Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Adventures in Cake, Installment One

I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of being poor. There are two ways to fix that, the one we spend most of our time on here at TAiMH is how to save, find deals, and just generally spend less money. The other side of that coin is making more money. If you, like me, have found yourself in a situation where a new, better-paying job is not on the horizon and the chances of a raise are almost nonexistent, increasing your income seems impossible.

Second jobs can be a life saver; they can also be a life sucker. Minimum wage for ten to twenty hours a week can ruin your social life even as it barely helps you squeak by. What’s a nearly broke person to do? This one decided to start a small business.

The second step after deciding that I was up for the small business challenge was determining what goods or services I could provide to my community, be it actual or virtual. The most important aspect of this decision was whether or not I felt I could make a profit. If I’m not going to make a profit, it’s just another hobby. So I looked at my life, what kinds of things did I do for free that other people get paid for? In my case it was baking. I make cakes and bring them to my office or to parties; just about anywhere I go I take a cake, or cupcakes, or brownies, or cheesecakes. . . . Other people get paid to bake, why shouldn’t I? This wasn’t too much of a stretch for me--my mother baked cakes out of our home for my entire childhood. And yes, it was a wonderland.

After figuring out what I wanted to do, I needed to come up with the numbers to prove to myself that it could really work. Lucky for me I already have quite a few of the supplies that I need, so that helps reduce my initial costs. The less it takes to start making money, the lower your risk.

Check back soon for more Adventures in Cake and we’ll see how far down the road to business ownership I've traveled.

Update: Thanks to Financial Highway for including this post in The Carnival of Twenty-Something Finance.

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