8 of the Best Absentee Owner Businesses

8 of the Best Absentee Owner Businesses

Owning your own business can be a gratifying financial and emotional experience. It can also be a lot of work, which is why many people choose to go the absentee owner route and find businesses they can manage without being overly involved.

Absentee ownership has several benefits, the biggest one being that you don’t have to put in all the hard work yourself. You can hire someone to run the day-to-day operations of your business, freeing up your time to do other things.

Of course, not all businesses are created equal. Some businesses are more suited for an absentee owner than others. So, if you’re thinking of going the absentee owner route, we’ll provide you with some ideas to get you started.

What is an absentee owner in business?

We figured we should start with the basics. So, an absentee owner in business is somebody who owns a company but isn’t actively involved in its management. They may live in another city, state, or country; they may not have the time to dedicate to the business, or they may simply prefer to delegate authority to someone else.

There are pros and cons to being an absentee owner. On the plus side, you don’t have to be as hands-on, which can save you time and energy. And, if you delegate authority to a trusted manager or team, they may be able to run the business more efficiently than you could. On the downside, you may not have as much control over the company, and you may not be as aware of what’s happening daily.

So, with that in mind, here are eight businesses that are well-suited for an absentee owner.


While some may think that blogging is a personal diary that only family and friends read, many blogs generate a six-figure income each year.

A key element to making money from blogging is to choose a niche market with high-paying advertisers. Once you have built up a loyal following, businesses in your niche will be willing to pay you top dollar to feature their products or services on your blog.

How can you be an absentee?

This entire business can be outsourced. You can hire someone to manage the blog for you and write the posts. All you need to do is collect the payments from advertisers. If you have something like Adsense, you can even automate the entire process of getting paid.

Income potential.

Getting started with a blog is a slow process. You need to incorporate SEO throughout your blog for people to find you. However, once you have built up a following, the potential to make a full-time income is there. And, if you outsource the work, it can be completely passive income. If done right, you could easily make six figures per year with this business.

Vending machines.

We’ve all seen vending machines in gas stations, fast food restaurants, and office buildings. These are typically stocked with snacks and drinks, but there are now vending machines that dispense everything from live crabs to cupcakes.

This business model has been around for a long time, but it’s still a viable option for those looking for an absentee business.

How can you be an absentee?

It’s one of the perfect businesses for an absentee owner. There may be some initial work involved in setting up the vending machines, but once they are in place, you can collect the money. You can hire someone to stock the devices and handle any maintenance that needs to be done.

Income potential.

Location is critical with vending machines. If you can get your machines in high-traffic areas, you will be more likely to make a profit. However, even if you are not in a prime location, you can still make a decent income from your vending machines. Start with one and see how it does before investing in more.

Gym or fitness center.

With gyms, the barrier to entry is a bit higher since you will need the space and equipment. However, if you are looking for an absentee business, this can be a great option.

Everyone wants to be fit, and there will always be a demand for gyms and fitness centers (especially around the 1st of the year when people try to hold to their new year’s resolutions). You charge membership fees, and people come to work out. It’s a pretty simple concept, but it can be very profitable.

How can you be an absentee?

Once you have the location and equipment, you can hire staff to manage the day-to-day operations such as cleaning, customer service, and maintenance. For new members, you can completely automate the sign-up process with online registration. 

Income potential.

There are a few streams of revenue with a gym. The membership fees are the most obvious, but you can also charge for personal training, classes, and other services. If you have a popular location, you could easily make six figures per year with this business.

Inflatable rentals.

Ever seen a bounce house at a birthday party or carnival? Those are inflatables, and they can be pretty profitable. Kids love them, and they are a great way to entertain at parties.

Inflatable rentals are perfect for those looking for an absentee business. You simply deliver the inflatable to the event, set it up, and then take it down when the event is over. Keep in mind that you will need a place to store the inflatables when they are not in use.

How can you be an absentee?

You can hire someone to manage the deliveries and set up/tear down the inflatables. The same person can clean and store the inflatables when they are not used. To simplify the process, you can automate the scheduling and payment process with an online booking system. As an absentee owner, you’ll love one of these businesses.

