Updated May 9, 2022
By Dannie Phan
There are dozens upon dozens of new and interesting ways to make money in this day and age. If you’re not inclined to sit behind a desk from nine in the morning until five in the evening, you’re not alone. You can, too, step away from the hum-drum of the average workplace and instead explore the different ways you can establish a passive income stream.
Passive incomes see you benefit from a string of money without having to do much work yourself. While these positions don’t often provide you with enough to forgo a primary position, they can help you supplement your income and make for-fun purchases a little more affordable.
With that in mind, how do you go about making a passive income?
How to Make Money Doing Nothing
Making an income doing nothing is the dream, but is it a feasible one? To some degree, it can be. However, if you’re looking to make free money doing nothing, it’s more than likely that you’ll have to do a significant amount of prep work first.
Several different paths can help you secure a passive income. Before you kick up your heels and watch the money flow in, though, consider some of the following types of preliminary work:
Make Extra Cash by Creating a Blog
Nothing brings in money like advertisements these days. If you want to jump on the advertisement train, you can. All you have to do is establish your own platform first. Blogs are some of the best places both to make a name for yourself as an expert in a niche field and to host ads that will pay you for your audience’s time.
Of course, you’ll want to make sure that your blogging is more than just a placeholder for a few advertisements. You will need to make content for this kind of platform in advance if you want it to succeed and turn it into a money-making website. Pick a niche, then, and see what kind of information you have on hand to share with a broader audience.
The larger the audience you’re able to bring in, the better the advertisement deals you’ll get will be. For the best success, study what other bloggers are posting, whether they’re discussing get-rich schemes or newly-released video games. The market may seem full as it stands, but if you have the spare time, you can turn one of your interests into a passive income stream.
Designing an App
As mentioned, a lot of the ways you can make money doing nothing actually require you to put in a good deal of work ahead of time. Such is the case with app-building. Building an app takes a lot of time and know-how. You have to code, create art, and build a theme for your app with the intent of wooing an interested audience. This isn’t easy and can often involve the work of several people instead of just you.
Once you’ve gone about creating your app, however, you’ll have a chance to start generating your passive income. Put your app up in one of the many app stores currently circulating – the Apple App Store, Google Play, Amazon, and so on – and you’ll be able to bring in a commission both for any app purchases and for any adds you choose to run alongside your work.
While you may have to step in and tweak a few things about your app now and then, you can more readily kick up your feet and benefit from the side hustle you’ve invested in.
Selling Stock Photos
Do you spend the bulk of your time behind a camera? Do you want to put some of your images to use? You can partner with platforms like Shutterstock to do just that. Shutterstock will happily purchase future stock photos for a low initial cost. From there, you, as the photographer, can receive a commission every time that your photo is used for one purpose or another.
Now, this process won’t bring in money quickly. However, it is the ideal path for anyone interested in bringing in a small-time, passive, supplementary income.
Owning Real Estate
If you have the means straight off the bat, then you can make a passive income by renting out property that you either already have or that you choose to purchase. Platforms like Fundrise and AirBnB thrive because there are several parties out there who want to make a passive income off of the property that they already have or that they’ve stylized to appeal to a modern, traveling audience.
Ideally, when you go to make money off of real estate, you’ll own the land or property that you’re renting out. However, if you’re paying a mortgage on the land, you’ll want to make sure that you’re bringing in enough income to cover both your regular mortgage payments and any other expenses that you have to contend with. Once you’ve struck that balance, though, you can go about your day-to-day responsibilities without worrying about where your next paycheck will come from.
Partnering With Online Art Stores
If you’re an artist or otherwise artistically-inclined, you have the opportunity to transform your hobby into a lucrative career. As it turns out, you don’t necessarily have to sign on with a large company like Disney to start making money as an artist. Instead, you can partner with institutions like Redbubble.
