50 Home Business Ideas

Many of us want to earn extra money from home. And, indeed, starting a home business can be a good way to cultivate additional income, and help you reach other financial goals that you might have. There are a number of ways that you can improve your situation by starting a home business. From creative business ideas, to the more mundane, here are 50 home business ideas.

Use Your Skills

One of the best ways to get started with a home business is to use your skills. A number of business startup ideas grow out of the skills possessed by the business owner. If you have the skills — or if you can learn the skills — here are a few ways to make money from what you’re good at:

  1. Online Store-If you are serious about starting a home business then an online store is an excellent place to start. The best part of an online store is that you do not need a large start up capital, with just a few hundred dollars you can start your own online store. Besides the low start up cost an online store has many other benefits, for example it does not require you to rent office space, it has low overhead costs, does not require long hours etc. If you know what you want to sell online great, however you don’t need to know right now. I know it may seem overwhelming and confusing at first, however I would highly recommend Steve’s course on Profitable Online Store. Steve and his wife started their ecommerce store a few years ago and in their first year they made over $100,000! His wife was able to leave her day job and now only works 4 hours a week. Steve has extensive experience in the commerce business and has helped hundreds of students in successfully launching their business. He doesn’t just send you the material and leave you stranded, but he is there with you every step of the way with regular office hours (virtual office). If you are tired of your 9-5 job and want to break free then an online store maybe the answer. Check out Steve’s course and I would highly recommend you enrol in it, it will probably be the best investment you ever make.
  2. Writing: I always list this first because it’s what I do. If you write, and have reasonably good grammar, you can find gigs providing content, working for print and online magazines, preparing whitepapers (and doing other technical writing), and providing ad copy and press releases. All form the comfort of your home.
  3. home based business ideasGraphic design: Create logos, newsletter layouts, images for ads and other visuals for a variety of clients.
  4. Web design and development: Set web sites, and even maintain them. Develop different aspects of web sites, and design web sites for usability.
  5. App development: Those who know how to develop apps for different mobile devices, and even those who develop web apps, can make money with their skills. Create apps for others to use, or even for them to sell, and you can get your cut and make a profit.
  6. Social media/SEO services: If you are good online, and build social networks, you can leverage your skills to make money by providing your services to others. Help companies and web site owners build their brands in the social media space.
  7. Photography: Use your skills to take photos at different events, and even take portraits. Take stock photos and sell their use on stock photo web sites to create a tidy passive income stream.
  8. Videography: You can also make videos of special events, and put together montages for special events like birthday celebrations.
  9. Presentations: If you have skill at putting together presentations, you can create presentations for others.
  10. Make music: Those with musical skill can make money by hiring themselves out for events, as well as by playing in different venues. Many restaurants like to have live music at least some nights a week, and you could make money from the tips people provide for your playing.
  11. Consulting: Any skill and experience that you have in a number of areas can be used to help you start a consulting business. From knowledge of statistics, to communication, to image, to public relations, it is possible for you to put your knowledge and skill at others’ disposal and make money.

Share What You Know

Some home business ideas grow out of what you know. You can base a home business on your knowledge and expertise in a certain area. Some ideas that can help you put your knowledge to use can include:

  1. Tutoring: Start a tutoring business out of your home. You can approach by providing tutoring help in an area you specialize in, such as math, or English, or test-taking. You can also start a business that allows you to work with others, paying tutors and helping clients get the academic help they need.
  2. Music lessons: For a brief period, I taught piano lessons. (I discovered that teaching was not my forte.) If you know music, whether it’s playing a musical instrument or using your voice, you can share that knowledge, and earn some money.
  3. Art lessons: Teach children and others art. If you have a knowledge of painting or drawing, you can teach others.
  4. Online teaching: One of the growing areas of interest is in online teaching. If you have a college degree, you can teach college level courses in some cases. There are also virtual K-12 schools. You can, if you are ambitious enough, and get the right licenses, open your own virtual academy.
  5. Gardening: Many people need help learning to garden. You can offer your services in helping people set up gardens, and learn to grow their own food. Container gardening classes can help clients learn to grow food in small spaced.
  6. Preserving food: If you know how to can, bottle or dry foods, that’s something that others might pay to learn. You can teach classes and even sell small recipe booklets with ideas for what can be made using preserved ingredients.
  7. Guide: Do you know your local area? The best places to go for fishing or hunting? Do you know a stretch of river? You can start a business guiding people in the area. Even if it’s just a restaurant tour of the tastiest places in town, your guide efforts can be profitable.
  8. Technology: Start a business teaching others how to use technology. There are a number of people who need help setting up their computers, phones and gaming consoles. You can use your knowledge to your advantage.
  9. Craft classes: Hold craft classes in your home. If you know how to sew, crochet, knit, work wood, sculpt, or frame photos, you can teach these classes, earning some money and doing something you love.

