some highly profitable but unpopular/not well-known businesses

  • I grew up in the mountains outside of silicon valley. My friend’s dad is known as the “mountain millionaire”. He’s made his millions doing stuff like this; A tree falls on someone’s property. He charges them to cut it and haul it away. He then splits it into firewood and sells it for quite a decent profit. so he’s getting paid at all stops. he also does this with dirt. gets paid to haul dirt away from a landslide by the county. (we’re talking hundreds of thousands of pounds of dirt) he then gets paid to deliver it to construction sites and whoever else needs good dirt filler. literally making $1000’s a day to pick up dirt and drop it somewhere else.

  • Power washing. you can start small and work your way up to more efficient equipment. There is a lot of knowledge involved to do it well. But I started with nothing. I bought an old van with an old water tank and a pressure washer in it for $4500 got me running for the first year or two while I bought bigger and better stuff. I have managed to get my consumables down to 15% and I pay anywhere from 12-20 an hour for help. And it works out to about 40% in payroll. However. When we are working together well, half of that 40% comes to me and in fact if I am smart about it. I can cut a job that would take him or myself by ourself an hour to complete. We can complete it start to finish in under 20 minutes. So help is a huge factor. Go find yourself a trucking company and wash their trucks and trailers. They’re fantastic because as soon as you get them all cleaned up they go somewhere and get good and dirty again and need another wash. Buildings are a little more money in your pocket for your time. But they only get washed once every year or two. So you need A LOT of customers to keep you going. I only have maybe 10 full-time customers. I have become quite good at it and only work for the companies that wash once a week. I have 6 companies like that. One has 10 trucks and 15 trailers. Another has 3 trucks and 5 trailers. And so on. Then I have a handful of guys who call me on random about every two weeks and they kind of spread out the down time from the bigger companies. This gives me 5-6 days a week work. Anywhere from 6-10 hours a day sometimes I get stuck working 12-14 hour days but you gotta do what you gotta do to keep the customer happy. And that is a rarity. Mostly only when I don’t have help. Such as they call in sick or something. I’ve been at it for 6 years now. Last year I grossed over 100g After payroll.


  • I have a full time job. Wanted something that basically ran itself. The basics: – Find maid who wants more business – Start website (here’s mine with booking form (… not sure if it’s okay to post these, but just want to give real examples…. – advertise for free (FB, craigslist, twitter, etc) – Pay maids 70-80%, keep 20-30% It took me $650 to start up. Most of it was for the website. I direct all customers to the site to book, so I take very few calls. Probably spend 9-10 hours a week on the business right now. I started in July. Growing slowly:12 cleanings this month (10 of which are recurring customers) and 3 maids now. A very nice side business that is easy money, continues to grow with more word of mouth referrals.

So is your maid a full-time employee or contractor? Did you provide supplies or does she bring her own? You registered your business and everything? Have you handled any complaints? What about insurance/theft?

I am thinking about doing the same in my area. I’d appreciate any insight.

they are independent contractors. They bring their own supplies. We are in the process of becoming a LLC. Yes, I have handled one complaint so far. Re-cleaned for free, and turned them into a bi-weekly customer. I’d encourage you to get insured and bonded

I’m a marketing specialist and also own a couple companies. I’m always looking for simple ideas like this. I’ve been tossing around the idea of snow removal. How did you find a good employee to get started?

My first maid cleaned my parents house forever, and my second cleaned my in-laws. So there was a lot of built in trust, and I knew the quality of work. The third was a reference from one of my current maids. As far as the interview process, and starting from scratch on a potential candidate, I have not yet done that. I have seen quite a few posts where it can be tough, but am looking forward to learning that process as well. In your case, do you know anyone who already shovels snow who is looking for more work? I’d start there.

  • I don’t do this personally, however, I have a friends father who started a non-emergency ambulance service. You basically bring seniors from a nursing home or retirement home to the hospital for check-ups. Since some of these seniors are ill/close to death they have to go to the hospital ranging from 1 to 3 times a week. The competition over charges drastically. You can cut what they charge in half. Get a Ford van, turn it into an ambulance and get 2 emts. One to drive and the other to look at the patients’ vitals. From there try to expand clientele and get more emts and ambulance etc. I do not know how much you can gross but I believe he has about 4 to 5 vans running 40 to 60 hours each. He started it himself as an emt and now rarely does any work and lives the good life.