned "industrial" due to the materials used,
  8. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

    There is nothing in the HOA rules about home based businesses. Actually there are 3 home daycares in my subdivision, one with a business sign out front. I have only had one complaint from the HOA concerning my boat, and that was leaving it out overnight in my driveway. As long as everything is inside the garage they don't, and I think they can't, say anything.
    As far as zoning for industrial and such. What is the difference between building as a hobby, and building an occasional kayak for sale? I know there are backyard boat builders that build boats as a hobby and sell them, how many boats can you build a year and sell without needing a proper business liscense? I wonder if it works like cars (if you buy and sell more then I think 5 in a year you need a liscense).
    I'm also thinking of renting a storage space or small warehouse to do the work in depending on how much money I have when I start, we will see.

    As mentioned I would build a prototype, and maybe a few examples to guage interest. Let me be clear, I have no desire to turn this into a full time business! I am a career firefighter/EMT and will be for the next 20 or so years. This would be a hobby/part time side job at best. That is unless it takes off and I have to expand ;).

    I'm sure given enough time I could figure out the whole business aspect. Tracking accounting, payables, recievables, flow, taxes....alot of that is confusing, but then again much of it has become much easier in recent years thanks to computer programs and spread sheets. I have never in my life had a desire to start my own business until now because of all this, but it may be an itch I have to scratch sometime soon. At the very least I can build them for personal use and for friends :).

    Lots to think about. :eek:
  9. noeettica

    noeettica Well-Known Member

    You should be fine on one ze two zees (Sp LOL)

    just Invite your Cop buddies over for BBQ and a brew once and a while so they know why there is an Acetone smell ... ;-)
  10. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

    If you start a second boat within 12 months of the completion of the first you are considered a builder and would be required to register as a manufacturer.  A business license is most likely the simplest part.  You should incorporate.  If you are ever sued then they sue the corporation and not you personally (provided the corporation is properly maintained).

    Once you are considered a manufacturer then you must not offer for sale any vessel that does not have a certification label and the label must be affixed prior to leaving the place of manufacture.

    Once you are considered a manufacturer then you must request manufactures code.

    Remember that when you certify a vessel you are guaranteeing that the vessel meets ALL State and Federal regulations and that most certainly includes liability.

    Be very careful here.  Computers are great tool for tracking down violators.  Example: When you provide a bill of sale the state records the sellers name.  I have no idea what the fine would be but I can imagine it would be very detrimental to ever building another boat.

    If you are going to do it - do it the right way, the legal way.
  11. cutrunner

    cutrunner Cert. Yamaha technician

    Ive always wanted to do this also, on small scale, 2-3 boats a year. Just to say i did it i guess, lord knows theres not much money in it.
  12. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

    Thanks for some of the info guys. However I have found that first it will be more hassel then it is worth right now, but I may revisit it in the future.
    Second thing, I appreciate all the worries about liability and such, but everything everyone has suggested (here and on other sites) and told me only applies to powered vessels. After reading up some I have found that there really are no USCG regulations for canoes and kayaks, no floatation requirements, no label requirements, nothing! They do need a HIN, but there are no building specifications, only suggestions from outside groups, that frankly the USCG doesn't care about.
    I discovered alot after my wife asked me what the difference between a kayak and a surfboard you paddle?
  13. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

    I can assure you with 100% certainty that the suggestions are made from the illinformed persons. I can also assure you with 100% certainty that you will incur liability.

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