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41 Outdoor Business Ideas

Written by:

Carolyn Young is a business writer who focuses on entrepreneurial concepts and the business formation. She has over 25 years of experience in business roles, and has authored several entrepreneurship textbooks.

Edited by:

David has been writing and learning about business, finance and globalization for a quarter-century, starting with a small New York consulting firm in the 1990s.

41 Outdoor Business Ideas

Many major American businesses depend on outdoor activities, such as The North Face or Columbia. But there are also countless smaller businesses that rely on people getting out and moving about, which is happening more and more now that the pandemic is finally ending. Outdoor recreation in the US generates $125 billion, a major chunk of the national economy.

If you like being outdoors, you might consider starting a business and earning some money while you’re there. With minimal investment, you can start a gardening, plant nursery, or landscaping business. You could provide pool cleaning, lawn care, or dog walking services.

Check out our list of excellent outdoor business ideas — you’re sure to find some appealing options.

1. Landscaping

How to start a landscaping business

Boosted by the recent real estate boom, landscaping and lawncare have seen steady growth in recent years. That expansion is expected to continue, so now’s an excellent time to get in on the action and ride this wave to success. 

You could offer a wealth of services, from designing yards and gardens to tree planting, trimming, mowing and more, and you could focus on residential customers or businesses, or go for broke and aim for both! Also, offer unique design services, sustainable practices, or specialized gardens like low water or native plant gardens.

First, you’ll need to brush up on your landscape design and maintenance skills. Fortunately, the US government in 2019 partnered with the leading landscapers’ association to launch a national landscapers’ apprenticeship program to train more skilled workers. 

You’ll also need to invest in quality equipment, as well as a reliable truck. After that, to attract clients you’ll want to build a simple, appealing website and launch some strong marketing to get the word out.

Landscapers can earn between $40,000 to $100,000 annually, depending on client volume and project size.

2. Lawn Care

How to start a lawn care business

The lawn care market has grown significantly in recent years, thanks to the real estate boom, and is forecast to keep expanding in the years ahead.

Start a lawn care business by investing in quality mowing and maintenance equipment. Offering seasonal services like leaf removal or snow clearance can provide year-round income.

Of course, you’ll need to stand out in order to attract clients (like using eco-friendly products), and deliver top-quality service to keep them. You also need to have a strong marketing campaign across social media, various online platforms like TaskRabbit and Angi, and your local community.

Lawn care professionals can make from $30,000 to $60,000 a year, with potential for more as the business grows.

3. Farm

How to start a farm business

Farming is a trillion-dollar industry in the US, and offers considerable opportunity for the hard-working entrepreneur. Agriculture, food, and related industries contributed roughly $1.530 trillion to U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) in 2023.

Farming is not as easy as putting on overalls. You’ll need to find and purchase the right piece of land. You’ll need to choose your crops. Maybe heirloom tomatoes, zucchini and soy beans? Organic farms are generally more profitable because of higher prices and/or lower input costs than conventional farms. Next, work the soil and make sure it’s ready for planting, then keep your fields clear of insects and blight. You’ll also want livestock. Will you have chickens, lambs, cows, pigs? Rare breed native livestock can provide premium products and profitable incomes. You can sell directly to consumers or local restaurants and other small businesses.

A small farm might net $20,000 to $50,000 annually, but much depends on scale, efficiency, and market prices.

4. Dog Walking

How to start a dog walking business

Would you believe that dog walking is a billion-dollar industry in the US? If you love dogs, you could start your own dog walking business and help people care for their pets while making a good living, getting some exercise and enjoying yourself! It’s a win-win-win. 

Of course, it’s not as easy as giving a dog a bone. You will most likely need to register with your local health department and get insurance, to help you in the event of any accidents or incidents. But beyond that, you’ll just need to offer your services on social media and online platforms like Rover.com and deliver excellent dog walking services to your first few clients. The good thing is that you can set it up with minimal investment; just your time and basic supplies. Offer unique services like group hikes or training sessions to stand out.

