Businesses you can start with little to no capital in Zambia

You probably have a dream to start a business, but you feel you don’t have enough capital to get started. Well, it’s time to make your dream a reality. You just need to know what’s going to give you the best chances of success.
The biggest problems you’re likely facing are what business ideas have the best chance of success and which ones give you the best chance of making money.

This article will help you discover the business ideas that you can start easily with just a few hours of your time a week. This can be to add to your income or create a full-time job for yourself. You have the power to grow into a full-time business and increase your income. The ideas are not exhaustive but are meant to open your mind to possibilities. The idea you choose is very important. However, how you execute and your ability to bring that idea to life are even more important.

Businesses you can start with minimal to no capital

Guinea Pig Farming: Guinea pig farming is becoming popular in Zambia. An adult costs approximately K50 and can live upto 7 years. If you have a space to breed them, it will be very easy to setup. They can give you 2-4 pups per litter per month and can been fed on left over vegetables from your nearest market.

Hair Dressing: This one comes with minimal cash such as barbing machines for barbers and combs, hair straightener/blowers for hairdressers. It’s easy to rent a space in an already paid-for salon if you can make an agreement with the owner. Otherwise, you can offer home services. Everybody needs to do their hair once in a while, whether it’s barbing or female hair do’s. However, to invest in this type of service, you need to be innovative, because there’s too much competition out there. It could be as simple as offering your clients the option of going to their homes at no extra charge even if you work in a salon. Don’t forget to ask your clients for pictures to help you advertise and offer competitive prices.

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Laundry services: Don’t call your business “bo washa.” Remember, you’re starting small. You currently have no equipment so you’ll be hand washing. Add ironing, shoe washing and carpet washing to your list. Open a Facebook page and let customers call you to offer your services from their homes. If you can secure a customer a day, you’ll be on your way to buying equipment and employing others to do the work.

Cleaning homes: This is the beginning of your big cleaning service business. Offer to spring clean homes or small offices. Use nice smelling cleaning materials that leave your customers’ premises smelling fresh. It’s not easy to win clients so offer a free service for starters. Clean one room at no cost and wow your potential client. Ensure it’s spotless including windows. It will take hard work and effort to get customers but once you work for one, leave a good impression and recommendations are to follow.

Baby seating: There are so many mothers who worry about who to leave with their children. This idea is not for those work full-time as maids. This is a unique kind of service you can offer part-time. This can be on weekends or nights. Call yourself a professional babysitter. Open a Facebook page and add areas you can service. Advertise your babysitting services for mothers who need some time out.

Teaching someone how to read: This idea can be for children or adults. Adult literacy classes have been stopped in government schools by the Ministry of Education. Therefore, use this as an opportunity to share the reading and writing skills that you have. Make fliers and share them within your community. If you have space, do this from your home. Otherwise, you can do home visits, especially for children. You can rent a small shop where you’ll always be present once you’ve raised a bit of capital.

Breaking stones: As physically demanding as this is. You always have to start somewhere. After all, not everyone is privileged to receive capital for a business.

Charcoal selling: With load shedding and the cost of electricity, you can start selling prepackaged charcoal. You would need capital of about K200-K250 for a bag of charcoal and plastic bags. Prepack a bag into smaller packs and sell them to your neighbours. As your capital grows, you can increase your range of products. Try to stick to items that won’t go to waste quickly like onions, beans and garlic.

Sell Freezeits: Strange as this sounds, these are not accessible in my neighbourhood. Believe you me, it’s a middle-class neighbourhood. My kids and I have to buy in large quantities whenever we find them. If you have a freezer, take advantage of the heat and sell freezits(popsicles). The profit is not great but over time, you can grow your capital if you’re situated in a busy spot. A bag of 50 goes for K40. You can either sell them for K1 or K1.50 each. You have to decide if you want to push a large quantity quickly or make more but sell slowly.

Gardening and lawn care: I don’t have a full-time gardener. I have someone who comes in once a week. Actually, I had someone. When I get the perfect gardener, they seem to be in transit so I’m on the look again. If you have a hand for gardening, market yourself. It starts with gardening and grows to a big landscaping business. Just make it a point to give it your best shot every time you get an opportunity. If you can partner with someone, it can work to your advantage. It would be nice to see women offering this service and actually doing the job.

Real Estate agent: If you’re the type of person who always knows when there’s property available in your area, then this is for you. Charge a fee to either the landlord or tenant and make yourself some money to invest elsewhere. If you want to grow as an estate agent, you have to brand yourself from the beginning. Ensure you have a business name registered and social media pages. Open a free website if you can and place your mark in the industry.

These are just some of the ideas I could think of, but opportunities are endless. I will keep updating this post as I think of a business idea that doesn’t require much capital.

All the best in your endevours!