How to start a new business without money
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With unemployment and living costs skyrocketing, more Kenyans are considering running their businesses. But the availability of business capital and access to credit impedes local entrepreneurship. Under these conditions, can one start a new business without money?

In these times of tight bank credit, aspiring entrepreneurs may wonder how to venture into business with no money.

If you have a great idea but worry about your lack of capital. There are several ways to begin your start-up business with little or no cost to you.

But you will need to plug into the key attributes for business success —creativity, resourcefulness, flexibility, and hard work—to turn your business dreams into a start-up reality on a shoestring budget.

Starting new business without money

Here are a few free ideas to help you get your new venture off the ground.

1. Commit to doing it yourself

To start your business with little funding, you will need to think about all the tasks that you can do without hiring others.

Keeping your expenses low does not happen by accident, but through consistent and sometimes tedious efforts to handle matters on your own.

2. Work from your home

The costs of renting an office or storage space may be a major obstacle to starting your new business. You can reduce these costs significantly by working from home where possible.

Do as much of your work from your home, basement, garage, or storage shed as legally possible.

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Many start-ups, especially those requiring only a computer and Internet access, can easily be done from home where you are already paying rent or a mortgage.

3. Launch a service business

Evaluate your skill set and think about services you can offer to others. Many busy individuals and businesses would pay someone to handle their daily tasks.

From house cleaning to data entry and online research projects, your services have value to others and involve little to no additional expenses to provide.

4. Start an online drop-shipping store

How to start a new business without money
Credit: AppyPie

If you have a passion for selling products, then think about developing an online store for free and collaborating with product suppliers who offer drop shipments.

Many goods manufacturers and/or distributors would be willing to work with you on selling their products online and directly delivering your customer’s orders as drop
shippers.

Your buyers have paid for the items up front and the drop shippers carry the costs of product inventory and delivery.

5. Take microloans through P2P lending sites

Although you can seek loans from friends and family, you may want to consider casting a wider net through person-to-person (P2P) lending sites.

Several online sites have cropped up that allow individuals to seek microloans from other web surfers to fund their fledgling businesses, such as Zidisha.

6. Collaborate with other businesses

You can start your business without money by developing bartering relationships with other businesses in a related field. For centuries, bartering was the only method of trade between individuals and businesses.

Before the development of currency systems, bartering allowed parties to exchange products and services without money passing between the parties.  

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In today’s budget-conscious times, your business can revisit this ancient tradition by offering to swap your products or services in return for others’ goods and services.

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About the author

The writer is a former Serviceman at the Kenya National Youth Service with a passion in digital marketing and Entrepreneurship. He is the founder of The Inside Entrepreneur, Kenya.

Bentone Basil

The writer is a former Serviceman at the Kenya National Youth Service with a passion in digital marketing and Entrepreneurship. He is the founder of The Inside Entrepreneur, Kenya.