Dog walkers can earn $15,000 to $50,000 per year, depending on location and clientele.

5. Drone Business

How to start a drone business

The drone market is expected to almost double by 2028, as drones come into wide use for recreation, deliveries, surveillance, agriculture and more. You could start your own business, work from home and make a good living. 

The crucial first step will be researching your local and state laws and finding out exactly which types of drones can be used for which purposes. Next, you should decide on which segment of the market you’d like to focus, whether it’s for recreation, surveillance, or shooting videos. Specializing in niche markets can increase earnings. Your biggest investment will be purchasing high-quality drone(s).

From there you should probably get a bit of training so you’re able to showcase the drones to potential customers. At this point, all you need to do is build a website and start marketing.

Drone operators can make $30,000 to $70,000 annually.

6. Solar Business

How to start a solar panel installation business

Thanks to government incentives and greater concern about the environment, the solar industry is booming, and the cost of panels has declined more than 60% in the past decade.

Before you get started you’ll have a big decision to make: which aspect of solar power your company will concentrate on. You could sell solar panels, install them, sell and install, or go in another direction and build an entire solar farm. That last choice is of course the most expensive, and also requires a sizable chunk of land, preferably in a sunny place. Consider offering innovative solutions like battery storage integration. Whichever option you choose, you will need to meet all the licensing and regulations requirements, and after that you’ll be ready to renew and energize your entrepreneurial journey.

Earnings can range widely, from $50,000 to over $100,000 a year, driven by the scale of your operations and customer base.

7. Solar Farm

How to start a solar farm

Worried about climate change? One way to help combat it is to start a solar farm, or a field of photovoltaic solar panels that absorb energy from the sun and convert it into electricity that’s distributed to consumers or sent to the power grid. Solar farms provide renewable energy, minimize carbon emissions, reduce electricity bills, and are low maintenance. 

There are more than 5,000 solar farms across the US. Most are small with generating capacity of only up to five megawatts each. Setting up a solar farm requires significant initial investment in land and solar panels. The startup cost for a solar farm can reach $2 million and more. An option is to lease out your property to an individual or company that intends to put up a solar farm.

Focus on locations with high sunlight exposure. Profit through selling electricity back to the grid or through renewable energy certificates. Annual profits can be substantial but vary widely based on location and installation size.

8. Food Truck

How to start a food truck business

Food trucks seem to be everywhere these days, at parks and street fairs, music festivals, beaches, private parties and community events.

The first step, of course, will be settling on a menu. The possibilities are endless, from burritos to barbecue, from burgers to sausages, and from smoothies and milkshakes to pad thai and pizza. You could even go seasonal, and offer frozen desserts in summer and gourmet soups in winter, and be able to draw a crowd year-round. The next major hurdle will be acquiring the necessary licenses and permits, which are absolutely crucial for any food-related business. 

Last but not least, you will need the food truck itself. It’s sure to be a significant investment, but you might be able to find a reasonably priced used truck to keep costs low.

Locations and local events are crucial for visibility. Food truck owners can earn $20,000 to $100,000 annually, greatly influenced by menu and location.

9. Ice Cream Truck

How to start an ice cream business

Americans LOVE ice cream: we eat almost half a pound a week on average. Americans also love food trucks, which have exploded into a multi-billion-dollar industry in recent years. Yet for some reason, the rise of food trucks has in many areas meant the end of the ice cream truck. 

But now that’s starting to change, as a new generation of ice cream trucks has begun to emerge. These vendors don’t offer the same old popsicles and ice cream sandwiches you got when you were a kid, but instead provide locally-made ice cream treats, supporting local businesses and helping build a network of partners. More importantly, today’s ice cream trucks are wired, allowing customers to book them for events online, track their location and get a text message when they’re in the neighborhood. 

Start an ice cream truck business with a vehicle and a variety of ice cream products. Stand out with unique flavors or themed trucks. Success depends heavily on location, season, and marketing.

