Help Tia Wood Open an Office


I saw Tia Wood’s tweet this morning, and I wanted to share it with you. Tia has helped me numerous times when my websites have needed updates and/or upgrades. I trust Tia with my WordPress websites, and she always seems to be available when I need web development work done.

Tia Wood created a GoFundMe campaign to raise funds to open an office in her area so she can meet with clients. While working with domain investors probably pays some of the bills, I think having local business owners as clients will help her grow her business more rapidly. Domain investors (myself included) are notoriously cheap when it comes to development work, and small business owners tend to be willing to pay more for website design and upkeep.

Here’s how your donation will be used if you are willing to help Tia Wood according to the campaign website:

“Your donation will help me with the deposit, first month’s rent, furniture and equipment I will need to turn the key to my dream! I’ve already scouted out the location; a small and modest space in the downtown area of where I live.”

I appreciate all that Tia has done for my business and I am eager to launch my next website very soon (just waiting to finalize some paperwork on a deal).

Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn


  1. While I like Tia and she paid her dues, I am kinda shocked she would be seeking donations.

    No disrespect Tia… I paid my dues. You have previously.

    Baby steps and you dont need an office. Cut out the overhead expenses. Save your money and do this on your own. You will feel a lot better as well vs hand outs.

    My 2 cents

  2. First off: thank you, Elliot for making this post. I created this campaign last night not expecting anything to happen.

    Business 101, while I do understand what you are trying to say, I have cut my expenses and overhead as much as I could and I’ve done this for years. I’m a single Mom in Florida. I’m about as thrifty as one could get in my situation. Example: I just bought used shirts at a thrift shop for $5 each the other day and I was happy to do so.

    I’ve raised my daughter for years without government help. I’m definitely not the person to ask for handouts or waste money.

    My business goals are simple. I miss meeting people face to face. And I thought why not offer advertising in exchange for various donation levels? (You can see those levels when you visit the page). That way people are getting something back if they choose.

    The reality of what I do for a living is this: because I am a freelancer, I work based on time. If I’m not actively spending time on a project, I don’t get paid. My goals are to change that, starting with an out-of-the-home office I can actually meet people in.

  3. I don’t understand this, if you are seeking funding, why not compensate people with work for their donations, thanks, in a blog post for money in hardly an incentive, when you have tools of a in demand trade to provide for funds.

    Same thing with the blogger trying to setup his dj business, sell some of your domains, personally I believe in charity, but not handouts.

  4. Tia,

    I know your history and hey I give you a lot of credit in raising your child and being a single parent. So let me say you got my vote of respect.

    I just remember the hungry Tia Wood. Determined, Focused and your younger days on dnforum.

    Do you really need an office? Whats wrong with starbucks and meeting new clients there? What about baby steps vs trying seek donations?

    I am all rooting for you Tia. But you will feel a lot better by saying you done this on your own. Bootstrap. Rinsee and repeat. Mixture of domain sales, growing.

    Miss your blog as well and now your private.

    This does not the Tia Wood I know. But I guess you change course, change mindset and if you are ok on donations and handouts, ok. Thats all. Kinda bummed to actually read this and not the Tia I used to know.

    Now the flip side, If you needed shelter and food that is a complete different case. I would be the first one to step in.

    We all gone through growing issues, what direction to take. I am not perfect, I am learning as I go. I paid my dues. A door closed for me 8 months back and now i am more hungry then ever before to make my journey in domaining. All ready started and had a record sales in 2012 and last week had my second largest sale ever.

    Just kinda shocked in this route you decided and you built up a solid list of customers and been considering you in doing a simple site for me.

    Dont mean to sound like i am an asshole. I am on your side. Difficult times for everyone and different courses we take. Different routes. Different measures of successes for everyone.

    I truly do wish you the very best Tia and your child.

  5. Here you can rent a place with all the secretarial support for less than 100$/mth , all the coffee, office supplies, and best of all you interact with other entrepreneurs.

