How to start a home business in the UK: Top 10 home business ideas.

April 13, 2020 / Comments (0)


I see many people in the UK want to know how to start a business from home and do it primarily over the internet.

But there are many possibilities to start either an online or offline business that you can establish from your home.

I love businesses that run from homes…and you should too. You can keep your overheads low, keep in touch with the world 24/7, thanks to technology and Wales, for example, is a great place to start, run and grow a home-based business.

I am going to give a little shout-out to Wales in this article as it is to me, more than just a place currently where I currently live.

And there are some great examples of businesses that thrive in this country.

My mother was Welsh and although we lived in England, I spent every school holiday in Wales for as long as I can remember and it always felt more like “home” than my actual home that I spent the majority of my life living in!

There is something special about Wales, at least for me anyway and after leaving my home in rural England, I moved to London where I lived for nearly twenty years, then moved to Dallas, Texas and 5 years ago, I returned to Wales.

I soon learned that there is a lot of support for businesses here and take a look at what’s on offer from Business Wales, to see the huge amount of information and support that is available to business, or those who wish to start a business here in the country.

I am going to talk specifically about home-based businesses in this article and I will list my top 10 below.

These are my top 10 because they are businesses that you can start with little capital and really make an impact, plus in my role as a volunteer mentor for Business Wales, many of the people I help, work from home.

I also started my global technology staffing business from my living room, as I talk about in this article, “How I started my first business from a living room in London”  nearly thirty years ago, so I know the value of starting a company from home and provided you have the desire, passion, and discipline to match your idea, there is no reason why you cannot be successful.

Some of the companies I mention in this article I know personally and I am mentioning them purely to provide examples of businesses in Wales and I do not receive any commissions or rewards for the mention!

Here we go and these are in no order of importance by the way:

#1 — Coaching and consulting

I have to open with this because it was exactly what I did in the form of my technology staffing company.


Back in 1992, just after the recession of the late 1980s and armed with a fax machine, telephone and a boatload of energy and passion, I leveraged my expertise in sales and staffing, to start what would become a global business that generated $65m in revenues by the end of the decade.

The only part that I struggled with at the time, was discipline.

If you are used to getting up and traveling to work in an office, then working from home might be a little strange and for me, the “longest walk” and toughest challenge was getting from my bedroom to the living room of my apartment in the morning!

Other than that, which eventually I overcame by forcing myself to get up and take a cold shower, it was no problem.

Now and much later, I offer a business coaching service from my home in Wales.

So whatever expertise you have, consider selling that expertise to others who are in need, by establishing a consultancy business and you can easily run that from your home.

# — Cleaning

Cleaning is big business and until robots take over, there will always be a need for real and passionate cleaners.

Why would I use the word “passion” in cleaning and surely you would expect most people to hate the job?


Maybe not…

When I eventually moved out of my home to an office, I hired a cleaner — this lady made sure that the office was not only spotless but also that there were fresh flowers in the office every morning (at her expense I may add) and that each person had a cup and sauce ready for coffee or tea.

Everybody loved her and the office was a far happier place in the mornings, which ultimately led to increased performance, profitability and profits.

It is a great business and here is a success story from someone who did extremely well in Wales!

#3 — Food

Everybody has to eat and I believe people will start to return to independent food suppliers rather than the supermarkets.


I always try to buy local produce when I can and Wales has no shortage of independent food suppliers.

I love to cook and if I had the time, I would perfect my recipes of seasonings and sell them to the public — maybe I will one day and if you have a passion for food, then you should consider this as a home-based business.

Make sure you keep abreast of food hygiene issues and that you are able to get out there and market what you have.

Here is an example of a Welsh independent, hand-made chocolate company and a Welsh cheese company.

#4 — Arts and crafts

Wales is a country steeped in history and arts and crafts are part of that history.


The famous entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk talks about buying and selling goods to generate cash — he explains that you can go out and scour garage sales, charity shops, and other sources to find cheap goods, refurbish them and then re-sell them at a good profit.

This is ideal for someone who has a flair for hunting bargains and the ability to put in the time and effort to re-work them into something special…and you can start the business easily from home.

Here is an example of a couple who moved from England to Wales to escape the rat race and then started there own business — take a look at the Welsh Otter Emporium.

#5 — Gardening and landscaping

Wales is a country of natural beauty and Welsh people take pride in their surroundings — so consider helping them.