10. Construction

How to start a construction company

The market size of the U.S. construction sector was valued at around 1.8 trillion U.S. dollars in 2022. It employed more than 8 million people as of 2022. Although it suffered a slump in the last two years because of the pandemic, it is anticipated to rebound strongly as the government’s stimulus package is expected to boost infrastructure spending. 

There are a few things you need to take care of first. You’ll need to comply with legal, insurance, and other requirements to avoid legal issues later on. It’s also a good idea to prepare a business plan, which will include your financial and marketing plans, to give you a clearer picture of what your company needs and how it will operate. It would also be wise to contract the services of a lawyer to help with crafting contracts, agreements, and other legal documents before moving forward with any construction projects.

Profits vary, but construction businesses can make significant income, often exceeding $500,000 annually.

11. Fish Farm

How to start a fish farming business

The US Department of Agriculture’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends at least 8 ounces of seafood (less for children) per week based on a 2,000 calorie diet. This presents an opportunity for fish farms to increase their output.

Fish farming refers’ raising fish commercially in tanks, ponds or other enclosures for the goal of producing food. It can be started with some aquatic systems knowledge and space for ponds or tanks.

A fish farm commercially breeds fish and seafood, usually for food. It’s important to prepare a substantial amount to find a suitable location, establish your fish pond, procure the required equipment, and find a reliable supplier of fingerlings. Of course, you’ll need to comply with licensing, zoning, and other regulations. It’s also to your advantage to scope out the market and draw up a plan on how to corner a share.

12. Mushrooms

How to start a mushroom farm

Mushrooms are delicious, healthy, easy to grow, and go for a good price. Demand for these edible fungi is increasing across the globe, especially in the US, as more consumers shift to healthful nutritious foods. The global mushroom market is predicted to grow at an annual growth rate of 9.7% from 2022 to 2030.

There are many ways to start a mushroom business. You can grow your own mushrooms in your backyard or purchase them from a reliable mushroom farm. The best way is to go organic, which is currently the most popular niche for farmers. But first, you have to decide what kind of mushrooms to grow and who your target market is. For example, you can sell your mushrooms to food businesses or wholesale shops. You should know the profit margin for each type of market segment so you can choose which path is more profitable for you.

Mushroom growers can earn $30,000 to $80,000 annually.

13. Ranch

ranch business idea

Farming and ranching may not be popular career choices, but they’re essential to our survival. Ranches provide meat for human consumption and materials like leather and wool for clothing, furniture, and more. There are around two million farms and ranches across the US and they’re projected to earn nearly $116 billion in 2024.

Running a ranch involves raising livestock or offering recreational services like hunting or lodging. Differentiate by practicing sustainable ranching or specializing in high-demand breeds.

A ranch has high startup costs so it’s a good idea to identify sources of funding first. If you don’t have an existing tract of land, you’ll need to raise funds so you can acquire or rent one. Another challenge that will impact profitability is climate change so it’s to your advantage to prepare mitigating measures.

Income varies widely based on size and services, potentially reaching over $100,000 annually.

14. Winery

How to Start a Wine Business

Have you dreamt of owning your own vineyard? It’s not as hard as you might think! And now’s a great time, with the $353 billion global wine industry expecting steady growth in the years ahead. Before anything, you need to have knowledge of viticulture. The first step is to decide which type of wine you want to produce. Wine comes in many varieties, from pinot grigio to cabernet, from chardonnay to pinot noir and beaujolais, so it’s important that you do your research and find one that fits your interests and talents. Starting a winery also requires knowledge of viticulture and a significant upfront investment in land and equipment.

The next step is to create a business plan and funding strategy. Vineyards don’t come cheap (they require knowledge of viticulture and a significant upfront investment in land and equipment), so generating adequate financing is critical to getting your wine business off the ground. Once that’s sorted, source your grapes from quality suppliers, buy the required processing equipment, and start bottling wine! How you market your wine will also be important, as this is a competitive marketplace. 

