What Business Would You Start If You Were Down To Your Last $4??

50 replies
This is inspired by another thread by 'I am nameless', about a homeless guy and his girlfriend who being down to their last $4, started a scrap metal recycling business.

So my question to you is, which business would you begin in this situation and how would you start?

OK that's two questions, but I'm looking forward to your replies...
#business #start
  • Profile picture of the author jamesfreddyc
    Not sure but I would say that if you swapped the "z" and "l" your last name would be awesome. heh.

    Grant Cardone's weekly "Young Huslters" program had a guy on the show recently that had a similar story and he turned everything around door to door selling energy services. The main underlying message was that it really didnt matter what product or service it was, being put into a last ditch effort sometimes is the only thing that will motivate some into action.

    Check his utube channel.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8876649].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
      Originally Posted by jamesfreddyc View Post

      Not sure but I would say that if you swapped the "z" and "l" your last name would be awesome. heh.

      Grant Cardone's weekly "Young Huslters" program had a guy on the show recently that had a similar story and he turned everything around door to door selling energy services. The main underlying message was that it really didnt matter what product or service it was, being put into a last ditch effort sometimes is the only thing that will motivate some into action.

      Check his utube channel.
      Yeah, door to door selling. It could be almost anything. I was in Pat Katan's with my wife, and they were closing out scented candles for a buck a piece. These were big candles.

      I'd buy them all, and sell them door to door for $10 each.

      I once sold "No Soliciting" signs door to door. Not kidding. i bought them from a hardware store (I think) for a buck a piece, and sold them for $10, if I remember correctly. I sold them to the people that didn't buy my vacuum cleaner. I sold hundreds until I ran out.

      I thought it was funny.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8876892].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author ronr
        Now that's funny

        <I once sold "No Soliciting" signs door to door. Not kidding. i bought them from a hardware store (I think) for a buck a piece, and sold them for $10, if I remember correctly. I sold them to the people that didn't buy my vacuum cleaner. I sold hundreds until I ran out.>
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8876900].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author TheCG
        Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

        I once sold "No Soliciting" signs door to door. Not kidding. i bought them from a hardware store (I think) for a buck a piece, and sold them for $10, if I remember correctly. I sold them to the people that didn't buy my vacuum cleaner. I sold hundreds until I ran out.
        That is funny as hell...
        Signature

        Yes, by the way, I AM in the Witness Protection Program. I could tell you who I am but then I would have to kill you.

        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8877156].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Jeff Schuman
        Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

        Yeah, door to door selling. It could be almost anything. I was in Pat Katan's with my wife, and they were closing out scented candles for a buck a piece. These were big candles.

        I'd buy them all, and sell them door to door for $10 each.

        I once sold "No Soliciting" signs door to door. Not kidding. i bought them from a hardware store (I think) for a buck a piece, and sold them for $10, if I remember correctly. I sold them to the people that didn't buy my vacuum cleaner. I sold hundreds until I ran out.

        I thought it was funny.
        You are obviously a terrific salesman. Selling no soliciting signs door to door. I love it!
        Signature
        Jeff Schuman - Blog Writer For Hire! Buy affordable, quality niche blog articles. Fast turnaround.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8877234].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author RKCastillo
          I work with the homeless here in Waikiki and this question is at the heart of every business I start "Can the Homeless do this to create an income to get them off the streets?"

          That being said, I would use my Local Lead Maximizer sales process but instead of using openvbx to leave voicemails I would have them cold call businesses using a script like this...

          "I was wondering if you could help me out? (Sure...) Do you guys to Roof Repairs? (Yes...) I have access to a couple people who are looking for a roofing company to come fix their roof but I don't fix roofs. Would you mind telling me who is in charge of your marketing so I could talk to them to see if they would like to talk with these people? (That sounds interesting...our marketing guy is "Bob" I'll transfer you).

          When Bob gets on the phone I would say the same thing and ask him if he would like me to send him some people who are looking for a roofing company.

          If he said yes I would then offer him a week long trial of leads for $20.

