Do you want to start a business based on shared economy model? If YES, here are 34 best innovative sharing economy business ideas & opportunities for 2021. With dozens of businesses springing up everyday, and with entrepreneurs still not having enough to fund their businesses, any avenue that helps them to manage scarce funds is usually welcome. This is one of the reasons why shared economy is gaining deep roots in the business world.

The need to manage scarce funds was not the only thing lending wing to the shared economy, the proliferation of technology through smart phones and online platforms have played a huge part. What started with ride sharing (Uber, Lyft) and property sharing (Airbnb) has spawned a multifaceted global industry, where consumers have access to nearly every good and service at the touch of a button.

The sharing economy plays a major role of helping people to live with less. Rather than buying expensive items that they don’t use that often, people can borrow second-hand from each other and not be burdened with the costs and upkeep that ownership entails.

Gone are the times when people only rent items when they can’t afford to buy them. Today, you can find a rental alternative for every product and service under the sky. Customers now prefer convenience and value for money over ownership.

With more and more people adopting this trend, the sharing economy continues to grow rapidly. The fact that this business needs very minimal capital to start off provides yet another sultry advantage. If you are a big proponent of the idea of living with less, and you want to start a business in this regard, there are tons of businesses that are available to you. Here a just a few of them.

34 Best Innovative Sharing Economy Business ideas for 2021

  1. Jewelry rental business

Jewelries are one of the foremost fashion items that launched into the shared economy industry. Diamonds, watches and other jewelry always make special occasion outfits look grand, but they cost a small fortune. To be able to afford this at a lower cost, people can now rent jewelries.

A lot of businesses are making good money renting out jewelries of every kind for special occasions. Consider starting your own jewelry rental company to equip consumers with beautiful accessories, including vintage items, precious gems or costume jewelry, for any occasion. Of course you may need good capital to stock your jewelry business, but with good publicity, you can break even easily.

2. Attire rental business

Yet another shared economy business that has been viable for a while now is that of apparel rental. Many men and women have closets full of clothing they no longer wear or only wear occasionally. A lot of companies buy, sell and swap these clothings, while yet others provide a clothing subscription service. Sharing clothing allows people to clear out their closets, find great clothes on a budget and make extra money.

You could also start a clothing rental company that specializes in formal wear, special occasion outfits or work clothing. Just go with what you feel comfortable with. If you like the idea of starting a platform where people can buy, sell and swap clothing, then this could be the sharing economy business idea for you.

3. Sporting Goods rental business

People who enjoy skiing, biking or surfing may not indulge in their sport every day. This is especially for those who do it for the fun of it. This is where you come in, you can rent out sporting equipment for those who can’t afford to buy them.

Sporting goods rental companies gather people who are willing to share their equipment with others for a small token. You can rent out bikes, skis, surfboards, yachts, or golf clubs through your a sharing business or select a sport that’s popular in your area or one that participants nearby enjoy.

4. Parking Sharing Business

In busy downtown areas, near transportation hubs or during the holiday season, parking can be in high demand. If you live in one of these places are you have space big enough to accommodate cars, you can start a viable business by renting out your parking spaces to visitors. Start a parking share company in your community to improve convenience for people and equally to maximize your resources.

5. Education Sharing

Education can be quite expensive that is why businesses are springing up to simplify this for students who can afford the expenses. Students can save money and enhance their education when they take classes through the myriads of education sharing sites that can be found online.

You can start one of these businesses in your community both online and offline. You can open a similar company and enhance K-12 school classes or teach skills like visual design, cooking or management.

6. Errands Sharing Service

Hiring someone to pick up dry cleaning, edit your promotional videos or walk the dog makes life easier. One of the most popular errand service in the world today is said to be TaskRabbit. It operates an errand sharing service that connects people with those willing to run their errands. You, too, can connect local consumers with an errand service, or create a specialized service that meets the unique needs of aging seniors, new parents or college students.

7. Housekeeping business

Consumers who don’t have time to clean their house, business or vehicle may hire a housekeeping service. Your cleaning company could connect consumers with general housekeepers, organizing specialists or restoration cleaners who take on tough tasks like mold removal or restorative cleaning after natural disasters.

