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Home-Based Business Opportunities

Home-based businesses in the town, suburbs or on the farm can be just as lucrative as office or factory jobs. Whether you are interested in gardening, crafts, DIY projects or personal service jobs, home based businesses offer the freedom to work from home at your own pace and to be your own boss.

In the articles below are stories of home business successes in many fields — gardening, home repair, office work, teaching, and arts and crafts of all kinds. There are also a few tales of home business failures and bumps in the road to learn from. And the advent of the Internet age has ushered in a whole new niche for online home-based jobs.
With a modest investment in time, energy and money, you can work from home and own your own business.

Garden Green

Earn Cash With your Own Garden-Grown Nursery
Our 3,000-square-foot garden produces about three-quarters of the vegetables we eat in a year — and a bumper crop of nursery stock that brings us up to $1,000 of extra cash annually.

Mother's Mini-Manual: Greenhouse Gardening
Although they're usually considered "luxuries,” greenhouses are, in fact, wonderful, year-round gardens that can be useful for producing vegetables for the kitchen table or the local market.

You Can Make Money Harvesting and Selling Botanicals
Almost every relatively green region on the U.S. and Canada boasts at least one native "medicine plant" which homesteaders can make money harvesting.

The Organic Home Nursery
With no money, no publicity and virtually no plants, Donn and Rachel Tickner started a retail organic nursery. All they really had going for them was a healthy stock of reverence, know-how and determination.

Pick Poke for Profit
Pokeweed (phytolacca americana) is an early wild green. Some folks pick pokeweed and sell it to neighbors.
Read about Rosemary Randolph's experience picking poke.

Hobby Farming and the IRS
The following tips by a specialist in extension farm businesses may give you better understanding this tax season, including records and other considerations.

Crafts for Cash

Toys to Build for the Young and the Young at Heart
Carefully crafted handmade toys can become family heirlooms passed from generation to generation.

Wild and Woody
Twig furniture blends the natural grace of the growing tree with the personality of the builder, including choosing wood, planning and making rustic furniture, alternative tenon, finishing.

I Build Willow Chairs for Pleasure and Profit
How to gather willow, tools needed for the job, chair design and how to market the chairs.
Read about R. Sowards' experience building willow cane chairs.

It Pays To Be An Old Sew-And-Sew
How to work 25 hours a week at your sewing machine as a seamstress, make $300 a month and keep track of the kids at the same time.

Sun-Burned Art
Use a magnifying glass, the sun and a block of wood to make wood-burned designs.
Read about Lance Ollenberger's sun-burned slogan button business.

Fine-Feathered Hatbands
Make a classy hatband from pheasant feathers.
Read about M.S.'s and Lori Ides' hatband making experiences.

How to Paint House Portraits
If you're a struggling artist in need of cash, make ends meet with house portraits!
Read about G.J.'s bartering experience with house portraits and Mary Denney's homescapes..

A Holiday Artist
When the approach of Christmas brings visions of elves, reindeer, holly and an empty bank account, this might be the perfect solution.

Make Wreaths for Winter Dollars
Use cuttings from evergreen trees to make wreaths for your family and friends, and to sell for holiday cash.
Read about Diane Abernathy's wreath making business.

The 19th Century Business You Can Start Today
The old business of tin-typing to make photographs is still economically viable today.

Hand-lettering Makes Sense: Cash in on Old English
Hand-lettering is easy to learn, worth money, and takes us back a little way toward the days when folks took pride in the graphic arts.
Read about Suzanne the Sign Painter.

How to Make $1,000 a Week Making Candles
The venture that keeps Dennis in the business of living is the business of making and selling candles.
Read about how Dennis inspired Janet Ryan's macrame business and David Paulson's candle making experience.

Macramé, or the art of creative knotting, may look difficult but its really about as easy as tying your shoes and as inexpensive as a ball of twine.

Trash to Treasure

Recycled Refunds
There's a surprising number of "checks" and "vouchers" with your name on them just waiting to be picked up.
Read about Sara Sander's refunding experience.

The Fine Art of Trash-Mongering
Conversation about the art of trashmongering and scavenging at Baltimore County Sanitary Landfill.
Read about Dave Bacon's and Tom Mesi's trash hauling experience.