          I would take that $20 to fund a twilio account to use as a tracking phone number.

          And if he likes the quality of leads I send him then we have different packages of leads he can pay for.

          Then I would use all kinds of different methods to drive phone calls to that roofer. Craigslist, Facebook, Walking Through Neighborhoods and looking for jacked up roofs and writing them a note I left on their door with a number on it.
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8877337].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author Vikuna2009+
            Originally Posted by RKCastillo View Post

            I work with the homeless here in Waikiki and this question is at the heart of every business I start "Can the Homeless do this to create an income to get them off the streets?"

            That being said, I would use my Local Lead Maximizer sales process but instead of using openvbx to leave voicemails I would have them cold call businesses using a script like this...

            "I was wondering if you could help me out? (Sure...) Do you guys to Roof Repairs? (Yes...) I have access to a couple people who are looking for a roofing company to come fix their roof but I don't fix roofs. Would you mind telling me who is in charge of your marketing so I could talk to them to see if they would like to talk with these people? (That sounds interesting...our marketing guy is "Bob" I'll transfer you).

            When Bob gets on the phone I would say the same thing and ask him if he would like me to send him some people who are looking for a roofing company.

            If he said yes I would then offer him a week long trial of leads for $20.

            I would take that $20 to fund a twilio account to use as a tracking phone number.

            And if he likes the quality of leads I send him then we have different packages of leads he can pay for.

            Then I would use all kinds of different methods to drive phone calls to that roofer. Craigslist, Facebook, Walking Through Neighborhoods and looking for jacked up roofs and writing them a note I left on their door with a number on it.
            There is only one problem here, being homeless you don't have a phone or internet access for that matter. Then again, how do you classify "homeless"? You might have a phone, internet access too and a quiet corner to sit around and do your cold-calling (as in hundreds daily). You might have a system to keep track of it all and who to call back, given that 85% do not buy today but maybe later.

            I guess Paypal works as well for anybody, homeless or not and you probably have the gizmo to use your cellphone to accept payments, going straight into your business bank account. Yeah, selling leads should work just fine, even if you are homeless...

            And while you are at it, have them sign up with your auto responder on your website for a free pdf guide on how to succeed in biz and build your list too.

            Eva
            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8878267].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
          Originally Posted by Jeff Schuman View Post

          You are obviously a terrific salesman. Selling no soliciting signs door to door. I love it!
          Jeff; I only offered them to people who just turned me down for a vacuum cleaner. You should have seen the reactions. They hesitate to buy, because they think it may hurt my feelings, but they really want one.

          And sometimes, I could tell that they bought one, as a way to tell me that they don't want anyone like me to bother them again. But the majority were very nice, and they bought. I did it partly as a joke, but it would pay for wings and beer.

          I never showed it to any of my salespeople, because i knew what would happen; They would come back saying "I sold one!" and mean that they sold a $10 sign.
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8878725].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author RKCastillo
            Actually...every homeless person I work with had a cell phone and they access the internet at the library
            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8879062].message }}
            • Profile picture of the author midasman09
              Banned
              Some years ago a neighbor told me his house was going into foreclosure if he didn't come up with $400 by the end of the week. He asked if I knew of any way to earn $400 with little or no investment.

              I told him to meet me at Napa Auto Parts at 8am the next morn and bring his garden hose, a bucket, whisk broom and dustpan.

              We met and I bought some "car wash stuff" and couple of sponges and a bag of cleaning rags. Probably cost $25 total.

              I tossed the stuff into my truck and drove over to a local real estate office (C-21) (Realtors ferry House-Hunters to properties and....need to keep their vehicles clean and shiny)

              We walked in and I told the receptionist that we "Wash and Clean" cars for $20 and ....would she ask any agents if they'd like their cars Washed and Cleaned for $20.

              3 agents came into the lobby and I repeated we were offering a "Mobile Wash and Clean" service for 20bux. If anyone was interested to move their cars to near the faucet outside the building.

              The 3 went out and parked their cars. We went out, hooked up the garden hose and "went to work".