8. Food Sharing Business

Yes, there is such thing as a food sharing business. Instead of tossing extra food after a party or letting food in the fridge spoil during vacation, people now share their extra food via an app like Olio. Another resource, Cropmobster, connects farmers with people in need.

You too can set up an app or business like this that helps connect people who don’t have enough food with people who have them in excess. Food sharing businesses help to reduce waste, conserve resources and fight hunger. If you are passionate about these benefits, begin a local food sharing business.

9. Office Space and Equipment Sharing business

Sharing office space, furniture and equipment like printers and phones maximizes a company’s budget and gives freelancers affordable workspace options. Up to 43 percent of people in the U.S. will work as freelancers by 2021, and you can improve flexible working conditions, enhance collaboration and support freelance and small business owners with a B2B sharing company.

This coworking concept is being launched in major cities of many countries across the globe. The success of this Business model is the ability to work independently yet among connecting with brilliant minds. Some coworking spaces, to survive in this competitive market, began renting spaces for office meeting and conference, providing options such as bringing pets to work, and renovating the architecture of the building suiting the particular profession.

  1. Financial sharing company

Individuals or small business owners who struggle to secure personal or business financing need creative options. Lending companies, including Lending Club, connect peers who need and have money. With affordable interest rates and low transaction and service fees, a financial sharing company is a smart idea if you want to help others meet their financial goals. But you need to have enough finances before you can start this business.

11. Carpooling Marketplace

Carpooling is the sharing of car journeys so that more than one person travels in a car, and prevents the need for others to have to drive to a location themselves. By having more people using one vehicle, carpooling reduces each person’s travel costs such as: fuel costs, tolls, and the stress of driving. If you like the idea of offering working people the opportunity to save money and meet new people on their daily commute, then this could be the sharing economy business idea for you.

12. Peer-to-peer technology lending service

Not everyone can afford to purchase the latest technology, and some only need specialized technology for a short-term project. With the advancement of technology, there is a rise in the demand for tech-enabled and simplified services across diverse industries.

If you like the idea of operating a lending service for technology, this could be the sharing economy business idea for you. In addition to offering a wide variety of tech products and value-added services, you can also offer rental finance options, and additional services such as logistics, warranty assurance, asset management and more.

13. Peer-to-Peer Bike Sharing business

If you live in an area where people find it easy to commute with bikes, then this can present a very good sharing business for you.  You can create a marketplace that enables bike sharing in your community. You can set up a platform that would allow bike owners rent out their bicycles to other people.

You can also take it further by building an app that can help your customers find renters, manage their bicycles and process payments. It is also safe to ensure that your bikes are GPS locatable so you do not have to battle with losses.

14. Event venue sharing

The boom of sharing economy has impacted the way people book venue spaces. Users can now book event spaces in the website for a short span of hours or a few days to events such as baby showers, receptions, office parties, photoshoots, conducting workshops, dinner, etc. Individuals who own large spaces or big properties can use this as a way to earn a profit. If your space is not up to par, you can make some renovations to bring it up.

15. Construction Equipment Rental

Tools and equipment are indispensable for the construction and machinery industry. As the sharing economy started from renting home space to cars and bikes, why not consider equipment rental a profitable venture? Small to middle-sized pieces of equipment such as builders tools, home maintenance tools like lawnmowers, party and banquet equipment, personal and household goods are rented periodically.

Heavy equipment such as bulldozers, earthmoving equipment, cranes or well-drilling machinery rented for heavy construction, off-highway transportation, or mining by big industries as it is not easily affordable and most companies would prefer to rent.

The stats reported by Statista, in 2021 the equipment rental market would be expected to reach 59.4 billion U.S. dollars in the united states. This suggests positive growth.

16. Camp space sharing

Since the sharing economy was introduced to renting homes, cars, bikes, venue spaces, and co-working spaces, last but not the least, it evolved to renting camp spaces in private and public lands. In this fast-moving, connected and yet in this unconnected world, trekking and camping is a journey of self-discovery.

Numerous companies in the market have launched camp sharing services successfully, inviting private space owners to host their vineyard, farms, private pools, gardens, and ranches. The tough job here is finding the location for camping and convincing the landlords to become a host. That can happen only by making your website popular and impressing the host with profits and benefits earned in return.