Try a Wood Pallet Project
A couple in Vermont has created potting sheds, a greenhouse and more from repurposed wood pallets

Teachable Moments

How To Teach Almost Anything At Home
From “101 Practical Ways to Make Money at Home.”

How To Teach a Guitar Workshop
If you're a passably-fair guitar player looking for a way to make some extra money, look no further – Suzette Haden Elgin tells us exactly how to earn $40 with your guitar almost anytime you feel like it.

Making Money

10 Surefire Home Businesses for the New Decade
How can I be my own employer and not spend a fortune doing it?

The Lonely Worker
Freelance cartooning: How to break free on a grass roots level.

Underground Moving
If you're stuck in the city, becoming a mover or trucker might help you earn your way out. All it takes is a second-hand truck or bus, a stable telephone number, strong arms and a broad back.
Read about Suzanne Harmon's freelance moving experience and Stanley Callopy's hauling business..

Getting Paid for Living Good
Have you ever dreamed of living the Good Life out in the country far from the city's noise and pollution and still get paid for doing all this while protecting natural areas from the dangers of "civilization"?

The Best Home Typing Business of Them All
Make your own hours and work at your own pace by transcribing notes for court reporters.
Read about Linda Martin's home transcriber experience.

$12,000 a Year Home Typing Business
Here's an article on how to make a ongoing paycheck with a home typing business.

Housesitting as a Way of Life
How to turn housesitting into a business and an acceptable, profitable substitute for home ownership.
Read about Claire Stevens' experience in pet sitting.

I Wash Windows And Live Like A King!
Authors offer different views on the window-washing perspective but agree that it is a fun, profitable field of employment.

How to Start a Home Bakery of Your Own
Baking brings family closer together and brings in extra money, including getting started, how the idea began, cost, simplicity and cleanliness.
Read about Dan Wesolowski's business selling sandwiches.

It's a Hare-Raising Business
Beginner's guide to raising rabbits, including a rabbit barn, pens, feeders and waterers, breeding stock, care and feeding, breeding, butchering and meat sales.
Read about Chuck and Cathy Tate's rabbit raising experience.

Rabbits, Records and Other Matters
Keep good records of the costs of feed and other costs for your rabbit-raising business.

Our Family Upholstery Business
Author and businesswoman shares how her family got started in the furniture recovering business, with advice and tips for potential entrepreneurs, and what it takes to get started and get established.
Read about Tim Hamblen's new upholstery business.

Wood-Burner Restoration
Bill Eckert explains how to restore an antique wood burning stove.

Chimney Sweeps are Cleaning Up!
This chimney sweep home business may be the best start-on-a-shoestring business that Mother has ever featured!
Read about Joel Baldwin & Bill Lannon's chimney sweep business success. And here's a successful business inspired by this article.

“Landlord” Doesn’t Have to be a Dirty Word
Buying, cleaning up, renting out, and selling quality older homes for a profit may be just the "home business" you've been looking for.
Read about Loretta and Dan Dolingg's success at being a landlord.

Profit with Portable Sawmills
Dreaming of a new home or barn you can't quite afford? If you cut your own lumber using a portable sawmill, you could save enough to bring the project within reach. And you can use the mill to develop a business custom-cutting lumber.
Read more successful sawmill businesses from James Fairfield, Dave Boyt and another tip from Dave.

The Treeincarnaters
Mark and Ray salvage logs for lumber from storm damaged trees.

I Drive For Money
How a retired gentleman who lives in the sticks makes money driving other people’s cars.

Saved by the Bell: a Business Solution
If you are in a location where business is slow, install a hose bell to alert you to customer’s arrival.

A Nice Little Concrete Business
Start an enterprise on $5. Here's an alternative way of earning money without getting into the 9-to-5 rat race.

How to Go to Work for Yourself
Start a small business and become economically independent.

On Your Own
Work at home rip-offs and starting a small business.

Post a comment below.


2/17/2016 10:09:07 AM
"$12,000 a Year Home Typing Business" It might be time to update your list and ask readers for things they're doing now to make money at home.

2/3/2016 2:54:52 PM
Looking at these old opportunities from 30-40 yrs ago is interesting but more up to date info is needed.

1/26/2016 4:15:51 AM
Well, reading this can be helpful as well.