  6. @BullS, unfortunately there is nothing available here in my town like that. I’m between Tampa and Orlando which are flooded with ‘executive suites’ that operate as you describe but both cities are too far to drive. I did find one in my town but it was too extravagant for my needs. I did find a small shop in downtown that is at the right price per month and the right size.

  7. Tia, rather then spend the money for an office when all you need is a desk and a door, why not talk to some local printing companies about partnering, taking a desk and swapping work with thier book of customers if local work is what you are looking for. Glad someone suggested the rent a desk at corporate suites and too bad you as so far away.

  8. Miss your blog as well and now your private.

    Enjoy your new website, and appreciate access to archived content. I don’t know what is private. Best wishes in your new endeavors!

  9. Hi Tia!

    I’ve had offices of all sizes from several thousand sq ft with employees (and all the headaches they’ll give you each day LOL) to medium size suites to small 1 room offices, and I’ll tell you though indeed it is professionally impressive to have offices, after the years go by you realize clients just care about the results you deliver for them, that’s the bottom line.

    It doesn’t matter if you have meetings in an office or at Starbucks or at a luxury hotel lobby or at a nice restaurant. They all work fine if you can provide the client with what they are seeking. I much more enjoy working from my nice office at home beyond any I’ve had in office buildings.

    It’s peaceful and quiet at home and I can stay in casual comfortable clothing all day. I can take breaks and take a walk with my dog or just relax and read, watch TV, listen to music, or just sit in traquil solitutde to brainstorm new ideas. I can work in the wee hours of the night with all my computer equipment steps away, not a drive away.

    The older you get the more you realize all we really have that is the most valuable component in our lives is TIME. And life is very very short and goes by faster and faster as each birthday passes you by.

    I found myself to be the most productive from a home office because you don’t have employee distractions, you don’t have people around you saying let’s go to lunch, you don’t have all that back and forth wasted driving time, you don’t have all the “getting dressed for work” wasted time, etc.

    Most important to me though is protecting all my computers. In an office they are extremely vulnerable to theft and unauthorized access. I had several incidents when I had large office where I found an employee after hours on my computer surfing the Net and probably snooping through my PC I’m sure. We also caught a janitor using one of our computers late at night surfing porn sites. And it’s impossible to have an office and not have computers and other equipment get stolen.

    Janitors go in to clean and the door is unlocked and thieves know this and will sneak in and pretend like they work there, scout around and find stuff to walk out with. And employees are the biggest thieves of all. They steal stuff because they have so much access and know everyone’s routines in the office. This always blew me away, when even the most honest seeming employees were caught taking stuff out of the office that was company equipment and property.

    Tia, you’ll find that yes at first an office will be fun and professional feeling but after a while many creative type entrepreneurs especially find they much more wish they didn’t have to come to an office building each day.

    Also if you are an OCD type which many entrepreneurs are it will drive you bonkers having careless janitors (often times illegals barely able to speak english) cleaning your offices especially with lots of sensitive tech type computer equipment in your office.

    I used to go crazy when the cleaning crew would come in at night to dust and clean. One time some idiot started spraying some kind of heavy duty cleaning solution on the monitors and keyboards. He even got desk papers wet. Messed up some of the PC displays. Another time a cleaning woman was vacuuming the carpets and had left the front office door wide open and she was in one of the back offices. So had any thief been cruising the halls he could have popped right in and grabbed stuff.

    We also often had times where the janitors forgot to lock the doors after cleaning. And cleaning crews will sometimes facilitate competitors to come in after hours to copy client records, business plans, take pictures of ideas on your white boards in meeting rooms. It is amazing the stuff you have to deal with when you have an office. Your stuff is all very very very vulnerable.

    So I would really recommend thinking this decision to change your way of doing business that has worked successfully for you for so many years.
    I’ve been there, done that and would never do office building offices again.

