Today's post is from our friend Marc over at VitalDollar.com. Given so many are growing uneasy about their jobs, I thought it would be a welcome and refreshing post to help encourage you to add to your income stream in a fun yet manageable way!
There are plenty of ways to make extra money outside of a traditional job, but online side hustles tend to get most of the attention. Starting a local service-based business may not be as trendy as becoming a YouTube star or Instagram influencer, but it presents a more realistic path to success for the average person.
Many service-based businesses are inexpensive to start, can be done part-time around your existing schedule, and allow you to start making money very quickly (which isn't possible with most online business models).
With that in mind, let's look at some practical options if you're interested in starting a local service-based business.
Home Cleaning Business
One of the most popular service-based businesses is starting a home cleaning business. This is likely because it requires very little start-up costs, can be done with minimal experience, and has a relatively low barrier to entry.
You probably already have most of the things you need to start this business, like a vacuum, a mop, rags, buckets, and other basic cleaning supplies. You may need to buy a few additional things and some extra cleaning products, but the costs are usually minimal.
Start by offering your services to friends, family, and acquaintances. This will help you get some initial experience and testimonials that you can use to market your business.
For a helpful guide, please see How to Start a Cleaning Business in 10 Simple Steps.
Lawn Care and Landscaping
Another practical service-based business idea is starting a lawn care and landscaping business. Lawn care businesses typically offer services like mowing, trimming, edging, leaf clean-up, fertilizing, and snow removal. Landscaping businesses may also offer design and installation services for things like gardens, bushes, trees, and stone walkways.
Offering basic lawn care services is a good option for getting started since you'll need less equipment. Bigger landscaping jobs may require you to rent or buy specific equipment, but you can wait until you're making more money to expand into those jobs.
Pet Sitting and Dog Walking
If you love animals, there are a few animal-related service businesses you could start. One option is to offer pet sitting services, where you watch people's pets while they're away. It could be a doggy daycare where you watch pets while their owners are at work, or you could offer overnight services for people who are traveling.
Another animal-related business idea is starting a dog walking service. This is perfect if you live in a densely populated area and enjoy getting some exercise while you're working. To maximize your revenue, you can offer both services.
Rover is a great resource for anyone who wants to get started. You can create a profile as a service provider so pet owners in your local area can find you.
If you're a jack-of-all-trades, starting a handyman business or offering odd job services is a great way to make extra money. You can do anything from installing light fixtures and fixing leaky faucets to assembling furniture and hanging pictures.
Your specific skills will determine the types of jobs you can do, but most people have some skills that others would be willing to pay for. If you don't feel confident in your handyman skills, there are plenty of online resources and YouTube videos that can help you learn what you need to know.
There are many different things you can rent out for extra income. The options that are available for you will depend on what you have to offer renters. One of the best options for many people is to rent out storage space. If you have extra space in your basement, attic, garage, or shed, you can use a platform like Neighbor.com to earn cash by renting it out for storage.
If you have an RV or camper, you can rent it out when you're not using it. Websites like RVshare and Outdoorsy will help you to get exposure for your rental. This can be a high-profit side hustle because the rental market for RVs and campers is very strong.
If you have experience painting, starting a painting business is a great way to make extra money. You can offer your services to paint the inside or outside of people's homes or businesses.
To get started, all you need is some basic painting supplies like rollers, brushes, tarps, and ladders. You may also need to buy some additional supplies depending on the types of jobs you're taking on.
Carpentry is another service-based business idea that can be profitable. If you have experience with woodworking, you can offer your services to build custom furniture, cabinets, and other woodworking projects.
To get started, you'll need some basic carpentry tools, but if that's something you're into, you probably already have the tools. You may also need to invest in some larger pieces of equipment if you're taking on bigger jobs.
Teach Music Lessons
If you're a musician or singer, teaching music lessons is a great way to make extra money. You can offer your services to teach people how to play an instrument, sing, or both.
To find students, you can advertise your services online or post flyers around town. You can also contact local schools and community centers to see if they're interested in having you teach classes there.
Starting a caregiving business is a great way to make extra money, and it's a service that's in demand. You can offer your services to provide elderly or disabled people with the help they need to live independently.
There are many different types of caregiving services you can offer, and you can specialize in the type of care you're best suited for. For example, if you're a nurse, you could offer nursing care services.
To get started, create a profile on a platform like Care.com or HomeCare.com. You can also contact local agencies that provide in-home care services to see if they're interested in partnering with you.
If you love to bake, starting a baking business is a great way to make extra money. You can offer your services to bake cakes, cookies, pies, and other desserts for people's special occasions.
To get started, all you need is some basic baking supplies and a list of recipes. You can also sign up for a course or two to learn more about the art of baking.
Starting a pressure washing business is an often-overlooked side hustle. All you need to get started is a pressure washer. You can get a good one for a few hundred dollars, or you may already have one. You can offer your services to clean the exterior of people's homes and businesses, sidewalks, patios, decks, and more.
It's a simple service that anyone can do with a little practice. You can also make good money from it.
Appliance and Small Engine Repair
If you're handy with tools and have experience repairing appliances or small engines, starting a repair business is a great way to make extra money. You can offer your services to repair people's washers, dryers, refrigerators, lawnmowers, and more.
Advertise your services on Craigslist and bulletin boards at local businesses and organizations. There are always people who need help making repairs, so you'll have plenty of potential clients.
If you live in a city or town with a lot of history, starting a tour guide business is a great way to make extra money. You can offer your services to give people tours of the local area.
To get started, all you need is some basic knowledge of the area's history and a way to market your services. You can use Craigslist and other methods of advertising locally, or reach out to hotels and other businesses that cater to travelers.
There are many different service-based businesses you can start to make extra money. Choose one that suits your skills and interests, and get started today. With a little effort, you can be on your way to making some extra cash in no time.
Marc is a personal finance blogger at Vital Dollar where he writes about side hustles, investing, and saving money. His work has been featured at Forbes, Business Insider, MarketWatch, CNBC, Yahoo Finance, and many others.