Our economy is changing. With it, the workforce is evolving. Just ask Andrew Yang. With it, people’s views on what it means to “make a living” are evolving. More people than ever are looking for a side hustle or a way of making residual or passive income.
I myself am a professional blogger. It is a side hustle. It is not residual. But it is maybe a gateway to a more passively-earned living. Who knows. But I have considered how to get to a point where my wife and I can live off passive income. It’s not easy. And I have found that many of the suggested ways of getting there have to do with investments and other financial pursuits, of which I am honestly just not that interested.
Most modes of passive income do, of course, involve a financial investment upfront, and a little bit of start-up effort. The following ideas do not cost much. But for ones that do, you will probably want to look for things that would at least be fun, or things you’d be doing anyway.
Here are some starter ideas. Nothing you’re going to retire on.
1. T-shirt ideas. With companies like Spreadshirt or Threadless you can pitch an idea for a t-shirt and they will create it. Depending on the company, it can be as little as the concept alone, or you can create your own graphic and submit it, then they make and sell the shirts, and you get your cut. This feels like something my wife and I could sit around in our living room with a notebook or a recording device in front of us and just start spitting out ideas. You’ve probably heard someone say some silly combination of words and you thought it sounded like a great band name. Now you can apply the same idea to creating funny t-shirts, and make money doing it.
2. Stock photos. If you have the slightest interest in photography, and bit of talent, or at least a knack for framing a scene, there are sites that may buy your photos for stock images. I never thought about it, but those stock images online have to come from somewhere. And it doesn’t have to be a beautiful sunrise, a scenic locale or anything like that. You never know what images people might be looking for, for whatever reason. In fact it is very possible that the more specific the image is, the more in demand it will be or the more you can get for it. If it’s good. I did say “and a bit of talent” remember. But once you’ve sold your images, they keep making you money.
3. Advertise on your car. Okay this one is not one that you might warm to immediately, but think about it. Granted, with companies like Carvertise or Wrapify for example, you’re going to be dealing with more than a bumper sticker. Your car would be like a billboard on wheels. You’d basically be driving around in what looks like a company car. But think about it. Whoever’s ad is on your car is paying you. They are employing you. So it isn’t so off the wall to think of it as a company car. You’d be making money for driving, something you’re doing anyway. You may have certain routes you are required to take, but think of it as being an Uber driver without those annoying customers in the back seat. And, hey…it’s better than getting the “Google” logo tattooed on your face.
Like I said, these are just the ideas that appealed to, or at least were amusing to me. You may be very well versed in stocks and bond and all that what-not. And if so, more power to you. Take a look at what’s out there and try setting something in motion while you are still employed. In time, you may find that an odd side-venture allows you to cut back at the office. Good luck.