              This RE office had about 30 agents and....while we were working on the 1st 3 cars....other agents came over and....by the end of the day we had done 14 cars ($280)

              The next morn we went back to NAPA and another RE office and 8 more cars ($160) By Thurs afternoon we had collected $840.....more than enough for his mortgage.

              So....I told him he could now go to other RE offices and....start upgrading his "mobil service" to more "detailing" service.

              So....use your $4 to buy a Big Mac, fries and a coke and ask a buddy or family member to loan you the garden hose and other stuff and....go get some Realtor Cars to Clean.

              Don Alm.....marketing guy
              {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8879213].message }}
              • Profile picture of the author IMBlest
                Originally Posted by midasman09 View Post

                Some years ago a neighbor told me his house was going into foreclosure if he didn't come up with $400 by the end of the week. He asked if I knew of any way to earn $400 with little or no investment.

                I told him to meet me at Napa Auto Parts at 8am the next morn and bring his garden hose, a bucket, whisk broom and dustpan.

                We met and I bought some "car wash stuff" and couple of sponges and a bag of cleaning rags. Probably cost $25 total.

                I tossed the stuff into my truck and drove over to a local real estate office (C-21) (Realtors ferry House-Hunters to properties and....need to keep their vehicles clean and shiny)

                We walked in and I told the receptionist that we "Wash and Clean" cars for $20 and ....would she ask any agents if they'd like their cars Washed and Cleaned for $20.

                3 agents came into the lobby and I repeated we were offering a "Mobile Wash and Clean" service for 20bux. If anyone was interested to move their cars to near the faucet outside the building.

                The 3 went out and parked their cars. We went out, hooked up the garden hose and "went to work".

                This RE office had about 30 agents and....while we were working on the 1st 3 cars....other agents came over and....by the end of the day we had done 14 cars ($280)

                The next morn we went back to NAPA and another RE office and 8 more cars ($160) By Thurs afternoon we had collected $840.....more than enough for his mortgage.

                So....I told him he could now go to other RE offices and....start upgrading his "mobil service" to more "detailing" service.

                So....use your $4 to buy a Big Mac, fries and a coke and ask a buddy or family member to loan you the garden hose and other stuff and....go get some Realtor Cars to Clean.

                Don Alm.....marketing guy
                Midasman09, where in the world do you get your brilliant ideas!!!

                You are absolutely amazing!!!
                {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8880429].message }}
                • Profile picture of the author umc
                  I know that the car wash idea works because I had the same idea years ago and started my detailing business from that. I went on to provide car wash services on a route for several office complexes and large companies, and offered full mobile detailing services from it as well. You could probably start a neighborhood car wash service too, just going around and branding yourself as the neighborhood car wash guy that comes around on Friday night or Saturday morning or whatever and makes sure that everyone has nice looking cars for the weekend. I ended up taking care of cars for the local minor league baseball team, and was in talks with some local shopping malls to set up some on-site car wash services whereby shoppers could have their car cleaned while they shopped.

                  You could also start a house cleaning business on that $4. Put a free ad up on Craigslist advertising your services and use the customer's vacuum and supplies. Now, those people that want you to use their stuff typically aren't the customers that I go for in my cleaning business, as a true professional typically has their own supplies and equipment, but to start out from a destitute position you could find people to hire you and let you use their supplies and equipment. It may feel like more of an employee role than a business owner, but you would be building your reputation from day one and again, that can easily be spun into your own full blown business over a little time.

                  With that said, you could mow lawns using the customer's equipment, or do any number of things doing manual labor on people's homes like painting, landscape work, cleaning gutters, etc.

                  Manual service type businesses can be great for quick cash. I've done lots of different things over the last 15 years or so and it has been fun. My wife and I started the cleaning business that we've had for the past 13 years with a few phone calls and the cleaning products that we already had at home, and bought better supplies and equipment as time went by. We went from almost penniless at the point where we were back to where we are now with money in the bank, a home that we like, a full work schedule earning more money than we need, and a waiting list of customers whenever we need them.
                  {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8881040].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Shadowflux
        Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post


        I once sold "No Soliciting" signs door to door. Not kidding. i bought them from a hardware store (I think) for a buck a piece, and sold them for $10, if I remember correctly. I sold them to the people that didn't buy my vacuum cleaner. I sold hundreds until I ran out.