Provide Services

Look around your town, and see if there are any services that you might be able to provide. You might be surprised at the need in town — and the way that need can turn into a side hustle to help you make more money or a full time home business:

  1. Pet care: Take care of others’ animals. From walking pets, to sitting pets whose owners leave town, to grooming services, if you know to take care of different pets, you can start a home business.
  2. Yard care/landscaping: Provide lawn care and yard care services, as well as landscaping. You can even design yards to look more attractive. Provide services form mowing the lawn, to fertilizing, to planting bushes. You can even install sprinkler systems.
  3. Hauling: Many people need help hauling, but don’t have the vehicles for it. You can haul refuse away, or you can bring bulky purchases home from the store for someone whose car is too small.
  4. Tax prep/accountant services: There is actually an account in my town who works out of his home. He has a home office, and provides tax preparation services and other accountant services. You can do the same. In many cases, clients need only drop something off, and you can work on it at home.
  5. Run errands: There are a number of people who don’t have time to do their own shopping, pick up the dry cleaning, or run other errands. You can provide these services for others, giving them more time in the day while you take care of the annoying errands.
  6. Elder care: If you have the right certifications, you can start an elder care business from your home. This can include taking care of the elderly, checking up on them, or just providing companionship.
  7. Massage therapy: If you have the right certifications, and the right licenses, you can provide massage therapy services from your home.
  8. Home health exams: You can base out of your home, and travel in your local area, to perform home health exams. In fact, the last time someone came to draw my blood, weigh me and take a urine sample for my life insurance, it was an independent contractor running a business out of her home. Insurance companies and others can contract with these professionals. You have to have the appropriate training, though.
  9. Personal care: If you have the right equipment, licenses, and the know-how, you can cut hair in your home, or provide manicures and pedicures, or provide other personal care services. One of my friends invested in a barber chair, and it’s set up in her home, where she can cut hair and earn a little money.
  10. Babysitting: Take care of others’ children and get paid for it. You will have to meet state regulations, though. However, if you set up properly, you might actually be eligible to receive state assistance to provide meals for the children your watch.
  11. Sell stuff for others: Help those  who don’t have the expertise or the time to sell their own stuff. Help them sell items on eBay or on Craigslist. Keep a portion of the sale as a commission for yourself.
  12. Bookkeeping/payroll: Offer your services to small businesses in town, or offer them over the Internet. Keep track of others’ books and payroll, saving them time.
  13. Virtual assisting: You can provide your organizational and other skills to others with the help of the Internet. You can offer services to locals, or you can offer them to those on the other side of the country. Make phone calls, schedule appointments and more.
  14. Transcription: Many people need notes transcribed. There is also a need for voice records and other other records to be transcribed. Charge for your services, and you could set up a good home business.

Life Skills: Help Others Improve Their Lives

Do you think you could help others improve their lives? If so, you might be able to try one of these business ideas — which you can do from your home.

