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23 Profitable Hobbies That Make Money

You know how they say, “do what you love, and you won’t work a single day in your life?”  

Well, with an entrepreneurial spirit and some extra effort, you can do more of what you love and actually making money from it.

gaming is one of the most profitable hobbies

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a college student, a stay at home mom, or even a retiree; turning a hobby into a viable business can help you put an extra cushion in your bank account each month.

With that in mind, this article will reveal 23 profitable hobbies that can make money.

Grab a seat, relax and prepare to be inspired! 

1. Playing Video Games

video game hobbies that can make money

Shocked? Well, you shouldn’t be; playing video games are gaining more popularity than ever. 

So much is the popularity of esports that some of the top paid YouTubers are gamers. 

Remember as a kid when your folks used to warn you about wasting time playing video games? How times have changed! I know, it’s crazy.

With the new PS5 out, now is the time to think of turning your gaming hobby into a business. Aspiring gamers love watching pros play, especially if they’re enjoyable to watch. You can coach new players on how to dominate a game.

Top gamers such as Ninja and PewDiePie record themselves playing popular games and broadcast on platforms like YouTube and Twitch in real-time. If you’re a good player with a great personality and a comedic touch, you can follow in their footsteps. 

You may need to hit a certain number of viewers or subscribers before you start earning. As you grow a following, monetize with ads, ask your audience for donations and offer premium memberships. 

Besides live streaming yourself with commentary as you play, you can talk about how to bypass certain obstacles, review gear, solve puzzles and dungeons, etc. to score extra cash. 

2. Start A YouTube Channel

money making hobbies from home include YouTube

YouTube is an amazing platform to learn things and get entertained. When you watch your favorite YouTubers do their thing, you make them money. This encourages them to do what they love.

Many YouTubers are making a living through the platform via ads, affiliate marketing, and sponsorships. Most started their channels to have fun and make a side income, but with time grew them into a full-time job.

If you love creative entertaining or informative videos, you can leverage the platform and become a YouTube superstar. 

Starting a YouTube channel is free and straightforward. To create a welcoming online environment, wow your viewers with a thoughtful channel name, icon and banner art. 

Deliver valuable content consistently and work on building your audience. You’ll have to do some research to make a substantial income, but it’s worth the effort.

3. Graphic Design

Most bloggers use opt-ins that are basically some form of digital products like a planner, a checklist, wall art, a list of tips, a calendar, a cheat sheet, or any other printables to grow their email lists. If they look pretty, these will have a better conversion rate. 

Suppose you’re one of those creative people who love creating and sending out posters and invites, you can design logos, posters, flyers, infographics and business cards for businesses to save them valuable time. 

Graphic Design is really big on Fiverr, DesignCrowd and 99Designs, and businesses spend huge bucks on getting their printables professionally designed. You can list your service on these platforms for the price you would work for.

And it’s not just bloggers and businesses. There are people out there that don’t know or don’t have the time to make family photo collages.

With everything going digital today, you can rest assured that graphic design will be around for quite some time.

4. Pet Sitting

pet sitting is a hobby that can make you money

If you love pets, and they love you, pet sitting is a great way to mix business and pleasure. There’s nothing more satisfying than getting paid to take care of them. 

A pet may not fit into the busy lifestyle of a working professional. Pet owners find it difficult to find someone reliable to watch their little furballs when they’re out of town on a trip or stuck at the office.

You could turn your love for pets into a profitable hobby. Look for pet sitting opportunities in your neighborhood. Let your friends and acquaintances know that you’re offering pet sitting services.

Sites like Rover enable you to mark your available hours and days to place requests only for times you can work.

Pet sitting for a few hours every week could get you some good cash. Other ways to earn an income by loving pets include pet walking and pet grooming.

5. Real Estate

Man flipping a house

Next up on profitable hobbies that can make money? Real estate.

Do you find yourself reclaiming wasteland or renovating your home regularly as a hobby? How about turning it into a business?