1/20/2016 2:00:46 PM
What a great resource! Working from home, around my family's busy schedule has been amazing! I love the freedom to be able to attend what is important to me, and to be able to volunteer frequently, without sacrificing a great income. I feel truly blessed to have found a business that's such a great fit ethically, environmentally and financially. If you're looking for an excellent residual income stream, I invite you to visit

11/7/2015 6:53:38 PM
Great share! It's a pleasure to read your article about business opportunities. I like the freedom to work from home at my own pace and to be your own boss. I am currently working with an ecommerce company. It's free to join. When you shop online, you get paid. If you want to learn more, visit

10/30/2015 6:00:34 AM
A lot of these money-making ideas require some sort of skill or talent, but what most people don't realize is that they already possess one or two marketable skills. I believe that one of the hardest things to do in running a home-based business is taking that first step and actually GETTING STARTED! Marketing (also known as 'getting customers') is also an obstacle for many folks. With that in mind, I started a blog called 'Self Employment Business Ideas and Marketing Strategies.' I hope it helps some home-based entrepreneurs get over those initial hurdles.

9/13/2015 3:54:47 PM
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9/7/2015 2:26:19 AM
Thank you for this page, it is nice to see all this information in one place. Prior to setting up Online Business Team I have even tried a couple myself. It was always my dream to have my own online business. What I found that works best online is now being offered for free. Here is an explanation of the software I use that will enable you to create unlimited cash generating websites

7/5/2015 4:15:10 AM
I am currently doing work from home business with All Solutions Network. It has been an awesome experience, and it’s free to join, no cost at all. You get commissions when you sell products, and there are many retailers to sell through, so you can promote whatever products you want. There are also opportunities for up to $5,000 in bonuses per month, and most people make their first $100-$500 within the first couple of hours. I absolutely love it, and love the support that's available! If you're looking for an excellent residual stream of income, check out this link:

6/26/2015 6:41:55 AM
Do You Need Extra Income? Do you have a PayPal Account? (If Not the set up takes 10-15 minute) Does $50 000+ in your PayPal account sound like something you'd be interested in? That's Right. $50 000+ dollars in your PayPal Account. IT WAS PROVEN ON OPRAH You have most likely seen or heard about this project on TV programs such as 20/20 and Oprah, or you may have read about it in the Wall Street Journal. If not, here it is below - revealed to you in step-by-step detail. This program is by no means new. It has been in existence in many forms for at least a decade. But in the early days, it required a lot more time and effort, as well as an investment of a few hundred dollars. However thanks to PayPal and the Internet, the investment is now virtually ZERO! And what's more, the entire process is FASTER, EASIER, and MORE LUCRATIVE than it has EVER been! How to Turn $6 into $20,000 in 30 Days with PayPal I WAS SHOCKED WHEN I SAW HOW MUCH MONEY CAME FLOODING INTO MY PAYPAL ACCOUNT. I turned $6 into $20 000 within the first 30 days of operating the business plan that I am about to reveal to you free of charge. If you decide to take action on the following instructions, I will GUARANTEE that you will enjoy a similar return! STILL NEED PROOF? Here are just three testimonials from the countless individuals who decided to invest nothing more than $6 and half an hour of their time to participate in this program: "What an amazing plan! I followed your instructions just three weeks ago, and although I haven't made 15 grand yet, I'm already up to $9 135. I'm absolutely gob smacked." -Pam Whittemore , Ohio "Well, what can I say? THANK YOU SO MUCH! I sent 40 e-mails out like you said and then I just forgot about the whole thing. To be honest, I didn't really think anything would come of it. But when I checked my PayPal account a week later, there was over $5,000 in After 30 days. I now have over $11,000 to spend! I can't thank you enough!"-Juan Tovar, NY, NY "I was shocked when I saw how much money came flooding into my PayPal account. Within three weeks my account balance has ballooned to $12 449. At first I thought there had been some sort of error with my account!" -Richard Barrie , Boulder,CO The only things you will need are: · An email address · A Business or Premier PayPal account with at least $6 deposited in it, and · Just 15 to 30 minutes of your time. This program takes just half an hour to set up. After that, there is absolutely no work whatsoever to do on your part. You have absolutely NOTHING to lose, and there is NO LIMIT to the amount of income you can generate from this one single business program. Let's get started, just follow the instructions exactly as set out below and then prepare yourself for a HUGE influx of cash over the next 30 days! Here's what you need to do. REQUIREMENTS · #1) an email address · #2) a Premier or Business PayPal account Now follow the steps: 1-4 STEP #1 - Setting up your FREE PayPal ************* extremely safe and very easy to set up a FREE PayPal account! Copy and paste this to the address bar (notice the secure "https" within the link). Be sure to sign up for a free PREMIER or BUSINESS account (and not just a PERSONAL account) otherwise you won't be able to receive credit card payments from other people. STEP #2 - Sending PayPal money "It is an undeniable law of the universe that we must first give in order to receive." Now all you have to do is send $1.00 by way of PayPal to each of the SIX email addresses listed below. After setting up your free paypal account and confirming or verifying YOUR ACCOUNT AND putting (SIX Dollars) $6.00 into your PayPal Account. Use the Account tab on PayPal to send $1.00 to each of the names on the list with a note "Please add me to your list." Make sure the subject of the payment says... *PLEASE PUT ME ON YOUR EMAIL LIST* (this keeps the program 100% legal, so please don't forget!) (Just in case you still haven't opened your PayPal account yet, use this link to open one in your name), #1) #2) #3) #4) #5) #6) (Make sure it's the same e-mail address that you used to open your PayPal account. This is the way you will receive payment) STEP #3 - Adding Your Email Address After you send your payments, it's your turn to add your email address to the list! Take the #1) email off the list that you see above, move the other addresses up one (6 becomes 5 & 5 becomes 4, etc) then put YOUR email address (the one used in your PayPal account) as #6) on the list. **MAKE SURE THE EMAIL YOU SUPPLY IS EXACTLY AS IT APPEARS IN YOUR PAYPAL ACCOUNT** STEP #4 - Copy Message to 200 Newgroups, message boards,etc. The Pure Joy of Receiving PayPal Money! You are now ready to post your copy of this message, to at least 200 newsgroups, message boards, etc. (I think there are close to 32 000 groups). All you need is 200, but remember, the more you post, the more money you make - as well as everyone else on the list! In this situation your job is to let as many people see this letter as possible. So they will make you and me rich! You can even start posting the moment your email is confirmed. Payments will still appear in your PayPal account even while your bank account is being confirmed. HOW TO POST TO NEWSGROUPS & MESSAGE BOARDS Step #1) You do not need to re-type this entire letter to do your own posting. Simply hold CTRL key and A to select all, and then copy, either with CTRL+C or select 'copy' from the edit menu. This will copy the entire letter into your computer's clipboard. Step #2) Open a blank 'Notepad' file and place your cursor at the top of the blank page. From the 'Edit' menu select 'Paste'. This will paste a copy of the letter into notepad so that you can add your email to the list. Or copy to a Word Document and Place in the email upon completion. Step #3) Save your new Notepad file as a .txt file. If you want to do your postings in different sittings, you'll always have this file to go back to. Step #4) Use Netscape or Internet Explorer and try searching for various newsgroups, on-line forums, message boards, bulletin boards, chat sites, discussions, discussion groups, online communities, etc. EXAMPLE: go to any search engine like,,, - then search with subjects like millionaire message board? Or money making message board? Or opportunity message board? or money making discussions? or business bulletin board? or money making forum? etc. You will find thousands & thousands of message boards. Click them one by one then you will find the option to post a new message. Step #5) Visit these message boards and post this article as a new message by highlighting the text of this letter and selecting 'Paste' from the 'Edit' menu. Fill in the Subject, this will be the header that everyone sees as they scroll thru the list of postings in a particular group, click the post message button. You're done with your first one! Congratulations! THAT'S IT! All you have to do is jump to different newsgroups and post away. After you get the hang of it, it will take about 30 seconds for each newsgroup! REMEMBER, THE MORE NEWSGROUPS AND/OR MESSAGE BOARDS YOU POST IN, THE MORE MONEY YOU WILL MAKE! BUT YOU HAVE TO POST A MINIMUM OF 200** That's it! You will begin receiving money within days! **JUST MAKE SURE THE EMAIL YOU SUPPLY IS EXACTLY AS IT APPEARS ON PAYPAL.** Explanation of why it works so well: $$$$$ NOW THE WHY PART: Out of 200 postings, say I receive only five replies (a very low example). Then I made $5.00 with my email at #5 on the letter. Each of the five persons who just sent me $1.00 make the MINIMUM 200 postings, each with my email at #5 and only five persons respond to each of the original five, that is another $25.00 for me. Those 25 each now make 200 MINIMUM posts with my email at #4 and only five replies each, I will bring in an additional $125.00! Those 125 persons now post the MINIMUM 200 with my email at #3 and only receive five replies each, I will make an additional $625.00! Now here is the fun part: each of those 625 persons post a MINIMUM 200 letters with my email at #2 and they only receive 5 replies that just made me $3 125.00! Those 3 125 persons will all deliver this message to 200 newsgroups with my email at #1 and if only five persons per 200 newsgroups react I will receive $15 625.00, with an original investment of only $5.00! AMAZING! When your email is no longer on the list, you just take latest posting in the newsgroups, and send out another $5.00 to emails on the list, putting your email at number 5 again. And start posting again. The thing to remember is, thousands of people all over the world are joining the internet and reading these articles everyday, JUST LIKE YOU ARE now! So can you afford $6.00? And see if it really works? I think so! People have said, what if the plan is played out and no one sends you the money? What are the chances of that happening when there are tons of new honest users and new honest people who are joining the internet and newsgroups every day and are willing to give it a try? Estimates are at 20 000 to 50 000 new users sign up every day, with thousands of those joining the actual Internet. Remember, play FAIRLY and HONESTLY and this will work. This really isn't another one of those crazy scams! As long as people FOLLOW THROUGH with sending out $5.00, it works! With warm wishes, bless you and your loved ones, $$$$$DON'T PASS THIS UP $$$$$