Working as an artist online is a complicated business. You first have to go about establishing your style and growing your audience. Only then will it be easier for you to secure a passive income selling prints or other merchandise. Should you manage, however, to win over a crowd that seems interested in bringing home your work, then platforms like Redbubble and Etsy can help you supplement your current income.
When in doubt, you also have the option to open up commissions. Thousands of people around the world are looking for custom art for one reason or another. You can set up a social media account specifically to draw in clients, then provide them with art for a set fee. Over time, your reputation will grow, and you’ll have the opportunity to transform commission work or comparable releases into a full-time career.
Playing the Stock Market
Wrangling the stock market these days is a complicated matter. While you can’t always predict the ups and downs and stock, you can start to get into the bidding if you have the fund money.
Before you start to ride the rollercoaster that is the stock market, however, you need to determine how best to apply and save money. You have the option of choosing which stocks and funds you want to back on your own time. Alternatively, however, you can reach out to an investment manager and work collaboratively.
Once you’ve decided whether or not you’re working alone, you can go about determining what kind of investment account you want affiliated with your name. If you’re all about handling your investments yourself, brokerage accounts through platforms like Robinhood often let you gain access to the stock market with little outside cost. You can open a brokerage account when working with a manager, as well, and establish either an individual retirement account or a taxable brokerage account.
You also have the option of opening a robo-advisor account. These accounts pick the most interesting stocks for you and allow you to bring in a passive income as a result. The entry cost, notably, is relatively expensive, but once you have your feet on the ground, you’ll have more opportunities to bring home money without having to do too much work.
Before you jump into stocks in 2022, however, be sure to note the state of the market. Late January has already seen some unusual stock market behavior, with GameStop stock rising at unprecedented rates courtesy of an online meme market boom. Do your research ahead of time, then, and see for yourself what kind of long-term money you may be able to make.
Writing a Book
Have you always wanted to craft a memoir? Have you had an idea sitting idle in the back of your head that you feel you need to get down on paper? Writing a book is a difficult task, but once it’s done (and you’ve revised it a few times over), you can rely on book sales to generate a long-term passive income for you to enjoy.
This is, of course, another task that requires a lot of work upfront for a big payoff later. If you want to forgo that kind of labor, however, you can instead opt to work with a ghostwriter. Ghostwriters, for a fee, can sit down with you and write the book that you want to share with the world. At the end of your partnership, you can provide the ghostwriter with a lump sum and go on to sell the book in question under your own name. This way, you can earn back what you paid your ghostwriter and make dividends on the book you’ve released. It’s a win-win for you and the writer you choose to employ.
How to Make Money with No Money
If you don’t have the time or desire to create content before resting on your laurels, don’t worry. There are still ways for you to make money even if you don’t have money or content to begin with. If you’re looking to start a side hustle or to make this week’s grocery bill, you can make money by:
Do you have a neighbor who leaves town on a regular basis? Have you wanted to make your way into some of the bigger homes around your area? Then you can readily advertise yourself as a housesitter. House sitting lets you spend days at a time in another person’s home to watch over their pets, care for their plants, and discourage thieves from taking advantage of an empty property.
The business can pay well, with housesitters often setting their own rates. You can charge per day or by the hour, depending on your preference. Either way, should you get hired, you’ll have the chance to spend long days in a new place, enjoying someone else’s house, and making money. What could be better than that?
Listening to Music
Musicians in this day and age are as common as grass in a field. That doesn’t mean, however, that the career isn’t lucrative. Any musician who is able to distinguish her sound has the opportunity to start bringing in money courtesy of platforms like Soundcloud and YouTube.
It isn’t just musicians, however, who can make a passive income these days. Music critics, too, are able to supplement their existing incomes as new musicians release their music. Becoming a music critic can be as simple or as complex as you want to make it. While you can go to school and learn about the complexities of musical theory, you can also trust your ear. If you’ve spent thousands of hours listening to the music that’s on the radio, you’ll know what you like and what you don’t. In turn, you’ll be able to express the interests of a demographic like yours with some reliability.
