This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

5 Things to Look for in Entry-Level Businesses

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- When Kellyn Timmerman, owner of FeNa, launched her online handbag business in March, she knew she was taking on a big risk, even if she did have a passion for designing handbags.

For that reason, Timmerman, an architect who was laid off during the recession, looked to keep her expenses under control. She decided to have a presence online only, as opposed to renting a storefront. And she minimizes loss by making bags to order instead of having a set inventory as she looks to sell her line of small clutch handbags.

Caring Transitions franchises take care of everything from estate sales to actual moves for seniors opting out of living alone -- a business with high demand and low costs for an owner.

So far the risk is worth it, she says.

"I have never felt such satisfaction and reward than I have working for myself," Timmerman says.

Indeed, every business owner interviewed for this story identified a single key factor for business ownership: passion or a sense of personal satisfaction. If a business can't provide that to an entrepreneur, it's probably not worth doing.

But since every entrepreneur wants to succeed but may lack what could be a million-dollar idea, taking a cautious, well-thought-out approach is the best way to start.

Experts say common attributes of successful new businesses include low barriers to entry, such as little upfront money, working from a home office or minimal training.

Caring Transitions has those qualities. It offers services to seniors or the ill who need to move to a retirement community, assisted living facility or elsewhere. Caring Transitions will take care of everything from estate sales to, in some cases, the actual move.

"Our job is to assist people to get through that. We're kind of like the general contractor. Here is the entire blueprint for what has to happen. We decide with you what we can do with you and what has to be hired," says John Buckles, the company's founder. "You can feel good about what you're doing and can directly see the results that come out of that."

Franchisees run the business out of their homes, gaining clients typically through referrals from doctors and attorneys. Combining that with an aging but longer-lived baby boomer population makes owning a Caring Transitions franchise is a good entry-level business, Buckles says.

"There are more people that need this today than providers. People are going to have to go through this process," Buckles says. "I don't need to convince people that it is needed. It makes it easier for [a franchisee] who is coming into this."

1 of 3

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 17,001.22 -38.27 -0.22%
S&P 500 1,988.40 -3.97 -0.20%
NASDAQ 4,538.5510 +6.4470 0.14%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs