21 Of The Easiest And Cheapest Businesses To Start (For Less Than $1,000!)

21 Of The Easiest And Cheapest Businesses To Start (For Less Than $1,000!)21 Of The Easiest And Cheapest Businesses To Start (For Less Than $1,000!)

You don't need a lot to start earning a lot MORE!

If you’ve got time to spare or have been itching to break out from the daily 9-5, maybe starting a side hustle is the thing for you. One of the biggest hurdles a lot of entrepreneurs face is budget – “what if I don’t have enough money?”. Well what if you could find a business you could start under $1,000? The cheapest business to start only requires one thing – you. Your set of skills and expertise will take your far. Let’s see what you could offer.


21 ideas for the cheapest business to start

1. Tutor

cheapest business to start

Source: Unsplash

There’s huge markets of people looking to learn new skills. If you know a specific skill, there’s something willing to learn. PayScale says the median wage of tutors $17.64 per hour.

2. Translator

Speaking of skills, knowing how to speak many languages is a skill in high demand. Whether you do some translation work online or help other startups be a translator for international communication, having this skill is extremely flexible and scales really well. The median pay for translators is  $19.88 per hour.

3. Transcriber

If you have quick fingers and spare time, you can earn some side cash from people who need audio interviews, speeches or videos transcribed. The pay isn’t bad with a median pay of $15.15 per hour.

4. Freelance writer

Writing is one of the cheapest business to start. Business owners and entrepreneurs want to focus on running the business. But if they’re worth their salt, they know good copy goes a long way in helping to establish a brand. The only issue with freelance writing is the pay varies massively according to your experience and speciality. But starting up is easy, since you just need a computer and internet connection.

5. Photographer

Handy with a camera? Creating memories through photography and a keen eye for detail can be a great business. The initial cost of equipment is high in the tripid, fancy camera and insurance. But if you’ve bought that already, freelancing can earn you $25.29 per hour.

6. Dog Walker

cheapest business to start

Source: Unsplash

Get some exercise and quality time with pets! It’s an easy business to start and can be done on a routine, where you set your own hours. Pet business insurance will be the bulk of your expenses. The median pay is $13.23 but can vary from $8 to $20 depending on your location.

7. Jewellery maker

Don’t let your creative talents go to waste! If you are good at making artisanal crafts and goods, selling these on online art platforms like Etsy can make this profitable. Normally, sellers charge by project, rather than hourly wages.

8. Makeup artist

cheapest business to start

Source: Unsplash

If you’re a professional makeup artist or hairdresser, why not earn some side cash by doing out-of-hours work? People will pay for a quick touch-up or even a full on makeover. Makeup artists have a median wage of $17.19 per hour, while hairdressers earn $10.15 per hour.

9. Virtual assistant

cheapest business to start

Source: Shutterstock

Virtual assistant jobs are becoming more and more popular with stay at home moms. They can earn up to $900 per month working for international companies! If you’re organised and efficient with your time management, this could be the job for you!

10. Copy editor

cheapest business to start

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There’s a lot of bad copy out there. And businesses want to make sure their’s is the best. If you’ve got a good eye for detail and excellent grammar, why not earn $22.09 per hour improving copy for companies?

11. Personal chef

In this modern age, a chef can work in many areas. Whether it’s for parties, business functions or helping a busy entrepreneur out who has no time to cook, personal chefs can earn $20.82 per hour.

12. Graphic designer

cheapest business to start

Source: Unsplash

Making your website pleasing to the eye is tough. Even if there are a lot of free designing software, not many know how to utilise the power of these apps. If you’re a patient and competent graphics designer, you could earn anywhere from $15 to $28 per hour solving issues with customised graphics.

13. UI/UX designer

Similar to a graphics designer, you’re fixing software issues. But the focus is on how easy a website or an app is to use. There’s nothing more frustrating when you’re browing a site that is clunky and hard to navigate, which is why software engineers fix the backend coding to improve user interface (UI) and user experience (UX). UI designers can earn $41.63 per hour, while UX designers have a median salary of $34.36 per hour.

14. Social media manager

cheapest business to start

Source: Unsplash

Less heavy on the tech side and more on social media, a lot of small companies and startups are on the lookout for social media managers. You’d be managing all the content that gets posted and making sure their brand is pushed out, while making sure it’s #Instaworthy. The median salary is $14.11 per hour.

15. Consultant

If you’ve accumulated a lot of experience in an industry, your knowledge and wisdom will be really valuable to people who are at crossroads with their businesses. You could help with strategic planning and help businesses expand or reduce in size to meet their goals. Consultants earn a median salary of $39.55 per hour.

16. PR professional

Another business you could start with a lot of experience is a PR manager. You probably gathered a lot of contacts and know an industry inside out. That expertise can be leveraged as you network with the media, potential advertisers and government arms. PR managers make $49 on average.

17. Property manager

If you’re good with planning and looking after things, people will pay $50,000 – $100,000 for good property managers. A good choice for the cheapest business to start, they normally ensure that a household is in check and everything is running smoothly. This includes running the daily chores and liaising with other domestic professionals like gardeners and cleaners.

18. Event coordinator 

cheapest business to start

Source: Unsplash

If looking after properties isn’t your thing, then you can use those organisational skills to plan big and momentus events. We’re talking birthdays, anniversaries, graduation parties – some people lack the creative insight into making a gathering really memorable. Event coordinators can earn $12.77 per hour.

19. Wedding planner

Wedding planning is such a big deal that it deserves a category on its own! It can cause unforeseen stress and sleepless nights for the to-be bride and groom. So having someone there to make sure all the finer details are sorted and everything is ticking along can be invaluable. Wedding planners can earn $19.89 per hour.

20. Personal trainer

cheapest business to start

Source: Unsplash

Do you love motivating people? Personal training is still high in demand as individuals are always on the lookout to improve themselves. Your biggest expense will be in insurance. But if you love fitness and working with people, you could start earning $18 per hour as a personal trainer!

21. Freelance accountant

Certified accountants can earn a lot of side money since many entrepreneurs won’t have any experience balancing the books. In your spare time, this could be the cheapest business to start. Accountants can earn $18.45 per hour.


Inspired to by our list of the cheapest business to start? Leave a comment or share with a friend and start making some money!

Read more articles below:

The Top 15 Easiest Startup Ideas For A Highly Profitable Small Business

7 Asian Startups By Women That Have Been Successfully Funded

The 3 Main Reasons Why Family Businesses Fail

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Written by

Vinnie Wong