Do Business

Start a Business - Step #5

Step #5 – Open for Business!

Congratulations! You’ve received your Certificate of Occupancy and now all you have to do is open the doors and begin your business operations.

Make contact with local business resources so that you are not alone in spreading the word about your new business!

Aledo Main Street – Dana Murphy, Executive Director – (309) 582-2751 – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

City of Aledo – Tarah Sipes, Economic Development Coordinator – (309) 582-7241 ext. 213 – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Start a Business - Step #4

Step #4 – Zoning, Plan Review, Inspections, & Permits

Once you have found a property that seems to fit your business’s needs, verify that the location meets code regulations and complies with local zoning regulations for your business type.

Questions regarding zoning, permits, and inspections can be directed to:

Mercer County Zoning Enforcement Officer: Vicki Bull - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - (309) 582-2138

City of Aledo Building and Zoning Official: Justin Blaser – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. – (309) 582-7241

Proceed to Step #5

Start a Business - Step #2

Step #2 – Prepare a Business Plan

A business plan is vital in determining the credibility of a new business. It can be used as a management tool and may be required if you decide to seek financing. The plan also demonstrates to prospective investors that your business has a well-defined course of action.

A comprehensive business plan must include the following -

  • Market research into the feasibility of the product or service. (Is there a demand? Is the market saturated? Who is your competition?)
  • What are your capital start-up needs? How much money do you need to get started? How much money will be coming in as a result of your efforts – be realistic!
  • Management Team Profile – including experience. Who’s running the show?
  • Executive summary – including product or service description. What exactly are you going to be doing?
  • Number of individuals projected to be employed – include yourself and other management.
  • Timeline for start-up. Be realistic and reasonable.
  • Marketing plan – How are you reaching your customers?
  • Proposed ownership and/or legal structure of business. Is a sole proprietorship, partnership, or corporation best for your situation?
  • Principle location of the business – Does this fit your operational needs? Will this be a long-term location or will you be seeking a larger/smaller space in the future?

You can draft your own business plan, or you can use one of the following tools to help you organize your thoughts and information:

Proceed to Step #3

Start a Business - Step #3

Step #3 – Find a Location

Click here to see a list of properties and buildings available for rent, lease, or purchase.

Proceed to Step #4

Start a Business - Step #1

Start a Business

Step #1 – Start at the Beginning

Consider these when looking to start your own business –

  • demand for your product or service
  • the number of other people/businesses that offer your product or service
  • how much money you need to bring in to support your lifestyle

The following links provide information that will help you determine if you are ready to start your own business, or if you still need to figure out some of the details.

Proceed to Step #2