5 Surprisingly Boring Businesses Raking in Over $300,000 in Cash Flow Annually

by Corey Philip //  October 5, 2023

Boring businesses can be very profitable indeed.  In this blog post we’ll take a look at some boring businesses that are listed for sale each making more than $300,000 annually.

And I’ll drop my thoughts on the opportunities for each business.

Home Inspection Services: The Hidden Value in Every Home

Home inspection services are a lesser-known yet highly profitable niche within the real estate industry. Home inspectors play a pivotal role in safeguarding the interests of both buyers and sellers by evaluating the condition of residential properties. What makes this business appealing in terms of cash flow is its steady demand, relatively low overhead costs, and the potential for entrepreneurs to establish thriving practices. With average fees for home inspections and a growing awareness of their importance in real estate transactions, home inspection businesses have the potential to generate annual cash flows well exceeding $300,000.

Here’s an example of one currently listed for sale in Tennessee!

Opportunity:  there’s a decent pool of experienced home inspectors that will work as independent contractors which keeps your cost variable and business scalable.

Downside: this business is really driven by home purchases and refinancing, and with the rising interest rate trend this business is likely facing a headwind.  That could be offset by a reasonable acquisition price.  The 3.37x valuation multiple they’re asking on this business seems a little steep.

Event Rentals: The Thriving Business of Making Celebrations Happen

In the world of entrepreneurship, there’s a hidden gem that caters to the joyous moments in people’s lives: the event rental business. This dynamic industry encompasses the provision of tents, tables, chairs, and even bounce houses, transforming ordinary spaces into memorable venues for celebrations of all kinds. What makes this business particularly appealing is its capacity for generating robust cash flow, often exceeding the $300,000 annual mark. Event rental companies play an indispensable role in the success of various occasions, from elegant weddings and corporate gatherings to fun-filled children’s parties, ensuring that every event is equipped with the essential furnishings and entertainment.

Upside: These event rental businesses can be absolute cash cows with a relatively low acquisition price that are easy to run.  New competitions is always a threat, but a business like this one that has been around for more than 10 years is probably a sure bet.

Downside:  You will have to work weekends — all weekend. Events only happen on the weekend and things get set up early and taken down late.  Staffing is also a challenge.

Commercial Cleaning Companies: Cleaning Up More Than Messes

In the world of seemingly mundane businesses, commercial cleaning companies stand out as silent powerhouses of profitability. These businesses specialize in maintaining the cleanliness and hygiene of various commercial spaces, from offices and medical facilities to retail stores and industrial complexes. What might appear as routine janitorial work is, in fact, a thriving industry with substantial cash flow potential.

Opportunity:  commercial cleaning businesses provide a recurring revenue that is very sticky.  Switching cleaning services is often an overwhelming move for commercial clients, so they wont regularly shop you around and leave.  You’re also a necessary and small cost of doing business.  All these points are in stark contrast to residential service where clients can hop around or decide ‘they just don’t need cleaning anymore’.  A 10+ year old business provide a great foundation to scale.

Challenges: Like most on the list, staffing is a challenge but that said it is easier to staff than other businesses as training is minimal and the work load is recurring.

Pest Control Services: Squashing Bugs and Earning Bucks

In the realm of seemingly mundane businesses, pest control services stand out as a testament to both necessity and profitability. These enterprises specialize in ridding homes and businesses of unwanted pests, from ants and rodents to termites and bedbugs. While the thought of squashing bugs may not spark excitement, the financial prospects within the pest control industry are nothing short of remarkable.

I love pest control businesses because there is a lot of private equity investment in the space.  There is great opportunity for you to buy one of these businesses that is too small for private equity and grow it to a point that it is attractive for them and sell it at a much higher multiple.

This pest control business is 30 years old and cashflows over $450,000, and they’re asking less than 3x for it!  

Opportunities: Considering the title, this business focuses on the termite niche but there are many other niches within pest control. Expanding to other niches in the pest control market may be a great way to earn business from the 30 year customer base you have.  Also considering the size and age of this business, it is likely to be a boomer business that could grow tremendously with a website revamp and tech stack implemented.

Collision Repair Shops: Where Precision Meets Profitability

Amidst the world of seemingly unexciting businesses, collision repair shops stand as unsung heroes of the automotive industry. These establishments specialize in restoring vehicles that have been involved in accidents or collisions, ensuring they regain their former glory. While the work may involve dents, dings, and the occasional fender-bender, the financial potential within the collision repair industry is far from ordinary.

Here’s a 51 year old repair shop for sale.    

Opportunities:  The value of a brand that has been around for 50 years is hard to quantify and express in words, but those that have owned a business more than a decade old know what I am talking about!   I would look to maximize word of mouth by nurturing the customer base that still lives in area.  This type of plan requires conviction as no one ever plans to need a body-shop, but when they do, you want to be the one they remember.

About the author

Corey Philip

Corey Philip is a small business owner / investor with a focus on home service businesses.

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