15. Florist Business

How to start a florist business

Does the sight of flowers brighten your day? Then why not start your own florist business and make every day beautiful. If you have some storage space, you could even start your business at home and sell your flowers online and in your local area. 

Your first step would be to research which flowers are most popular in your area and find a wholesaler who offers quality products at a good bulk rate. Once you’ve built up an inventory, you might build word-of-mouth by offering free bouquets to local businesses, such as restaurants, hair salons and hotels — places with a sizable clientele — then giving discounts to anybody who mentions that they saw your flowers in these businesses.

Florists can earn between $25,000 to $50,000 annually, with growth potential through online sales.

16. Campground

How to start a campground

Camping is one of the most popular pastimes in the US. Over 50 million U.S. Americas above the age of six years old went camping in 2022 and 2023. 

Your biggest challenge in starting a campground is finding a suitable location. The most visited campgrounds in the US are in state parks, near bodies of water, surrounded by wilderness, or in the mountains. Once you find an ideal campsite, you’ll need to comply with licensing, zoning, and other legal requirements. Before you launch your business, it’s wise to research the market and find out what other campgrounds are offering.

Revenue comes from nightly fees and selling camping supplies or rentals. Annual income ranges from $40,000 to $150,000, depending on location and amenities.

17. Tree Farm

How to start a christmas tree farm business

Growing trees helps fight climate change. But did you know that it’s also a great way to earn money? The $8.1 billion US tree and shrub industry is projected to grow in the following years. An increase in housing starts and rising demand for food products will drive growth in the next few years. Trees take a long time to grow, so it’s best to start your tree farm business now. 

You can start small and establish a tree farm within your property, or you can go all in and purchase or lease acreage for a larger operation. Among the ways to earn from your tree farm business is to focus on high-value fruit trees. Another is to select trees that produce specialty wood for furniture or fiber for clothing. You can also establish a nursery and sell tree seedlings.

Market to local landscapers, retailers, or directly to consumers during holidays. Profits can range from $40,000 to $120,000 annually, heavily influenced by species and market demand.

18. Courier Business

How to start a courier business

The courier service market is growing fast, thanks to the rise of delivery apps like InstaCart, DoorDash and more, so there’s real opportunity in this line of work. Particularly if you already have a car, this is a low-cost venture with little risk and strong profit potential. To get started you just need to sign up as a driver for one of your local delivery apps and start making pick ups and deliveries. 

Once you’ve built a reputation, you could start offering your courier services to area businesses, which tend to pay more. Couriers can make $45,000 to $115,000 a year, with potential for more as the business expands.

19. Apple Orchard

apple orchard business idea

US apple production for the 2023/24 crop year is 250 million bushels, which represents a 1.5% increase compared to last year’s production figure. Demand is expected to be stable as apples are among the most consumed fruits and more Americans want to include fruit in a healthy diet. 

An apple orchard requires knowledge of tree cultivation. Before you can start your business, you should first decide what type of apples you plan on growing, how big the farm will be and where it will be located. You can easily check which states are best for growing apples. Apple orchards cover a wide range of activities such as tree planting, tree care, and agriculture.

Besides selling the fresh fruits, you can make extra income by opening your apple orchard to families and offer events like bonfires and picking competitions. Apple picking is fun and Instagram-worthy and pickers get to make apple pies, apple juice and more.

Seasonal festivals and direct sales can also boost income. Earnings vary, but orchards can net $60,000 to $150,000 seasonally.

20. Summer Camp

summer camp business idea

The summer camp industry, valued at around $4 billion in the US, is expected to grow in the following years.

To get started, you’ll have to choose a niche and decide whether to set up a vacation camp, sports camp, or outdoor adventure camp. Most camps still cater to children, but some have programs for adults as well. Your choice will determine the kind of facilities that you will build. Camps generally provide cabins, campsites, and recreation facilities and equipment. They also provide meals, snacks, and non-alcoholic beverages. Consider offering specialized camps like tech, sports, or arts to attract specific groups.

You will need to make an upfront investment. Unless you already have an existing property that’s ideal for a summer camp, you will have to choose your location well to be able to attract customers.

