Last updated March 26th 2023
Life is expensive and it isn’t going to get
any cheaper. Inflation has been outpacing wage growth for decades so an ever increasing number of people are finding it difficult to support their lifestyle. So what are your options? You can only cut living expenses so much because of course you need the basic necessities of food, shelter, phone, etc.
The other option is to increase your income. Other reasons you may want to add an income stream may be to increase your standard of living, to lay a foundation for a new career, or to get paid for a hobby you enjoy. Alternative revenue streams have grown more popular as the internet and smartphones have made it easier for entrepreneurs to promote their businesses and find clients.
Below we have outlined 16 ways for you to increase your income, encompassing both active and passive methods. Active methods will require more involvement from your end ranging on the “side hustle”. Passive income typically requires more of an upfront investment and will take time to realize a more impactful income jump. Both types of income will require effort, the difference is when and how often the work happens.
Before you start:
- Choose two or three options to begin your research. Reach out to companies, employees, and customers of the product, service or idea to get an understanding of what to expect. Be sure to know the benefits and the costs of each idea.
- Create a detailed checklist of what you need to begin. Think about what you need to start. Materials, designations, software, skills. Consider how will you find clients. Word of mouth, put out an advertisement, and social media can be good places to start.
- Create a budget to get started. It is vital to know how much you need to get started. Remember the whole point of generating additional income either through an active side hustle or passively is to avoid taking on more debt. If the costs become to prohibitive, think of another option. There are plenty of fish in the sea.
- Review your list and complete one task at a time. It’s the start that stops most people. Once you have everything lined up, the only thing left to do is act. Once you have completed one item, recognize your victory then move on to the next. As you progress through your checklist things may need to be revised.
Alright, let’s dive in shall we?
1. Rent your property
These days you can rent just about anything you own. There are numerous sites to rent your home whether that be the entire house or just one room. You could also rent your car (there is a website for that), particularly if you work from home a lot and don’t need it everyday. Got extra space in your home or garage? Rent it out. People in between moving or that have grown out of their current living space would be glad to pay you.
Do you live in a condo with an extra parking stall, if so people will pay top dollar to rent it out especially if you live near public transit. If you have a pool, that can be a hot ticket during the summer time you could rent out for a day. Reliable platforms have emerged allowing you to rent your boat as well. Again, a great way to make money during the summer time or if you live in year-round warm climates.
Lastly if you have heavy power tools (snowblower, power washer, table saw, etc.) rather than going to a home improvement store, you can rent out your tools.
2. Freelance Writing
Do you have the writing bug? Blogs, websites, and other online media are always looking for fresh new content. Freelance writing work covers a wide range of skills, from proofreading and writing copy to social media management and beyond.
If you have a talent for writing and strong language skills, writing can be a very good way to earn extra money, and often these jobs come with flexible working hours. There are a bunch of sites out there that connect writers with outlets in need. We suggest building a library of content so you can show potential suitors your work. Writers can make hundreds of dollars per article so put those skills to use!
3. Driving With Rideshare
You can be your own boss, meet new people, and build up a client base to service. There are two dominant players in the space so you can choose to work with one or both. Reach out to those already driving people around to get their opinion. If you live near a big city this can become quite a nice side gig depending on your lifestyle.
4. Create a Blog or YouTube Channel
This is kind of piggybacking on the freelance writing idea however the work required and potential payout is a lot more. These methods can bring in money through advertisements and sponsored posts. The great thing about this gig is that you can choose any topic you are passionate about and create content for it. Sports, travel, food, video games, birds, the list is endless.
Blogs and YouTube channels are essentially free to start and can be a great outlet to enhance your topic of choice. It will take time to build an audience but while you are doing that you can build your content library so new members can binge your material.
5. Pet Sit or Dog Walk
Calling all animal lovers! If you have spare time during the day or on weekends when pet owners are out of the house its the perfect opportunity to be a furry friend’s companion. You can search Craiglist for people looking for pet sitters or you can post an ad yourself. Get paid to get some fresh air and make a pet’s day.
6. Record an Audio Book
If writing isn’t your thing then maybe talking is your thing. Recording an audiobook for stories, lectures, or guides is a great way to earn easy income. An added bonus is you can learn about the topics you are recording. With the increase of the digital economy, publishers are always looking for way to expand their offering and reach a wider audience. Record your material once and collect passive income for each sale.
7. Invest in Dividend Paying Stocks
To be honest this will take either a long time or a lot of capital to generate noticeable income. The good news is there are thousands of dividend paying stocks in North America. Check out the stocks we cover that pay dividends through our membership plans. Dividends range in the percentage they payout but a 3% annual dividend is very reasonable.
For example if you invest $10,000 that’s an extra $300 per year for doing nothing. A company’s dividend can change for better or worse so make sure you understand the company and their dividend history before committing. For a full breakdown of what a dividend is and how they work review our Investment Insights page through any of our membership plans.
