5 businesses that you can start and operate from home

Career Advice
24 April 2019 | Career Advice | Guest Author

If you’re a recent graduate with a strong skill set and an entrepreneurial streak, you might be considering starting up your own business. But this is no mean feat, and even if you’re courageous and confident in your knowledge and abilities, striking out alone can seem daunting.

One major barrier to graduate entrepreneurs is finding a location and site for their business.

Renting shop or office space can be extremely expensive, especially if you are already burdened by student debt. This represents a prohibitively large risk for many people, but it needn’t be a deterrent.

An excellent solution to this is to start a business that you can operate from home - at least to start with. Establishing yourself takes time and dedication, but it could be the ideal career path for those with an independent spirit. Here are 5 businesses that you can start at home:


Start your own online business

If you have a product to sell, you don’t need to hire shop space to do so. In this day and age you have the opportunity to build up your business from the comfort of your own home by establishing an online store or e-shop. This is perfect if you studied an arts subject or simply have a creative hobby that you can monetise, and you don’t need a huge amount of money to set everything up either!

Your online presence doesn’t need to be limited to eBay or Etsy. The visual nature of social media means that you can cultivate a following using Instagram; meaning that you can put those editing and filtering skills to good use.


Work freelance

Graduates of courses where much of the work is completed digitally, such as computer science or graphic design, have many opportunities to start their own businesses using the skills that they have acquired. If you’re a graphic designer, computer programmer or copywriter you can work from home on freelance projects and manage your own time. Having completed your degree, you will already have the skills and most, if not all, of the equipment you need. There are thirdy party online tools that can help you to get started in freelancing. 

If you studied a foreign language at university, you can opt to work from home translating documents. Even the most sophisticated translation software cannot compare with the nuances of a fluent speaker, so translators are always in demand, and translation gives you the opportunity to become part of a global marketplace while working from your bedroom.

Bear in mind that it is much easier to secure freelance work for all of these roles if you already have experience. If you have completed any paid or voluntary experience, such as an in-house internship, this will stand you in good stead.


Careers with animals

If you are an animal lover, you will be pleased to know that many people who work with pets are self-employed and run their own businesses. Plenty of animal care professionals, such as dog groomers, operate out of their own houses rather than working in a salon and earn a stable income doing so.

If the idea of a doggy nursery appeals to you, a dog sitting business can be run from your home. This can be a very profitable service due to the large numbers of people who own pets but work long hours, or those who cannot care for their pets over a brief period of time, such as a holiday. You can also combine this service with dog walking, giving you the chance to vary your day to day routine.


Private tuition

After graduating it can be hard to get a job in your chosen field, especially if your degree was in a non-vocational subject. However, you are qualified to provide private tuition in your specialist subject and tutors can charge a rate of around £20 an hour for their services.

It is also possible to tutor A Level students who wish to study your degree course at university. You can help them to prepare for any entrance exams that there may be, as well as look at their personal statements and/or portfolios. This is particularly useful if you went to a university that is renowned for the subject you studied, as places on that course will be in high demand.


Transcription and grant writing

In fields such as medicine and law, grants and transcripts are essential, but simply hiring any writer to complete them is not often practical, as the grant or transcription requires detailed specialist knowledge to ensure correct terminology.

If you are educated to degree level in a subject where specialist writing is required, you can use your knowledge of the sector to establish a transcription or grant writing business. This can be combined with your existing career - in which case, it is an excellent way to make sure that your knowledge is up to date. However, it is also a perfect way to start a business in its own right, and it’s easy to establish as you require no more than your existing skill set and a computer.

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