You fantasize about ditching the daily commute and starting a business from the comfort of home.
The only problem with your entrepreneurial daydream? You don’t have any idea what kind of business to start, much less how to make it profitable.
No worries, we’re here to help.
You’re not alone in wanting to go it alone. Of the 31.7 million small businesses operating in the U.S., about 81% were run by individuals with no employees, according to the most recent government numbers.
Whether you’re looking for a little side-hustle income or you dream of quitting your current job and the daily commute for good, here’s your guide to home-based business ideas.
- 1 The 49 Best Home Business Ideas
- 1.1 Businesses That Don’t Require You to Leave Your Home
- 1.1.1 1. Freelance Writing
- 1.1.2 2. Virtual Assistant
- 1.1.3 3. Travel Planner
- 1.1.4 4. Bookkeeper
- 1.1.5 5. Tax Preparer
- 1.1.6 6. Tutor
- 1.1.7 7. Teach Online Classes
- 1.1.8 8. Write an Ebook
- 1.1.9 9. Affiliate Marketer
- 1.1.10 10. Social Media Consultant
- 1.1.11 11. Start a YouTube Channel
- 1.1.12 12. Become a TikTok Influencer
- 1.1.13 13. Start a Podcast
- 1.1.14 14. Be a Voiceover Artist
- 1.1.15 15. Web Developer
- 1.1.16 16. Graphic Design
- 1.1.17 17. Become a Life Coach or Career Coach
- 1.1.18 18. Be an Online Dating Consultant
- 1.2 Work at Home… and Beyond
- 1.2.1 19. Local Tour Guide
- 1.2.2 20. Cleaning
- 1.2.3 21. Professional Organizer
- 1.2.4 22. Personal Chef
- 1.2.5 23. Photography
- 1.2.6 24. Real Estate Agent
- 1.2.7 25. Home Staging
- 1.2.8 26. Babysitter
- 1.2.9 27. Musician
- 1.2.10 28. Personal Trainer
- 1.2.11 29. Yoga Instructor
- 1.2.12 30. Massage Therapist
- 1.2.13 31. Notary Public
- 1.2.14 32. Handy Person
- 1.3 Home Business Ideas for Selling Stuff
- 1.4 Home-Based Businesses That Let You Work Outdoors
- 1.1 Businesses That Don’t Require You to Leave Your Home
- 2 Next Steps After Choosing a Great Home-Based Business Idea
- 3 Frequently Asked Questions About the Best Home Business Ideas
The 49 Best Home Business Ideas
Choosing your business can start with something as simple as picking an activity you enjoy and figuring out how to monetize it.
However, if you don’t already have a passion you want to profit from — or you’d rather keep your hobbies and work separate — you can still start a successful home-based business on your own as a sole proprietor, or one-person business.
A sole proprietorship doesn’t need to register with the state (unlike corporations, partnerships and LLCs). However, you still must comply with registration, license, tax and permit laws.
Local social media groups like Nextdoor can be a source of ideas. There you’ll find everyday services that are in demand, although it may not be the most glamorous work.
Mundane chores make for good business because they’re tasks that many people are willing to pay someone else to do, whether it’s mowing lawns as a groundskeeper or setting up bounce houses as a kids’ party planner.
We’ve come up with a list of the best business ideas that have relatively low barriers to entry and startup costs but offer real income potential.
Ready to start your journey toward self-employment in the comfort of your own home? Let’s get to work.
Businesses That Don’t Require You to Leave Your Home
Running an online business lets you make money with little need to leave the house. You may need a personal website where potential customers can find you, although you can also find work for your specific skills through sites like Upwork and Fiverr.
1. Freelance Writing
Use your wordsmithing skills to start a freelance writing business. We have advice for how to pitch a story if you’re looking for your first byline.
To make freelance writing your full-time business, you’ll benefit from expanding your repertoire to incorporate multiple types of writing (editing skills also increase your value). Here are a few options:
- Creative writing. Share your literary talents by submitting to these seven literary magazines that pay for short stories and poetry.
- Technical writing. Who doesn’t love a well-written instruction manual? Although technical writing might not offer as many creative options, the median pay as of 2020 was $35.89 an hour.
