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Friends In Need

Setting your boundaries, home-office deduction news.

This story appears in the January 1998 issue of Business Start-Ups magazine.

Have your friends or neighbors ever asked you to help out by accepting packages or checking on their latchkey kids since you're home all day? How do you let them know, nicely, that you're not a mail center or a babysitter?

Jose Herrera, co-owner of Comptec Inc., a West New York, New Jersey, software design and computer consulting company, discovered you have to stand firm to avoid wasting time on friendly favors. "I had offered to help a friend set up his computer. This individual proceeded to hound me for the next two days. When I finally had some free time and called him to come over, he actually sounded upset because I hadn't done it sooner," he says.

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