        I thought it was funny.
        I just wanted to say I love this. It's not funny, it's freaking hilarious! It's a perfect example of selling what people are buying. "Don't want a vacuum, huh? I bet you hate door to door salesman, right? I have these 'No Soliciting" signs...."

        Anyway, I'm a writer so I would spend that $4 on a can of coffee grounds and then hunt down some leads.

        The trick is to take the money you make and reinvest it so you can expand. That's how you build a business. I started with nothing, sold some assets, continued to reinvest, and here I am, years later, still doing the same thing.
        Signature
        Native Advertising Specialist
        Dangerously Effective
        Always Discreet
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8893513].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Matthew Anton
    Invest in a ski mask

    seriously though

    With $4 you don't have any leverage to let your capital work for you, so you have to put sweat equity to use, for someone else that has the capital. You need to become a service provider. This 99% of the time takes the form of a job, where you perform an activity hourly for X amount, or you perform a set task (piece work) for X amount.

    I'm all for entrepreneurship but don't feel it's healthy to advocate someone starts when they are at rock bottom, although they say necessity is the mother of invention.

    If you are living with your Parents and can take the risk it's worth it, or if you have side money. In this case you need some type of cushion to keep you off the streets, and that means finding a company or someone that could benefit from your skillset (labor) and receive monetary compensation.
    Signature
    BacklinksIndexer - automated index/bulk links
    TwitterBacklinks - retweets service
    Web2.0Backlinks - web2.0 creation/link building
    Google+ Matthew Anton
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8876686].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author qu4rk
    Originally Posted by Tim Bazley View Post

    This is inspired by another thread by 'I am nameless', about a homeless guy and his girlfriend who being down to their last $4, started a scrap metal recycling business.

    So my question to you is, which business would you begin in this situation and how would you start?

    OK that's two questions, but I'm looking forward to your replies...
    What skills do you have?
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8876735].message }}
  • how about some on-street performance, only if you know how to play guitar or drawing something funny for people
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8876810].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author socialentry
    I would find myself a job ASAP.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8876834].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author qu4rk
      Originally Posted by socialentry View Post

      I would find myself a job ASAP.
      I'm not the OP, but I think he means hypothetically if you couldn't get a job either.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8876866].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author laurencewins
    I would start into the business of saving!
    Signature

    Cheers, Laurence. Writer/Editor/Proofreader.
    Website / Blog for more info.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8877137].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author iAmNameLess
    I met a guy in St. Louis MO that spent his unemployment check on ordering 100 umbrellas at a little over a dollar each. In the midwest, the whether changes all the time, and spring/summer, tons of pop up thunderstorms. Anyway, what he would do is go out and sell the umbrellas for $10/pop.. they were pretty high quality too. When it would rain or clouds started forming he'd be outside going bus stop to bus stop, or catching people walking and sell the umbrellas.

    Depending on the whether he'd sell 75-150 umbrellas a week. Obviously, he was kind of depending on mother nature here in order to make money, and I wouldn't really recommend something like that, but it's an example of someone filling a need when opportunity arises.

    Ran into him again not too long ago, maybe 6 months ago? He was outside of a cardinal baseball game when they were calling for rain, selling red/white umbrellas. Said he ordered 1000 and only had about 50 left. Must have had a pretty good outing. Asked him what he does in winter, he said he goes out and sells scarves and gloves on the streets for $5/pop.. he gets them in bulk for less than 50 cents.

    Anyway, the point is, whether you have money or don't have money... there is always a need to fulfill. Keep your eyes open and see what you find.

    If someone really came up to me and said they were down to their last $4 and needed to make some money. I'd probably suggest going door to door to houses and asking if they needed any help with yard work, cleaning gutters, etc.