Gardening services will always be in demand…at least as far as I am concerned, so if you are physically fit, have an eye for all things green then do not underestimate the business value of gardening and landscaping services.

One of the things that I have noticed within this industry and from my experiences of hiring them everywhere I lived is reliability and quality.

So these are two areas you can immediately focus on and your customers will love you for it.

This is an easy home-based business to run.

#5 — Fitness and personal training

I was obsessed with exercise and fitness for years and a personal trainer back in my youth (I am 55) was someone you say at a gym.


I was a martial artist and an Olympic weightlifter for most of my life and if only the technology we have today was available then.

I could have progressed much faster.

Today, there are so many resources available online and people are far more concerned with their health and wellbeing, so help them, if of course, you have the skills.

But think about the bigger picture — the motivational factors behind training, diet and how it can affect and improve people’s lives as a whole.

You could do motivational videos, workouts, meal plans and so much more.

It’s a huge industry and here is an example of someone from my home in the City of Swansea.

#6 — Digital marketing

We are in a world where, by 2030, it is expected that ninety per-cent of the population will be online.


Homeworking will be as natural as going to an office thirty years ago and again, this is my opinion and I am backing up that opinion by teaching my children who are sixteen, thirteen and nine, respectively by giving them as my friend and online mentor, Fernando Raymond says:

“The digital skills to pay the bills.”

This is a huge and growing industry and I cannot go into the huge array of skills that you can learn to thrive in this digital era…but here are a few:

  • Copywriter
  • SEO specialist
  • Web designer
  • Blogger
  • Content marketer

To name but a few online business ideas! You can read more here.

Be prepared to learn and as Fernando explains…learn to “beat up your brain” and do the hard work.

After many years of running my own businesses that utilize everything digital, I am now putting in the hard work and effort to learn each and every aspect of the industry…hard work and especially for me as I am older, but as an entrepreneur, I never quit.

Start learning and here is an example of someone who started their own consultancy here in Swansea.

#7 — Tourism

As I said, Wales is a country of natural beauty and as a child, I spent many holidays on the fabulous beaches the country has to offer.


Look at the options of running a business that could be both your home and your business.

It’s hard work for sure but running, for example, a bed and breakfast could give you both.

Here is a bed and breakfast that is in the town of my first visit to North Wales and to the first, ever beach that I saw, where you could drive your car on to the sand.

Running a bed and breakfast can be rewarding and I know it is hard work because my aunt and uncle ran one for several years, but it is the perfect and literal combination of the words “home” and  “business.”

#8 — Trading the markets

I want to start this with a huge warning — financial trading is not easy and never, ever be seduced by the adverts that promise you riches and rewards beyond your wildest dreams.

Trading-Markets-From Home-As-A Business

My wife was a former currency trader for a major international bank and I can tell you that the returns the professionals make are far smaller than you would probably imagine.

Remember also that any trading that is on “margin” or leveraged comes with potentially a huge amount of risk.

I won’t go any further here than to tell you to do your homework diligently and make sure you learn from those who have proven track records and ignore the BS ads!

Here are two for you to look at:

Lex Van Dam

Anton Kreil

I want to specifically point out that I have (nor my wife) any affiliation to these people and urge you to do your homework.

What I love about the trading world is that you are close to the money — it is a totally money and results dominated industry and requires a computer and your ability to trade.

Beware…it is not easy, but the rewards can be huge.

#9 — Write a book

You may just have a book sitting in your head right now…and who knows, it could just be a book about Wales!

The important thing to note here is that you do not need an agent or publisher to write it.

Take a look at writing a book on Amazon, to see what is involved.

With so many people getting online today, you so many more opportunities and that is why I am going to give a little more info on #10 as it may get you started with the one thing you need to write a book..

Writing itself!

#10 — Blogging

This for me is the absolute best way to get started online, as it is affordable and does the one thing that many of us don’t do and that is to develop our own personal online brand.


I talked about my children earlier and I want them not only to learn the digital skills but also to start building their online brand and also to build their “digital real-estate.”

I truly believe that digital real estate will become more valuable than it’s bricks and mortar counterpart.

It’s because you have so much more reach — and that reach is almost instantaneous.

There are many reasons to start a blog and I touch on them in this article “3 reasons to get online now.”

Matat Levin has just started her own blog based in Cardiff and you can do exactly the same.

Wales is a great place to start a business, especially from home.

Cymru Am Byth!

Neil Franklin

Last modified: May 28, 2020

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