You can start with flipping small projects (single-family houses, condos, townhouses) and as you gain more experience, go for bigger projects. It’s possible to invest in housing without buying a home. 

If you have strong communication and marketing skills, you can also become a real estate agent and help investors, homeowners, and businesses buy and sell properties. 

If flipping houses is too big of a challenge, why not start small with a house cleaning business.

6. Freelance Writing

woman writing with a laptop

Are you a great writer? Do you spend most of your free time writing articles, resumes, poems, quotes or stories? 

If you can whip up a 1000-word article in less than an hour, you could be making money doing ghostwriting, copywriting, or freelance writing.

I can attest firsthand that writing as a hobby can turn into extra cash. Take a few seconds and look around you. There’s probably a novel or textbook nearly. That book is a product of a writer.

Blogs require content on a regular basis. If you’re knowledgeable in a certain topic or niche, platforms like Freelancer, TextBroker, and UpWork are looking for freelance writers like you. You get to work from home and choose your own hours.

Write in different creative ways to express compelling thoughts and engage your own critical thinking. Writing will also allow you to learn more about topics that interest you. Try putting effort into gaining a basic understanding of keywords and SEO.

As a beginner, you won’t make much, but as you build your profile, you’ll be able to command a good rate. If you don’t want to write for other people, you can write an eBook focused on a specific topic and sell it on Amazon Kindle.

7. Blog

I love blogging and have been able to snag some extra cash doing so. If you have a natural flair for writing and are somewhat computer-savvy, starting a blog and making money is easier than you think. 

What are you passionate about? What enthuses you? Those are the small things that would make a great personal blog.

You can review products, teach people how to prepare delicious dishes, give tips on how to save money or document your travel escapades. By creating content on interesting topics you’re passionate about, you’ll attract like-minded readers and build your tribe. 

Not sure where to start? Pick a platform like Blogger or WordPress, choose a memorable domain name and find a web host. 

For less than $5 per month, you can secure hosting from Hostgator or Bluehost. Now that you’ve booked your space on the internet, feed your readers valuable content.

Work on creating a following as your income will depend on how many readers you can attract to your blog. To keep readers engaged, try the following: a teaser for your next post and a lively comments section. 

While it may need patience and hard work to become an established blogger, a blog allows you to create a passive income stream that will pay you even when you are not working. 

Use Google AdSense and Mediavine to set up display ads once your blog starts raking in decent amounts of traffic. You can also try affiliate programs or sell your own products, courses, or services through your site. 

8. Music

Music is everyone’s favorite hobby behind closed doors. If your idea of a perfect weekend is to curl up on the sofa with a guitar in hand, why not get paid to teach others how to play musical instruments? 

You can make money doing various things in the music field. The music business isn’t that difficult to break into.

Rather than keeping your talent to yourself, start offering private music lessons. Or better yet, creating online courses on how to play certain instruments. Music lessons pay well and let you set your own schedule.

Not everyone who loves music loves teaching. Touring musicians are constantly in need of stand-in musicians while on the road. You can also monetize your musical talent by performing as a DJ at local pubs, restaurants and weddings. 

Promote your services by networking with music teachers, orchestra instructors and local bands. 

Here are six more ways to make money with music.

9. Cooking

man and girl making money with their cooking hobby

It may sound like a pretty ordinary hobby, but many people will happily pay you to cook delicious food for a special occasion.

Cooking takes time – time that not everyone has. But if you’re a freak in the kitchen, you can turn it into a profitable small business.

You don’t have to be a professional chef or the next Gordon Ramsay to earn money from cooking. And there are many ways to go about this.

Many Americans are trying to eat healthily but sometimes lack the time to prep meals. Consider cooking and selling healthy pre-prepared meals to capture this growing demographic.

Once word gets around the neighborhood that you’re a master in the kitchen, the orders will come rolling in.