    Obviously... if you want to start a business, your highest chance of success is when you already have some money to spend and money to save up.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8877196].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Sunganani
    My recommendation, coming from the school of hard knocks, is to get a job from where you can save money and then move on to an internet business. My focus would not be on the $4. It would be on getting some basics settled like accomodation, food etc. When you are married and have three kids, some things you have to moonlight!

    At least it had paid off for me although now I am self employed and seeing growing income from my Kindle book.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8878288].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author mark healy
    i would say get a job first and reinvest some spare cash to start an internet business, its cheap, quick and can get you up and running in no time
    Signature

    Build a Real Online Business from scratch today!
    Get Your FREE Webinar Training Here

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8879224].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author mrmatt
    My first business online was selling on eBay. Thrift stores are a gold mine if you know what you are looking for. My specialty was boardgames and puzzles. I regularly bought puzzles and board games for $1 and sold them for $35 to $120. I knew what I was looking for.

    So with $4 I would go out and find the puzzles and board games I knew I could sell for that amount. Buy 4 of them and sell them on eBay and net $120+ from my $4 investment.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8879555].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author vndnbrgj
    I would agree with others that with only $4 left, I would get a job.
    After my bills were paid, and only after, would I begin to set aside cash for a business.

    At only $4, you can't even open a busineess.
    Where I live it costs $10 to file a DBA for the county.
    To file a Corp, like an LLC, S Corp, C Corp, etc... is $50.

    Even at $10, you are still $6 shy.
    What kind of business can you starrt? You can't.
    You could however go hustle for some cash, but that is different than starting a business.
    Signature
    Life Begins At The End Of Your Comfort Zone
    - Neale Donald Wilson -
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8879631].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author ahlexis
      Originally Posted by vndnbrgj View Post

      I would agree with others that with only $4 left, I would get a job.
      After my bills were paid, and only after, would I begin to set aside cash for a business.

      At only $4, you can't even open a busineess.
      Where I live it costs $10 to file a DBA for the county.
      To file a Corp, like an LLC, S Corp, C Corp, etc... is $50.

      Even at $10, you are still $6 shy.
      What kind of business can you starrt? You can't.
      You could however go hustle for some cash, but that is different than starting a business.

      Believe it or not, in some places you have up to 40 days after you've actually started operating to file that DBA before you will have any issues on it. Or at least you used to, as I haven't been there in quite a while. But this is in California that I'm talking about, and you'd think they'd be a bit more of a stickler than most places.


      Originally Posted by midasman09 View Post

      . . . go get some Realtor Cars to Clean.

      Ever thought of adding a ladder and a longer-handled brush to your list of tools? That would get you the ability to reach the top of a semi cab. Those guys pay $50+ per vehicle when they get their trucks washed (sometimes $100+)!

      And for a lot of drivers it's a company-reimbursed expense as long as they get a receipt because if they keep the truck clean - especially keep the greasy oil and dirt and mud off the wheels - the inspectors at the inspection stations see the cleaner truck and most of the time don't sweat them for a full inspection because if it's clean on the outside they figure it's up to date with maintenance and the paperwork's more likely in order. That's a big deal for a truck driver, especially when they get paid by the mile and not by the hour. They're not earning unless the tires are turning.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8881785].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author manolo2
        i would start to sell all my unwanted stuff on Ebay and raise money to start another business
        Signature

        Discover How To Profit From Internet Marketing Quickly Using This Simple Method =>Create Money Ideas

        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8881789].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Ron Lafuddy
    One caveat to add to what Don and UMC have posted. At $20 per vehicle, you're going to find some nasty ones along the way. That price is just too good to pass up. It'll usually be a minivan with a couple of crumb-crunchers and busy parents. These vehicles will take 2-3 times the energy, effort and time to get the inside clean.

    Most people are aware of the condition of their vehicle. They understand when you tell them you have to charge more because of the extra time involved.

    Make sure you inspect the vehicles first, before accepting them at your regular rate.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8881509].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author umc
    Oh yeah, I wasn't saying trying to get into all of the specifics, but good point. It all depends on what you offer. On the cheap you go exterior only. We did cars for one price, wagons/suv's/vans for another, and trucks depending on the size. We would do a basic interior wipe down and vacuum along with the exterior for another. You can upsell things like Rain-X, tire shine, etc. Lots of options to go with.

