Can You Start a Business With Limited Capital?

Have a business idea but no money to make it into reality? Often, that’s the case with entrepreneurs. Those who want to start a business may feel deterred by the start-up costs. Starting a business can be a significant investment upfront, but with the right knowledge and work ethic, you can make it worth it.

Understand the Costs

First, you should understand what it’ll take to start your specific business, including:

  • Registering your business
  • Applying for business licenses
  • Securing business permits

These are all fully dependent on your location, so check in with your local regulations to see what applies to you. Licenses include business operation licenses, zoning licenses, building permits, health licenses, and environmental licenses. Additionally, ask yourself what you’ll need to really get the ball rolling. Will you need to lease an office space, or can you run your business from home? Will you require various equipment from the get-go, or can you hold off while you get things started? If you’ll need staff in the early stages, don’t forget to consider payroll.


It’s entirely possible to get a business started with just the help of family and friends. Sometimes, pooling together money from loved ones can be enough to get your business idea up off the ground. Crowdfunding is also an option. You could either collect donations or start bringing in investors who will have some stake in your business but be able to offer you larger sums of money. 

Seek Financing

If you find that you’ll need significant start-up money, seeking financing might be the best option. Luckily, loans come in all shapes and sizes, but you should always shop around and work with lenders to find what works best for you. In general, if you have good credit, more options will be available to you and you’ll be able to secure financing with better, more affordable terms. From bank loans to federally-backed loans from the Small Business Administration, many loans are specifically geared towards start-ups. When searching for the right lender, make sure you find one that is experienced with not only small businesses but new businesses. Ensure you fill out all the paperwork carefully so that you get approval as quickly as possible, but don’t apply for a bunch of loans at once. A lot of hard inquiries into your credit could hurt your score.

Whatever method you use to start a business, establish good habits and use what little capital you have as efficiently as possible.