How To Start A Business In A Garage: 11 Unique Ideas

Some people think they need office space to start a business. In order to acquire and obtaining customers, that’s one of the keys to running a successful business. However, that’s not always the case as you can start a business from anywhere. One creative example is from your garage. This article is a must-read if you want to learn how to start a business in a garage.

In this post, I’ll go over why a garage business is viable today. Also, I’ll go over eleven neat ideas to start a business in your own garage. I’ll wrap up by discussing how I would go about it.

Why start a garage business?

If you have garage space, are you utilizing it? Or is there empty space that you don’t use? If not, then use that as an opportunity to provide a service to others.

If you don’t have the financial means to purchase commercial property, your garage can be another alternative to use. There are a lot of costs for owning commercial real estate as well; for example, you’ll have permits or may be subject to local ordinances and regulations.

With a garage space, that comes with minimal costs. Especially if you own it, you’re not subject to the same standards as if you were to lease or own commercial space.

How to start a business in a garage: Some tech companies such as Apple and Amazon started in garages.

Did you know?

Many tech companies that are around today started their businesses in a garage. Amazon and Apple started out small before becoming world-renowned companies.

In the case of Amazon, it initially started out as a little-known online bookstore. Originally launched in a garage by Jeff Bezos (former CEO and founder), Amazon is now one of the largest online marketplaces. 

When you think about it, it’s quite fascinating what can happen over time. For the remainder of this article, I’ll go over some ideas for getting a business started in a garage space.

  1. Photography Studio
  2. Sell Your Artwork
  3. Music Recording Studio
  4. Barbershop
  5. Pet Grooming Salon
  6. Car Repair Shop
  7. Laundry Mat
  8. Selling Handmade Goods
  9. Be A Personal Trainer (A Fitness Studio)
  10. Watch Repair Services
  11. Podcasting Or Vlogging Studio

Photography studio

If you’re a professional photographer, consider using your garage as a photography studio. It can be a great way to help others get professional photos taken.

That can be for people who want single portraits of themselves. Or for some families, they may want to take professional family photos. There are many parents who also like to have professional photos of their kids.

If that’s the case, you’ll need to invest in some portrait backgrounds, lighting, and cameras. An attractive garage studio can be created if you have the resources.

How start a business in a garage: A photography studio can be a great idea to start in a garage.

Sell your artwork

If you’re an artist, you may want to use that space to create your art. You can then sell that artwork to others.

In any case, you could end up having your own little art store. You can have a large collection of art to sell. Even today, the artwork is still very relevant, as people love to hang it up in their homes.

How to start a business in a garage: Using your garage as space to do artwork (and sell it) is another great idea.

Music recording studio

If you’re a musician, using your garage can be great for recording music. Or, if you’re not a musician, consider having other musicians rent out your garage space for recording sessions.

Using that space allows musicians to record albums while producing great music. In that case, you can charge a monthly fee for a musician to use your garage as a recording studio.

How to start a business in a garage: Using your garage as a recording studio can be great to rent out to musicians.

Barbershop

If you know how to cut hair (or do it for a living), it doesn’t hurt to start your own barbershop. As long as you have formal training (a licensed professional), why not start it in your garage space?  It may not be ideal as having a professional barber shop, but it’s certainly possible.

I happen to know someone who runs a barber shop in his garage. He and his two sons have done very well serving clients, even if it’s in their own garage space. So it’s not uncommon for that type of business to start in a garage.

How to start a business in a garage: Starting a barbershop is not uncommon to do in a garage space.

Pet grooming salon

Similar to a barber shop, you can do the same with grooming pets. If you have a passion for serving pets, that can be a great business to run as well.

If you’re going to take that route, you want to be comfortable grooming your own pets. If it does not work out, you may want to give it a pass. 

But if it works out and you have formal training, then why not? Some other things to consider would include having pet owners bring immunization records prior to doing service.

For example, if you’re going to groom dogs, are they updated on their rabies shots? Professional grooming salons ensure pets receive the proper immunization shots. As a result, it can prevent illness during service.

How to start a business in a garage: Doing pet grooming can be a creative idea, especially if you enjoy working with pets.