- Resume writing. Use your writing prowess to help other people get jobs. Charmaine Pocek told The Penny Hoarder she earned $30 to $800 per assignment on Fiverr as a freelance writer creating resumes and cover letters as well as optimizing clients’ LinkedIn profiles. Pocek set a record for being the first U.S. — and the first female — Fiverr seller to break $1 million in earnings.
- SEO writing: Help websites show up at the top of Google searches with content that focuses on search engine optimization.
2. Virtual Assistant
Administrative assistants typically answer to a boss, but start your own business, and you’ll be calling the shots.
A virtual assistant performs similar tasks to in-person assistants, but you can offer your services to one or multiple companies. You might be doing data entry one day and proofing articles on WordPress another, so be prepared for a variety of tasks.
3. Travel Planner
Arrange for others to travel the world without having to leave your couch.
A remote travel planner is a great home-based business idea for someone who is well organized, detail oriented and has stellar customer service skills. It helps if you have travel experience and understand trends in the travel and tourism industry.
Although the job market for a travel agent is currently on the decline, you might be able to niche down by marketing to a targeted audience, like single parents with young children or retirees with limited income. The median pay for a travel agent is $20.36 an hour.
Life makes more sense in spreadsheets. If this statement sounds like something you’d say, a bookkeeping business could be in your future.
Rather than targeting a big business account, start by focusing on smaller businesses that need help managing their finances. You don’t need to be a CPA to start, but strong computer and customer service skills help.
5. Tax Preparer
Another home business option for someone skilled in accounting is to become a tax preparer.
While you don’t need formal training to become a tax professional, it can help. You’ll need a Preparer Tax Identification Number and an Electronic Filing Identification Number from the IRS to start, and you may have to register with your state.
While tax preparers generally work on a seasonal basis, you may be able to earn enough during tax season to stretch through the remainder of the year.
Enjoy all the fun of teaching without leaving home.
An online tutoring business lets you offer your expertise, whether it’s teaching math and English to elementary kids or prepping high school students for the SAT.
These 10 online tutoring companies are a good place to start. Promote your expertise in a subject or grade level in your bio — teaching certifications will also add to your credibility (and bottom line).
Most tutoring platforms require instructors to either have or be working toward a bachelor’s degree, and previous teaching experience is preferred. Check the requirements before you apply.
If you’re thinking of starting a tutoring business, you can learn a thing or two from this former Scripps National Spelling Bee participant who earned $100 an hour tutoring kids who want to compete.
7. Teach Online Classes
Turn a topic you know a lot about or a talent you have into an online course as a way to make money from home.
This is one of the best home-business ideas because it allows you to capitalize on what you already know with very little investment. Online classes are also a great way to earn passive income. You can record your online classes once and get paid for months or years to come as people sign up for your courses.
8. Write an Ebook
Writing an ebook (or several) is another option to earn passive income from home. Your ebook could be fiction or nonfiction, and you can decide to write about whatever topic you like — as long as there’s an audience for it.
Self-publishing your book removes the barriers to entry built into the traditional publishing business model. You don’t have to have a literary agent and hope it gets seen by the big publishing houses. However, after publishing your ebook, it’s up to you to funnel potential readers to your masterpiece.
9. Affiliate Marketer
If you have your own website or your own blog that already gets traffic, affiliate marketing should be part of your business plan.
The basic concept: You can make money by including affiliate links to products you recommend on your site. When your readers click on the link and buy the product, you receive a commission.
Check out affiliate marketplaces to connect with brands that will pay you to promote their products and services. Among the many marketplaces is ClickBank, which says on its website that you can earn commissions as high as 90%.
10. Social Media Consultant
Got a knack for words and a knowledge of the latest trends in social media? Consider becoming a social media consultant.
Most small businesses don’t have the budget for full-time social media management, but they want a presence on social media to attract and engage customers. That translates to plenty of opportunities for you to pitch your services. Sell your social savvy — and expertise with publishing software — to local businesses by writing blog posts.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) lumps social media consultants into the general category of public relations, listing a median pay rate of $30.20 an hour.