Income depends on the duration and pricing of programs, with potential annual earnings of $30,000 to $90,000.

21. Dog Training

How to start a dog training business

Many dog owners simply don’t have the time or patience to deal with training their pet, and turn to professionals for assistance. If you love being outdoors and spending time with dogs, starting your own dog training business could be a great way to make a living while enjoying quality time with cuddly canines.

Dog training is a growing industry already worth a quarter of a billion dollars, and you can get in on the action with just a few relatively simple steps. You could even run your business from home, and do your training in the local park. But you will need to make sure your skills are up to par, and there are a lot of online courses to help you brush up your skills before you take the certification test.  

Offer group classes, individual sessions, and specialized training such as agility or obedience.

Next, you’ll need to build a website offering your services. Finally, you’ll need to reach out to pet owners on platforms like Facebook and Instagram and market your new business. Once you get that first client, you just need to deliver, and the referrals and money should start rolling in.

Dog trainers can earn $30,000 to $80,000 annually depending on services and clientele.

22. Gardening

How to start a gardening business

If you have a green thumb and love growing your own plants, you could take your hobby outside and launch a gardening business that helps people and makes real money. The global lawn and garden market is likely to experience steady growth over the next seven years.

Starting a gardening business is relatively simple and doesn’t require a lot of overhead costs. This type of business can also be run from home. You can host in-person and virtual workshops on gardening, design or maintain gardens, and provide other services like lawn mowing or outdoor repair. If you want to stand out, consider offering organic gardening services.

It’s a good idea to research the market first and find out what your competitors are offering in order to find clients. Market your services to residential homeowners and local businesses.

Gardeners can make between $35,000 and $70,000 a year, with growth potential through workshops and consultations.

23. Farmers’ Market

How to start a farmers market

Are you among the millions of Americans who shop for fresh locally grown fruits and vegetables each week at farmers markets? Well, you could take the next step and start your own farmers market. It’s a great way to begin your entrepreneurial journey and promote a healthy and nutritious diet. You’ll also be helping local farmers earn bigger profits by giving them a venue to sell their produce directly to consumers and eliminating the middlemen. 

The number of farmers markets has been increasing. As of 2019, there were more than 8,000 farmers markets across the US. Some markets sell only fresh fruits and vegetables while others also carry meat, eggs, baked goods, dairy products, and flowers.

First, it’s important to link up with the local farmers. It’s easy to find them; just ask the US Department of Agriculture for a list of farmers in your area. It’s also important to find a big area. If you plan this carefully, your farmers market can be fun, healthy, and financially rewarding.

24. Plant Nursery

How to start a plant nursery business

The $43 billion nursery and garden stores industry in the US has been steadily growing in the last five years.

There are many factors that you must take into account before you can start your plant nursery business. You must think of innovative ways to compete with the big industry players, know your target audience, and have extensive knowledge of plants.

You should also identify the plants that you will cultivate – ornamental plants, or herbs and food crops? Offer a diverse selection of plants, including exotic or hard-to-find varieties. To differentiate your nursery, consider adding planting services and garden consultations.

Get creative in marketing your products. Having a website and social media accounts will help promote your business, so work on these even before you launch your plant nursery. Plant nurseries can net $40,000 to $100,000 annually, depending on scale and specialization.

25. Roll-off Dumpster

How to start a dumpster rental business

Roll-off dumpsters are large heavy-duty trash containers that are used to transport bulk waste materials collected during cleanup, construction, renovation and demolition projects. The U.S. dumpster and roll-container market is expected to grow from $517.4 million to $998.9 million in the next ten year.

To get started, you’ll have to invest in dumpsters and find a location where you can store these. You will need a dumpster permit if you place your dumpsters on the street, sidewalk or in any public area. Permit requirements vary from state to state, so you’ll need to check your state’s regulations. It’s also important to scope out the market and find out the prevailing rental rates. The rates vary, depending on the type of waste, length of rental, and more. To find clients, it’s to your advantage to advertise your business, promote it on social media, or seek referrals.