5/19/2015 2:19:10 PM
Personally, I tend to like the opportunities for leveraged and/or residual income! There's nothing like seeing the fruits of your labor materialize into an income that is being made by people in your downline. Being an Affiliate Marketer is most definitely the best decision I have ever made. If you would like some information, Copy/Paste the link below:

5/12/2015 12:23:04 PM
What would extra income mean for you and your family? At Myecon, we are teach financial strategies to: 1.Minimize Taxes, Eliminate Debt, and Minimize expenses 2.Earn Home Business Income 3.Earn investment income by asset Accumulation

1/5/2015 10:50:14 AM
I'd like to add in become a school substitute teacher in your area. My kids are home schooled {my mother is a retired, certified school teacher.}, but I work as much or as little as I want in our local district high school.Which gives me time to work our line to line garden;which provides for us and the neighbors in the spring,fall, & summer. We also registered with the local Ag dept ,so we can sell excess at local farmers markets.Some markets will even allow you to sell hand crafts in a separate booth. And do not forget arts & craft fairs!

1/3/2015 4:52:22 PM
Hi. Some of these ideas look pretty good. I would add Amazon FBA as an excellent home business because of its ease of entry and success rate.Also, at: we highlight only Legitimate home businesses for Free. Take a look. Thanks

10/10/2013 9:54:33 PM
My home-based business is raising chickens and selling eggs, or giving them to a local charity that gives a box of food out once a month. Sometimes, they don't have much in the way of meat to share and a dozen eggs can provide more protein in someone's diet. Eggs can be boiled, baked, poached, fried, made into egg salad, made into deviled eggs, added to pancakes, added to cornbread, added to cookies, added to milk for extra richness, like in eggnog, or pudding, etc.

9/20/2013 5:34:14 PM
How about some home based business opportunities for 2013....not just the 1970s.

8/30/2013 2:37:23 PM
BEFORE YOU SIGN UP FOR ANY OF THESE!!!!!!!!!!!! Check with the Better Business Bureau first. It will save you money, time and heartache. Anything that guarantees you tons of money for little effort is usually a scam anyway.

4/3/2013 4:05:38 PM
Many of these articles are quite old. They should be reviewed for current applicability and improvements over the years. Are there any new types of home businesses out there?

Cynthia Clouser
11/29/2012 7:01:13 PM
These are awesome ideas. l remember doing Macrame when l was younger. Going to find another site for that. Don't really remember how to.

Jen Smith
11/14/2012 5:41:53 PM
The article on home typing was penned in 1974. May not be relevant 38 years later.

Linda Slasberg
11/7/2012 3:34:42 PM
I work from home as a copy editor and typist.

5/5/2012 4:33:41 PM

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