Focusing your business on one area, at least early on, can help build your expertise. Research the local online business landscape to discover where the need is, whether it’s helping establish social media accounts for local businesses, contracting for a specific number of posts per week or setting your sights on a specific industry (restaurants, for instance).
11. Start a YouTube Channel
Share your life, interests or skill set with the internet via YouTube, and bank some cash. YouTube is a home business idea that can help you earn residual income. The videos you create now can bring in income months or even years down the road.
One YouTuber told The Penny Hoarder that she started earning revenue on her YouTube channel within six months, despite having no technical experience or equipment beyond a laptop and a smartphone. Check out her advice on how to make money on YouTube.
Some of the platform’s top earners bring in tens of millions of dollars, however you can aim to make this home-based business idea into a modest side hustle with low startup costs.
12. Become a TikTok Influencer
TikTok is much more than just trendy dances. It’s also a legitimate way to earn money from home if you have a nice-sized following.
You likely won’t make a bunch of money overnight, but if you create quality content consistently, focus on a niche and follow the trends, you might find success. Depending on how many eyeballs check out your videos, you could earn from $200 to $20,000 for a branded video. You can also make money selling products online or offering consulting services.
13. Start a Podcast
Launching a podcast is another way to capitalize on your knowledge base or interests.
For example, one journalist told The Penny Hoarder that she quit her TV station job in 2017 to become a full-time podcaster and focus on the news she wanted to share.
You can make money with a podcast through advertising, sponsorships, subscriptions, paid content and donations.
14. Be a Voiceover Artist
Put your talents from high school drama class to good use earning money as a voiceover artist. Voiceover artists record audio for video games, audiobooks, TV commercials, radio spots, cartoon programs and more.
It’s a fairly flexible job that you can do during nontraditional work hours, making it a perfect home business for someone with a 9-to-5 job or a stay-at-home parent, like this woman.
15. Web Developer
If you can balance aesthetically pleasing and user friendly, your next business could be as a web developer.
Technically, there are differences between web designers and developers, with designers tending toward the visual aspect while developers focusing on the coding. The BLS, which doesn’t differentiate between the two, states the median pay is $37.12 an hour.
Even if businesses in your area don’t have a big budget for complicated websites, they may need a simple landing page. If you have the web design and coding skills, you can start small and expand your business based on referrals and your portfolio.
16. Graphic Design
Unleash your creativity — and use your art degree — to create a graphic design business.
Whether it’s designing logos or layouts, you’ll need to invest in the proper equipment and programs to give your designs a professional look. But you’ll at least be able to find colleagues to consult — in 2019, about 1 in 5 graphic designers were self-employed, according to the BLS.
If you’re just getting started as a graphic designer, add to your portfolio by volunteering to create brochures and programs for nonprofits like your church or kids’ school.
Once you’re established, you’ll be able to set hourly or per-project rates. You could earn between $65 and $150 per hour. These tips will get you started.
Make your business stand out by including your personal story. Share how you got started and why you love what you do to connect with customers looking for a reason to choose you over the competition.
17. Become a Life Coach or Career Coach
You can make money in this line of work through one-on-one sessions with clients, creating webinars or workshops or creating a blog or podcast. The amount of money you can generate with this home business idea will vary based upon your method of monetization and the size of your own audience.
18. Be an Online Dating Consultant
Helping someone craft an online dating profile sounds like something you’d do for a friend over drinks, not a home business idea that generates income.
However, you can legitimately start a business as an online dating consultant, helping people craft their online profiles and connect with potential dates.
Other ways to earn money from providing online dating services include shooting photos for a dating profile and investigating dating fraudsters.
Work at Home… and Beyond
Sure, you enjoy working from home, but sometimes you miss human interaction. No worries — there are plenty of home-based business ideas that let you run your business from your couch but also allow you to escape the confines of home.
19. Local Tour Guide
Do you love showing off your city? Make it your business by becoming a local tour guide.
And you don’t have to limit yourself to museums and monuments — although that’s an option, too.
One man told The Penny Hoarder he makes $10,000 a year with his side gig leading craft coffee tours around St. Petersburg, Florida, while another earns income leading bike tours to check out the many murals around the city.