26. Roofing Business

How to start a roofing company

Roofing is among the most crucial services a business can provide. Without a strong roof, what’s the point of an office or home? That might help explain why the US roofing industry is worth $26 billion and expected to expand more than half by 2030.

The key first step will be learning how to be a roofer. Launching a roofing business requires expertise in roof installation, maintenance, and repair. There are countless online courses available to get you started, and after that you should probably do a bit of apprenticing to get your feet wet.

Once that’s all done you’ll just need to get certified and get your roofing contractor’s license, and perhaps decide which type of material you’d like to focus on. Maybe aluminum roofing? It’s been gaining ground lately. You ca differentiate your business by offering eco-friendly materials.

Roofers can earn significantly, often exceeding $100,000 annually, depending on job size and frequency.

27. Snow Removal

How to start a snow plowing business

When starting a snow removal business, it is important to comply with all legal and insurance requirements first. It’s also a good idea to identify your target market and study the competition to find out what they’re offering and how much they’re charging. Having access to the latest technology and equipment is crucial in optimizing efficiency, so you should monitor market trends.

Snow removal requires heavy machinery such as front-end loaders to remove snow, especially those that have accumulated from plowing. With careful planning, your snow removal business would be off to a good start.

Annual earnings can range from $70,000 to $150,000, heavily dependent on the weather.

Pro tip: Consider expanding your business to include lawn care and landscaping services during the off-season to maintain a consistent income throughout the year.

28. Beekeeping

How to start a beekeeping business

The US beekeeping industry, valued at $624.2 million in 2023, with the market size increasing 1.2% in 2023 compared to 2022. Bees are essential because they pollinate food crops and trees that humans need to survive. They also produce honey, a natural sweetener with medicinal properties. 

Before you get started, you must understand that beekeeping is a regulated industry and the laws and regulations differ from state to state. It is important that you find out what your state’s regulations are. Do you need to secure a license or register your bees? Is beekeeping allowed in your neighborhood? You will find the answers to these and other questions as you do your research. It is also important to find out the standards and regulations that you must follow if you’re thinking about bottling and selling honey.

Sell honey, beeswax products, and offer pollination services to local farms. Specializing in organic beekeeping can attract premium pricing.

Beekeepers can make $30,000 to $60,000 a year, depending on product demand and hive productivity.

29. Composting Business

How to start a composting business

Up to 40% of the US food supply ends up as waste, according to the USDA. The government aims to cut food waste in half, or by around 66 billion pounds, by 2030. Some states have banned food waste from landfills while others have required recycling of organic waste.

These policies are pushing more Americans to resort to composting, the natural process of recycling organic waste such as food scraps, yard waste like fallen leaves and branches, and other biodegradable materials. Starting a composting business could be your ticket to financial freedom.

Plus, you’ll be helping reduce the country’s carbon footprint and fight global warming. Compost, the organic material produced after composting, is added to the soil as fertilizer or used as an alternative to soil to grow plants. It’s used in gardens, landscaping, golf courses, and more. Offer finished compost to gardeners and farms. Differentiate by providing zero-waste consultations.

This environmentally friendly business can net $35,000 to $65,000 annually.

30. Pool Cleaning

How to start a pool cleaning business

As pools have become less expensive in recent years, they have also become more popular, which means demand for pool technicians is at an all-time high. 

It helps to live in an area with a lot of pools, and somewhere that’s warm year-round, like Florida or Arizona. You’ll need to get all the appropriate equipment, from filters to cleaning chemicals, brushes, hoses, buckets, nets and more. Finally, enroll yourself in a two-day course to be trained and certified as a pool cleaning technician.

Of course, pool maintenance involves a lot more than cleaning. The trouble could be anything from a leaky skimmer or malfunctioning pump to an algae bloom or clogged pipes. There’s tons of pool-related servicing to be done. Offering regular maintenance packages and emergency cleaning services can attract a steady clientele. Specializing in green cleaning methods can also appeal.

