Unfortunately this is a question being asked a lot more now with this lingering, dead economy. Hopefully in about a month things will begin to change in a positive way. I have asked myself this same question dozens of times over my career - and opened a lot of businesses with limited and with significant investment. First, and always, do the business plan. Take the time, think through everything, put down all of your plans, costs, expenses, ON PAPER, not in your head no matter how good you are. Even if babysitting is the business, what are your constraints? Limitations? If you are capable of doing something with little or no cash outlay that has value, such as consulting, speaking, writing, child care, as opposed to manufacturing something - even something very small and inexpensive - you are better off doing so. If not and you are able, sell something someone else owns - I mean something you don't have to buy to resell - anything from real estate to products. If you aren't a salesman, aren't public as a speaker or can't write something that can be sold, do some searching to find where a local business has something they are having a problem finding someone to do something for them. It may be delivery, expediting, stuffing envelopes, and come up with a financial plan offering that is good for both of you.