If you already have a passion for arts, food or other amenities that make your town special, you can start by offering free tours to friends, then expand your reach by promoting your tours on social media and through your local tourism office.
Cleaning other people’s places may not be everyone’s dream job, but that’s what increases its potential as a profitable business.
Housekeeping is one option, but if you’re willing to get your hands a little (or a lot) dirty, your services can be invaluable to clients who want you to clean out decades of accumulated trash in their basements, attics and barns.
21. Professional Organizer
Channel Marie Kondo or Clea and Joanna of The Home Edit and start a home-based business as a professional organizer.
This profession differs from a typical house cleaner. It involves organizing people’s belongings into beautiful systems that discourage clutter. This job requires an eye for detail, good judgment, discretion when dealing with clients’ personal things and, of course, stellar organization skills.
Being that you’re doing work that many people avoid, you can pocket some sweet income with this home business idea.
22. Personal Chef
Your dinner parties are always a hit, and people form a line for your bake sale contributions.
Bank on your culinary prowess with a personal chef or catering business.
You don’t need a culinary degree to start plating, but a few referrals could help fire up your business.
Offer to cook for the school fundraiser or church picnic, and be sure to display your business cards at the serving stations.
Posting professional-looking photos of your mouth-watering dishes on your website is another way to attract customers. A personal chef who charges up to $65 per plate hosting dinner parties shared more tips.
Use your photography skills to take a shot at starting a business.
24. Real Estate Agent
As a real estate agent, you’ll spend a good amount of time away from your home meeting with clients, touring properties and hosting open houses. But you’ll also spend time in your home office compiling comparable properties, pouring over listings, researching the market and drawing up contracts.
To become a real estate agent, you’ll need to complete coursework and pass an exam to earn your real estate license. You’ll also need to find a brokerage to work with.
As a real estate agent, you earn a percentage of the sales you see through. The median pay for real estate agents in 2020 was just over $51,000.
25. Home Staging
Live out your HGTV dream.
Homeowners hoping to get the highest price need to make their humble abode look its best. And that’s where you, the home stager, come in to rearrange the furniture, hide the million toys in a storage unit and replace all those framed cat photos with tasteful art.
Think you have what it takes?
One woman who started her home staging business with a $3,000 investment built her client base by doing the following:
- Using Google Adwords for online advertising.
- Asking for word-of-mouth referrals.
- Creating a social media presence.
- Networking with local homebuilders and Realtors.
Love kids? Love having kids running around your home?
If your home is prepared for the rough-and-tumble world of children, babysitting in your home is a good way to get around the whole “nanny tax” thing (that’s where the parents have to pay you as a domestic employee because you’re working in their home).
Each state has its own regulations about what age and how many kids you can watch at one time before becoming a daycare, so check out your state’s rules before you start. Learning a few basics — like CPR and first aid — can also help you demand a higher rate.
How much you can make varies based on how many kids and your location, among other factors. The Care.com calculator suggests the rate for babysitting one child in New York City is $17.25 per hour.
Let’s start with the assumption that you aren’t a rock star musician prepared to tour the world.
That doesn’t mean you can’t be in the music business. In fact, we have 13 ways to make money off your music here.
28. Personal Trainer
Turn your love of fitness into cash by becoming a personal trainer working from your own home studio or travelling to clients’ houses. Increase your credibility (and pay) by getting certified by a nationally accredited organization like the American Council on Exercise (ACE) or National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM).
Expect the business of personal training to be more of a marathon than a sprint. Accreditation training can take weeks and cost hundreds of dollars, along with liability insurance, and you’ll have to maintain your certification with continuing education.
The BLS says the median pay for fitness trainers and instructors is $19.48 per hour, but pay can vary widely depending on your location and specialization — IDEA Health and Fitness Association notes the average rate for personal trainers in New York City is $32 an hour.
29. Yoga Instructor
A yoga instructor is another fitness-related, home-based business idea. Getting trained as a Certified Yoga Teacher (CYT) can help you establish yourself as a professional qualified to lead others in their yoga practice.
Working as a yoga instructor allows you to have flexibility (pun intended) about where you work. You can take your home-based business online by recording videos or doing virtual classes. You could also lead yoga instruction at a community center, a park or your client’s home.
