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Starting a Business With No Money? Here's How to Do It.

How to start a business when you don't have capital. Know the financing options you can get.

This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Let's make it clear from the start: Can you or can't you start a without money?

Yes you can, however, it is not a path that everyone wants to travel. These stories of great companies emerging from nowhere in penthouses have many for minor that are not told to make the entrepreneurial path seem more romantic. However, all these companies required years of effort, shortcomings, a lot of nested work and are only a handful of the thousands of companies that are created every year in the world.

So if you think that the entrepreneurial path is your thing, but you don't have money, maybe this will help you.

You can start a business with little or no money , but that's not the same as starting without resources. In fact, the more resources you have, the less money you will need. By resources we can mention some such as intelligence, imagination, social circle, experience, studies and knowledge in general, the time available, the ability to connect seemingly unconnected points, the ability to see opportunities where no one else finds them, manual, sports, artistic or physical skills in general, intellectual skills, health and so on, a long etcetera.

It all starts with an idea

Don't try to discover the black thread at first. There are formulas that are already winners; take one and innovate on it: cheaper, luxury, better service, personalized, simpler, prettier, faster, at home, in an application ...

Take into account that then you will have to adapt that idea to the immediate and make it work exclusively with the resources you have. I mean, keep it simple at first.

The plan

I suggest you contain:

  • Short and specific description of the business. Only a paragraph, but if you can a line, the better. The requirement is that anyone who reads it instantly understands your product or service.
  • Simple budget. That is, how much money do you have and what other resources do you have, such as time, knowledge, experience, contacts, potential partners, potential clients, and more.
  • Immediate actions under the given budget.

Financing means

If you really don't have any money, there's only one way to start: ask for funds or work to get them.

If you already have experience in the field in which you want to undertake, then you can ask and you have these financing options .

Friends and family: Take into account that "clear accounts, long friendships." I assure you that you do not want to ruin your interpersonal relationships for money issues.

: Crowdfunding platforms. If you don't know about it and you think your idea won't be attractive enough, you should do some research on the crazy projects that have seen the light of day in this way.

Government Support: Look for opportunities from the state or for startups. There are currently many plans for it.

Private financing: Banks, companies or lenders. Just be careful what you sign, as a variable or unfavorable interest rate can kill your project before it starts. In fact, this type of financing is recommended only when you have demonstrated that your business works and produces enough profits to pay the credits obtained. That is, to scale the business.

: There are networks of high-risk investors that put the seed capital of promising companies or projects. Do some research on the internet as there are continually calls for competitions to obtain these funds.

And if you do not have a way to access any of the above options, you always have yourself, the source of financing that is never lacking is YOUR OWN JOB . In other words, don't wait sitting with your hand outstretched to see who will take pity on you. Find a preferred job in the field where you want to start your business. In this way, you will gain two things, invaluable experience that you can apply in your future business and money to finance it.

Start small by thinking big

When starting a business there is no money to reach. The more you have, the more you spend, so keep it as simple as possible. Adapt your business model to avoid as much fixed costs as possible (avoid unnecessary rents, salaries and services). Make the internet your store, your school, your marketing center, your means of contact, everything.

Make a list of the things that will be essential for your business and another of the things that you could get for free, do them on your own or exchange them with others who have what you want and who want what you can contribute.

This path may take you some time and you may have to learn various digital skills, but that will make you grow as a person, as an entrepreneur and in the future as an entrepreneur.

Sale and adjustment of nuts

Start with your natural market, that is, all the people you know, family, friends, former coworkers, etc. Send a WhatsApp to each and every one of the contacts in your agenda to offer your product or service, make your first sale and don't forget to ask for feedback on the service and quality of what you offer. In this way, you can start making the corresponding adjustments.

Final thoughts

  • Low costs : Regardless of the size of your venture or business, you must keep this idea as a mantra. Keep costs low both financially and in time and effort.
  • Budget reserve : Have a "little save" that allows you to cover your expenses and those of your business for at least six months, which is the time in which you should have reached your point of equilibrium.
  • Regime before the Treasury : You can start as a natural person and the moment you see that your business hits, you can change to a legal person.

Will you make a lot of mistakes? Of course (and more than you think). Each and every one of your steps will have to be corrected and you will need to take others that had not even crossed your mind. But don't worry, it's natural. Just adjust and keep moving .