This is a collaborative post.
We all know the old phrase:
“Choose a job you love, and you’ll never have to work a day in your life.”
Cliché though it may be, doesn’t it sound tempting? If you want to learn how to make money, you may as well start by looking at ways to monetize the things you love.
Whether you are looking to start a new career, or simply looking to make a bit of extra cash on the side, there are ways you can do this with your favourite hobby.
In this post let’s take a look at five popular hobbies that make money – or at least, have the potential to make money, once you know how!
Chances are you already do at least one of these things in your spare time – so why not get paid for it?
Best hobbies to make money
By the way, this post contains affiliate links. That means if you buy something after clicking one of my links I may receive a commission, at no extra cost to you. Thank you!
Most of us take dozens of pictures a day on our smartphones. But do you have a real talent for framing great snaps? There are several ways to turn photography into a side hustle!
Become an events photographer
To really make money from photography, you’ll probably need more than your smartphone. Your iPhone snaps may impress your mates on Facebook, but you won’t get the professional results you need when selling your services. Therefore, it’s best to invest in a decent camera if you want to gain credibility.
You can then advertise yourself online and to your friends, and offer your services as a photographer for special events, such as weddings, engagements, pregnancy shoots and college graduations.
Sell your photography prints
If your skill with a camera borderlines on art, you can also make money by selling prints online. From using popular photography sites to your own website or online marketplaces such as Etsy, you could get yourself a reputation with the right exposure (no pun intended).
As more people notice your work, you could start to raise your fee and make a more serious income from your services.
Sell stock photos
Even better, upload your pictures to a stock photography site and you could be making a nice stream of passive income each time a snap sells.
There are several different websites and even apps where you can sell your photos for money, ranging from amateur to professional. Try these for starters:
These sites all vary in terms of fees and copyright, so check the T&Cs before you start selling.
If you have a talent for the written word, there are all kinds of opportunities available to you. Writing is one of the best hobbies on a budget because you don’t need any special tools or equipment except your laptop.
And once you’ve honed your skills, there are several ways to generate money from this hobby!
The most well-known road is journalism, but it helps to take some kind of qualification unless you are lucky enough to get your foot in the door at a local newspaper and work your way up.
You might also consider approaching local companies by offering them your services as a writer for their websites, blogs or marketing materials.
Publish a book
On the other hand, you may be more interested in the world of fiction, in which case you probably already have a novel percolating in the back of your mind.
Getting a book published isn’t easy, especially if you go down the traditional route, but you could self-publish an eBook, and market it through your followers on social media.
You might want to pick up a copy of the Writers and Artists Yearbook too, as that contains a vast list of publishers and agents that you can approach directly with your work.
The other route to go down is blogging. You have the freedom to write about whatever you want, and you can generate a readership by showcasing your personality and interests, as well as your writing style.
From personal finance to travel or cooking, you can start a blog in literally any niche. You can generate cash through affiliate marketing, ad revenue, sponsored posts and product sales.
Many writers also use their personal blogs to attract more freelance work.
Sports can also be a profitable hobby that can make money, whether you are skilled at a particular game, or have a passive interest in a specific sport.
Local sports jobs
Assuming you have the ability to play, you may be able to make money from coaching junior teams or acting as a referee. Approach local schools and organisations to find out more.
Of course, if you’re really good enough you might have considered becoming a professional in your given sport, giving you the opportunity to make an untold fortune. Start working with local teams and coaches to give you the leg up you need.
Make money from sports online
If your sporting prowess only goes so far as lifting up your TV remote, there are other ways you can make money from your hobby without spending any Saturdays in a muddy field.
You can make money online from your sporting knowledge by buying and selling sports memorabilia for a profit, publishing a sports blog, or running your own fantasy sports league, making money through membership and advertising.
Matched betting is another idea. This is a low-risk way to profit from your interest in sports by taking advantage of betting sites’ special offers. You use special calculators to ‘match’ your bets so that you don’t lose money, and pocket the cash from ‘free bet’ offers.
I use this matched betting service to show me which bets to place and where. Worth looking into if you’re looking for a sports related hobby to make money online.
Music is another popular hobby you can make money off of.
As with any creative hobby, it is difficult to become famous with your own work. However, you can upload your music on sites such as Soundcloud, and you may make valuable contacts through your listeners.
Performing live is also a good idea. Depending on your skills and instrument, you could busk (ask your local council about licences), perform at weddings and events, or look for work as a session musician on the local music scene.
For the latter, you should advertise your skills locally and online and then approach local bands directly at bars and clubs. You won’t get paid loads, but who knows where it might lead you.
The other avenue is music tutoring. If you have mastered the use of a particular instrument, advertise your services to others.
There are loads of adults and children desperate to learn how to play specific instruments, and you may be the person to help them master the craft.
You could get a part time gig at a music school, or go self employed and advertise your services online, or locally, at schools, colleges, and community groups.
As with most of the hobbies on this list, art is a broad subject, from skills with a paintbrush to graphic design. Whatever route you are interested in, it can be one of the best hobbies to make money as there are so many ways to profit!
Sell your crafts to make money
The most common way is to sell your craft. That could be through Etsy, your own website, craft fairs or at local art galleries or gift shops.
You can also display your artwork at local eating places or shopping centres (with permission), with contact details posted underneath for interested buyers.
Here are some of the many, many different craft hobbies that make money:
- Jewellery making
- Soap making
- Homemade bath bombs and bath salts
- Leather craft
- Stationery or card making
One tip is to try thinking of opportunities to niche down. For example, you could specialise in wedding favours or new baby gifts. This can make it easier to market yourself in the beginning.
Sell designs online
If you have design skills, you can make money by putting your designs on different objects to sell online. Print-on-demand websites such as Redbubble and Teespring will allow you to upload your work and set your own profit margins.
Ever wanted to see your artwork on a t-shirt or an iPhone case? Well, it may not be what you originally intended, but with Redbubble you can put your artwork on almost anything.
Even better, these sites have no upfront sellers fees, and they handle the printing, shipping and customer service. You don’t even have to deal with your own inventory.
Tutoring is another option, whether this is on a one-to-one basis, or running a class at a local school or adult education college. Depending on your style of art, you may be able to fill a niche that is not yet included on the current curriculum.
You can also teach your craft online. This could be through a revenue generating YouTube channel, a subscription package through your own website, or a third-party site like Udemy or Brit + Co.
No matter what your hobby is, there will be ways you can make money from it.
This post focused on my top five money generating hobbies, but with a bit of creativity, you’ll find the options are endless! Continue your research online, and talk to other people with similar interests, be they friends at a local group, or through niche-specific websites and forums.
What better way to start a new side hustle than by doing something you already love!