4 Ideas For Earning Passive Income (and Why You Should)
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure page for more info.
Have you ever wished you could earn extra money without having to be at work? Isn’t that one of the best things about paid time off?
Imagine being on an epic vacation, visiting family for a weekend, being out with friends all night, or just taking a glorious, much-needed nap…and having money flow into your bank account the entire time.
Does that seem impossible? It’s not. The above is a simplified description of earning passive income and you don’t need to be a millionaire to achieve it.
What is Passive Income?
You know how you’re required to clock in at work everyday? Your presence, one way or another, is required to earn a paycheck each week, right? You have to actively earn your income. You more than likely can’t just take a month or two off to go on vacation and still earn your normal salary.
Passive income is the exact opposite. Your presence is not required to earn money, at least, not after the initial setup.
Most passive income isn’t passive right off the bat. It may require an upfront time or financial investment. But it pays dividends down the road, as you’ll be able to profit from that income stream for years to come with little to no effort afterwards.
Why Passive Income is Awesome
Do you have dreams of achieving financial independence or retiring early someday? Then you probably know that passive income is one of the key components to living that dream.
Unless you love your job so much you never want to retire from it, you might want a break at some point. Having streams of passive income will help you achieve financial independence because you’ll have enough income coming in outside of your day job to quit.
Working becomes optional once your income surpasses your expenses, but the bulk of that income needs to be earned passively (without you being there) to make financial freedom possible. You can’t be free if you have to be somewhere to earn money!
Passive income can help you even if you’re not looking to fully retire right away. You could always set up passive income instead of an active side hustle to help you earn more for savings or debt repayment.
At the end of the day, if you value your time and don’t mind putting in the work, then passive income is right for you. If this concept sounds a little too crazy to wrap your head around, here are a few examples of passive income that just about anyone can achieve. Just note that all of these ideas do require upfront work!
1. Create an online Product
I specify online because for the most part, selling anything online is going to have lower overhead. So many of my blog friends have authored and sold ebooks on Amazon and other platforms, others have sold courses, and some have even sold spreadsheets or worksheets they created.
Do you have an eye for a good deal? You can sell those items, for a profit, by using Amazon FBA. You can make hundreds, or more, each month by selling items through Amazon. Here are some free training courses to help get you started to make money on Amazon.
There is a huge market for a wide variety of things. One of the best ways to earn money is to think of a problem you ended up solving with your own ingenuity. Could it be likely that others are looking for the solution you found?
Package it up as an online product sell it. Of course, it’s not as simple as that, but if you have a blog or an online audience willing to buy products from you, things get a little easier. There are plenty of people who start blogging to make money, and creating products to sell is a great way to turn that income into passive income as you don’t need to be there to sell it!
People can search for the solution they’re looking for, and hopefully your product comes up in the results. They click on it, read about it and maybe they decide to buy it. Boom – there’s a sale in your bank account, and you could be sleeping on a beach somewhere halfway across the world.
Key in creating an online product, or even starting a business, is having a website for the product/business. A website is a must have as it can serve as a portal to your business or means to make sales. I know setting up a website may sound difficult, it doesn’t have to be.
A hosting company, like Bluehost, can help you install and launch a website with one click. If you sign up through my Bluehost link, you can start a website for $2.95 per month plus a free domain name for one year.
2. Real Estate Investing
I’m not talking about buying and flipping houses. I’m talking about real estate investing for the long-run. Quite a few financial bloggers have mini-real estate empires and are able to live off of their rental income month after month.
This isn’t something you can just jump into, but it is something to consider if you wouldn’t mind being a landlord or hiring out property management. There are many variables to worry about, but it’s all about building a good team under you to take care of your properties (if they’re far away).
This is one of the main ways I hope to build passive income once my student loans are paid off. I don’t ever see myself wanting to buy property to “settle down,” but I wouldn’t mind buying a duplex or triplex and residing there alongside tenants who can (hopefully) cover the mortgage.
You can also rent out a second home or apartment. Do you travel much or do you own a second property? Consider listing your house or apartment on Airbnb to earn extra money on the side or create a new stream of income.
3. Invest in Dividend stocks
Another favorite among financial bloggers, dividend stock investing, is basically what it sounds like: investing in dividend stocks and building your portfolio to the point where you can live off of the dividend payouts.
Like it or not, investing is a key part of being able to retire early. You need a way to grow your wealth to outpace inflation. If you want to do this and either don’t know where to start or have little to invest, you can begin to build your own dividend portfolio at Motif Investing for as little as $250.
Dividend stocks can be a good option to accelerate your way toward financial independence!
4. Build a Business
I know, this probably doesn’t sound passive at all, but think about it for a few seconds. Have you ever worked for a smaller company where you knew the owner(s)? Were they there a lot, or could they take off and not have to ask anyone for permission?
Some people create a business because it’s their passion, while others build businesses to create a stream of passive income in the future.
The creation of a business isn’t something to take lightly, but if you can build an amazing team alongside you that can run the operations with little to no supervision, you have yourself a nice passive income stream. The key is to be able to outsource every aspect of your business – enough to keep it as hands-off as possible.
Again, one key to building a business is launching a website to go alongside it. You can start your own website for $2.95 per month through my Bluehost link – which also allows you to install it with one click.
Start with Passive Income as Your Goal
I didn’t even know what passive income was before I began blogging, but after seeing so many examples of it played out, I’m fairly certain I can make it happen. And if I can, you can as well.
You don’t need to be a millionaire to create products online or invest in the stock market. You just need to be able to manage your money intelligently. Start with the goal of generating passive income, and work your way up. Come up with ideas you can implement, consider how much time you’ll have to spend on the project before it earns any money, and figure out whether or not passive income is right for you.
Additional resource: If you want to create your own dividend portfolio but don’t know where to start, don’t let that hold you back! There are many options available, but one of the best based off of minimum requirements and the ability to invest specifically in dividend paying stocks is Motif Investing. Motif allows you to start investing for as little as $250 and is one of the cheapest brokerages in the space. In some cases you might even qualify for a new account promotion.
Do you have any passive income sources? Are you working toward one? How? Do you think the term passive income is slightly misleading given the work you need to put in beforehand?