Boy, I don`t know if this qualifies as expert advice... but here goes.
Can you arrange for a team member or team members to work remotely and on a freelance basis? That way, if you overbook projects, you have someone for the spillover... without the added expense of dedicated space.
Just a thought.
I agree with theswaynester about the fact that it is best to outsource your work to some freelancers such that they can work remotely until you gather enough clientele, cash flow and the confidence to expand. I am wondering if there has been any headway in your alternative strategies. ..?
I`m also starting out like yourself and after much thinking I`ve decided to start as a solo entrepreneur while keeping my day job, once I`ll heave earned enough money I will start hiring but until then I will only outsource when really required.
I agree with previous posters, boostrap as much as possible, you really don`t want to have fixed monthly recurring cost (salaries) when there`s no money coming in, unless you`ve got one of this juicy 18 months project that you can deliver incrementally, therefore invoice monthly.
You can find a quick intro about me which I`ve just posted :
(I`m also interested in the Business of Software)
Well, since I`m from NY, and say "you guys" no matter what the gender, I`ll consider myself a "guy" ;)
1) Is your company legal? Do you have the proper licences to do business? It seems as though you`re still in the "start up" let`s figure out what to do stage.
2) Is the business going to be part time of full time? It doesn`t seem to me that you`ve done any work so far, is that true?
3) Is the partnership legal and do you have a buy/sell agreement (basically a buy-out agreement) If not, I`d get all that legal stuff straightened out.
4) seems to me like you have too many cooks in the kitchen with all these copartners. How is everyone going to be compensated? What are their "jobs", how many hours per week will they work.
5) Do you have a business and marketing plan?
6) Is there a business incubator near you? www.nbia.com I think is their website. They offer low cost offices and admin support to start ups (usually).
7) I`ve had clients who were in the web design business who had teams of people working for them. They did it in a variety of ways, and in combination.
a) hired local business owners to fill in as freelancers on projects.
b) outsourced to companies in Russia, India, etc.
c) found good people who are doing it part time or for fun (I actually found one of these)
d) find a local company to outsource to.
8) You mentioned that you need a team... what are the co-partners and others doing?
9) <snip> Re: I am not sure if I should start looking for projects first, then hire people and place to do work..OR...get people and place and then go ahead looking for work, since then I will have more confidence of what we can do. And I will be very honest..I don`t have a whole lot of money to get a big place and hire people till I get work. But, without people how can I get work? I am in a big dilemma.</snip>
Getting the right people can be as difficult as getting your first work. Consider the idea of "reserves" - Create a list of whom you think you`ll be needing. Find enough of them who can help you during the year. Now you have a reserve of freelancers, etc. to assist you no matter what projects you have coming down the pike.