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Using Your Computer to Start a Business

The equipment you already have could be the key to a home business.

Q: I have four computers, four scanners, seven printers and two photo printers. I'd like to work full time from home using this equipment. Any ideas?

A: There are many businesses you could start. You could set up a center where customers could do work. Whether you can do this in your home depends on your zoning. If you live in an area without a copier store, you might fill the gap. Even if there already is one, differentiate by providing editorial services. You could also create promotional materials or teach graphics and design programs.

Since you could be doing something in the desktop publishing arena, get feedback from others through, a portal for that industry.

Here are some questions for you to consider:

  • What are you most skilled at doing?
  • What kinds of people or fields do you enjoy working with?
  • How would you most enjoy using your equipment, and who might need you to do that?

Put these ingredients together, and you'll find a variety of possibilities.

Authors and career coaches Paul and Sarah Edwards have written 15 books, including Working From Home. Send questions to or in care of Entrepreneur.

This story appears in the June 2004 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »