Work and Home.
No two words evoke more opposing feelings. When to comes to business, financing, and market trends, the last word one would think of is the home. Conversely, entrepreneurship isn’t exactly what one would associate with the home.
Home, however, can actually serve as a gateway to business opportunities. Homemaking, from cooking to cleaning and other home matters, requires skills that can potentially be a source of income and can even be expanded into full-blown businesses.
So if you’re a homemaker or someone with certain domestic skills, here are some ideas on how to unlock the business potential of your daily chores.
Cooking up a business
Your kitchen can cook up more than just your family meals. The food industry may be a saturated market, but it’s also one that will always stay relevant to many people.
If you have a signature recipe that has been a guaranteed hit at every single potluck you’ve served it in, you should start considering selling these goods. Whether it’s a cookie or a casserole, getting into the food business is a great place to start.
Many famous food businesses started in home kitchens. Famous Amos, for example, is a cookie brand that started with homemade cookies. The advantage of these homemade food brands is that they were already “market-tested” through family and friends, even before they were launched. They also gain popularity through one of the most powerful forms of advertising–word of mouth.
When starting, you would need to consider how to mass-produce the food you’re making, to a certain extent. You would also need to ensure that your kitchen has the capacity and the sanitary requirements that such an endeavor would entail. You don’t really need to go big-time right away and invest in industrial equipment, but knowing how to manage big batches should be something you already have down pat.
Crafting an enterprise
Knitting or cross-stitching is often a punchline, implying that a person has learned this because they have nothing else to do, but the truth is, these are beautiful crafts that bring joy to the lives of many—and can also earn them a pretty penny.
Just browse through Etsy listings, and you’ll find so many shop owners whose small businesses are based on the crafts and skills that they’ve pursued at home. There is an exceptional range of work out there. Embroidery, sewing, woodwork—these are all home hobbies that you can pursue and eventually sell to a welcoming market.
There is competition, so apart from maintaining a high quality of work and making your price competitive, try making your brand stand out. There should be a unique selling point that would make your knits unique, like a special yarn or unusual colors and patterns. Maybe your wood crafts are inspired by pop culture or are made from recycled wood. You could also offer personalization services to make your crafts extra special.
We’re living in a time when people are looking for authentic, handmade, and artisanal products. Many are also keen on supporting small and local businesses. It is for these reasons that home handicrafts might be your gateway to business.
Serving the market
Maybe your product isn’t necessarily about making things but about providing services. That’s a very viable option, too. Busy families and professionals often need help with routine household chores, and maybe your business can be all about that.
You can start small, maybe only around your neighborhood. Whether it be a car washing or window cleaning service, you can start with maybe just yourself or a couple of friends and some basic equipment and tools. Ask your initial clients to recommend you to their friends, and you might find yourself with an expanding business.
Expanding the home
Because your home will serve as the headquarters of your business, you might find yourself needing extra space. Apart from looking for actual commercial space, you could also consider just moving to a bigger home. This would give you more space for your growing business while also maintaining the homemade, “fresh from our backyard” nature of your business. Talk to a mortgage lender to explain your situation–that your home loan isn’t just a domestic investment but a business move, too.
Our homes may be where we retire after a day’s work, but with the right business, it could also be the place where we find joy in our work.