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Can I setup an office at home?

Home Office 300x195 Can I setup an office at home?Given the rent of properties have sky-rocketed recently, it is very tempting to start an office at home within one room of the apartment. Is it allowed by law to do that? Let’s check.

Who can setup a home office?

According to Mr. Om Ahuja, CEO, Jones Lang La Salle India, certain percentage or a fixed area is generally marked for office use. This percentage generally varies from city to city and in some cases, different within the city as well. One might have to check with the local or state residential authority to get an exact area.

For example, within Mumbai Metro Area, one can use 220 square feet of area for commercial use, valid for both apartments and independent houses. However, it is confined to certain professions such as doctors, lawyers and chartered accountant. A residential space can also be used to teach certain forms of art, like dancing, yoga, tuitions etc.

In Karnataka state, similar rules apply where professions like chartered accountants and doctors can run their offices from home. According to the Karnataka Shops and Commercial Establishments Act, 1961, these professions require more intellectual work than physical.

Do I need permission to setup a home office?

Even if you fall under the above mention profession, one is required to take permission from the local municipal authorities. Once approved, your office area will be considered as a commercial property and you will be required to pay commercial charges on the water, electricity, taxes, etc.

Disclaimer: This article is written as an informational purposes only. Please check with the local municipal authority before starting an office at home.

This article was inspired by the article in Economic Times.