Although starting a business with your partner might seem like a bad idea for some couples, for others it could be a dream job. In fact, your link can make you great business partners.
Working with your partner can indeed distract you from your business or strain your relationship, but it could just as well bring you closer while doubling the passion to make it successful. If you handle conflict well and motivate each other, you should consider turning your passions into a business.
Business ideas for couples
Many startups are well suited to a two-person team. As with any partnership, these 13 business ideas work best when each of you takes on a role that matches your skills and strengths. A business relationship, like all business ventures, is truly a labor of love. Here are 13 businesses you and your partner could start together:
1. Catering company
Some couples fight over who should cook dinner, but for others cooking a meal together is a bonding activity. If you and your partner fall into the latter category — and are good cooks — you might want to consider starting your own catering business. Let the resident foodie cover most of the food preparation while the other serves as the customer service representative and sous chef.
Sometimes socializing with the public is what couples need to successfully work together. If that sounds like you, consider opening a small cafe. A cafe doesn’t require a lot of space, and having a limited menu is a good way to focus on high-quality or specialty items without having to scramble. One of you can run customer service while the other works the cafe. Consider hiring a manager and employee so you can take turns taking days off without closing the store.
3. Food Truck Vendor
If you are a foodie who likes to travel, consider becoming a food truck vendor. Whether you’re setting up shop at music festivals, block parties, or private events, food trucks are a great way to earn extra cash while traveling and meeting interesting people. The freedom of the open road and the lure of their favorite pursuits has led many food truck salespeople to embark on such an adventure, and doing it with the person you love might just be even better.
4. E-commerce retailer
Crafty couples with a passion for DIY projects can start a project on platforms such as Etsy or Zibbet. One of you can handle marketing, the other can handle customer service, and you can both fulfill orders. E-commerce not only represents an opportunity to earn money, but also offers you and your partner a chance to be creative together. What could be better than having fun while making a profit?
5. Online retailer
Maybe you are a couple who enjoy shopping together. If you enjoy looking at garage sales and thrift stores and are familiar with antiques or vintage items, you may want to consider being an online dealer, as sometimes the items you come across are valuable and can be resold on a niche market. Antiques, old toys, and comic books are just a few examples of items that might catch a potential buyer’s eye, especially online.
Start by opening an online store through social media platforms such as Facebook Marketplace or a site like eBay, where both of you can advertise your items locally and generate sales. If your business is growing, consider expanding into a physical location.
6. Fitness instruction
If you’re a couple who run and hit the gym together, starting a fitness business might be right for you. Whether you’re interested in personal training or classroom instruction, you can get certified with organizations like the Athletics and Fitness Association of America and then start accepting clients. If you and your partner specialize in the same area, you can double the number of sessions or lessons you book. Alternatively, if one of you is a personal trainer and the other teaches a class, you can expand your customer base through the variety of your services.
7. Home cleaning service
For working parents with long hours, cleaning the house may fall to the bottom of the to-do list. Offer your weekends and evenings to these families, for household chores such as vacuuming, dusting, mopping floors and cleaning the bathroom. With you and your partner working as a team, you’ll be able to accomplish these tasks twice as fast.
8. Pet sitting business
Do you and your partner love animals? Let your friends and neighbors know that you are available to babysit their pets while the owners are away on vacation or weekends away. Pet owners often feel more comfortable leaving their furry friends in the care of a trusted owner than boarding them, so getting referrals shouldn’t be too difficult. Offering two pet sitters means more individualized attention for your customers’ pets, which can be a great selling point.
9. Landscape and garden advice
Are you and your partner master gardeners? Take your talents on the road and help others do the same. Many owners are ready to pay for advice on how to turn an ordinary garden into a real Eden. Beyond gardening, you can help homeowners create a more eco-friendly backyard by helping them set up rain gardens, rain barrels, and compost piles. These types of services are becoming increasingly popular as people become more aware of their environmental footprint.
Do you think you have what it takes to be a YouTube star? Documenting your life may sound corny, but it can benefit you financially. If you’re a creative couple with stories and ideas, share them through a blog or video blog. You can turn your blog into a business by maintaining an interesting theme and posting content regularly. Whether it’s a collection of trips or date idea entries, your blog can increase your income and strengthen your connection.
11. Online teaching and tutoring service
If you like books, you might find that online teaching or tutoring is a successful business idea that can be done from the comfort of your own home. With remote learning becoming more widespread during the COVID-19 pandemic, parents are looking for ways to supplement their children’s education. Online tutors are in high demand, as are online classes like cooking or learning musical instruments, as people look for hobbies they can pursue at home.
12. House flipping business
You can start a house flipping business with your partner by buying existing homes or dilapidated properties at an affordable price and fixing them up to resell them for a profit. If you have a knack for remodeling and selling, you can apply your skills to earn income through these projects. You and your loved one can inspire each other by brainstorming and encouraging ingenuity.
13. Travel agency
If you are a couple who loves to travel the world, you and your partner can open a travel agency to help others have a wonderful vacation. While travel may not necessarily be on everyone’s mind during the pandemic, once normalcy returns, those who have been cooped up at home for the past year will be eager to plan getaways. Your travel agent can help people plan and plan their vacations, as well as advice on where to go and what to do while there.
Looking for even more ways to start a business? Check out these ideas from our partners at CO— of the United States Chamber of Commerce, or explore these other great business ideas.
Takeaway key: There are many business opportunities for couples, such as catering, running a food truck, reselling vintage goods, and flipping houses.
Advantages of couple companies
Starting a business with your partner is a risky decision. It’s important to remember that there are bound to be good times and bad times, and like any other relationship, a business partnership takes a lot of work. However, it can also have advantages both for your entrepreneurial adventure and for your growth as a couple. Here are some of the potential benefits of running a business as a couple:
Better communication is an automatic benefit of working as a couple. From launching your business to your day-to-day operations, communication is your most valuable tool for success as a business couple because it will help you define your roles and responsibilities and achieve your short- and long-term goals.
Starting a business and working together can lead to a new appreciation and mutual respect, both personally and professionally. Few things are more empowering than understanding everyone’s priorities and goals, but it does involve working hard and sacrificing a lot to build a business bigger than you, for your own benefit.
The ability to easily plan free time together is a big advantage of working as a couple. When you don’t have a business together, you have to change dates with other colleagues to synchronize your vacation, which is stressful and time-consuming. By working as business partners, however, the timing and duration of your vacation is independent of other employees and company restrictions.
Your successes will mean so much more if you celebrate with your partner, considering the effort and time you both invest in your work. Having more of a connection with each other through your work will make those wins that much sweeter and your time together that much more special.
Takeaway key: Working as a couple has several benefits, including better communication, a greater sense of respect and appreciation, and the bond that comes from sharing your entrepreneurial experience.
Additional reporting by Jad Kaado.