Income potential.

While this will generally be seasonal, you can make a decent income with inflatable rentals. Prices will vary depending on the size and type of inflatable, but you can typically charge around $200 per event. There are some start-up costs, but you can easily make your money back and start turning a profit within a few months.


Don’t want to get your hands dirty? No problem. Laundromats are an excellent option for those looking for an absentee business. People will always need to wash their clothes, and you can provide a service that is in high demand. Plus, there are always laundromats for sale so that you can get started quickly.

Laundromats are relatively easy to manage. You will need to hire someone to handle the day-to-day operations such as taking care of the machines, customer service, and ensuring the place is clean.

How can you be an absentee?

Customers walk in, do their laundry by depositing coins or swiping a card, and then leave. You don’t have to be there for people to use the machines. Hire out the day-to-day operations, and you can be as hands-off as you want. Just show up to collect the quarters.

Income potential.

Despite collecting quarters, there is decent income potential with laundromats. You can make around $30,000 per year for every 1,000 square feet of space. So, if you have a 3,000-square-foot laundromat, you could potentially earn $90,000 per year! Of course, location is vital, but if you can find a good spot, this could be a great option.

Car wash.

Just like the laundromat, people will always need to wash their cars. This is an excellent option for those owners looking for absentee businesses as it is relatively easy to manage.

There are a couple of ways of going about this business. You can either purchase an existing car wash or build one from scratch. If you make one from scratch, you will have more control over the design and layout, which can save you money in the long run, but substantial upfront costs.

How can you be an absentee?

There are a couple of types of car washes – automatic and manual. If you go the automatic route, customers will simply drive their cars through the wash, and everything is done for them. This requires very little supervision, so you can be as hands-off as you want. For manual car washes, the customer will drive their car into a bay where they will wash it themselves. Either way, you only need to hire someone for maintenance and repairs.

Income potential.

The income potential will vary depending on the type of car wash you have, but you can typically expect to make around $55,000 to $100,000 per year with a self-service car wash and upwards of $500,000 per year for upscale, full-service carwashes.

Cleaning services.

There will always be a demand for residential and commercial cleaning services. And, best of all, it is relatively easy to get started. You can either work with an existing cleaning company or create your own.

The concept is simple – customers hire you to clean their homes or businesses, and you send out a team of cleaners to do the job. This business is best suited for those who don’t mind getting their hands dirty as you will be doing a lot of the work yourself in the beginning.

How can you be an absentee?

For handling new customers, you can automate the process by setting up an online booking system. You can take payments online and have a team of cleaners that you can dispatch to clean the homes or businesses. You can hire employees or independent contractors to do the work for you.

Income potential.

This small business is easy to scale, so the income potential is high. You can charge by the hour, by the job, or by the square footage. For example, you could charge $50 per hour for a two-hour minimum, $200 to clean a three-bedroom home, or 20 cents per square foot for commercial cleaning services. The best part, you could have recurring customers that you clean for every week or every month.

Landscaping and lawn care.

There will always be a demand for landscaping and lawn care services. Customers schedule you to come and mow their lawn, trim their hedges, or do other yard work.

Of course, the equipment can be expensive, but you can always start small and work your way up. A lawn mower, leaf blower, and weed whacker are all you need to get started if you do it yourself. But that wouldn’t be an absentee business, now would it?

How can you be an absentee?

Like the cleaning business, you can automate the process by setting up an online booking system. Customers can schedule and pay for your services online. You can then dispatch a team of workers to do the job for you. You can develop your brand online and become a local powerhouse for landscaping and never touch a lawnmower.

Income potential.

As with most businesses, the income potential will vary depending on your location and customer base. However, you can typically expect to make around $50-$100 per lawn, and after you pay your workers, you should have a profit of approximately $30-$50 per lawn. If you scale that up to 10 customers, that’s a profit of $300-$500 per week, and you never have to trim a hedge.

Ready to start your business?

There are many fantastic businesses you can start as an absentee owner. By automating the process and hiring a team to do the work for you, you can have a successful business with little hands-on involvement. The best part is that these businesses have high-income potential, so you can make a lot of money without having to put in a lot of hours.