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Do You Need a New Small Business Idea?

There are many reasons for wanting to start up your own small business. Some people are bored of their nine to five job and want to start up something small on the side that interests them and could have the potential to turn into something more fully-fledged given time. Others may have been made redundant and are finding it a struggle to secure another job, so want to try their hand at creating their own. There are even many retired people who still believe they have a few good years left in them yet and are not quite ready for a cardigan and armchair.

Whatever your reason for wanting to start up something new, many people actually find themselves stuck for an idea of what they could do. Luckily, we can help you here with a few tried and tested ideas for a lucrative business whether you are looking for a job on the side or a second or even third career from home!

Bookkeeping and Accounting

Do you have bookkeeping or accounting experience? There is a lot of call today for freelance or independent bookkeepers and accountants to help with other local small business owners. You could specialise in helping sole traders or small businesses in your local area who may not have the time to manage their own accounts. Many sole traders are in the position where they are solely responsible for every element of their business, and many don’t have the time or skills to keep on top of their books and paperwork. Their business may be too small a concern for larger accounting companies to consider taking on, so you would be providing an invaluable service to entrepreneurs in this position.

You can create some flyers and business cards and walk around your local area to hand-deliver your information to local shops, independent traders and service providers. Many will appreciate having a bookkeeper or accountant that is on their doorstep.

Small repairs and upcycling service

Are you good with your hands and love nothing more than fixing things or figuring out how things work? If you have a stash of tools in your shed and like tinkering with gadgets, then you could find your niche helping people with small repairs and maintenance jobs such as bicycle repairs, fixing toasters, coffee machines and other household gadgets. There is a huge social movement at the moment to re-use and recycle rather than throw away your stuff, so opening up a little workshop in a spare bedroom, garage or shed where you can take in small repairs or help get pushbikes roadworthy after a long winter in storage could be a nice sideline for you.

Business Plan Writer

With so many people looking to set up their own businesses, there is a need for them to prepare a business plan, especially if they are wanting to apply for funding to get the business off the ground. Even unemployed job seekers wanting to start up a business through the New Enterprise Allowance system at their local job centre may need help preparing their business plan to help them get their business idea passed for funding. You could help them with this!

Lots of people have a fantastic business idea, but don’t know where to start. Everything starts with a business plan, so if you are organised, methodical and know how to research for and structure a sound business plan, your skills could be in great demand.

Domestic Cleaning service

The demand for domestic cleaning services are also on the rise. With so many more people spending more of their time out of the home and in the workplace today than ever before, there is still a need for domestic tasks to be done, but with no-one home on a regular basis to complete them the tasks soon pile up. Many families are really time-poor these days, so a helping hand with the domestic chores can be a welcome relief for busy parents, career couples and single workers with long commutes.

There are so many ways to profit from this business, from general hoovering and dusting, to changing bedding, doing laundry, cleaning windows and ironing. You can set your own services to provide depending on your own skills and available time. You can post leaflets around housing estates to get your first clients and if you provide a good job, then word of mouth recommendations will help you pick up new clients.

Specialist Consultant

You may have spent many years within a trade or industry and attended lots of industry specific training courses that have qualified you to expert level. It would be a great shame not to make further use of your skills, knowledge and qualifications, especially if you are facing retirement and don’t feel you are ready to step back from the world of work just yet.

Setting yourself up as an independent consultant within your industry will be a logical step for you to take here. You may well already have lots of industry contacts that could be useful for sourcing clients once you are ready to take that step.

Mobile Computer Repairs

While computer repair shops are pretty common in large towns and cities, it may not be the case in a more rural setting. Offering a convenient mobile computer repair service could be the perfect solution for rural clients that are more cut off, or for those people who are unable to get their computer to a repair shop. Having a service that comes out to people’s homes offers a level of convenience that many repair centres don’t offer and can often win you loyal clients that will stick with you for years as you will become a trusted source of help.

So if you have mad computer skills and are familiar with fixing software and hardware issues, then this could be the niche for you.

Dog Walking and Pet Feeding Services

We all know how much the British love their pets, especially dogs! With people working long hours, our pets are often left alone at home for too long. Offering a dog walking service can be a great solution to this problem. You can add extra services to boost your appeal and income, such as feeding, cleaning and grooming, spending time playing with dogs, pet-sitting and even administering medications and trimming claws. You could even offer extras such as retrieving milk off the doorstep, picking up parcels left by the door, closing curtains and switching on the lights to help protect homes and make them look occupied.

Auction Assistant

Lots of people need help to de-clutter their homes. This happens a lot when grown up children move out, older people downsize to smaller properties or families move home and need a hand to dispose of unwanted belongings they don’t want to take with them. Many items can be valuable and are worth selling on eBay or other online sales sites. You could be the one to help people in this position by sorting through their clutter, picking out valuable items and listing them for sale on online auction sites.

You could charge a flat rate for your services, or instead agree to take a percentage of the money made through sales. Whichever you would find easier.


These are just a few ideas of already successful small business that could be operated from home out of a spare room, garage or garden shed. The time and costs of setting up these types of businesses are minimal, but you could find them to be a very lucrative side-line that could possibly lead on to something greater further down the line. So what is stopping you?

Further reading:

Start Your Own Business in Ten Easy Steps

The Over 50’s Entrepreneurs are leading UK Small Business Growth