low overhead business to start | online businesses with low startup costs

Luckily, there are tons of ways to start businesses and make money with a side hustle while still leading a well-rounded, meaningful life. If you play your cards right, you’ll be able to quit your day job and grow your side business idea into an empowering self-employed career.
I couldn’t believe it when I first heard how expensive window treatments were! But now I understand, they add a lot to the appearance of a house, and to the utility of particular room. There are lots of reasons why this is a great business. It is a combination of sales and service, especially if you are doing the installation. And people like to see the textures and colors you have to offer in person. You can start this business on a mobile basis with low overhead, calling on customers at their homes and eventually open up your own storefront.
Generally speaking, if the square footage of your home office equals 10 percent of your home’s total, you can claim 10 percent of its expenses. The IRS also has a “simplified option” rule, which allows you to deduct $5 per square foot of your home office on your return, with a maximum write-off of $1,500 (based on a maximum of 300 square feet). It’s a good idea to take a picture of the space so that you have a record, in case the IRS does scrutinize your return.
When a bank forecloses on a home they always have to hire a business to clean the place out. Sometimes this can be really dirty, both physically and emotionally, but it’s an overlooked and profitable business idea.
My kids did an upscale sneaker and related goods boutique. This can be a lot of fun but it may be harder than you think to make money. First make absolutely sure your location has great foot traffic—stand there and count heads before you sign a lease! Then develop a distinctive plan for merchandising, and don’t be afraid to mark down what isn’t moving.
If you own a car you have what you need to start delivering groceries. While Webvan and others have failed to make grocery delivery work on a large scale, there is a market for small timers, as evidenced by the many shopping services that are online now.
This is an especially good idea for stay-at-home-parents who need to bring in some money. You’re already staying home with your kids: why not invite a few others to the party? Licensing for in-home daycare varies from state to state, but you will want to make sure you comply with your local regulations. Median salary: $19,300.
The human equivalent of a doggie bed and breakfast is Airbnb, the home-sharing Web site that has put a dent in the traditional hotel business. This is the ultimate home-based business, as you literally rent all or part of your home to guests.
While anyone can check an aggregator site for the best price to fly to Saint Louis, planning a more elaborate trip might be too much for some travelers. This is where a travel planner comes in, using his skills to find the best trip—including flight, accommodation, rental car, and tours—for the budget.
I recently started working in network marketing with a natural hair care line. It has transformed my life, by giving me my confidence back. I was losing my hair and I didn’t know what to do. I’d been to the Dr and told it wasn’t a thyroid issue, but they couldn’t tell me what WAS causing it. My good friend introduced me to these amazing products, that in a matter of months changed my life. My husband is now using the products for his “gaining face” (not receding hairline) issue. Lol.
Choose an adventure really carefully. One that people will easily pay good money for. “Focus group” it. At least informally ask lots of people for their feedback on a suggested adventure before you put any money into marketing it. Then when you do offer your first trip, make it incredible! Research it carefully and surpass people’s expectations. On your first few trips it is more important to build a great experience and a great reputation, then to make a lot of money right out of the gate.
Just remember that efficiency is as much the key to a successful soap-making business as artistry is—maybe more so. Get your processes down pat and stay focused on a defined target market, and you can run a soothing and successful home-based business.
There are a lot of building maintenance services that don’t require an electrician or a plumber and can be done by someone with basic handyman skills. You could provide that service for commercial, industrial or multi-family housing units. You could also have highly skilled people such as plumbers and electricians on call too.
Many parents seek out tutors to help students with schoolwork in areas they are struggling with. Consider hiring yourself out as a math, literature, or science tutor (or whatever else the kids are learning these days). Experience with kids and with schools is a major plus here.
To make delivery affordable for the customer and efficient enough for you to make a decent profit, you may have to service a very limited area. You might start by approaching elderly residents in a housing complex, promising delivery just two days per week in order to process as many orders as you can at once.
Recently, I received an email from an individual who was desperately seeking a legit, online, work from home business opportunity. This person had currently moved to a very rural area of town and was unable to commute to work. Another obstacle that this individual faced was the issue of needing money ASAP to pay for bills and daily living expenses, but they still wanted the flexibility and perks of being their own boss.
With people working 9- 5 they often do not have the time to walk their pets in the day. As a dog walker you would walk their pets for them in the day.  This simple business idea could become profitable with a good amount of customers. If you are walking more than one pet at a time then you could increase your profit further.
Whether you are helping a business with traditional marketing materials or instructing them on the fine art of blogging (ahem) and social media, this is a business that has almost unlimited potential for freelancers. Median salary: $108,000 (!).
Every business needs help with their Internet marketing. And now I see even the smallest businesses hiring specialists for individual aspects of digital marketing. For example, they may hire one expert for pay-for-click search engine advertising, another for Facebook marketing and still another for SEO for their website. So, you could focus on one aspect of digital marketing, or you could be a generalist.
Multifunction Printer: Most printers today are also outfitted with scanning, copying and faxing functionalities, so you can purchase one slightly more expensive machine instead of four separate ones. When looking for printers, take into account the cost of the ink as well. Depending on your business needs, you may not need a full color printer, and this can end up saving you a lot of money over time. If you have a high volume of items to print, consider investing in a laser printer or something with a higher speed. Also, keep in mind that when the need for major print jobs arise (i.e. a lot of copies, full color), you can outsource it to your closest office supply store or Kinko’s.
In regards to the comment above about not listing any network marketing companies in this article, it’s no secret that one of the fastest ways to get into business is to either join a turn-key business in the network marketing industry (I personally only recommend certain kinds) or be an affiliate for a product/service that’s already been created.
For example, if you are streaming video as part of your business, you are justified in buying faster internet. However, if you are mainly using the internet for browsing and email, there is no reason for you to get a higher speed internet package.
For my business (blogging here at SeedTime) it took a long time before I started making any money blogging, let alone enough to pay the bills each month. I didn’t really know anything when I started and still feel like I do a whole lot more wrong than right, but the one thing I have had going for me is that I have been persistent.
The question I’m asked the most (by far) when I meet and speak with fellow entrepreneurs is, “How do I know which business idea is best for me?” This one is always quickly followed by, “How do I start on this side business idea while I’m still working my full-time job?”
A membership website is a great business model that con provide you with a recurring revenue stream. Once you have members signed up you can charge them a monthly subscription fee to access the content of your site. This could work great for digital products and other valuable online resources.
Like drinking beer? Why not try making it yourself as your side business idea? With enough patience and skill you might end up brewing something that others are willing to pay to drink. Pick up an easy-to-use starter kit from Mr. Beer online, invest the time it’ll take to perfect your craft, make a unique brew and start shopping it around to friends & family to see what they think of this side business idea.
Each state has its own rules about insurance that can be offered to home-based outfits. Look up your particulars at the Insurance Information Institute, an industry trade group and information clearinghouse.