Do you speak multiple languages? Do you have advanced skill in an academic subject such as math, physics, or history? Leverage your knowledge and help someone achieve their goals. Tutor’s can charge roughly $50 per hour depending on the subject. You can meet new people by posting ads around your local college or university. Be sure to have credentials ready to support why you are an expert on the subject. Dig up old material you have on the subject to aid in your lessons. You can also tailor lessons to the needs of the person you are tutoring providing the best experience possible.
9. Sell Domain Names
Domain names are the real estate for websites. Buying and selling domains has the advantage of not needing space for storage so you can own as many as you care to spend on. The thing is there is no centralized market so its difficult to know how much a domain is worth. Some domains are free and can be claimed through a multitude of websites. Others are extremely expensive, for example in 2019 www.voice.com is reported to have sold for $30 million!
If you have a knack for spotting emerging trends you can snap up the related name and sell for big profits. Short and simple is the best way to go for mass appeal. The downside is you may buy a domain that has no demand. In that case your out the cost of the name.
10. Take Online Surveys
That’s right, you can get paid for your opinion Unfortunately it’s not much varying from $1 – 25$ per survey. If you take 3 or 4 surveys a week while you have some down time the rewards can add up especially considering the work put it. Playing games, providing feedback on products or services, or watching movies are all viable ways to get paid for your input. Even the great Netflix pays people to give opinions on their content.
11. Sell Digital Products
Digital products are the dealer’s choice coming in the form of files, templates, website plug-ins, printables, images, applications, among many others. Regarding an app it can be anything including tools, fitness, games, organization, etc. The more novel your idea, the more downloads and ultimately more money it will generate. The heavy work for this comes upfront creating the product but once you do, sell the digital product as many times as you want at an attractive markup.
12. License Your Art
Licensing can be from your music, photography, drawings, or paintings. In terms of visual art advertising agencies, realtors, magazines, and news companies are some examples of businesses that may buy your work. If you’re a photographer, there are a bunch of websites you can sell your photos as stock images to under a license agreement. This means you can sell the same photo an unlimited number of times for a fee.
Art galleries are always looking for new stock to fill their showrooms. Research local art galleries near you and you can become a professional artist. For music, reach out to advertising agencies, small independent film makers, or recording studios as people in these industries needs music for their projects.
13. Consult On a Business
If you have tenured experience in manufacturing, sales, human resources, or logistics you can get paid to consult on various businesses. These skills are highly transferable and often follow a systematic process that can be replicated across most industries.
Earning potential would be based on a few things such as the need of the company, ability of the company to pay, and of course your skills. Be sure to be able to back up the financial ask you are making. The longer your experience, the breadth of experience and conversely if you have a certain niche, these factors can all play into your compensation.
14. Be An Affiliate Marketer
Affiliate markets typically have a large following already but its never too early to start. These people make money by promoting a third party’s service or product. The marketer would have an existing blog, social media presence, or website and display links to a third party. Instagram would be an example where a person could post and promote other products. You and the third party would determine what action earns a commission. It may be a click, an email sign up, or an actual purchase. Joining an affiliate program is free, so there aren’t any upfront costs. You’ll need creativity and skills to build trust in your followers in order to be a successful affiliate.
15. Sell With Dropshipping
Dropshipping is a type of online business in which the seller functions as a middle man between a supplier and a consumer. This type of business doesn’t have a physical store or warehouse. Instead, it partners with manufacturers and ships the products directly to customers. The nice thing is you’re only duty is promoting and selling the products and passing orders on to your supplier. You don’t have to handle the logistics of storing and shipping the products.
Dropshipping does not require a lot of upfront cash. You will need an e-commerce set which can be easily set up through a few websites. You don’t need to invest in a physical space, and you only pay your supplier when a customer makes a purchase. Most dropshippers earn a commission of 20 to 30% of the sale price.
16. Create An Online Course
Demand is high for digital course content in a wide range of fields. These include content for computer coding, economics, finance, healthcare, parenting, and Search Engine Optimization. Digital courses can be promoted through marketing channels such as social media and sold through various websites that will help you build the course. This will require some upfront work from you like outlining, recording, and posting the course online on platforms as well as creating downloadable assets and resources for your students. Eventually, an online course will continuously generate passive income, helping others along the way.
Choose something you’re excited about. That way, it won’t feel like work and you’ll be more likely to stick with it.
Start small. Avoid doing too much all at once, focus on getting started. Once you’ve got the basics down, you can start expanding your passive or active income.
Use your existing skills and knowledge. You don’t need to start from scratch. This will save you time and energy, and will help you get a good start.
Promote your side hustle. Tell friends and family about it, share it on your platforms. The more exposure you can get, the better.
It’s very unlikely everything will go exactly as planned. Things will go wrong, you will make mistakes. It’s ok. There will inevitably be challenges and setbacks along the way. The people that can actually build multiple revenue streams of income for themselves stick with it and learn from challenges. Now go get it!