Can I do this?
ActonBell · 11/09/2022 23:07
I’m thinking about setting up a small business focused on interior design for kids specifically. It would be targeted commercially at businesses and non-profits who want to incorporate small children’s play spaces into their existing business (or upgrade the ones they have) to increase the time customers spend with them. It would be focussed on sound environmental principles, a less is more creative approach to open-ended play, and, of course, durability, safety and a fun experience for kids.
Here’s my question. There’s a place near me where I take my kids quite often and they have just such a little area that looks really tired at the moment. I’ve looked at their reviews and it does crop up in the less-than-complimentary ones. I think I would spend more time there if it were better and I’m confident other families would too.
I’d like to offer to do it up essentially for free. They would just pay for the stuff/materials needed. The trade off would be that I would have a start to my portfolio and a sense of whether I can actually do this! It’s not a big job and I think I could make a significant difference with quite a small input.
But I haven’t formally set up the business yet and don’t have insurance or anything. I wouldn’t be building anything structural and I would ask them to find someone to put up the shelves I have in mind if they want them. It’s more about rearranging the space, a bit of painting and purchasing some new toys (which I have already done the research on! All UKCA tested) I’ve got a ‘vision board’ all ready to go because I’m a geek and I like creating these things. I know it sounds simple but I genuinely think that I know suppliers and have ideas in this area that many people wouldn’t know if they’re focused on other areas of the business.
So can I do this as a test the waters thing or do I need a more formal set up before I can offer to do anything like this?
Surtsey · 11/09/2022 23:12
Maybe you could approach them and see what they say? Everyone has to start somewhere, and you don't need to register as any kind of business until you start making money. If you are just getting them to pay your expenses for the costs involved then there is no income involved at all. Good luck.
DelilahBucket · 12/09/2022 19:11
Ask them and see what they say although I think you may find they can't afford to spend anything on the space right now.
I would recommend professional indemnity insurance to be on the safe side in case you are seen to advise them on something which later backfires. I would have a contract in place too so both parties are clear of what is expected.
Going forward, at the moment you may struggle to find clients. There is a reason these spaces look tired and outdated, businesses haven't got the funds. Maybe something to look at in a few years.
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