According to Popular Mechanics, before starting a beehive it is important to check your local zoning laws to ensure that you are allowed to keep bees on your property. Additionally, make sure that there is enough space for humans and bees to peacefully coexist, and that no one living in the immediate vicinity is allergic to bees. Failing to do so can set one up for costly fines, and/or lawsuits.
In terms of protection, once you have a hive set up and depending on the size of the hive, a full protective suit may not be necessary. Often, a simple veil and jacket provides enough safeguard against the bees. TreeHugger also notes that larger smokers are easier to keep lit than smaller ones, so that is a consideration as well when making purchasing decisions. When working with a limited budget, any flat bar or flat-head screwdriver suffices as a hive tool, and a simple feather works well as a bee brush.
When building a hive, TreeHugger advises placing the bottom hive boards on bricks or concrete blocks to raise them off the ground, and also suggests keeping a few extra hive boxes on hand in case of an emergency. To feed the bees, a top feeder filled with a syrup mixture of two parts water and one part sugar is often a good choice.
Bees are best kept in an area that grants them a natural flight pattern. Placing them near a wall helps to block wind drafts, and it provides them an area to fly up and over. In choosing a location, dry and sunny areas are the most suitable for bees, in close proximity to flowering plants and shrubs. Keep in mind, that chemicals of any kind should not be used in the construction of the hive and feeders, as they can threaten the bees' health and survival.