Why not turn your music reviews into cash, then? Platforms like RadioEarn pay you a few cents for every song review you leave through their platform. If you want to go for a more lucrative pay-off, you can write up song reviews and see what kind of magazines or publications are looking for public opinion. All of these avenues can help you secure a passive income after just a little bit of hard work – and really, how difficult is it to express an opinion about a song you’ve already listened to a dozen times over?
More people in the world are willing to pay for a friend that you might anticipate. If you’re an outgoing person, why not make this kind of service available to the people in your area? You can advertise friendly services on platforms like Fiverr and spend days with people working out, going to lunch, and just keeping them company.
Friend-based services often benefit the elderly as much as they benefit anyone else, though you’ll always want to vet the people you spend the day with before you find yourself in an uncomfortable situation. While the pay can vary from gig to gig, you’ll have the opportunity to set your rate yourself before heading out for an afternoon of lunching or just keeping someone else company.
Standing in Line
It turns out that you can make money standing around if you know where you should be standing.
While 2022 may not be the most profitable year for line-holders, the profession hasn’t gone out of style. Over the years, everyone from the Average Joe to American Senators has employed other people to stand in line on their behalf. Whether it’s for an iPhone release or with the intent to lobby, you can make either an hourly rate or a flat rate if you volunteer to hold the place of another person in a box office line.
To get started as a placeholder, you can advertise your services on platforms like Fiverr. Alternatively, don’t hesitate to make a website for yourself with Carrd or to make your services available through social media.
Who says you can’t make money in your sleep? If you know where to look, you can make money testing out new mattresses for manufacturers around the United States. Different manufacturers will advertise for bed testers either through their platforms or on social media. You can find these manufacturers and put forward your services at your leisure. While you may not make a significant income doing this kind of work, you can get a good night’s sleep and bring home enough money to pay for a night out when you’re done.
Picking Up Deliveries
In this day and age, most shoppers are all about the here and now. No one wants to wait in line if they have to, especially not for a product that they’ve already ordered. While that in mind, you have a chance to make money picking up someone’s purchases for them.
Now, this work isn’t the same thing as delivery work. In many ways, it is much simpler. Instead of taking your car to a restaurant or shop and bringing someone their purchase, all you have to do is stand in line. Once you’ve got your client’s purchase in hand, you can meet them in the parking lot of the shop you’re at and hand it over in exchange for payment. This way, your client can finish other errands or pick up their kids and you can make a little bit of money on the side.
When in doubt, there’s always an opportunity for you to make money while doing your online shopping. Online shopping services have boomed since early 2020, and their popularity doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon.
Shoppers, in turn, have more opportunities to bring home cash back on essential purchases. You can use apps like Honey, for example, to earn rewards on each of your purchases and to build up credit for additional purchases. Some credit card companies even enable you to earn dollars back on every purchase you make with a partnered retailer. While you will need to give a bit of money, of course, to bring some money home, you’ll be paying bills or buying groceries just as you always have. What’s the harm, then, in seeing how your weekly grocery bill can’t pay you back?
Partner with Swagbucks Today
It’s easier than you might think to make extra money without doing anything. The age of the Internet allows you to connect to people and positions willing to pay you for the tasks that you already complete on a day-to-day basis.
If you’re willing to put in a little bit of work to make money but still prefer to earn your income from the comfort of your couch, you’re in luck. Swagbucks helps its users make money all without leaving home. When you sign up for a Swagbucks account, you can start earning in-platform points by taking surveys, browsing the web, and playing games. Once you’ve earned a certain number of points, you’ll be able to cash your winnings out. You can exchange those points for PayPal credit or for gift cards to your favorite retailers.
Are you ready, then, to start bringing in some supplementary income? Sign up for a Swagbucks account today and make money doing little to nothing at all.
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Originally published August 11, 2021