    I could also mention that in some areas the EPA is getting tough and cracking down on some of this because of water runoff. There are ways to do it without the water really ever hitting the ground though, and heck, it can be done totally waterless if need be. Gotta watch though. I've heard of guys locally that were fined or shut down, usually using pressure washers and causing lots of runoff in office parking lots. If you're down to your last $4 though, you do what you have to do and learn and build as you go. Anything you do at that point is likely just a building block to get you to bigger and better things.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8881538].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Ron Lafuddy
      Thanks for jumping back in here, UMC. I know you've got the experience and the systems down, for setting this up the right way. What I found out when setting this up for my son is that "interior only" cleaning was the key. Busy professionals will pay $25-$35 (and more) all day long, to have their vehicle interiors cleaned. (Special thanks to Don Alm and Jason Hatchett for that inspiration.)

      The other key feature is, you come to their place of business to do the work. It's convenient for them. They can see what's going on. They can see all of the work and the effort that you are putting in to make their car look good again.

      They absolutely love it. And, the activity, especially the sound of the vacuum attracts others, like bees to honey. They want you to do their car too.

      It's all about repeat and referral business.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8881670].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Kunle Olomofe
    I answered this specific type of question almost 2 years ago with a pretty detailed plan that can be adapted to sell pretty much any service. Here's the thread: http://www.warriorforum.com/offline-...hours-try.html

    As the title states above, my plan caters to the homeless and people with no money, not even a buck talk less of $4.

    By the way, it's not just theory. I actually was in that position years ago and used practically all the steps in the plan I outlined on here.

    I advocate such methods instead of getting a job. Getting a job often requires a lot of research, applying, waiting for feedback, being shortlisted, and getting hired. It may not always be but it often is a long process. If someone is in really down and out financially etc, getting a job isn't always a practical way to quickly solve their problem like the same day.

    Meanwhile boot strapping almost always offers at least a daily meal (and sometimes more) while you work on other options (perhaps like getting a job or whatever else works for you at the time).

    Cheers,

    Kunle Olomofe
    Signature
    Celebrity Marketing Formula - How To Quickly Become A Celebrated Authority In ANY Industry/Niche... Coming Soon.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8881867].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Tom Addams
    This would work:

    I'd buy a domain for 99 cents with a Godaddy Promo Code, find hosting for under $3.01, advertise the domain, and flip it for - I hope - a hundred bucks or more.
    Signature

    I Coach: Learn More | My Latest WF Thread: Dead Domains/ Passive Traffic
    Learn one way I earn money: I give away free stuff.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8889961].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author kingofthesouth
    Originally Posted by Tim Bazley View Post

    This is inspired by another thread by 'I am nameless', about a homeless guy and his girlfriend who being down to their last $4, started a scrap metal recycling business.

    So my question to you is, which business would you begin in this situation and how would you start?

    OK that's two questions, but I'm looking forward to your replies...
    First off I would evaluate what my be abilities are then put them into action.
    Only $4 would get me going for sure.
    I probably would start landscaping and make it work on a major scale since I have had success doing it. Lord knows I would be in a panic to make it work with on $4.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8890014].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author qu4rk
    Man, this is actually turning out to be a good thread. There are a couple of great ideas for anyone who is down on their luck. If you are really bad off, with no friends, no family, then Kunle Olomofe has a pretty good idea. And Don's idea is pretty nice if you can get a small loan from friends/family.

    What a great community.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8890135].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Tim Bazley
      Wow guys!

      It's nice to see how this thread seems to have captured your imaginations!

      That said, I guess I should say how I'd do it, or rather how I did it 9 years ago, so...

      Step 1

      I sold some unwanted stuff I had around the house on eBay for I think around £200 if I remember right.

      Step 2

      Started up a local handyman service. All I did was spend £15 on an ad in my local newspaper and £125 on public liability insurance (vital if you're working in other peoples' houses).