Pool cleaners typically earn $30,000 to $60,000 per year.

31. Pest Control

How to start a pest control business

There’s a very good reason pests are called pests — because they’re really annoying! That’s why pest control is a $23.5 billion industry in the US that’s been growing steadily for years. It can be difficult work, but you could start your own pest control business and help people enjoy safer, more comfortable lives while making a good living. What’s wrong with that? 

The first step is choosing a good area, preferably somewhere with older homes and buildings that might be infested, and with little pest control competition. You’ll have to decide if you want to focus on a specific type of pest, such as rats, ants and roaches, bees and wasps, or all types. Next, you’ll need to invest in some serious equipment and outfit yourself for the job. Finally, you’ll need to do some studying and get certified as a licensed pest control professional.

Pest controllers can earn $30,000 to $50,000 a year, with potential to grow by servicing commercial clients.

32. Car Wash

How to start a car wash business

With a decent-sized investment, you could start your own car wash business and make countless car owners beam with pride while making a good living. 

One crucial element will be location, as few people drive out of their way for a good car wash. So it’s important to find a location with ample space, steady vehicular traffic and easy access. Near malls and shopping centers, or alongside highway rest stops, are among the stronger options. Once you’ve nailed that down, you’ll need to invest in top-of-the-line car washing machines and fine-tune your knowledge of car detailing. Soon enough, you’ll be washing your way straight to the bank!

Car washes can generate $40,000 to $100,000 annually, depending on services offered.

33. Junk Hauling

How to start a junk removal business

Junk hauling services are needed when customers need to toss some items that no longer spark joy while they’re doing home improvements, having their houses renovated, or simply decluttering. The broader waste collection services industry in the US was valued at nearly $76.6 billion in 2023. Industry players believe that about $10 billion of this was made by the junk removal segment. 

With just your truck and network of prospective clients, you can start your junk hauling business. It’s a good idea to research first on your local government’s requirements, such as licensing and permits. You can set your rates after you scope out the market and find out how much the competition is charging. Offer clean-out services for homes and businesses. Differentiate by recycling or donating items to reduce waste. Most junk haulers charge by volume. Some provide same-day services while others stick to a schedule.

Junk haulers can make $30,000 to $60,000 a year, with potential higher earnings from larger contracts.

34. Gutter Cleaning

How to start a gutter cleaning business

The US gutter services industry has grown steadily in the last five years and is expected to earn more than $778 million in 2024

There are many ways to start a gutter cleaning business. You’ll need some money upfront for buying cleaning supplies and tools. Before you launch your business, though, research the market and see what other gutter cleaning services providers are offering and what their rates are. You can differentiate your business by offering environment-friendly cleaning products and automated solutions. 

Once you’ve decided on your niche market, start selling your services on social media channels like Facebook and Instagram, or seek referrals. Offer discounts to attract clients and provide additional services like painting over graffiti, or snow shoveling in the winter.

Gutter cleaners can earn between $25,000 and $50,000 annually.

35. Repo Business

How to start a repo business

The US repo industry is worth $2 billion and expected to see steady growth in the years ahead. It can be difficult work, going to people’s homes and reclaiming their goods, but if you have the stomach for it there is real money to be made. 

Start a repo business by understanding repossession laws and obtaining the necessary licenses. Invest in tow trucks and tracking systems. Being reliable and discreet can help you build a strong client base.

Repo agents can make $40,000 to $80,000 a year, depending on contracts and recoveries.

36. Woodworking

How to start a woodworking business

Are you good with wood? If so, this is a great time to get into the woodworking industry, which has seen steady growth in recent years and is expected to be worth nearly $6.8 billion globally by 2030. These days, people everywhere are interested in hand-crafted, artisanal goods, from wooden rocking chairs to homemade pies. 

You could start your own woodworking business from home for little investment and ride this wave of appreciation for sturdy, traditional products to serious success. Even if the trend slows down, high-quality furniture and other wooden items are always in strong demand.  