If you enjoy feeding a crowd, offering to cater to community events and friends’ parties can give you some serious cash. Between social media reviews and word of mouth referrals, you could wind up with a booming business in no time.

Many successful restaurants started their businesses in their very own home kitchens.

People’s lives are getting busier and busier. Other ways to make money with a cooking hobby include opening a food truck, starting a meal delivery service for busy office workers, selling recipes on Etsy and creating a food blog.

10. Gardening

best profitable hobbies that make money

If you enjoy gardening, you’ll be glad to know that you can’t only save money on your grocery bill.

There’s a growing demand for organic fresh farm produce from local farmers. Your customers can include local restaurants, grocery stores and even your neighbors. 

The great thing about gardening is that you don’t need a large garden to grow your fruits and vegetables. Your own backyard or simple containers can yield well-tended garden produces. 

Start by setting up a stall at a farmer’s market. You won’t be able to make millions with your green thumb, but as more people know you, you’ll be surprised by the amount of money you’ll be making with only a few hours of work.

Also, you can also tend to other people’s gardens or create a blog and teach DIY enthusiasts how to garden. Here are twelve more ways to make money gardening.

11. Photography

Do you go everywhere with a camera in your hand, capturing the beauty in everyday moments? Not only is photography a fun and addictive hobby, but it’s also a great income generator. 

As humans, we’re visual creatures. People are always looking for freelance photographers for occasions like graduations, birthday parties, etc.

A good cameraman is as good as the camera he uses. Photography may take a bit of investment upfront for a quality DSLR, gear and studio space, but once people know about your business, you’ll start getting booked for gigs. 

Do a few shoots for friends or family so you can showcase your wonderful work and get some positive reviews to help your business take off.

You can also niche down in photography. You can make wedding photography your thing, or specialize in newborn photos and showcase your work on Facebook or Instagram. Another way is contacting real estate agents and offering to take pictures of properties for their listings

If you have a knack for always capturing the perfect shot and have some on your laptop, sell photos on apps like iStock, Shutterstock, and Adobe Stock. 

All you have to do is load the photos into their databases. It’s a more passive approach, but there’s a strong demand for great photos in today’s internet-driven world.

You’ll receive up to 50 percent royalty on every image sold, making it another wonderful source of passive income. 

You can also earn money as a photo editor if you’re familiar with photo editing tools. As your portfolio grows, your clientele expands.

12. Crafts

Are you a brush and canvas wizard? Or maybe you like knitting cute little pet clothing during your free time. If what you love making is something useful, you can make good money selling your crafts. 

People are always hunting for hand made products at craft shows and online. Sites like Etsy and eBay make it easy for you to sell your hand-crafted items online. 

If you don’t want to use these platforms, you can create your own website and list them there. This way, you won’t have to split profits, though it may take a while to gain customers. 

Other crafting hobbies that make money include soap making, sewing, quilting, jewelry making and leatherworking. The amount you can make selling crafts can vary on skill level and operational costs. You may need to invest some money in craft materials and stall rentals.

13. Brewing Beer

This is an interesting one. Brewing beer may seem like an expensive hobby, but it can be a moneymaker if done right.

If you enjoy drinking beer with your buddies, why not make it yourself instead of spending half your paycheck on it? If you’ve always dreamed of being a brewer, what’s holding you back? 

There’s good demand for locally brewed beer. Beer drinkers are converting to craft beer. You can sell your beer at farmer’s markets, festivals and local stores. Not to mention online stores that sell homebrew kits and accessories.

I have never been a brewer but know some people who love passing the time with brewing. Many of them end up selling their beer too.

Before venturing into home brewing, explore your local legal requirements and take into account all potential pitfalls.

14. Fly Drones

flying a drone for a hobby

What a time to be alive, am I right?

I know what you are thinking, “But flying drones makes us spend money, not make money.” It can make a decent buck if you get creative with it.

