As mentioned in a previous posting, I am in the process of setting up a homebased business in Oz. After I got my TFN, I applied for my ABN and then I thought I was set to go. Fortunately, one of my new friends in town quickly pointed out that you MUST get shire approval before you commence trading. I was so fixated on setting up some rudimentary accounting systems based on ATO guidelines that I didn't even think about the local authority. The shire applications are available online. I nearly passed out when I saw that they can levy a fine of AU$50 000,00 if you commence trading prior to approval!!! (Eep)
Also, you are not permitted to sell retail goods from home. That is a real bummer but my friend says they can be flexible so long as you go through the correct channels. Another point to bear in mind is that your business application pertains only to the residential address mentioned in your application ... so, if you move you'll have to make application again through the shire and pay another AU$191 application fee. This means my business plans have had to slow down for a while but maybe it is good as it will force me to spend more time on set up strategies and planning. A very useful resource for small business is the tax office's website. See www.ato.gov.au/SBconcessions for tax concessions for businesses with a turnover less than AU$2 million per annum.