ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Business and Employment»
  • Small Businesses & Entrepreneurs»
  • Business Ideas

5 Businesses To Start With Little Cash

Updated on January 4, 2018
L.M. Hosler profile image

Linda has worked several businesses on her own. Some have been successful and she has learned a lot and made many new friends.

The American Dream

I think everyone, at some time, has dreamed of being able to work for themselves. Wouldn’t it be nice to work the hours you choose, not have to worry about what clothes or uniform you might be required to wear to work. And how about some of those horrible bosses we have all had to deal with? Best of all wouldn’t it be nice to make enough money to live comfortably? Well, there are ways of achieving that dream. Now that doesn’t mean you are not going to have to work hard to make that dream possible. And it doesn’t mean you are going to get rich, but are you going to get rich working for someone else? That is highly doubtful.

What are your goals

There are many businesses that can be started with little money but a lot of time and effort, but there are many things that will need to be considered before you take that final step and give up your regular job.

  1. Consider what your interests are, what skills you have and what skills you may be lacking. Will you need to further your edcation
  2. Determine what your goals are. A small family business or do you have goals that are much higher.
  3. Can you start your business from home
  4. Will you need a license or certification
  5. How much help will you need? Can you do everything on your own
  6. Are you good at details such as bookkeeping and taxes or will you have to hire others to handle those areas of your business
  7. How much time can you give your business, part time or full time?
  8. Your family. Will you have their support and will they be able to help with the business? Will you be able to support your family financially till your business becomes profitable?

Businesses to consider can include any of the following suggestions


Do you have a passion for writing stories, poetry, or articles? Have you dreamed of seeing your name on a book cover? Consider writing if you think you would enjoy writing as a career. This is something you can begin with very little cash investment. Paper, pen and ideas can get you started. Of course, a typewriter or even better a computer will be needed in the future. Computers and printers are available in most libraries if you are not able to afford them right away. Much research will also be needed as to how to market and sell your writings. There are many opportunities online, with newspapers, magazines and newsletters as well as copy writing and proofreading opportunities. Pick a subject you have some experience with, read everything you can, do the research and start writing.

Writing can pay well if you are a good and disciplined writer. Will you write the next best seller? Probably not, but you can make a living writing if that is what you enjoy doing.

Cooking from your kitchen

Do you enjoy being in the kitchen and experimenting with new foods and recipes or is baking your thing? Or maybe you love to do both. I love to do both and at one time I made homemade candies from my kitchen. I made some extra money but I also put several extra pounds on, because, well, I love candy. Years later people are still asking me if I will make candy for holidays. This can become a good business for you to start right from home. But do your research on this one. Do you need a food license and is it legal to do this from home? Different states and cities have different laws, so it is always best to check out all legal aspects of this venture. Once you know what is legal, you can move ahead with planning your bakery from home and start advertising. Your friends and family already know that you are a great cook and baker so have them spread the word and start taking pie, cookie and cake orders. Taking a cake decorating course would be quite helpful. Take pictures of your works so people can see what a nice wedding cake you can make.

A beautiful wedding cake


Caregiver for the elderly and disabled

Our baby boomers are now becoming America’s elderly citizens and many of them need assistant with every day chores. Some of the everyday things they may need help with include:

  1. Personal care such as showering
  2. Cooking
  3. Cleaning
  4. Transportation
  5. Shopping
  6. Medicines
  7. Using the bathroom
  8. Walking
  9. Assisting with financial matters

I wish I had gotten started in this business long ago but I have only been in this business a few years now. But I love helping the older people, listening to their stories and just being their friend. Many times I am one of their very few friends they have because their former friends and most family members are gone. For a writer, their stories are priceless to me if I can only find the time to write their stories.

In this business, you will have to consider the needs of the people you are caring for but you can still have a great deal of flexibility with your time. Some clients may only need nominal care which can mean only a few hours of your time, while other clients may need full time hours. In some cases, overnight care may be required. Overnight care is great if you can be flexible and if you are a night owl type of person. At times this business may require some lifting and assisting people with standing and mobility.

Elderly woman in a wheelchair

Postcard sold on Ebay

Selling on EBay

At one time I used to sell books and other items on EBay and I did make money. My main problem personally was buying items, then having no place to store them till they sold. My second problem was the high shipping costs and getting things to the post office quickly.

This is an easy and quick business to get started with very low start-up cost. However, you will need a computer and an internet connection to get started. Then check your home for items you no longer need or want. List those items on the EBay site and you have started your own small business. Now check out yard sales, estate sales and anywhere else you can find items that will sell and make a profit for you. There are some good wholesale sites online that offer good products in large quantities at low prices. EBay is the undisputed champion of online market places and there are many success stories of people creating big businesses on EBay. You could be one of those success stories. The only downside of this business is the high shipping costs, which does affect any business that requires items to be shipped.

Selling on Ebay

Direct selling

Direct selling

Direct selling can be done with no fixed physical location and with little or no inventory on hand. This means you can pretty much sell a company’s products in whatever manner that works for you as long as you follow the company’s policies. Many direct sales companies now provide their representative with an online website or store so many sales can be made online. Another selling method is to host home parties for your friends and relatives while encouraging them to do the same. If they do host successful parties they are usually rewarded with free company products and special incentives.

Most direct sale companies make it easy to sign up to become a representative or consultant. Generally speaking, most companies have a low investment cost of less than $100 and that usually includes a kit containing necessary start up materials. Many also provide catalogs, business cards, flyers and other advertising materials, which of course, you will be responsible for buying.

You never know just who your customers may be. I have one friend who never burned candles in her home. However, she bought a few candles from a direct sales representative and loved the candles so much that she made the decision to become a representative for that company and managed to make some extra money for her bills. Did she become rich? No she didn’t, not yet anyway, but she is still working hard every day to succeed and feels that she has more control over her life.

Popular direct sales companies

  1. Avon
  2. Pampered Chef
  3. JewelScent
  4. Tupperware
  5. Jamberry Nails
  6. Jordan Essentials

Just do the research on any company you are interested in. Consider all the costs that will be involved. Talk with other representatives of these companies to get their inside opinions and information.

Is a business right for you

I spent years wanting to work for myself but never had the nerve to leave the security of a regular paying job. I am not suggesting that anyone should run out and quit their job on a whim. Running your own business is not for everyone. Building your own business is hard work, requires discipline, and research. It also requires that you keep your own records, pay your own taxes and insurances. You may also most likely at some point require the services of a good lawyer and accountant.Consider all aspects of starting and running your own business carefully. For myself, I don’t ever want to work for anyone but myself. I am the best boss I have ever had.

© 2017 L.M. Hosler


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.