A few years ago, I overheard a conversation in a gym about a fellow who was planning on starting an Irish pub, of which there are close to million (well almost a million) in Boston, but then changed his mind and opened a pub focusing on craft beers. It was wildly successful! In addition to being a unique idea at the time, he also chose an excellent location and developed a solid food menu. Unless your overhead is extremely low, you are probably going to need to serve food to make a go of this business, so yes you can be extremely successful–but it is no small undertaking.
If you’ve got the attitude (and look), there should be a product or service out there on the hunt for the right model to promote their brand as a side business idea. You can sign up with a large agency, find a freelance agent, or look for your own modeling gigs as an independent talent. Since modeling is a complex field, get all the advice you need before jumping right in and find a mentor who can guide you through some of the early challenges it’ll take to establish your brand. Depending on your preference, you can specialize in a single media format such as video or still images, to build a compelling portfolio and grow this into a business idea that has the potential to scale.
General business license. The jurisdiction where your home is located is likely to require a general business license. This license serves a two-fold purpose. First, licensing protects the residents of the city or county by identifying businesses operating in its jurisdiction. Second, licensing raises revenue for the local government. For this reason, most general business licenses must be renewed annually.

If editing and advising college students on how to write compelling 500 word essays on topics such as “You were just invited to speak at the White House. Write your speech,” seems like a compelling business idea to allocate your free time towards, trust me—tons of parents will pay you to edit admissions essays and offer constructive feedback for their children. Be careful not to blur the ethical line of actually writing their essays, but serving as an editor to help them convey their message can become a great side business idea that has the potential to spread by word-of-mouth referral in your community.

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