If you’re looking to generate extra income during retirement, you might want to explore ways to make your hobby into a more profitable venture. After all, hobbies are the activities that, in most cases, you’d happily do for free. And pursuing a hobby-related business can make for a relatively smooth second-act transition since you likely have many of the skills, expertise and personal connections needed for success.
Thanks in large part to advances in technology, the possibilities for monetizing your hobby—both locally and online — have never been better. So, if you’re eager to turn your hobbies into retirement cash, here are six winning strategies to consider.
1. Teach Your Hobby
Whether you’re a skilled photographer, an experienced chef or a talented musician, there’s a good chance that others will pay you to teach them what you do so well. There are lots of ways to share your expertise. For example, you can set up shop in your home — just like your neighborhood piano teacher — or teach at a local adult education program or school. Alternatively, you could aim to reach a broader audience and create your own online courses and deliver them using an online instructional platform like Udemy.com or Pathwright.com.
2. Sell Your Products Online
Thanks to the proliferation of online marketplaces, the options for selling your products online have improved dramatically. Etsy is probably the best-known marketplace for artisans and crafters, but there are plenty of other smaller sites you might want to consider like ArtFire.com, Zibbet.com and HandmadeArtists.com.
3. Write About Your Hobby
Hobbyists enjoy reading books, magazines and how-to articles about their passions. So, if you love to write, there might be a way to profit from writing about your hobby. You can search for freelance writing assignments on sites like MediaBistro.com, FlexJobs.com or VirtualVocations.com.
Another option is to start your own hobby-related blog. While it will take time to build up a significant fan base, once you do, you can monetize your site through advertising, sponsorships or by selling your own digital information products—like e-books, downloadable tool kits, worksheets and more.
4. Create New Products Related to Your Hobby
Every hobby comes with its own set of specialized clothing, accessories, gear or gadgets. Hobbyists tend to be willing to buy products related to their hobby, so if you can craft, invent, or import an accessory for your hobby, you might be able to build a profitable income stream to supplement your retirement.
5. Find a Part-Time Job Related to Your Hobby
From the baseball enthusiast who gets paid to write about spring training for his local paper to the theater lover who works as an usher at the local arts center, finding a hobby-related job is a wonderful way to blend work and fun. Think about the places you’d happily spend time at for free—a ballpark, bookstore or gardening center—and see if they have any part-time job openings.
You might also find seasonal work at places like resorts, parks or tourist attractions.
An excellent resource for sourcing and learning about seasonal jobs is CoolWorks.com.