To get started, there are a few key steps you’ll need to take. First, you should get all the necessary tools and equipment, if you don’t already have them, and brush up on your woodworking with an online class or two. Next, you’ll need to decide woodworking items that you plan to make and sell: furniture, figurines and chess sets, decorative plaques and custom wood pieces, or all of the above.

Woodworkers need creativity and skill to succeed, with potential earnings of $40,000 to $90,000 annually.

37. Handyman Business

How to start a handyman business

The US handyman industry has been growing steadily for years, and by 2026 the broader home services market is expected to double! So there’s clearly a real opportunity out there. 

A key first step will be determining which services you will offer. In addition to repairs, you could offer maintenance, painting, cleaning, drywall, carpentry, minor renovations and more. Next, buy all the necessary tools and start advertising your services on online platforms like Angi. Specialize in quick fixes and maintenance tasks to build a regular customer base.

You could also reach out to landlords, developers and residential complexes offering to provide your services at a discount. Once you’ve delivered great work in your first few jobs, you can bump up your rates.

Handymen can earn $35,000 to $80,000 a year, with growth potential through additional services.

38. Bike Rental

How to start a bike rental business

As more workers return to commuting between their homes and offices, demand for bike rental for last mile connections will likely increase. More commuters now prefer to ride bikes because these are good for the environment.

The bike and scooter rental market was valued at $2.4 billion in 2022, and is expected to grow at an annual rate of 17.93%, reaching $6.47 billion by 2031.

There are a few things you need to consider before starting a bike rental business. Is there a market for bike rental in your area? What kind of bikes should you offer? How many bikes should you have at any given time? You will find the answers to these questions as you research the market. It is also important to comply with all the legal and regulatory requirements and to come up with a good marketing plan. An option is to place bike docks near subway or bus stations.

Bike rental businesses can make $30,000 to $60,000 seasonally.

39. Boat Rental

How to start a boat rental business

Boat rentals industry, currently valued at $5.3 billion in the US, is expected to see smooth sailing and steady growth in the years ahead. If you like spending time outdoors, you could start your own boat rental business and help people enjoy their time off while making a good living. 

There are several possible constraints. For one, you will need to live near a sizable body of water, and find an available access point or marina to base your operations. Second, you’ll likely need to accept the seasonal nature of this line of work, which in most areas of the US will only bring in revenue for 6-7 months of the year. Finally, getting started will require a significant investment, as appealing, rentable speed boats and other watercraft do not come cheap. 

But if you’re OK with all this, and able to acquire the necessary permits and insurance, once you start putting boaters on the water you’ll be cruising straight toward success.

Boat rental operations can earn $50,000 to $100,000 annually, heavily influenced by location and season.

40. Window Washing

How to start a window washing business

Window washing is always in demand, which is why it’s a billion-dollar industry in the US, and a serious business opportunity. 

Starting a window washing business is incredibly easy. All you need is the proper gear and reliable safety equipment and you can start offering your services on an online platform like Angi or TaskRabbit. You could also check out the going rates to ensure your prices are competitive and watch a few YouTube videos to make sure you’re up on the latest techniques, but otherwise it really is that easy. Just always be sure to check all your gear and stay safe up there!

Window washers can earn $25,000 to $50,000 a year, with potential for more with commercial contracts.

41. Food Delivery

How to start a food delivery business

The market size of the global online food delivery sector was estimated at over one trillion U.S. dollars in 2023, and grow around 10% annually through 2028. So if you’ve been thinking about starting a food delivery business, now’s the time to act. 

As this is a fiercely competitive industry, you’ll have to carefully research the market in your chosen business location and decide on a niche. Key steps include: developing a food delivery app (or website), partnering with local restaurants/fast foods and using a reliable delivery system. Effective logistics and customer service are also important.

Once you’ve complied with the regulatory requirements, it’s a good idea to put together a digital marketing plan and pass the word around.

Food delivery services can net $30,000 to $70,000 annually, depending on scale and partnerships.


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41 Outdoor Business Ideas