How Much It Really Costs to Start A Sidle Hustle

The Online Gift Shop Creator

Business Costs: $10,000
Time Commitment: 30+ hours a week

Kelly Anne Parker wanted to build a business to eventually replace her day job in tech.

The 28-year-old drafted a business plan for an online gifting site called Send Ribbon, where a portion of the money spent on gifts would go to a specific cause. She calculated everything from the cost of printer paper to web hosting, adding up to about $10,000 in startup expenses.

She spent the next few months saving from her paychecks to launch the business. She sold clothes and accessories online, replaced her work wardrobe with a Rent the Runway subscription to cut shopping and dry cleaning fees, and used Amazon Prime for groceries. Being efficient with her time and money became a priority.

Meanwhile, she spent four to six hours each night building her business, saving Saturdays to spend with friends. “Having one free day cleared my head and allowed me to do my best work during the work week,” she says.

Within six months, Parker was able to quit her day job and launch her business. However, she still finds unexpected expenses creep up, especially from no longer having work-based benefits. “Medical and dental insurance are some of my biggest personal expenses each month now,” she says. “I would definitely advise other people to consider employee benefits, and how they will cover them in their own budget, before they take their side hustle full-time.”