Growth November 7, 2020 Last updated November 7th, 2020 1,408 Reads share

5 Recession-Proof Businesses

Image Credit: DepositPhotos

The market is bound to go up and down which can make starting a business a little discomforting, but there are some businesses out there that are more recession-proof than others. Though it can be hard to know exactly when a recession will happen, certain businesses don’t have to fear the slowing economy and may even benefit from such an economic downturn. It’s not to say that they won’t be affected, but these businesses usually hold strong or do better during a recession.


Repair shops and renovation businesses do well, if not better during a recession. This is because a lot of consumers revert to keeping the property and goods, they already own in working condition rather than purchasing replacements or new items. This can be repairs of all shapes and sizes, such as electronic repairs, mechanic services, and household repairs. To start a successful repair business, it would be best if you’ve already got the skills or know someone with the skills to repair whatever items you’ll service.

House renovation is a strong industry at the best of times, but it also does well during a recession because people are less likely to invest in the housing market and upkeep what they already own. House flipping becomes much more accessible as contractors and builders are looking for work thus lower their prices to remain competitive in a sour market.

Mechanic shops that specialize in a variety of services also continue to see business as people slow down on buying or leasing newer cars. The only challenge mechanic shops face is competition for older car parts, but with the right places, these parts can be extremely affordable.

Cleaning Services

Even when the budget starts to get tight, there is always a need for cleaning services. People don’t like to clean up the office after a long day of work, so this is a great task for businesses to pick up. Some companies will pay good money for good cleaning services, so be sure to do a good job because they can refer you to other businesses. Cleaning services do well for private homes as well as workplaces.

The costs of labor and supplies for this industry are low, especially if you’re willing to cut the labor costs and do the hard work yourself. You might find yourself working some unusual hours to accommodate other businesses and their busy times, but you’ll find that a good cleaning service is always in demand.

Information Technology

A lot of businesses now rely on technology to operate, but many of them don’t have the means to keep an IT staff on hand, so they outsource whenever they run into technological problems. The future will only see that more businesses depend on technology, especially with a big push to work from home. This industry is projected to see growth in the next coming years.

This business is recession-proof because the demand for IT services remains in effect when the economy is in a recession. Just because the money slows down, doesn’t mean that the technology does. These businesses are also great because there is little upkeep to it. There’s no need for a brick and mortar since you can do most of the work from home or the business that hires you.

Discount Retail

Since people slow down their spending with money, they look for ways to cut costs. A great way for the average consumer to cut costs is to purchase clothing and other items from discount retail stores.  Fashion becomes less of a priority when someone is watching the bank, so discount clothing stores see an increase during a recession. This is a great business to start since it’s incredibly easy to obtain older clothing or overstock clothing from suppliers while there is little upkeep other than ensuring the clothing is clean and in sellable condition.

Ding and dent stores also do well, because as mentioned above, renovations tend to go up. Consumers will look for the best deal and many items get taken off mainline shelves for small blemishes that many are willing to overlook.

Bars/Smoke Shops

During economic downtimes, businesses that deal with vices such as smoking, or drinking tend to do better. If the economy is doing bad it means that a lot of people are dealing with stress. Many of those people turn to vices to help manage their stress. Bars and smoke shops do particularly well, but they aren’t the only businesses that fall under this category. These businesses can just be retail, or you can start an establishment such as a restaurant, brewery, or tasting room.

Coffee stands and cafes also tend to hold strong during a recession since many people don’t like to give up their morning coffee. All these businesses can have high-profit markups if you manage your inventory correctly, since buying coffee, tobacco, and alcohol in bulk is significantly less than what it can be sold for.

Another similar business that is becoming increasingly popular is vapor pens or electronic cigarettes. With a trending product, these businesses are sure to stick around for a while if the laws don’t become overly regulated. Casinos and table houses often see an increase in players as people try to come to turn their bad luck into good luck.

Several businesses need to scramble and switch strategies when dealing with a recession, but with a recession-proof business, you’ll just have to continue operations as usual. Most of them require little skill or education in starting and maintaining and a few even have relatively small start-up costs.

The fear of a recession causes a lot of individuals to back away from starting a business, but there are many avenues one can take to ensure they start a business that stands the trails of a recession. As you can see, there are some recession-proof businesses out there. If you are looking to start one, do your research and get to work. If things go well, you will then have a recession-proof business.

People in the office -DepositPhotos

Jason Butler

Jason Butler

Read Full Bio