      Got my first couple of jobs that week and made about £100, so I ran the ad in the local paper again and got more jobs to do.

      And it just grew from there, making me a reasonable living for the last 9 years with more £1000 plus weeks than I care to count.

      Total cost to start...Minus £60!

      OK I was fortunate enough to have a basic toolkit for my own home maintenance, the kind of things most of you probably have such as drill, hammer, screwdrivers, pliers, paintbrushes, lawnmower etc.

      Plus I happened to have a decent sized estate type car (station wagon I think they're called in the US).

      I did have basic handy skills at the time but nothing special, so I just took on basic jobs most or many of you could do like cutting grass, tidying gardens, painting, putting up shelves etc.

      I then ploughed some of my early profits back into a van, tools and skills training so now I can fit new bathrooms, rewire houses, do tiling and loads of other more lucrative work.

      I've also invested in marketing training (vital when the recession hit) and built up enough knowledge here to not only survive and thrive, but to help other small businesses with their marketing too.

      Eventually I'd like to get to the stage where I'm doing consulting work maybe 3 days a week and property maintenance a couple of days, to keep my hand in.

      I'm currently doing probably 1 days consulting to 9 days handy manning, so have a little way to go!
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8893314].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Tim Bazley
        I'd also add that the best kinds of opportunities are what I call 'shooting fish in a barrel' businesses.

        I mean ones with almost infinite demand, so much so that if you step out of your front door and walk up the street a 100 yards, you've probably just walked past at least a couple of potential customers.

        To list some here (by no means exhaustive)...

        Handyman / woman - every property needs work on a regular basis.

        Gardening - most houses have gardens or yards that need ongoing maintenance.

        Car washing - they all get dirty!

        Home / office cleaning - again they all get dirty.

        Bookkeeping / accounts - every business large or small needs this service.

        Marketing services - every business needs to sell their stuff and most aren't that good at it!

        Web services / computer services - every business and most individuals need one or both of these.

        There must be a ton more too but that's a start.

        Plus they could all be started on the proceeds of a good eBay clear out in the average home!
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8893395].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author ZedyDiamond
    Really cool thread, never saw this kind of threads!
    And Claude, that's awesome haha!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8893645].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author travlinguy
    Here's one. But realistically, it would take more than $4 to start. You'll see this on fiverr but it can be expanded to large proportions. There are hundreds of gigs where you pay $5 and someone will hold up a sign with your message. People use the pic for their sites mostly.

    Okay, that's small thinking. Why not go to a site selling nice images and buy a license for a bunch of hot babes, and hunky guys holding signs. Once you have say a dozen or so to start, put sample messages in the signs and then post them on your Website. Offer this service to anyone interested. Tell your customers you'll put any message or URL they want on the sign. You might want to place watermarks in the samples to keep pilferage down. Let your potential clients know that you've purchased a license for the images and that you can guarantee there are no copyright issues.

    If you wanted to tweak it some, you could also buy images of famous landmarks. Stuff like Niagara Falls, The Eiffel Tower, The Northern Lights, local landmarks... The sky is the limit. Then you can put the bikini babe holding the sign in front of the landmark, which makes it more personal to the buyer. A little imagination goes a long way. You could have a dog holding a sign and offer that message to a pet shop or doggy grooming business. Cats, dogs, fish, monkeys... Get creative.

    Of course, you'd also take custom orders.

    What would you need to to this? An image editing program. A simple one would do. Placing a message on a sign is a pretty basic function. If you don't know how to do it go to Youtube and spend 15 minutes learning. You'd also need a website. A Paypal account. And a handful of images to get started. You could print up half sized flyers and circulate them throughout your offline territory as well as market to online folks. The sky is the limit. It might cost $100 or so to get started and could be huge.

