A lot of entrepreneurs do not want to start a business in debt. The idea of going through the traditional loan process can be difficult and discouraging to those ready to hit the ground running. While alternative avenues such as peer-to-peer lending and Kickstarter campaigns are on option, many would prefer to start small and grow as profits allow.
Today we are focusing on low-cost business ideas that you can start today for $20 or less. And I would love for you to share your ideas in the comments as well!
Start a Blog
If there is a topic you love to learn about and share with others, you may be able to make money blogging. Websites today turn a profit primarily through advertising whether that be affiliate marketing, displaying image ads or sponsored content. This won’t be immediate income as you will need to build a following before advertisers are willing to invest in your property, but the cost of entry is small.
Become an Avon Representative
Affordable cosmetics and skin care is an almost recession-proof industry. Avon has been offering budget-friendly beauty products since 1886. For more than 125 years, the company has been providing an affordable home-based business opportunity to Avon Ladies across the U.S. and now the world. Many women love the social aspects of home party plan companies, and this one is cheap to start.
- Cost Involved: Become an Avon Representative – $15
Sell T-Shirts Online
Sites like Cafepress and Zazzle have long been popular with those looking to create and sell t-shirts. And many entrepreneurs are finding success with the site Teespring. There is no monetary investment with this gig. You simply need to have the ability to come up with clever quotes and designs that will sell. Keep it simple and trendy for best results. And don’t forget with Teespring you need to meet your sales goal before you get paid.
- Cost Involved: Time Only
So, this isn’t the sexiest of home business options. But, it’s an in-demand luxury that people are willing to pay for in good times and bad. If going through a site like HomeJoy or Handy.com, they will cover your general liability insurance. Save up your profits to get your own insurance and make more money when going it on your own.
- Cost Involved: General cleaning supplies
Test prep services are highly sought after in the tutoring world. If you know what it takes to stay cool under pressure and prepare for life-defining exams like the SATs, someone in your community is likely ready and willing to pay for your guidance. Tutors in this field can make up to $100 per hour for private lessons.
- Cost Involved: SAT Study Guides
One of my favorite scalable home businesses of the moment is selling on Amazon and eBay. You can start with just one item to flip. You can even start out selling unused items around the house. Invest in more to resell as profits allow.
- Cost Involved: You Decide
Pet Waste Management
This is another job that falls under the category of Somebody’s Got to Do It. And people are willing to pay for it! In many areas, the going rate is currently around $10 per week for once a week scooping. You probably won’t get rich with this one, but it could be a nice little extra money-maker. If you profit margin is large enough, you can always subcontract the scooping to kids in the neighborhood looking to make a few bucks.
- Cost Involved: Plastic disposal bags and scooper
One of the reasons freelance writing is so popular is because it has one of the lowest startup investments possible. If you have an internet connection and keyboard, you are ready to roll. Check out Craigslist or the Problogger Job Board. You can even create a gig on Fiverr selling small writing services while you get your start.
- Cost Involved: None
Host a Guest
Unlike becoming a rideshare driver which would involve gas money, one of the other more popular sharing economy options is renting a room. Sites like Airbnb have made it easier than ever to host travelers for a night or two and earn something similar to the cost of a local hotel room in the process. Don’t’ forget to check your potential visitor’s reviews and references.
- Cost Involved: None
Extra Money Makers
Working at home successfully is all about maximizing your online time for profits. I highly recommend signing up for a few of the below programs, if not all, as a means of passive or low-work income.
- Ebates – I love, love, love Ebates. It’s not unusual for me to earn $300 to $1,000 per month in cash back bonuses and referring my friends. And, the program is free! They will even give you a $10 gift card just for signing up.
- Swagbucks – This program has come a long way from its earn-for-search beginning. Today you can earn SB for completing surveys, watching videos and more. Redeem your SB (aka Swagbucks) for cash or gift cards. (Members redeem approximately 7,000 gift cards per day!) Get a $5 signup bonus when you earn 2500 SB in your first 3 months.
- Inbox Dollars – Get paid to read emails, take surveys online, play games, and go shopping! New enrollees also receive $5 just for joining