    There is nothing as enjoyable and comfortable as being able to work from a home office.

    Just my 2 cents of experiences from decades of every kind of office . . . . .

    Here is a great article in Business Insider with some of the most successful entrepreneurs who work from home offices or without any office at all. The best story I liked is Richard Branson who has the mantra that his office is wherever he is at the moment. And he refuses to have any kind of office.

    Best of luck with whichever way you decide!


    • PS forgot to mention, best of all when you have worked long and hard extended hours, there is nothing in the world like have your bed closeby to go take a nap and get some rest.

      Driving home from an office after long hours is very dangerous and it’s easy to doze off at the wheel.

      Whenever I had offices, I used to take my naps on an office sofa and they are the worst for your back and rest time comfort.

    • Hey El. Just thinking it would be interesting to do a Poll to see the percentage of Domainers who work from home vs those who go to work in an office building.

  10. I checked out an office for myself recently just so I could have more social interaction and found I like the open floor CoWorking Space Share concept… Here in EC, Wisconsin it is only $12 a day with all amenities, wifi, coffee, kitchen, television, real people, meeting rooms, private rooms on a first come basis…$185 prepaid a month gets you key code access 24/7 …still cheap and very nice to interact with people in real face to face circumstances….It is the best of bost worlds and I will look for similar work space opportunities when I am traveling..Great way to meet potential clients too..

  11. Tia, We’ve had our differences in the past ;)but if I had to give advice on this I’d say if you need “donations” to open the door, you will probably be locking that door within a few months.

    I agree with the Starbucks ideas…I spend a lot of time in Starbucks’ in downtown Chicago (visit my site to see a recent post, shameless sef-promtion:))and it would floor you the business that is going on in cafes. If being around peeps is a goal it works for that too.


  12. @Kevin,

    Men are introvert and love to be left alone.

    Women love the interaction, the gossip about dress, shoes, hair, who is screwing who ,etc etc and you know one thing leads to another.

    Women love to dress up for any occasions and miss the LOOKS from guys.

    That how Tia feels….

    • @BullS

      Very good point about women liking the social component of an office environment.

      Also very true from every office building I’ve ever worked in.

      And that’s why most work flings and romances start in the office too. LOL

  13. @business101

    I would like to hear what have you been doing or achieved in your life. There is nothing wrong raising the money and why don’t you publish your name.

    Dude grow up and stop raising fingers at people who try to raise money and try something. And stop blaming people for what you think is right or wrong.

    So let me tell u you are dumb ass and next time reply with ur name and be legit while doing so.

  14. I almost shat myself when reading this post. A freelance web designer (OR ANYBODY IN WEB WORK) needs an office about as much as they need a hole in their head.

    • Hi Tia. Good luck. May the force be with you.

      First step towards moving forward…stop wasting time commenting on blogs and just do it.

      Second step, ask Elliot to give you equity on the websites you worked on for him instead of paying you a fee.

      Third step, ask every client you had work projects for to pay you a monthly/annual service fee to build up your residual income.

      Fourth step, ask Elliot to do marketing for the service you are offering. In case you don’t know, the guy is a direct marketing guru.

      Fifth step, ask Elliot to make you successful.

      If all else failed…..just ask Elliot to hire you as a full time employee.

      hehe. Sorry got carried away.

    • I’ll answer:

      1) Maybe, but I think it’s smart and brave to answer questions/criticism/advice

      2) Why would I ever give up any equity when I have the cash to pay for it? As much as Tia is great, if she demanded equity instead of cash (which she wouldn’t), I could find someone else. Getting equity only works if the buyer doesn’t have the cash or the seller has unique skills/experiences that can’t be found elsewhere. Our business relationship is based on trust. Tia trusts that I will pay her fairly for her work, and I trust that she is going to do a good job in a timely fashion.

      3) Good idea if clients are willing to do that. Tia offered something like this before to clients.

