Looking to start your own small business, start a company of your own or buy a business opportunity, franchise or maybe even a home-based business? While we’re sure you’re excited about your new venture and what it is you’re about to do, don’t forget that the where is every bit as important—starting with the city and state in which you plan to operate.
For the second year running, Thumbtack and the Kauffman Foundation have joined forces to give prospective entrepreneurs some much-needed insight on the subject, ranking the most and least small-business friendly cities and states across the U.S. This year’s analysis takes into account feedback from nearly 8,000 small business owners who were asked for their opinions on a number of key factors that affect the climate in which they operate, making it a standout in terms of methodology. Other studies that offer similar benchmarks for comparison usually stick to a simple evaluation of issues that seem to affect small business owners most, including taxes, licensing regulations, hiring laws, etc.
So, what was the most surprising finding this year? More than half of the small business owners polled reported that they are unconcerned with tax rates and believe they currently are paying a fair share, while 30% felt that professional licensing requirements pose a much greater problem. In fact, a full 40% of respondents reported having to adhere to licensing requirements across jurisdictions or levels of government, making the whole issue a great source of frustration.
As for the most hospitable cities and states when it comes to starting and operating a small business, we could give you a list here, but taking advantage of Thumbtack’s really cool and fully interactive map is a whole lot more fun! Meantime, let’s just say that topping the state list are Utah, Alabama, New Hampshire and Idaho, while top cities include just about anywhere in Texas.
Click here on the Best and Worst Cities and States for Small Business 2013 to access the Thumbtack/Kauffman Foundation’s interactive U.S. map now!