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Keeping Inventory in Your Home

What to do when your city restricts the use of your home for inventory storage

This story appears in the July 2002 issue of

Q: Iam a seamstress, and eventually I will also offer custom-designedphoto transfers for T-shirts and other items. The problem is, I wastold that while I can sew from my home, I cannot keep anyinventory. I would be mailing everything from the post office upthe street from where I live. Also, do you recommend I set up a Website?

A:Apparently your community's residential zoning allows you tooperate at home but restricts keeping inventory in a home. If youprobe deeper, you may find some wiggle room to allow you to do whatyou want. Inventory is not an exact term, though it's usuallythought of as being merchandise, stock-in-trade or commodities. Itcan also be defined to cover materials and supplies. But creatingcustom-designed items arguably puts you in the category of anartist. Most artists create their works at home. They havematerials and create original products as you plan to do. Artistsare often favored as a home occupation in zoning ordinances and,even when not, are generally allowed to do their thing.

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