17. Home Improvement Equipment Sharing

If you are the go-to fellow in your neighborhood for each grass, garden, and home-fixing gadgets under the sun, why not transform those favors into a gainful business by promoting your accessible hardware past your neighborhood friends and families?

You may even choose to put resources into increasingly explicit and greater expense hardware that would be helpful to everyone around you. Furthermore, if a client doesn’t realize how to utilize an explicit instrument, consolidate your gear rental with some skills training.

18. Get-away Sharing Business

With the advent of Airbnb, people are now sharing rooms anywhere and everywhere. If you have a house in an unusual spot, it may be time to put it to good use by sharing it out to potential users. In the event that you live in a very attractive visitor goal, you can make a pretty penny leasing space in your home to voyagers, and make a couple of companions while you are at it.

19. Crowdfunding

Like peer-to-peer lending, crowdfunding connects people who need money with those willing to provide it. On platforms such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo, entrepreneurs, artists, and others present startup or project ideas to a community of potential funders, and then set a target fundraising amount and date.

Dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of individuals can contribute to a single campaign. This makes crowdfunding doubly potent as a top small business fundraising option and a brutally effective way to cut small business expenses.

However, unlike peer-to-peer lending, the recipients aren’t always expected to repay the funds. Some crowdfunding campaigns function like grants, where individual lenders give money with the understanding that they won’t get it back.

20. Apartment/House Renting and Couchsurfing

Apartment/house sharing platforms connect homeowners with people who need a place to stay when they’re traveling. Hosts set the nightly price and specify available dates, typically when they’re not using the property. In preparation for a trip, visitors can browse accommodations in their destination and choose a place that fits their desired neighborhood, amenity needs, and budget.

21. Ridesharing and Carsharing

Ridesharing and carsharing offer some of the benefits of car ownership, such as easy access to a city without having to rely on public transit, with few of the drawbacks, such as paying for gas, insurance, and maintenance. With apps like Uber and Lyft, you can hail a ride from drivers in their personal vehicles.

With services like Turo, Car2Go and Zipcar, you can commandeer a shared vehicle, owned by a for-profit or nonprofit organization, and pay for the time you drive it. And with newer companies like GetAround, you can rent privately owned cars by the hour or day when their owners don’t need them. This is a good business to start in the shared economy industry.

22. Storage space sharing business

The concept of storage space rentals is similar to Airbnb, and it can be considered as an Airbnb for storage space. A self-storage rental platform connects people who are looking for storage solutions with people who want to rent out their unused spaces at affordable costs.

For storage pace owners, the platforms come as a handy solution to utilize their free space in a productive way. It also helps renters to book storage space effortlessly and cost-effectively. The revenue potential of your storage rental platform greatly depends on the number of customers you have.

Hence it is really important to focus on increasing your user base once you start out. Storage rental platforms make money mainly from commissions and transaction fees, as the listing is free of cost. However, you can also make additional money by allowing premium and paid listings on your platform.

23. Baby gear sharing business

Babies and young kids need a lot of stuff on a daily basis. However, packing and hauling the stuff across places while you are traveling doesn’t sound like a smart idea and it might even cost you additional money.

The baby gear rental idea is gaining popularity as it is a flexible way to reuse baby equipment without buying new ones, thereby reducing wastage. Demand for this service is also growing among parents who are seeking easier and more relaxing day outs with their kids.

With the global market value of baby products expected to hit $16.78 billion by 2025, it is evident that baby equipment rentals hold huge potential to rise into a lucrative business opportunity. While the primary way baby gear rental platforms make money is from commissions and transactions fee from users, there are additional revenue streams like selling complementary products and services.

24. Vacation Rental

It is one of the oldest rental businesses in the world. Have room to spare during the busy travel season, you have got business waiting for you. You can also invest in a property purely from a vacation rental business. You can also write informative blogs on places to visit near your property and you will be

25. Music instrument Sharing Business

Professional musicians have been sharing and renting out instruments for years but in recent years this business is growing exponentially thanks peer-to-peer networking websites. As an upcoming band or an aspiring musician, you can rent out your instruments to create funds for your next big buy. If you have instrument and equipment that you don’t use any longer for your shows, you can turn them into a source of revenue.

