7 Best Small Business Ideas To Make Money From Home

People’s preference for making money from the comfort of their homes has boomed over the past three years for obvious reasons, and even with the job market trending toward normal amid the pandemic, this preference has held steady — and is likely to continue.

You too may be wondering how you can earn a living at home. If you don’t have a job that allows remote work, consider the following small business ideas that can make you a home-based entrepreneur.

Invest in a high-yield CD or savings account

Investing in a high-yield certificate of deposit (CD) or savings account at an online bank can allow you to generate a passive income and also get one of the highest interest rates in the country. You won’t even have to leave your house to make money.

To make the most of your CD, you’ll want to do a quick search of the nation’s top CD rates or the top savings accounts. It’s usually much more advantageous to go with an online bank rather than your local bank, because you’ll be able to select the top rate available in the country. And you’ll still enjoy a guaranteed return of principal up to $250,000, if your financial institution is backed by the FDIC.

As long as your bank is backed by the FDIC and within limits, your principal is safe. So, investing in a CD or savings account is about as safe a return as you can find. And that return can pale in comparison to inflation, hurting the real purchasing power of your money. Nevertheless, a CD or savings account will yield better than holding your money in cash or in a non-interest-bearing checking account where you’ll receive nothing.

Rent out your home short-term

This straightforward strategy takes advantage of space that you’re not using anyway and turns it into a money-making opportunity. If you’re going away for the summer or have to be out of town for a while, or maybe even just want to travel, consider renting out your current space while you’re gone.

You can list your space on any number of websites, such as Airbnb, and set the rental terms yourself. You’ll collect a check for your efforts with minimal extra work, especially if you’re renting to a tenant who may be in place for a few months.

You don’t have a lot of financial downside here, though letting strangers stay in your house is a risk that’s atypical of most passive investments. Tenants may deface or even destroy your property or even steal valuables, for example.

Buy a local business

A local business offers you the potential to generate a cash flow stream through an existing and established company. If the business is profitable enough, you may even be able to hire a manager to run it for you while you make only the biggest decisions or none at all. You may be able to get an attractive loan to buy it, so that you put less of your own money at risk early on.

Local businesses may have attractive and profitable niches that you can buy into, and ones that cannot be easily replicated by competitors. You may be able to piggyback off the seller’s expertise or credentials, especially at the start as you get up to speed. Sellers may be willing to finance part of the sale, giving them some incentive to see the business succeed. Also, you may make part of the purchase price contingent on certain profit goals or other metrics.

You’ll need to carefully vet any potential acquisition candidates, lest you end up with a business that’s much less profitable than it appears or that has fading prospects. It can prove valuable to work with experienced and honest brokers to get the best deal and avoid pitfalls, or hire a consultant to help evaluate a potential deal. In addition, if you’re hiring a manager to run the shop, you’ll want to be sure they’re honest and competent, or you’ll have problems.

Virtual Assisting

If you have great organizational, communication and detail skills, virtual assistant might be an excellent business for you, according to Flex Jobs. While duties vary, virtual assistants often support an employer or client through a variety of simple tasks, such as handling communications (emails, phone calls, even texts), scheduling events and travel, and other administrative sorts of details.

Most likely you’ll just need a computer and a phone.

Set up an annuity

An annuity can be a good place to set up reliable income. With a typical annuity, you give money to a financial company, usually an insurance company, that will provide you with a stream of income in the future. Annuities pay out monthly, and they can be set up in a variety of ways, for example to start paying immediately or much later.

Annuities can be structured in a huge number of ways, depending on exactly what you need, but they’re the definition of passive income. If you want a monthly payout immediately, the insurance company can set that up, or you can structure the payment to start when you retire, for example. In addition, you can set up an annuity that has a fixed return or one that could offer a variable payout depending on how the annuity’s investments performed.

An annuity can be set up to pay out for a set period, say, 20 years, or a lifetime. It could cease payment on your death or it could continue paying out to your spouse. The options are wide.

Annuities are tremendously complex, and when you set one up, you’re often locked in for a long time, though you may be able to get out by paying a significant penalty. Read the fine print on the contract carefully so that you understand the pros and cons of the specific contract.

Every annuity contract is different, and each may offer a unique set of benefits in order to cater to your specific needs. So it’s vital to understand what you’re signing up for.

Content Writing

There’s been a huge proliferation in the need for content writers over the past few years, according to attorney Stewart J. Guss, since content is key to search engine rankings. “It’s a field where you can work your way up with smaller and less-demanding pieces of content for modest profits. However, in time, as you find your specialties, you’ll be able to command higher per-word or per-hour rates.”

YouTube channel

Are you an expert on travel to Thailand? A maven of Minecraft? A sultan of swing dancing? Take your passion for a subject and turn it into a blog or a YouTube channel, using ads or sponsors to generate your income. Find a popular subject, even a small niche, and become an expert on it. At first, you’ll have to build out a suite of content and draw an audience, but it can create a steady income stream over time, as you become known for your engaging content.

You can leverage a free (or very low-cost) platform, then use your great content to build a following. The more unique your voice or area of interest, the better for you to become “the” person to follow. Then draw sponsors to you.

You’ll have to build out content at the start and then create ongoing content, which can take time. And you’ll need to be really passionate about the product, since that can help you maintain the motivation to continue, especially at the start as your followers are still finding you.

The real downside here is that you can outlay a bunch of your time and resources, with little to show for it, if there’s limited interest in your subject or niche. Your area of expertise may be too niche to really draw a profitable audience, but you won’t be sure of that until you experiment.
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