If you find yourself flying drones in your free time, then it’s time to make money with it. Construction companies, real estate agents and stock photography sites are willing to pay big bucks for the breathtaking videos you capture. 

Thanks to Amazon Prime Air, you can join the scheme to turn your passion for flying drones into money by delivering packages.

15. Detailing Cars

If you find yourself making cars sparkle inside out, then it may be the best option for you to earn an income detailing other people’s cars

If you can get a few supplies, then you are in business! You could pocket good extra income just by working 3-4 hours 4-5 days a week.

You can work when you want and set up your prices. To figure out the fair market value in your area, try testing different rates.

16. Sell T-Shirts

You can design and screen-print or do iron-on transfer to t-shirts at home. Wouldn’t it be awesome if you could get paid for it too? Turns out you can!

You can do your own designs or open a social media page and have people submit designs to you. Many top entrepreneurs did it with t-shirts, and you too can!

Get this. You don’t even have to buy any stock of t-shirts as companies like Printful and Teespring will do that for you. All you need to do is insert your unique design on the editor and price it.

Whenever someone buys your t-shirt, you’ll receive your share of the profit.

With time, you can branch out and apply your designs on pillowcases, mugs, iPhone cases and wall art. 

17. App Development

App development is a techy hobby that makes good money.

As we grow more dependent on our smartphones for daily tasks, apps are constantly in demand. Businesses have realized this and are searching for app developers to create apps for their businesses.

If you’re good at coding, brainstorm unique ideas for Android and iOS apps. Learn more about creating apps in 9 easy steps.

18. Web Development

In this day and age, every business needs an online presence.

If you’re a bit of a tech geek with some great web design skills, you may be just the person a local small business is looking for. You don’t have to be an expert to get started. Consider enrolling in a basic web development course online, and bid on simple jobs on freelance sites.

More and more businesses are coming online, causing the demand for web developers to rise. 

Some businesses know that they need a website but are clueless on how to develop a responsive and user-friendly site that converts. It’s upon you to approach them. 

It doesn’t end there. You can also offer website optimization services to entrepreneurs and small business owners with slow loading sites. 

The best part about web development and optimization is that you don’t need to go to an office every day as you can do it as a part-time or stay at home job.

19. Social Media

Do you love being on social media? Social media is a great platform for meeting new friends and staying connected to the people you love. It has become more of a habit than a profitable hobby. But some users have managed to create a lucrative business managing social media for others.

Do you feel like you sit on social media all day and need to be paid for hours spent posting on Pinterest and Facebook? Businesses are starving for customers, and social media is a proven way to acquire new customers.

As a social media virtual assistant, businesses will pay you a handsome amount to manage their accounts. You may need to invest in courses to upskill. 

If you have a crazy fan following in niches like sports, finance, beauty, parenting, home décor, kitchenware, fashion, etc., you can become an influencer or brand ambassador.

The bigger your following, the more likely brands will approach you to promote their products and services. 

20. Proofreading

Do you have the irrepressible urge to correct people’s usage of “their,” “there” and “they’re?” If you can spot a misspelled word a mile away, you can get paid to showcase your strong grammar skills. 

When people write, they’re often blind to their own mistakes. Vast amounts of writing that other people do need proofreading. 

Proofreading is an evergreen job. Students want their essays to be flawless, publishers and agents want their manuscripts and synopses screened, and bloggers want perfect content for their blogs.

As a proofreader, you can be a second set of eyes on those people’s writing.

If this is something you are good at and enjoy doing, post your services on proofreading sites, and you can learn more here.

21. Comedy 

I like to think that I’m funny, but I don’t have half the guts needed to get on stage and do stand-up comedy.

Were you the class clown in high school? If you’re a natural comedian and making people laugh is your hobby, this is definitely a sign you can make good money with a stand-up comedy act.

Humor sells! 

Amateur and open mic nights are an excellent way to test out the comedy scene in your area. Few things feel as good as making a room full of people laugh. For openings, check with local pubs and perfect your craft in front of a live audience. 