26. Water Sports Equipment Sharing Business

As a water sports enthusiast you are well aware of the cost of water sports equipment. Why make your equipment gather dust when you aren’t using them? Hundreds of amateurs hunt for water sports equipment on rent in peer-to-peer websites as they don’t see a fair reason to buy them for a one-off adventure. Rather than storing equipment at your basement which can also cause irreparable damage to them, you can start minting money by renting them out.

27. Wedding Rental Business

Times have changed and couples want to make their ‘big day’ memorable. From lights to props and from photo booths to fancy furniture, there are dozens of things needed to make a couple’s special day even more special. You can rent out these to event managers who are always in the lookout for these things. Help them set up a venue and you can add to your earnings. You can start this business with a small capital and make a fortune.

28. Travel Equipment Sharing business

Travel and hospitality industry is the biggest employer in the world. It is worth close to $8 trillion. Traditional travel and hospitality service providers are failing to meet demands for the modern customers and this has given birth to the popularity of travel equipment rental.

You can start your own travel equipment rental portal where you rent out everything from adventure sports equipment to cars and caravans. Make good use of social media and in no time you would see a good number of bookings.

29. Furniture Sharing business

Starting online furniture sharing store is now creating new opportunities for entrepreneurs who desire to have regular revenue. The reason for calling this a regular business is that the product offered for rent comes under essentials for everyday living.

Renting business as a whole makes the owner of the product or property earn money on a regular basis, maybe every month. This continuous flow of money enables the owner to even earn excess money after covering the cost of the furniture.

30. On-Demand Repair Services

You can start sharing your skills as a mechanic to create a good source of income. One of the biggest advantages to owning a car is having freedom and mobility—unless there is some sort of complication that prevents a vehicle from moving altogether. Rather waiting for a damaged vehicle to be transported to a second site, you can help drivers with instant assistance and repair.

To me more effective in this, you may need to incorporate others into the business.  it possible for drivers to call for instant 24/7 assistance from the road. When paired with a smartphone or connected technology, cars are becoming hubs to receive everything from fuel deliveries to parcel orders and valet services upon request.

31. Futuristic Car-Sharing Services

With futuristic cars now emerging in the horizon, a whole lot of people might want to indulge their curiosity, but the fact remains that they may not have enough money to do that. If you can afford any of these new-age cars, then you should buy one and put them on rent. Users can quickly and easily book themselves one of your cars either online or via an app.

32. On-Demand Valet Apps

With a few taps on a phone, customers can summon a valet and avoid the hassle of finding a parking spot and then squeezing into it. Once they’d finished shopping, dining or taking a meeting, the valet would drive up with the vehicle.

This is a great sharing business that has been on board for a while now.  Once requested, valet reps will meet drivers and are able to successfully park their vehicles inside designated lots until vehicles are needed again. Authenticity and timely service are important for success of any on-demand service.

It is always good to invest in tools which would improve the quality of the services you provide to customers. As on-demand companies grow, they are spawning a new class of startups that provide behind-the-scenes tech tools for old economy companies that want to capitalize on the trend.

33. On-Demand Detailing Services

A lot of businesses are now offering on demand vehicle detailing. In addition to just car detailing, you can also offer other services including boat detailing, RV & 5th wheel detailing, headlight restoration, paint correction, and more. To maximize potential in this business, you should be able to perform this service at your clients’ turf.

34. Neighbor-Assigned Delivery Services

If your neighbourhood is having problems of missed deliveries, there is a way to solve the problem that can spread happiness all round. You can set up a service where neighbours get to pick up deliveries of their neighbours who are not around.

You can create an app that lets neighbors receive packages on your behalf so that you never miss another delivery. In exchange, the person accepting the package will earn some part of the delivery fee. Because the person accepting the package is earning a profit from the exchange, they have a greater incentive to make sure that the recipient of the package receives their order in a safe and secure manner.

The new service demonstrates how the sharing economy can be used to solve the common problem of missed deliveries.

Ejike Cynthia