Car repair shop

If you have mechanic skills and enjoy fixing cars, that can be another great idea. The nice thing about doing it is you can personalize services, or focus on what your customer needs the most. I like to refer to it as individualized attention.

Also, you can charge less than traditional repair services usually cost. Depending on the needs of your customers, you might be able to charge accordingly if you specialize in car repairs.

How to start a business in a garage: You can start a car repair shop in a garage as well.

Laundry mat

If your garage has a washer and dryer in place, why not offer to do other people’s laundry? Some people don’t like doing their own laundry, or they simply don’t have the time to do so.

Also, any revenue you earn can be used for machine maintenance or breakdowns. Or, you can invest some of that money into buying additional washers and dryers.

That can be an idea if you end up expanding your laundry business. Buying or leasing commercial space may be necessary, but it’s something to consider in the long run.

How to start a business in a garage: Starting a laundry mat is possible to do in a garage.

Selling handmade goods

If you’re into crafts or making your own handmade products, you can use your garage space as a little store. Whether that’s selling handmade t-shirts, coffee mugs, or anything else, it’s a great way to sell your own handmade goods.

Also, it’s a nice alternative to selling online. If you don’t want to restrict yourself to starting a print-on-demand store online (i.e. Amazon, Etsy), you have other options if you want to sell locally as well.

Be a personal trainer (a fitness studio)

If you specialize in fitness training, why not offer your services in your garage? You can conduct one-on-one training sessions, or even run your own little gym/workout facility. 

You may need to invest in some equipment to start out with. But it can be profitable if you end up working with multiple clients. 

Also, you can even hold group classes in your garage space. If you keep them small (no more than five people), you can have a nice variety of workout sessions to do. You can choose from yoga, pilates, or Zumba, among others.

How to start a business in a garage: Starting a fitness studio or personal training can be worth doing in a garage.

Watch repair services

Believe it or not, people still wear regular watches while they’re out and about. It is still necessary to fix watches if they aren’t working properly.

So you can start your own little shop where you can help get their watches fixed. You can go there instead of going to a store or mall.

How to start a business in a garage: A watch repair shop can be ideal for starting in a garage.

Podcast or vlogging studio

Your garage can be a great starting point for starting a podcast or making videos out of that space. If you’re someone who likes having a visual background, doing a podcast or videos can help make your space stand out.

Depending on what niche you’re interested in, you can get creative with how you want to utilize that space. When making videos, you can show demonstrations or give presentations if that is what you would like to do.

How to start a business in a garage: Podcasting or vlogging is ideal to start in a garage.

For instance, if you’re a personal trainer or fitness instructor, you can use your garage space to make home workout videos. From that point, you can post it on a blog you created, or even upload the videos through a Youtube channel.

Going down this route is not uncommon. YouTube channels are often started by people doing home workout videos or other health and fitness topics.

Which business is the best to start in a garage?

All of the ideas mentioned earlier are great to do in a garage space. Anyone can go about in those directions, and it can turn into something bigger down the road.

But out of all the choices, my recommendation would be a podcast or making videos (i.e. A Youtube channel). Today, it’s easier and cheaper to get started.

For example, you can get an inexpensive microphone to start recording audio sessions for podcasts. Or for videos, all you may need is a phone and an inexpensive lapel microphone.

But from there, you can utilize that garage space to make it worth working in. While working, it’s possible to reach more customers globally. 

If you’re going to go the online route, there’s a lot you can do to reach more people. That can be through social media or using your space to make videos and post them on Youtube.

There’s definitely a lot of potential if you stick to these options. So overall, I recommend going to the podcast or vlogging route to reach out to more people around the world.

Final Words

There are many ideas for starting your own garage business. It’s amazing to think that not a lot of people consider using their garage to start a business.

It’s still possible in today’s world. Sure, some people will strictly go the online route. But with podcasting or making videos from a personalized space, there’s so much more that you can do. 

What can initially start in a garage (as in the case of Amazon), can turn into something massive later on. So take some time to think about it, and then take action today.

Your Turn: Which business idea interests you?

I want to get your thoughts on this topic. Do you have garage space that you’re not using at the moment?

If so, have you thought about starting some type of business? Which of the ideas discussed earlier interests you the most?