  1. Life coaching: Help others find their calling in life, or get back on track with their lives.
  2. Career counseling: If you are connected in your career, and know how to help others create resumes and improve interview skills, you can charge others to help them get a foot in the door as a career coach.
  3. Financial planning: Many financial planners offer services out of their homes. Create plans to help others get back on the right financial track.
  4. Stress management: Hold meditation classes and/or yoga classes in your home. You can also help with other stress management techniques, teaching constructive ways to control anxiety.
  5. Spiritual consultations: There are a number of different ways that spiritual consultations can take place, depending on spiritual choices. However, in some cases, if you are a practitioner of different methods, you can help others find peace and connection with their spirituality. This can include astrology, Reiki, and other traditions.
  6. Mediation: Set yourself as a mediator. Solve problems between family members, and even help in cases of divorce. You may need the right certifications, though.

Make Something — And Sell It

Another way to start your own business is to make something, and then sell it. There are a number of places to sell your handmade goods. From local craft fairs and shows, to online marketplaces like Etsy and eBay, it is possible for your to earn a living from making things. Here are a few items that you can make, if you have the skill, and sell:

  1. Fishing flies: Fly-tying is a great art — and fishermen and would-be fishermen will pay good money for high quality flies.
  2. Sewing/knitting/crochet/quilts: If you can produce handicrafts by sewing, knitting, crochet or quilting, you can sell the results for money. You can create custom pieces, made to order, or you can produce items to sell later. My sister-in-law even creates patterns to sell so others can make her designs.
  3. Woodworking: Create beautiful items out of wood. You can produce items to order, or see what sells.
  4. Jewelry: My wedding band was made, custom, by a jewelry maker who created items out of a workshop attached to her house. Create jewelry, and sell it to others.
  5. Scrapbooks: Put together albums for others. Create scrapbooks and other memory books for those who want to capture the essence of life. You can even use your skills at digital scrapbooking to make items for others.
  6. Get creative: There are a number of other things you can make to sell. An enterprising young man in our neighborhood makes wallets out of duct tape and sells them. Consider what else you can make, than might be creative and useful, to sell.

Passive Income

No home business list is complete without passive income ideas. It’s true that no income is truly passive, since you will need to do some work to maintain your income stream. But it is possible to set money-makers in motion, under the name of a home business, and cultivate revenue.

  1. Income investing: Create an income portfolio with dividend stocks, bonds and P2P lending.
  2. Real estate/rental property: Buy income property and earn money. Whether you lease it out a business, or get renters, you can receive income regularly. Hire a manager, and you won’t have to do much at all.
  3. Web property: Buy web sites and monetize them. Yes, this can be work at the beginning, but once you get things going, it can provide income. Hire others to write for you, or do other tasks, and you won’t have to do as much work.
  4. Affiliate marketing: You can sell items through affiliate programs. As long as others keep buying in, or participate, you can earn money.
  5. Royalties: Create something once, and keep receiving money from it. You can also do this without sharing the profits with someone else. Create your own ebook and sell it yourself on a web site, or even on Kindle.


  1. says

    You left out power generation. We have been generating solar power for a week and a half (although there has not been much sun in that time, here in eastern Ontario). There is also wind power.

    • says

      Most of the ideas listed here don’t cost much, if anything, except some time and patience.

    • says

      Starting capital is not a problem for people with the great ideas. If you can’t find a way to finance your idea it is not great, clearly articulated in term of how you are going to implement it, no sufficient proof that it is viable, you do not have what it takes to implement it or do not know how to assemble and manage a team of able people to assist you .

  2. says

    Thanks for sharing this useful ideas here which will be helpful to so many people who are interested in home based business. Today so many ideas seek out a guide on how to get started in that area.

  3. says

    Miranda – great list. I’ve been running my freelance copywriting business from my home for several years and it’s great. Plus, to confirm what you wrote, it’s requires a fairly modest investment to get started – and the demand is huge.

    I offer some tips for people interested in getting started as a freelance health writer right here:


    Glad to have found this site – looks like some great info!

    • parck ezeh says

      Hi, Kindly guide me thru the online writing stuff.
      I am interested in advertising writing (copy) and publications.
      Equally strong in editing.
      Will be glad to get tips on how to start.

  4. says

    Another idea is a Green energy Power Miser Dealer.
    …simple, low cost, home business.