30. Massage Therapist
Work with your hands… and arms… and elbows… as you massage clients’ muscles.
Starting a massage therapy business requires more than one of those cool tables and a towel — although you should definitely expect to do a lot of laundry (all the sheets, you know).
Before flexing those fingers, you’ll need schooling and licensure — check here for your state’s massage therapy licensing requirements.
According to the latest numbers from the BLS, employment in massage therapy is projected to grow 21% from 2019 to 2029, with a median pay rate of $20.97 per hour.
31. Notary Public
There are many occasions that call for a person needing a document notarized — from buying a house or signing a will to filling out school forms or entering into a business contract.
A notary public is the individual who witnesses the signing of legal documents and ensures that the people signing the documents are who they say they are.
Depending on the state you live in, you may have to take a course and pass an exam in order to become a notary public. In many cases, you’re required to purchase a surety bond. You’ll also need to purchase a notary seal or stamp.
Your pay may be regulated by the state, but you can make decent earnings as a notary public.
32. Handy Person
If you have a knack for fixing things around the house, a good home business idea for you might be to become a handy person.
There’s a lot of variety in this line of work. You might spend one day fixing a leaky pipe and another day patching a hole in someone’s drywall.
Being that you can set your own hours, you might be able to charge a premium for working nights and weekends when other companies are closed.
Home Business Ideas for Selling Stuff
No, these aren’t the dreaded cold-calling telephone sales jobs — instead you’re selling your own stuff or other people’s stuff through your own local or online business or a third-party site.
33. Amazon Seller
Considering it seems like you can buy nearly anything on Amazon, it makes sense that you should be able to sell almost anything on Amazon, right? Here are three great options to create and run your own online store on Amazon:
- Private-label products: Generic products you sell online with your own packaging and logo.
- Retail arbitrage: Items you purchased elsewhere — like clearance items or Craigslist freebies — that you sell on Amazon for a higher price.
- Fulfillment by Amazon: Items you purchase for resale are shipped directly to Amazon, which stores the inventory in its warehouse.
34. eBay Seller
Use your eye for fashion to resell thrift store finds at a profit as an eBay seller.
To get started, check out eBay’s listings for similar items to determine the demand for your product and a pricing strategy. How you price your item affects how it shows up in a search — the lower the price, the more eyes, but setting a higher minimum guarantees a greater return on investment if the item sells.
Good reviews are essential for any online seller. Invest in thank-you cards to include with each order to remind your customers to add their feedback to your site.
Attract more buyers (and higher prices) by using good lighting and a professional presentation in photos of your product.
35. Etsy Marketer
Crafting a business from your love of, well, crafting, doesn’t mean you need to drag your wares to a table at the farmer’s market every Saturday. Setting up shop with the online marketplace Etsy allows you to sell handmade products like custom jewelry, refinished furniture and custom gift baskets without leaving your home.
As experienced sellers will tell you, a big part of being able to sell online via Etsy is re-creating the experience for a buyer who is used to handling handmade products in person when deciding to make a purchase.
Instead of discovering your handmade jewelry or macrame plant holders through a tactile experience, buyers are looking at your photos and descriptions of your handmade products on your Etsy store to decide whether to buy. High-quality photos and in-depth descriptions are essential for attracting customers, as is sharing your personal story.
36. Print-On-Demand Business
If you have a pulse on what’s trendy, you could develop your own line of graphic T-shirts with a print-on-demand business.
To gain success with this home business idea, it helps to have graphic design skills. However, you could always contract out the design work.
With a print-on-demand business, you don’t have to worry about managing inventory, shipping, returns or customer service. You run your own online store and the rest is handled by the third-party company you work with. Some popular options are Merch by Amazon, Printify and Spreadshirt.
It’s also important to note that your print-on-demand business doesn’t have to revolve around selling T-shirts. You could choose to sell products like tote bags, coffee mugs or wall art — customized with your own design or text.
37. Start a Dropshipping Business
A dropshipping business is a type of e-commerce business where you sell products featured on your online store, but you rely on a third-party business to fulfill the order and ship it to the customer. You pocket a percentage of the sale by getting the products at wholesale prices from your supplier.