    Just a thought. :p
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8893746].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author mark healy
    I would try and get a job by employment agencies first, this will be your quickest route.Once you have a job and can take care of the basics first like food and accommodation , then start an internet business.

    regards

    Mark
    Signature

    Build a Real Online Business from scratch today!
    Get Your FREE Webinar Training Here

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8919491].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Rory Singh
    If I were down to my last 4 bucks, I wouldn't be looking to start any business. I would be looking for a JOB.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8925627].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Kunle Olomofe
      Originally Posted by Rory Singh View Post

      If I were down to my last 4 bucks, I wouldn't be looking to start any business. I would be looking for a JOB.
      Hey Rory,

      I find this POV very interesting and something I just can't ever seem to relate to, but would you care to expound on that statement. Would just like to know why that would be your only option.

      Cheers

      Kunle
      Signature
      Celebrity Marketing Formula - How To Quickly Become A Celebrated Authority In ANY Industry/Niche... Coming Soon.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8957230].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author tahir100
        I agree with Rory Singh..I would look for a job in that situation. However, eBay can be considered as an option. Selling stuff on eBay and getting shipped through dropshippers. no upfront investment.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8957797].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author malouisa
    This is a very good question. I did experience on this. For me, i started negative balance. I almost surrender but thanks to God that He never leave me. I received wisdom to start by Faith. I started looking for a good product which i could market through words. Then when i received orders I just get the product through COD or cash on delivery. Slowly, i gain customers and with proper management and planning, it grows. Then i added more products.
    Signature

    Are you still struggling with your income? Try to check this.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8963785].message }}
  • I would start the "Double Your Way To A Million" business.

    LLS
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8964070].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author deane4567
    I would read the homeless bob ebook about how he started with nothing but an obama phone and access to the libary to make six figures in pay per call......
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8964658].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author blueberries
    The scrap metal is really a good start. Also she could pick up broken electronics and the old square t.v's and heavy computer monitors and get the copper out and then get the money to buy the silver .
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8966487].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author abbadox
    I had a friend in college who's parents were paying for him to go to school and they both died in a car accident. It turned out his parents were not doing very well financially and my friend dropped out of school and tried finding a job for awhile. He spent his days looking for work and crashed at various friends houses for a couple months. He came up with the idea of starting his own business and the only thing he could think of that he could afford to do was cutting grass so that is what he did seven days a week he would literally walk around the neighborhood knocking on any house that had grass long enough to need cutting and over the next few years he built it up to where he had about a dozen crews working for him. The point is it really is not about how much money you have but how much your willing to work to get what you want.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8966500].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author doggerel
    Put all your crap up on Ebay. I mean EVERYTHING. The stuff that you think will sell will almost certainly not sell, but the junk, trinkets and crap sometimes sells for 20 times what they are worth. You will be amazed when a bidding war starts over an empty bottle of cologne or a half-squeezed tube of hand conditioner. You need to think outside the box with Ebay. I've had heirloom bibles from the 1800's at half their worth that I couldn't even get a watcher on, but at the same time had multiple watchers and 7 bids on a small sleeve-case of old cd's that I thought no one in their right mind would buy. If all you have left is a pocket full of bottle caps, put them up on Ebay!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8993808].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author qu4rk
      Originally Posted by doggerel View Post

      If all you have left is a pocket full of bottle caps, put them up on Ebay!
      LMAO! Then go to the dollar store for a bubble envelope to ship them! You get the profit from the sell plus you have another envelope in inventory.

      Seriously, if you go to certain well off apartment complexes here in America, people leave all types of goodies outside the dumpster that are in great condition. Years ago, I got a great TV, couch, lamps, all sorts of things. We used to call it the store. LOL

      So, someone could combine that with your eBay idea & come out alright. For the larger items like TV's & couches, put them up on Craigslist!
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8994193].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author erinwrites
    I. Love. This thread. I have a box of media (CDs and DVDs mostly) that I've been meaning to take over to a buy/sell/swap shop to help me get the last few bucks I need for rent but now I'm tempted to hold out and put them up on eBay. Or spend a few bucks on No-Soliciting signs! You guys are great!
    Signature
    I put words on the Internet.
    Silly Haikus starting at $5! PM me for details! (Because it's fun)

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8994287].message }}

Trending Topics