  5. carmen says

    What about if you are renting the house where you live .Can you still run a business form home?

  6. says

    Depending on what kind of business you can. If it is an online business it shouldn’t be an issue, if it is something that might damage the house or require modification you should speak with your landlord.

  7. winile maphalala says

    l would like to start my own home business please help.

    • says

      What help do you need specifically in starting your own home business?

  8. says

    This is a fantastic list. I prefer an online business to a home business where I need to use space for products and shipping. You can achieve anything you want with your business if your passionate about it with a good plan of action. Great list!

  9. mrhobbie says

    Really great article with lots of great ideas. I actually tried the freelance writing thing with hopes that I would one day be able to quite my 9-5 job. I did make money but not enough to quite my job. Eventually I ended up finding my success by being an online merchant with my own e-commerce site. Was able to quite that 9-5 job years ago and now have the privileged of having a 9-9 business instead! ha ha! Work longer hours now but I am always at home with the family and financially reap the rewards. I still do the freelance writing sometimes just for the love of writing and the few extra dollars never hurts. Again, great article with lots of ideas!

    • splitjj7 says

      Hi, I am so interested in working from home and being my own boss. It looks as though you have figured it out. What are you selling, how did you start and how are you making it work?

  10. kalpesh says

    How can I start/setup a home business with passive income investing?

  11. says

    Awesome list of home business ideas……probably the best one I have found so far. Thanks for sharing!

  12. Ethan Poltrack says

    Great stuff and some good tips. My problem when I was getting started was jumping from opportunity to opportunity. If I did not see money like overnight I left. lol, it takes work to make money online. Set some goals and stick to them…. Thanks

  13. Johnna says

    I am interested in a couple home business ideas, if anyone has first hand knowledge or any suggestions it would be greatly appreciated. I want to do like a Meals Delivery Service. For the Elderly who do not qualify for “Meals on Wheels” due to income to high, single people with no time, single parents with NO time, families that both parents work or just people who HATE to cook. And I would have a delivery time & 3-5 meal choices each week. Second one is an online business where I give meal suggestions for people tired of same ole thing or children don’t like certain foods. I have owned a Deli & Catering company before as well as come from a large Italian family & have lots of cooking experience & its my love of life. Any ideas, suggestions VERY much appreciated. Thank you.

  14. Florence lundeen says

    H0w do I start to sell what I make?

    • Betsy Dobrick says

      Try esty, it is a great site to sell hand made items. People will be looking for what you do.

  15. gary says

    great list of ideas, that really covers a wide range of ideas …..some you wouldn’t think of for a work from home business.

  16. John says

    I do not think home business works for people with less money to start business at home. I tried to advertise for people with kitchen bussiness selling knives and utensils online but it was a waste of time. I started lending money to friends with interests when they pay me back, but some are idiots to me back. What is the right way to have money and make money?

    • says

      I think it depends on what you want to do. You can do a lot of freelance stuff such as writing, virtual assistance, social media etc. Blogging can also be a great way to make money if you put in the time.

  17. says

    This is by far the most comprehensive list I’ve seen so far. Thanks for all the great ideas. Can’t wait to start researching a few of them. Thanks again.

  18. says

    Great post. I am planning to grow my own company about training and coaching but I need a little more information about the know-how, marketing and how to structure an event. Thanks in advance for any further information.

  19. says

    I feel in the given enlightenment. quite a lot of knowledge I can when looking at this blog.

  20. says

    This is really great information and in these times of economy trends we need all the help we can get. Thanks again for great info.

  21. Tammy beaty says

    I enjoyed all of the useful ideas on your site. I am a bachelors prepared nurse ( currently in school for my masters ). I would love some input as to how I could go about starting an in home business in consulting, or home assessments. Just not sure how to get involved with insurance companies and such. Any information is greatly appreciated

  22. says

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    seems as though you relied on the video to make your point.

    You clearly know what youre talking about, why waste your intelligence on
    just posting videos to your weblog when you could
    be giving us something informative to read?

  23. says

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  24. says

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