You can choose from a variety of products for your dropshipping business. Your dropshipping business could be an online store selling clothing. Or perhaps you want to focus on selling home decor.
Your dropshipping business could play a part in a larger home business operation, like this woman who started a dropshipping business in conjunction with her existing ecommerce business.
38. Vending Machine Owner
Being a vending machine owner gives you the ability to sell products without renting commercial real estate or needing to meet with customers in person. You just have to find the right location for your vending machine and get permission from the local business owners there.
You can sell anything from soda and candy to toys and tech accessories. Startup costs can be around $2,000 but this home business idea is one that can generate passive income with little work required.
39. Subscription Box Business
Another home based business idea where you’d sell products is a subscription box business. According to the ecommerce platform Bluehost, projections show that subscription box businesses will bring in more than $15 billion in sales in 2021.
Subscription box businesses can span many different industries. You could sell clothes, makeup, food, books, pet toys and more.
Depending on what type of products you choose to sell with your online business, you may need a significant amount of capital (and storage space) to start this home business. However, you have the potential to gain customers and sales on a repeat basis with a subscription box business.
Sew you want to start a business (sorry, couldn’t help myself).
Turning your threads into a profitable business can start with adjusting hems and making alterations for family and friends, but there are plenty of other ways to use your needle and thread to follow your passion.
41. Home Baker
If your friends and family members can’t stop raving about your chocolate chip cookies or apple pie, perhaps baking is a great business idea for you.
You could create desserts for birthday parties, weddings, business events and more as a sweet source of income. If your treats are easy to ship, you can set up an online store and sell online in addition to fulfilling local orders.
42. Furniture Flipper
Successful online furniture flippers say to follow tips such as:
- Painting furniture in neutral colors
- Keeping rehab efforts to a minimum
- Instead, make small changes like adding drawer liners in dressers or putting on interesting hardware.
43. Airbnb Host
If you ever dreamed of owning a bed and breakfast, but never quite got your hands on that country estate, you can still channel your inner hostess by transforming a guest room (or your home) into Airbnb accommodations.
Instead of selling physical merchandise, you’ll be selling your space, but you’ll still need those same marketing skills to make your Airbnb attractive to potential guests. Think: inviting photos and a well-organized space that will garner great reviews from previous guests.
Figure your potential earnings with this Airbnb calculator.
(Hosting laws vary from city to city. Please understand the rules and regulations applicable to your city and listing.)
Home-Based Businesses That Let You Work Outdoors
There’s no need to limit your home business to the confines of your house. Here are some home business ideas that’ll let you spend time outdoors enjoying some fresh air.
44. Pet Sitting
Prefer your clients to be the four-legged variety? You could start a pet sitting business and cuddle with cats and dogs while their owners are gone all day.
There are more business ideas that can branch off of a pet sitting business, like starting a dog walking business. Connect with fur babies and their parents through apps like Rover or Wag to build up a client base. There, you can add your profile and let owners see your experience.
45. Small-Scale Farming
Got a backyard with some room to breed?
If a full-size farm is a bit beyond your reach, you could go the (much) smaller animal route and install a beehive. Turn it into a successful business by selling honey at the local farmer’s market.
Yes, there are setup costs and licensing required after you buy the bees to factor in. But considering the high price local honey can demand, one beekeeper nearly broke even his first season raising bees by selling the sweet stuff.
If you have more space, take notes from this couple who started raising four chickens in the backyard of their home and went on to raise 900 chickens and 400 Grimaud Pekin ducks on their six-acre farm.
Regulations vary for raising livestock, which is considered any domesticated animal that’s raised to produce labor and/or commodities. Visit your state’s Department of Agriculture website for details.
46. Seasonal Operator
Maybe you’re more of a fair-weather businessperson.
And if the holiday season offers more free time for a business venture, think Christmas lights.
Light installers make the majority of their money hanging those twinkling lights during the holiday season.
47. Garden Consultant
You’ve probably heard of business consultants, who bring their decades of knowledge to advise a company on whatever their issue is. You might not be a CEO, but if you’ve had years of growing gardens, you could turn your planting know-how into a garden consulting business.
