15 home-based business ideas to start with little (or no money)
What if you could work from home? It can allow you to spend more time with your family, control your own income, or simply separate yourself from your demanding boss.
Whatever the reason, make sure it’s a good reason that motivates you to get up and go to work every day.
At first, you may want to try various earning methods. Throughout this trial period, you will be able to find out what you like to do and if the payment is worth it to you..
You may have to work multiple sources of income to create a full-time income, but it is entirely possible to build a full-time life from home.
The best home based business ideas
While some home businesses require a large initial investment to start, others have a much lower barrier to entry.
1. Start an errand service
People hate running their own errands, so you can step in and take care of them. It’s relatively easy to get started, especially if you have a car. You can deliver groceries, pick up dry cleaning, or pack for a move. Whatever the errand, you can tackle it and get paid in the process.
To get started, you might want to check out TaskRabbit. It’s an easy way to connect with customers in your area without having to pay to advertise.
2. Take care of people
Let’s face it, kids are everywhere! Most of those kids have parents who need a break at times, or maybe even childcare during the workday. Whatever their needs, you can step in to take care of those children and get paid.
Other people need help caring for their elderly relatives. This is another opportunity you can take to provide a much-needed service and earn some money.
Becoming a babysitter, nanny, or caregiver for the elderly is not a difficult process. First, you have to decide if you are capable of taking care of people. It is a great responsibility to care for a child or an elderly parent. You should not go down this path if you are not prepared for the responsibility.
If you have decided that you are ready and willing to take care of children or the elderly, start meeting with clients. The best way is to build referrals from family or friends that you have helped in the past.
Spread the word in your community through Facebook, Craigslist, and other platforms. Most areas have an X City Babysitters Facebook group. Find it and connect with parents in your area. You can also post flyers around town.
You can also find potential clients through websites like Care.com, TaskRabbit.com, and SitterCity. Some cities also have childcare or babysitter agencies that will connect parents with caregivers. All of these third-party options have a fee associated with them, but you may be able to look into the family thoroughly through these companies.
Taking care of other people all day is hard work, but most babysitters and nannies are well compensated for their time. Before starting a job, make sure you are clear about your compensation expectations to avoid hassle later.
3. Become a freelance writer
Freelance writers are everywhere! Think about all the online content you have access to. A large part of that was created by freelance writers. The sheer amount of content that needs to be created online indicates that there is always room for more writers in the space.
Writing is a great option for anyone who loves (or at least likes) to write. You don’t need to have an advanced degree in English or journalism to become a freelance writer. In fact, most businesses only care that you can meet deadlines and create great content.
Freelance writing is definitely not a get-rich-quick scheme, but there is an opportunity to slowly increase your income over time. At first, you’ll likely have to take jobs that pay much less than you’re worth. However, it’s important to take advantage of those opportunities and build a portfolio of writing samples that you can leverage for higher-paying gigs.
Job boards like these are a good place to start.
- Profinder by LinkedIn
Keep in mind that the best way to build a customer base is to build a network. You can do this by connecting with other writers through Facebook, conferences, and courses.
You don’t have to buy a course, but Earn More Writing is great if you want to start your career as a freelance writer. The course creator is a successful freelance writer making over six figures. She shares her best tips on how to get started.
4. Become a social media manager
Social media is everywhere, and businesses need help when it comes to managing their social media accounts. Often times, the business owner is too busy to manage their own social account. However, they may realize the importance of building a strong social media presence.
As a social media manager, you would be responsible for posting to your accounts and creating a presence that is appropriate for the business. You may want to educate yourself through the many free online sources available to learn more about your favorite platforms before getting started.
Then contact all the local businesses in your area to see if they need your services.
5. Sell things
You can start selling your own stuff right away to make some quick extra cash. What can you sell? Almost everything! Here are some ideas to get started
Many of us have old cell phones, tablets, laptops, video game consoles, and similar items collecting dust in our homes. Either we got the new version of the article, it stopped working one day, or we just aren’t interested in using it as much nowadays. You can turn those old electronics into cash. Decluttr is one of the easiest ways to sell your old electronics. Read 24 Places to Easily Sell Your Used Electronics for more information.
If your closet is full of clothes you never wear, then it might be time to turn those outfits into money. ThredUp and consignment stores are a great place to start. Check out our post on the best places to sell your old clothes!
Again, your closet may be filled to the brim with shoes you never wear. I am guilty of this! Eventually I plan to sell these shoes for cash. Take a look at the 29 best places to sell your shoes.
Novels, textbooks, short stories, even period magazines. All of this can be worth money to the right buyer. You can sell to individual buyers, used bookstores, or a company like Bookscouter.
Related Post 23 Best Places to Sell Textbooks Online
Piece of furniture
As your life changes, you may decide that you no longer need some of your furniture. You can sell it for cash through a variety of platforms, including Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace.
Related Post Where to Sell Your Antiques
And many more articles. Be sure to check out our post on the best apps to sell your stuff. Just remember to look for a fair price so that both you and the buyer are happy.
Although selling your own stuff is a great way to clean up your house, it’s an unsustainable way to make a living. Unless you have lots of houses full of valuable items, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to keep yourself for long this way. However, if you want to increase your profit, you can buy items with the intention of selling them.
When shopping for items, make sure you find the best deal possible. You want to follow the general concept of buying low and selling high. Selling items with market value is a way to make a living. You can look for deals at your local thrift store or garage sales. In particular, look for designer clothing and collectibles, as these are the items that are most in demand.
Once you’ve purchased the items, you can sell them through Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, Amazon, eBay, and more. It can help to focus on one area at a time. Build your knowledge on one category of items before adding another category to your skills.
6. Launch your own blog
Yes, it is possible to generate a full time income from a blog. Although it will be hard work, it is absolutely possible. The process for starting a blog is really simple, but after the initial setup, you have to be willing to put in the time to make it successful. Blogging is by no means a get-rich-quick scheme, but if you work hard, then it is possible.
Before you start, read How to Start a Blog in 10 Minutes or Less. Describe what you will need to do to start blogging.
7. Become a Handyman (or Handywoman)
People tend to avoid doing things at home for various reasons. They’re afraid they’ll end up making the problem worse, have no idea where to start, don’t have the time, or just don’t want to. No matter the reason, you can step in and help them. In the process, you will be able to earn some money.
If you’re not sure what a handyman does, don’t worry. Most handymen have a list of tasks that they offer to clients. Some have a longer list than others, but make sure you only accept tasks that you can do. Here are some homework ideas to get you started.
Painting the interior or exterior of a house is a difficult task, but only because of the size of the job. Many homeowners decide to hire someone to do this job. That’s where you come in.
You may want to start with interior painting because it requires less equipment. Eventually, you can reinvest your income to buy better equipment to tackle bigger jobs. You should verify that your state does not require any licenses before you begin.
Windows are notoriously difficult to clean, and some cleaning services generally don’t do windows. Many homeowners and shops will pay someone to get the job done right.
Once you’ve gained some experience cleaning ground-level windows, you could invest in the right equipment to safely tackle windows higher up. Don’t expect to start in a huge building, but you just might be able to make it to the top.
Tiles, carpet, wood. All of these types of flooring are time consuming to install correctly, and many people don’t want to do this backbreaking job. If you’re willing to do the work, then you shouldn’t have a hard time finding clients.
Things break, which is the nature of a home. Many times, the owner has no idea how to fix the problem. People will call you out on the weirdest breaks, but if you’re experienced with the tools, you’ll probably be able to figure it out.
Before you start as a handyman, make a list of everything you can do. It might be a good idea to make some flyers, post on platforms like Facebook and Craigslist, and print some business cards.
The key is to do a good job. Once you’ve done a few jobs right, you can get more word of mouth.
8. Pet care
If you love animals then this could be the perfect way to earn money. People will generally pay between $15 and $50 a day for you to take care of their pet. Payment will depend on the level of care they expect and the type of animal involved.
In addition to pet care, you can also offer dogs to walk. Walking the dog is a fun way to exercise and earn money at the same time. You can find customers through word of mouth, flyers, or apps like Rover. Rover is a useful app that will connect you with potential customers in your area. It might be easier to start through the app, but finding customers through your network will work too.
9. Become a virtual assistant
You can become a virtual assistant if you have access to a phone, computer, and the Internet. The type of work will depend on the client, but you should expect to do research, writing, programming, and more.
If you are interested in seriously pursuing a career as a virtual assistant, then you should consider taking the VA 10K course. The creator is a successful VA who offers great advice on building your business.
10. Become a graphic designer
Businesses all over the world need graphic designers to create logos, illustrations, and more for their websites and stores. You can succeed as a graphic designer if you have an artistic eye, good computer skills, and the right software.
You can choose to create very basic logos or complex designs at a higher price.
Related Post 11 Ways to Design T-Shirts to Sell
12. Make something and sell it
If you are crafty then this is for you. People want to buy fun, clever gifts or local products, which means you can create something to sell in your community.
Some things you may consider selling are
Making soap isn’t too difficult, and it can be a fun project. Start with an online tutorial and try experimenting with your own soap to create a unique project.
If you are an artist, paint what inspires you! You can sell your paintings through Etsy, local craft fairs, or your own website.
Do you have a flair for style and design? You could start a jewelry business. Invest in some supplies and up your game with free tutorials online or classes at local bead shops. You can sell your products online or at local fairs and festivals.
12. clean houses
Although the idea of cleaning up other people’s messes doesn’t sound glamorous, it will pay the bills. You can start a cleaning service for almost no cost.
You can find clients through Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, and your family and friends. You can also post flyers around town. If you do a good job then you shouldn’t have a problem finding clients.
Think about your school days. Were you good at a particular area of study like math, science, or English? Perhaps you are still very good at these subjects. You may be able to put that knowledge to cash.
The best way to start is by posting flyers on campus, or sending an announcement to parents. You can also sign up for an online tutoring platform like Tutor.com.
Tutors are hired not only to help prepare for tests like the SAT and ACT, but also for students who are struggling in their daily classes. You can help a student learn and build your own income at the same time.
Related Post How to Start a Tutoring Business
14. Start a tour guide service
If you live in a popular tourist destination, this is one way to earn some money. The key is to create a tour that people love and promote to their friends. Be sure to take the group to all of your favorite sites and explain all the details that only a local would know.
You can start by creating your own website, publishing it on Facebook Marketplace, or signing up for a travel agency connection service like Vayable. Keep in mind, though, that sites like Vayable charge a fee, so you’ll have to part with some of your income.
Working from home is a great thing for some people, but it’s not for everyone. You need to have the willpower to force yourself to do things. Be honest with yourself before you start. Don’t start working for home without a solid plan that works for you.
Although it can be difficult at times, working from home could change your life for the better.
What work at home job do you want to try? Let us know on our social networks.