Do you have what it takes to be the next business success story? Are you excited about the potential that can happen?

Feel free to share your thoughts by leaving a comment below. I look forward to reading your responses, and I’ll gladly respond promptly.

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Eric is a content writer and the site owner of notimekillers.com. He takes great pride in helping people manage their time and grow their businesses. Eric is a firm believer in time freedom, as he believes in taking ownership of time. 

“Time is your most important asset. It can be your best friend or worst enemy. How you use your time can shape the future you desire to have.” In his leisure time, Eric loves to write and read whenever possible. He enjoys going for long walks outdoors while doing in-home workout videos every week. You can follow Eric on LinkedIn.

Self Photo 2019: Here's a picture at a building in downtown Chicago.

6 thoughts on “How To Start A Business In A Garage: 11 Unique Ideas”

  1. Thank you so much for the interesting ideas on how to make a business in a garage.  There are so many ways here that look fun and creative, but I believe that trying to get into the vlogging business would be fun. 

    I think it would also take a lot of work, but that is okay if you have the determination and the time to do it.

    Reply
    • Hi Jessie,

      It’s funny how you can get creative with starting a garage business. Even some of the most unheard ideas (such as a pet grooming salon) are worth considering.

      You and I seem to be in agreement on the vlogging business. It can be a lucrative business if you make the right decisions; in other words, if you take action and keep up with it.

      You’re right that it takes a lot of work, and many people don’t have that determination. So you make an excellent point on that- it’s something more people need to do these days.

      Thank you very much for sharing your thoughts- I greatly appreciate them.

      Reply
  2. Great post, it really got my entrepreneurial juices flowing. It’s true so many Fortune 500 business got their start in a garage. Like you said, it sure saves on startup costs.

    I never considered laundromat! I love outside the box thinking.

    I have one question I’d love for you to address. Are there out of the box ways of dealing with neighbors, communities, covenants etc. that can help grease the gears so to speak? What absolute rights does a homeowner have to use their garage for business purposes?

    Reply
    • Hi MJ Van Dyke,

      Yes, some of the most successful companies got their start in a garage. Giants such as Apple and Amazon fall under that category, and both of them have had massive success over the years.

      As far as your question, I don’t have a clear answer on that. Dealing with neighbors and communities is important for running any garage business, so I’ll have to look into that.

      Regarding rights for homeowners, that’s a different subject I’m not aware of. However, that can be something to research and write an article on at some point.

      So I will follow-up at some point and maybe write an article on it. I think it would be worth understanding more about, especially for homeowners.

      Thank you very much for your question. I greatly appreciate it- we’ll be in touch.

      Reply
  3. This post is a great article with some wonderful recommendations for businesses to start in a garage! I actually already sell my artwork out of my garage, which means my garage is also a crafting studio, craft storage space, and art studio.  

    The only thing I do not use the garage for anymore is parking my car 🙂 I think some of your other ideas, however, are absolutely genius.  

    I would have never thought to run a laundry mat out of my garage, but what a fantastic idea.  That is a service people will always pay for!  

    I think you could also run a gardening service out of the garage storing your tools in there or even planting some pots of plants to grow seedlings.  People would be willing to buy seedlings from their neighbor over Home Depot any day!

    As far as YouTube videos and podcasts go, I think it would be interesting to decide on a business to run out of your garage. Then, you can make a podcast or YouTube channel showcasing how you actually got your garage business up and running! 

    Or even some tutorials about the skills needed for the business you have chosen.

    Anyway, interesting article. Thanks!.  

    Reply
    • Hi Ashley,

      There are a lot of things you can do creatively by starting a garage business. My list is more of a starter’s guide, but there are a lot of things you can do in that direction.

      I’m glad to hear you use your garage for selling your artwork. That’s a great starting point for anyway who’s into artwork.

      Also, I like the gardening service idea. As you said, it can be another neat alternative to a major outlet such as Home Depot.

      But I do like the vlogging and podcast methods as well. What you mentioned about documenting your progress starting a garage business is another excellent approach. You sure have a lot of thoughts in mind.

      Thank you very much for sharing your insights- I can’t tell you how much I appreciate them. 

      Reply

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