Although people may dream of growing their food, most backyard gardens end up a little on the sad side, if alive at all. Your knowledge of soil acidity, fertilizer composition and sunlight needs — plus a willingness to dig around in the dirt — could pay off as a garden consultant.
If you enjoy being out in your yard and are already skilled at maintaining your own lawn, a landscaping business might be a good home business idea to pursue.
Depending on where you live, your business may be at the mercy of the changing seasons, but this business is one where you can easily snag repeat customers year after year.
Local social media groups — like NextDoor or a neighborhood group on Facebook — could be a good way to drum up business. Providing great results is also an excellent way to attract new customers and prompt existing customers to refer you to their friends.
49. Car Detailing
Cleaning a car inside and out is a chore many people would pay someone else to do. It’s also among the home business ideas you can start with little experience, no education requirements and low startup costs.
You can choose to have clients come to your home to get their cars detailed or charge a premium as a mobile car detailer who’ll meet busy clients where they are.
In addition to this being a good home business idea for those who enjoy the outdoors, this line of work is fitted for people who are detail oriented and enjoy physical labor. You can get a nice workout by cleaning cars all day!
Next Steps After Choosing a Great Home-Based Business Idea
Consider these home business ideas a jumping off point or the spark for a related idea that isn’t on this list.
Just know that starting a business requires more than just a good idea, so you’ll first want to check out our step-by-step guide to starting a business.
You’ll need to research the marketplace, create a business plan, gather funding, consider how to legally structure your business, come up with a memorable name and potentially register with the state.
The business world might be tough, but isn’t it easier weathering the ups and downs in the comfort of your own home?
Frequently Asked Questions About the Best Home Business Ideas
If you’re still figuring out which of these best home business ideas would be right for you, the answers to these frequently asked questions may help provide clarity.
What Are the Most Successful Home Businesses?
You can find success with any of the home-based business ideas featured on this list, provided you target an audience who could benefit from your product or service and you put in the work to consistently deliver.
That being said, there are some home-based businesses that seem to be more profitable than others. Web developers, graphic designers, tax preparers, bookkeepers and real estate agents can develop a lucrative business from home and end up earning more than the median wage for U.S. workers.
What Is a Good Home Business Idea?
What you’ll consider to be good home-based business ideas will depend on what you’re looking for in a new business opportunity. Many profitable home businesses start as a hobby or interest you already have.
If you’re looking for home business ideas where you can be flexible with your hours, consider business ideas like working as a graphic designer, a voiceover artist, a home baker, a furniture flipper or an Amazon seller.
If you crave some social interaction while you work, business ideas like a personal chef, a babysitter, a personal trainer, a real estate agent or a local tour guide might be the best business ideas for you.
Great home business ideas you can start if you’re good at making sales include running an online store on Amazon, operating an online store on eBay, having a vending machine business or starting a subscription box company.
If you enjoy spending time outdoors, some home-based business ideas you should consider are working as a garden consultant, starting a landscaping business or detailing cars.
What Is the Easiest Business to Start?
The easiest home-based business ideas to develop are those with low barriers to entry and minor startup costs.
Think about your existing skill set, qualifications and expertise. If you used to teach fourth grade, for example, it would likely be easy for you to start a business tutoring elementary school students. Or if you’re a skilled crafter who always makes custom stuffed animals for your friends’ kids, you could easily create an online store on Etsy and sell your handmade products from your online store.
If you have to take courses and earn a certification before you can launch your own business, that may not be the easiest path to pursue.
Having low startup costs is a big factor in deciding whether your home business ideas will be easy to follow through with. However, what you consider to be low costs for your home-based business is subjective. Ideally, you’ll want to be able to get your business up and running without depending on a loan or blowing through all your savings.
Before you start a business, make sure you have a solid emergency fund aside from the savings you plan to use for business expenses.
Some home business ideas you can start for less than $100 include freelance writing, working as a virtual assistant, tutoring, starting a YouTube channel, being a professional organizer, starting a dropshipping business, starting a print-on-demand business, working as a pet sitter or detailing cars.
Tiffany Wendeln Connors is a writer/editor at The Penny Hoarder. Nicole Dow is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder.