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Thread: Side Business?

  1. #1

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    Default Side Business?

    Anyone have a little side business to supplement their income from their primary job? I'm always thinking of ways I can get a little business going, and could use some thoughts from those that are doing it.

    Just curious.

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    i`am a butcher in a grocery store, and cut steaks at a resturant.
    it`s not really a business yet tax time will tell.

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    Yes and no. I used to run a farrier business on weekends for additional funds but no more. (After an accident in '98 my back could no longer handle it.) A few years ago I became 1/3rd owner of a computer business that I helped start up with the future in mind but I'm not taking an income from it right now.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shizelbs
    Anyone have a little side business to supplement their income from their primary job? I'm always thinking of ways I can get a little business going, and could use some thoughts from those that are doing it.

    Just curious.
    Side jobs make the world go round;)
    I'm a painter and my buddy is a tile guy and we both have pretty decent side jobs going. WE have found that there is a need out there that can be filled by just a few easy steps. It may sound simple but sadly you can set yourself apart by just doing quality work, showing up when you say, answer their calls and actually giving a **** about "your" customer. I don't know what skills you have but we have found that in our businesses times are good and people have forgotten about customer service. There is no better advertising than word of mouth. The only caution I will give you was experienced by both myself and my friend. We thought that once we did a couple of jobs we would just have to stand back and field all the referrals. Well it has taken about 3 years to get a list of loyal customers and for those to turn into solid leads and almost weekly calls.

    So what skills are you going to market?
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    Well, since you're across the country, and no threat to me... :D

    Seriously, I started a cleaning business eight years ago, and never looked back. Several good reasons for this particular type of business, in no particular order, are:

    You can start it for VERY little money, both for supplies and advertising. It's nice to have so little overhead at startup that you're making money almost immediately.

    If you are so inclined, you can do most of the work yourself, at least until you've gotten a few clients. It's not rocket science, after all. Then hire people as you expand. You can hire either employees or subs.

    You can pick and choose a variety of special services to try (homes, offices, windows, carpet/upholstery, floors, etc.), depending on how many types of contractors are in your area. OK, the carpet/floors thing will need some specialized (read expensive) equipment and training, but you also make that back fairly quickly doing specialized work. At >$.25/square foot, it adds up!

    You can work the days and hours that are good for your lifestyle. If a job doesn't feel right to you, you can walk away.

    Last, but not least, HUGE tax advantages. I'm only a d/b/a, so I file a Sched. C along with my 1040, but I do the thing myself. That's not rocket science, either; Save your receipts, keep good records... not too difficult, really.

    A lot also depends on your age and physical condition, as well as determination to succeed.


    This is, of course, all dependent on what type of person you are, but it's worked so far for me. You must treat your customers the way you want to be treated, and they will stay with you. That's not to say it's all gravy, but the good has outweighed the bad by quite a bit. My .02 for today. Good luck with whatever you decide to try!

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    Well, I was thinking more of something I could do from my home office. I have a great 9-5 type job, but was thinking more of something I could in my free time/down time.

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    I get paid too much on OT to make it worth getting a second job. OT has slowed down a bit lately, but I'm still not hurting.

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    I guess I have two areas of main interest right now, but am open to others.

    1) Running and maintaining a small website offering certain information to draw visitors and hopes to make revenue off advertising. Nothing fancy. Certainly not looking to make a living off it, just enough to pay for some toys.

    2) Run some sort of online retailer.

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    My son and I sell items on ebay. He's a senior in HS and I stop by the thrift stores and pickup items. He lists and sells them for his job. Better than bagging groceries. I also own and operate a 250 acre pine tree plantation with my brothers. Not much work, just plant em and wait like 20 years to cut them.
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    Oh wow....the image that popped into my head was of when I was a kid, me and other kids would wait outside the grocery store with our little wagons and solicit people to bring their groceries home for something like 25 or 50 cents. We would line up like a taxi stand....jeez I'm getting old!

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    What a great thread!!!

    I was laying tile for the past few years on the side, but I kinda pulled out when I started my odd houred retail job. I continually think about kicking that back up into full gear, but it hasn't happened yet. Opus is so right though, if you just do a good job and put the customer first, people are blown away.

    I would love to have some small job on the computer at home on the side. Anyone ever look into those vacation packages deals where the computer does the selling? It always intrigued me, but looked rather fake/too-good-to-be-true kinda deal.
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    Most of those work at home deals are swindles. The companies make their money from the software package sales. You lose.
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    Most of the forum knows of my side job, DJing. However, my photography has been doing ok as well. The local paper I freelanced with over a month ago has been using photos of mine on a weekly basis (weekly paper). I get paid by the photo and don't have to do any editing to it. I send the photo as it was shot with no editing on my part. All totaled, my side work pays my truck payment, gas and insurance. Easy $$$!


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    I do auto detailing on the side. Started doing it when I had my show car that needed to be detailed every 3-4 days, bought all the professional equipment(buffers and waxes) and never looked back. So far I have had steady business with my local neighborhood and town, but I am continually getting calls on my cell from out of towners that "heard of me through the grapevine."

    Auto detailing for me for a full deal takes about 3-4 hours and pays from $150-$175, not bad for for a little cash only side job.

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    Side businesses can be great opportunities. The tax breaks are significant when used correctly (and legally). A few things to consider:
    1. Visit with a community college professor who teaches business/marketing. The free advice is worth the time.
    2. Have reasonable goals
    3. Make sure you can invest the money without strapping yourself
    4. Don't plan on taking money out for your own salary for at least a year
    5. Have a proper business plan
    6. Talk to others in the field
    7. When investing in the startup supplies/items buy used whenever possible.
    8. Have a friend or two to act as outside consultants. Tell them you want brutal honesty.
    9. Don't wrap your emotional self worth in the success or failure
    10. Enjoy the ride
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    I set up corporations as a side business. Being a real estate investor, I always meet new investors that need to incorporate for tax savings/asset protection. Easy money.;)
    Everytime I think I'm out, THEY PULL ME BACK IN!!!!!!

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    i do word of mouth electronics installs car and home its not steady but it pays quite nicely when its there :)
    funny but that is what i do all day long for my real job minus the car stuff
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    I teach, and have the custom install business. It has definetly helped out over the last couple of years.
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    I'm an entrepreneur, send me your money and great things will happen
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    Got my tile business back up and running a little bit!

    "In The Neighborhood"


    Got my business cards printed and have teamed up with a local small contractor who is subbing a lot of his jobs to me. Keeps me busy. Hope this year is a good one!
    Honoured to be, an original SOPA founding member
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    What weird timing for this thread to be resurrected. I've been thinking about it again lately. Part of me just wants to pick up more shifts doing the same thing, but another part wants the challenge of learning something new.

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    Shelby:

    Decide how much your freetime is worth. I know you're not "struggling" to make ends meet. Based on that alone, I would almost tell you not to do the work and let your money do it. If you like dealing with people, you could start buying low cost houses and renting them. Easily the most bang for the buck you can get for your time but you need the first cash influx. One of my friends clears about $1K/month above all his mortgages on his properties and he puts about 8 hrs a month into it.

    Beyond something like that, it's just not worth it to me. In my mind, if I can't make an hourly rate greater than my salary, I should just forget about it.
    There is no genuine justice in any scheme of feeding and coddling the loafer whose only ponderable energies are devoted wholly to reproduction. Nine-tenths of the rights he bellows for are really privileges and he does nothing to deserve them. We not only acquired a vast population of morons, we have inculcated all morons, old or young, with the doctrine that the decent and industrious people of the country are bound to support them for all time.-Menkin

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    Quote Originally Posted by MrNightly View Post
    Got my tile business back up and running a little bit!

    "In The Neighborhood"


    Got my business cards printed and have teamed up with a local small contractor who is subbing a lot of his jobs to me. Keeps me busy. Hope this year is a good one!
    Good luck to ya man! Do you do bathroom tiling? Kitchen? I'll let you know if I hear of anyone wanting some work done here locally.

    Quote Originally Posted by jdhdiggs View Post

    Beyond something like that, it's just not worth it to me. In my mind, if I can't make an hourly rate greater than my salary, I should just forget about it.
    I wouldn't necessarily agree with that ... I'd say that it depends on if your goal is simply to make money, or to do something fun on the side that also results in some extra income.

    I have a website that I run on the side that makes much less than my hourly rate at my full-time job ... but I still do it for the other benefits ---it's fun, it's challenging and I am constantly learning new things.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwhitakr View Post
    Good luck to ya man! Do you do bathroom tiling? Kitchen? I'll let you know if I hear of anyone wanting some work done here locally.

    Hey thanks man! I'd appreciate it! I specialize in kitchens and bathrooms, but have done it all honestly. I just finished up a front porch and steps for this lady in Mission Hills. Nightmare of a job, did it during 10 degree weather, had to have tents and heaters up to keep the air above 40 degrees... ugh. But yah, I have access to any material with my day job! I enjoy it, and that's what matters!

    Thanks!
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    I massage peoples tweeters, you know, to help with speaker break-in. I'm rolling in dough.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jwhitakr View Post
    I wouldn't necessarily agree with that ... I'd say that it depends on if your goal is simply to make money, or to do something fun on the side that also results in some extra income.

    I have a website that I run on the side that makes much less than my hourly rate at my full-time job ... but I still do it for the other benefits ---it's fun, it's challenging and I am constantly learning new things.
    To each their own, I have more fun in my freetime doing other things than I would doing anything that would make me money. I make more than "enough" money, so you would have to pay me a lot to get me to stop having my free time be mine.
    There is no genuine justice in any scheme of feeding and coddling the loafer whose only ponderable energies are devoted wholly to reproduction. Nine-tenths of the rights he bellows for are really privileges and he does nothing to deserve them. We not only acquired a vast population of morons, we have inculcated all morons, old or young, with the doctrine that the decent and industrious people of the country are bound to support them for all time.-Menkin

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    Quote Originally Posted by jdhdiggs View Post
    To each their own, I have more fun in my freetime doing other things than I would doing anything that would make me money. I make more than "enough" money, so you would have to pay me a lot to get me to stop having my free time be mine.
    I think I'm more with you than not. I guess when I start thinking about doing something on the side, I really want something that will allow my money to work for me. I don't necessarily want to work more, but find ways that I can invest some of my savings to build more wealth. The long term goal is make money doing nothing. That's the world I want to live in.

  29. #29
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    Side Business???? Oh Boy!!!! Here we gooooooooooooooooooo


    1. HP engine building. Mostly degree in cams, install nitros kits and set-up rear ends for a few shops and friends as needed. Sometimes do a complete build if the money is right.

    2. Buy, sell & trade HO scale model trains on ebay. I mostly deal in imported brass models.

    3. Custom detailing and painting of model trains of all scales.

    4. Most ANY home repair or remodel. I'll do hands on for some fine detail work like trim and crap. But mostly just act as general contractor and call in some of my subs from work and make a few funds as a middle man.

    I try and stay a little busy from time to time....LOL

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    For alot of people, making the same amount part time as they do full time is near impossible. I have some side work I do that pays just as well as my full-time job but I got lucky in knowing people that needed specialized, skilled labor. My side work is as an auto mechanic and diesel mechanic. I do it because I enjoy it but it also brings in some nice coin. I would never get a part-time job in off-hours doing the work anywhere else if I didn't know somebody.

    So if I wanted to do part-time work in the automotive industry, I'd have to work a parts-counter somewhere or something and then I wouldn't make anything near what I make at my full-time job even though I have a ton of experience.

    But, extra money is extra money and there is no such thing as too much money. There's alot of money and sometimes there's not enough money but I have never heard anyone say "Man, I just got too much money!"

    Oh, besides being a car and truck and bulldozer fixin' dude, I've recently stumbled in to building websites for small, local businesses. Did a good job for one place and now all their friends and business acquaintances are asking what I can do for them. The money is good but I think I'm starting to get in over my head with that.
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