      4) I think this post qualifies. Aside from that, I barely spend the time I should spend on my own business. If I wanted to spend more time working, it would be to grow my own business.

      5) I know Tia is going to grow her business and will continue to be successful.

      6) Not looking to increase my overhead and I don’t have nearly enough projects to keep Tia busy.

  15. Elliot I know you meant well, and I like Tia, but I knew reading this on while clicking this would do more harm than good.

    Who is Business 101, I think I know. Interesting how someone can say you are not the Tia I know or remember and she does not know your name.

    Chris that is really cool what you have there in Wisconsin. $12 a day is nice.

    Good Luck Tia

  16. Tia –

    We’ve never worked together but I’ve seen your posts on forums over the years. If you are looking for a cash infusion people would be more likely to pay for a discounted service up front even if it doesn’t happen right away. If you typically charge $500 for web design maybe offer $250 for completion by July 1st. You’ll line up lots of projects, collect cash up front and secure your office and (maybe an assistant) faster than you can imagine. Heck – I may be your first customer on that promo! Just my opinion.

    Personally I would look for space for rent within an existing office environment. I know several real estate and insurance companies in NY that would be thrilled to collect money for renting a desk to you.

    Look at these deals all in your area

    Another option is renting a house, I found several 3-4 bedrooms for $1000/mo so you can convert an extra room to office if you wanted. Happy to assist with more information if you so desire.


    • That’s a great idea! I didn’t think about discounting services in that way. The donation site allows custom reward levels and I can set something up like that later today.

      The first listing is in a bad neighborhood. Winter Haven is too far but I will put that 3rd one on my list as a possibility, thank you! I have several Craigslist candidates saved as possibilities.

  17. Started a mortgage company out of the basement of a house and clients respected us for it. My prior office was in one of the top levels of one of the biggest buildings in town. Even in the mortgage business whenpeople really needed something from me rarely did they ever come to my office. 99% of the time meetings were held offsite. The prior company that I worked for in the highrise owners endedup under federal endictment for fraud loans trying to cover their lavish business lifestyle while my homely mortgage company boomed.

  18. Wow, great post! I have never used Tia’s services yet, but I have definately communicated with her and ran a few things by her. She was highly recommended by some major league contacts that I have. I will do business with you Tia one day, thanks for your patience. With that being said having an office is not what it use to be. It might be a waste of money, we are now in a very mobile economy! How will it increase your bottomline? What I do, to add clout and local presence is to rent virtual offices and/or mailboxes. I have addresses in NYC, LA, Miami, Toronto, Rio, Vegas, and multiple others worldwide. Its cheap and it adds clout.

  19. Thank you for the kind words, Mike.

    There are other factors involved with making this decision to get an outside office ( that I didn’t realize I had to explain, judging by some rather rude comments here ).

    Someone mentioned they used to work from their basement. If I had a basement, or more room for that matter, I might not be looking for an office. I’m in a small two bedroom apartment with my homeschooled daughter all day and we are shoved into a tiny corner of my living room, taking up almost half of my living room.

    A few years ago I did have an outside office in Missouri based out of my ex-inlaw’s business. I do know what it’s like to have a buffer between home and work life. Working from home isn’t for everyone and after 13 years, it’s just not working for me anymore.

    Most of the comments on this blog remind me of the time I finally made the leap to quit my job and pursue web development full time. I was criticized heavily for that decision as everyone wanted me to make the ‘safe’ choice.

    I am glad I did not make the safe choice.

    This means more to me than just portraying a professional image. For me, this is a giant step forward in the RIGHT direction for me, my business and my daughter.

  20. Tia-

    Hey, it is not a life or death decision, if you don’t like it then do something else.

    No need to get piss off or waste unnecessary energy-

    just do it!!

  21. Tia, You’re so cute I can see from the photo. In your case, putting your face and personality out there will work in your favor – you go!

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