Due to lockdown restrictions and the closure of schools and offices, many Filipinos were forced to stay at home, finding opportunities to explore various home-based businesses during the pandemic. Even when establishments started to reopen and the majority are now back in schools and offices, many still opted to continue their home-based businesses on the side for extra income.
What are home-based businesses?
As the name suggests, home-based businesses are those operated from home. Regardless of the nature of the business, number of employees, or capital invested, it is considered a home-based business if it is operated in the place you live in.
Starting a Home-Business: Pros and Cons
Just like any other business, starting a home-business can also be quite challenging. The idea of becoming your own boss and having more freedom in terms of tasks and schedules is thrilling, yes, but it also means added responsibilities on your part as you need to take care of everything on your own. But of course, it can be rewarding and fulfilling too!
Before you start your home-based business, learn about these pros and cons first.
Pros of Starting a Home-Business
- It doesn’t require high startup costs. In fact, there are some home-based businesses that won’t even require capital to start. As long as you have the skills and equipment needed, you can already start your business.
- There will be less risks too. And since it requires lower or even no startup capital, you don’t need to take out loans or use all of your savings to get the business going.
- You can save on operating expenses. You don’t need to pay for an office lease and other expenses such as phone and internet bills, utilities, and maintenance. You can just use the resources available at home.
- You can save time and money on daily commutes or drives to work. Considering the frequent gas price hikes and heavy traffic especially in Metro Manila, staying at home to work and earn is already a huge relief.
- You can enjoy more personal freedom. You are your own boss, so you can set your own schedule and rules.
- You can do what you love. Having the opportunity to make a career out of your passion will give you an irreplaceable sense of fulfillment and satisfaction. Doing things you love can also help you thrive and grow further.
Cons of Starting a Home-Business
- You have to do more work. You will be responsible for all business-related tasks, including business registration, operations, and finance management. Remember, it’s usually a one-man team when it comes to home-businesses.
- Your income can be uncertain. Unlike in your full-time job where you have a fixed salary in a fixed cut-off period, your income in a home-business will depend on how good the business is performing. If you fail to meet your sales targets, you’ll have less income.
- There will be less benefits. Some companies offer really good employee benefits such as healthcare, fitness and wellness programs, performance bonuses and incentives, among others. You would have to give up on these benefits when you choose to start your own home-business. You will also be the one to take care of your mandatory government contributions.
- Personal matters may interfere at home. Running a home-business means you have to work in the company of your family, relatives, and loved ones. Sometimes, personal matters may cause distractions and affect your productivity. It might also be challenging to constantly set aside your personal and professional engagements while working at home.
Things to Consider for a Startup Business
Here are the things you need to consider before starting your home-business:
- Type of business. What are you going to offer? Businesses are typically categorized into Service, Merchandising, and Manufacturing. It’s important to determine which type of business is the most feasible and can actually be profitable.
- Target market. Who will buy your products or services? Identifying your customers is essential in the path you’re going to take.
- Startup capital. How much capital do you need? Do you have to buy more equipment and supplies? Do you need to renovate a part of your home for the business? Determine all the spending you have to make in order to start your business operations.
- Manpower. While it’s usually just you in the business, you still need to consider the possibility of hiring more people eventually. How many do you need to hire and how much are you going to pay them? Think of these things as early as now.
- Marketing plan. How will you market your business? Are you willing to pay for social media ads and other marketing efforts? You need to consider creating an efficient marketing plan to ensure the success of your business.
- Business registration. You need to register your business and secure all necessary permits and licenses to operate your business, even if it’s home-based.
- Finance and accounting. Whether it’s a small home-business, you still need to have an organized and efficient accounting system. If it’s too much work for you, don’t hesitate to seek professional help from accountants and bookkeepers.
Small Profitable Business Ideas You Can Start at Home
Here are 6 business ideas that you can start at the comfort of your own home:
- Online Selling
We’ve seen the rise of online businesses during the pandemic. According to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), there were 75,000 registered online businesses in 2020 alone. The availability of different marketplaces such as Shopee, Lazada, and Facebook Marketplace, among others, has made it easier for these businesses to thrive in the new normal.
Clothes, shoes, bags and fashion accessories are just some of the most popular items sold online today. Starting an online business usually requires a PHP5,000 to PHP10,000 capital, and all you’ll be needing is a computer or laptop, internet connection, a selling platform, and of course, products to sell.
- Pinoy Merienda Stall
Who would say no to their favorite Pinoy merienda? After fulfilling your regular work hours, you can set up a small stall in front of your house and sell merienda to your neighbors. The starting capital for this kind of business usually ranges between PHP2,000 to PHP5,000. You can serve fish balls, squidballs, hotdogs on a stick, bbq, kwek-kwek, banana cue, palitaw, turon, buko juice, gulaman, and other Pinoy favorites.
- Sari-Sari Store
Even with the presence of nearby malls and supermarkets, sari-sari stores have remained popular among neighborhoods and communities. A sari-sari store has always been a go-to store for snacks, cooking ingredients, toiletries, and many more. In fact, it is considered one of the most profitable businesses in the country.
If your home has some space to spare, you can open your own sari-sari store with only a PHP3,000 to PHP5,000 starting capital. If the business is doing good, you can even earn as much as PHP15,000 daily. Not bad, right?
- Printing Business
Now, this isn’t the typical printing business you have in mind. You don’t need to purchase your own printing equipment or hire personnels to make your printing services efficient. You only need to find a print provider.
To start, you can open your own online store and upload your designs on the said platform. You can print shirts, notebooks, mugs, and caps, among others. Once you get a customer, your print provider will take care of all the printing tasks and you just need to pay them for the production cost. You can also have the liberty of setting the price of your products in this type of business.
- Homemade and Handmade Products
This is for aspiring entrepreneurs who have the skills and passion to turn their hobbies into a business. Do you love cooking, baking, and creating stuff? With a starting capital of only PHP3,000 to PHP10,000, you can start selling homemade food, cakes and pastries, and handmade accessories such as necklaces, bracelets, and earrings.
You can utilize all available resources at home first. When you start earning, you can purchase and invest on new equipment for the business. Aside from the products mentioned above, you can also consider selling sauces and spreads, candles, home decors, soaps and many others.
- Coffee Shop
Time to make use of your endless love for coffee and make money out of it! There is no doubt that coffee is such an in-demand product these days and you will most likely succeed in this business as long as you provide value for money coffee.
For starters, you will be needing an espresso machine and grinder for the coffee beans. You can also consider hiring a barista if you are not that confident with your coffee-making skills. The ideal capital investment for a coffee shop business typically ranges between PHP5,000 to PHP15,000.
If you’re worried about the costs of the needed equipment, there is always a way to save. For example, you can purchase second hand machines that are still very much efficient or you can search for stores that offer huge discounts, or at least those with lower prices compared to others. Remember, you can still upgrade your equipment later on.
Before you take the next steps, make sure to research about your business idea first and learn everything you need to know about its operations. What worked for others might not work for you. That’s why it’s very important to choose a business that is actually feasible.
And remember, as long as you have the skills, determination, and commitment, you’ll never run out of ideas! So, start brainstorming now and push through with your entrepreneurship journey!