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10 Best Small Business Ideas for Students

The Best Summer Job Is Your Own Business


Best business ideas for students.

Gardening/landscaping services

Image (c) Photolink / Getty Images

Looking for a summer job? Why not start your own business instead of working for someone else? Besides accomplishing the main objective of making money over the summer, when you start your own business you'll have the satisfaction of being your own boss and of creating something yourself. Another great advantage of starting your own business is that you won't have to waste time looking for a summer job - you'll already have one.

When you're choosing a small business idea for your summer job replacement, there are two approaches you can take. You can plan to start a seasonal business that you can pack up and close down at the end of the summer when you go back to school, or you can choose a business that allows you to continue running the business (on a reduced scale) throughout the year. There are some of both in this collection of the best business ideas for students.

1) Lawn Care/Landscaping

This is a great summer student job because it's seasonal and is greatly in demand throughout the summer season - and almost anyone can do it. Another great thing about this small business idea is that it’s easily expandable; add landscaping and/or gardening services if you have the knowledge and abilities.  See Pros & Cons of Starting a Lawn Business.

2) Sports Equipment Rental

Summer is the season to get moving and there's a big appetite for wheeling around - on bikes, rollerblades, skateboards or scooters. The right location and the right weather could make this small business idea a real money maker.

3) Guided Tours

If you live in an area with historical/cultural/scenic attractions, why not start your own business offering guided tours? Don't despair if you don't live in a place with spectacular scenery or historical chops; ecotours and guided hikes are becoming increasingly popular. Taking people on tours of the local flora and fauna has the added bonus of getting outside in the sweet season.

4) eBay Selling

This is a small business idea that could have real potential. Find the right product to sell and build a good reputation as a seller and selling on eBay could be a bonanza. The downside is that doing these two things takes research and time. On the upside, however, this is certainly a business that would be easy to continue on a part-time basis.

5) Vegetable Delivery

People are paying more attention to what they eat and where it comes from than ever before - and are more willing than ever before to pay a premium to eat “better”. A summer business such as preparing and delivering boxes of fresh vegetables and fruits (organic or otherwise) could be very profitable.

6) Exterior House Cleaning

Window washing, gutter cleaning, power washing exteriors - start your own business doing the home care chores that others hate to do and you can clean up during the summer clean up season! And once you’ve established this business, it should have great carry-over potential, giving you a list of repeat clients summer after summer.

7) House/Pet Sitting

Many people travel during the summer and need someone to look after their houses and/or pets while they're gone. Making the rounds and taking in newspapers and mail, checking the house and feeding or walking “Sweetie” could be a great “summer job” business for you and it could even have the added bonus of giving you a place to live over the summer. For more information see Pet Sitting Services Home-Based Business.

8) House Call Geek

If you're technologically savvy, you have expertise that a lot of people still don't. Start your own business making house calls troubleshooting computer problems and/or showing people how to do what they want to do with their computers. This is another small business idea that would work well as a part-time business post-summer, too.

9) Rubbish Pickup

There are lots of people with lots of junk that they would like to dispose of, as the success of 1-800-GOT-JUNK testifies. And late spring/early summer is the season of the highest demand as people do their spring clean ups. If you have access to a truck, this could be a money making small business idea for you.

10) Instructor

If you have a particular skill and the necessary certification, teaching can be a very satisfying and lucrative small business. Music lessons spring to mind, but there are myriad other possibilities, from yoga and aerobics through mountain biking and horse riding. Tutoring in the traditional school subjects is another small business idea with an instructional theme.

So consider the possibilities and start your own business this summer, working for yourself rather than working for someone else. While some people are still looking for a summer job, your own business will already be up and running - and making money.

To help get your new business off the ground see Steps to Starting a Business in Canada, Starting a Business FAQs, and Starting a Small Business.

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