You may get paid in discounted drinks and snacks at first. If you’re consistent, you’ll soon land small comedy gigs like a warm-up act for better-known performers.

Social media users login to their accounts every day to watch funny videos, find new memes, and exchange them with their friends.

You can probably think of several social media accounts that amassed a huge following simply by curating memes and viral videos. Create your own social media following to help your business start gaining traction.

You can also write funny eBooks or create a podcast. Comedy clubs are constantly searching for new talent.  Cracked.com is a comedy site featuring an open forum set up to vet aspiring comedic writers.

22. Woodworking

Woodworking is one of the best profitable hobbies to give you peace of mind and cut you out from whatever is happening in the world.

Many people love to DIY their own wardrobe, tables, shelf, etc. Such people love the aesthetic and feel of hand-crafted wooden products.

If you’re a skilled woodworker, have access to the right tools and people always praise your work, then your finely crafted items need to be in someone’s living room. 

The competition is not as stiff as it once was, so there is definitely a demand for quality woodwork.

You can start with your neighbors and they could recommend you to their friends when they like your work. 

Next, target art and craft show and online classified ads such as Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist. 

23. Flipping Cars

If you’re fond of discovering undervalued items like old cars and giving them new life, then you can start a business around it.

One thing about flipping cars is that you take advantage of other car owners’ trash. Take a trip around nearby garages. You will be surprised to find all sorts of treasures. Some cars will be like new. Others will need a little TLC and that’s where your expertise comes in.

Flipping cars is a long-term project and takes some startup capital, but the ultimate profits can be well worth the investment.

Under the IRS’ guidelines, some hobbies qualify as a business and need to be treated as such when you file your taxes. 

4 Steps To Picking Profitable Hobbies That Make Money

If you didn’t find a profitable hobby from the list above, then I want to help you find a hobby that’s right for you.

I’ve broken it down into four major steps that you’ll go through in picking profitable hobbies that you can build a business on.

1. Think About What You Are Truly Passionate About

The first thing you need to do is to think about what you are passionate about.

  • Consider what makes you excited to wake up in the morning?
  • What things do you spend a lot of money on because you love doing it?
  • What things that you would normally be paid for would you do for free just because you love it so much?

If you have any great hobbies that tick any of the questions above, that is a potential hobby topic to build a business around.

For me, I love traveling and have spent tens of thousands of dollars traveling around the world. Building a business around being a travel influencer is 100% a fantastic potential idea for me.

I also love cooking, shopping, and writing. Out of all my passions, I decided to go with my “writing” hobby and built a business around that in the form of a personal blog.

The most important thing to consider when choosing profitable hobbies ideas is that you truly love it. It will be a lot easier to work on your business and stick with it the going gets tough.

2. Determine If Your Profitable Hobbies Ideas Can Make Money

You’ll want to quickly validate if your hobby topic has the potential to make money. This is a very important step because you want to build a business around a subject matter that will build your bank account up.

The great thing about hobbies is that virtually all of them have the potential to make money – but don’t skip this step!

The easiest way to figure out if your hobby topic has monetization potential is to see if people are spending money around your topic.

For example,

  • If your hobby is photography, people spend money on an editing software, camera equipment, traveling, and courses on photography.
  • Maybe your hobby is dancing, people pay money to learn how to dance, watch performers perform, watch youtube videos and tv shows related to dancing, etc.
  • If your hobby is watching the sunset on the beach, it likely will not be a great choice.
  • There is very little money flowing around this hobby idea, which will make it incredibly difficult to turn it into a money-making business.

Once you have validated your hobby has the potential to make money, you’re ready to move on to the next step which is to see what your potential competitors are doing.

3. Start Researching What Your Competitors Are Doing

Your competitors are people who are already in the industry of your hobby of choice, and are already “doing it.”

You’ll want to pay special attention to those who are already making money. They are the successful ones and the people whom you’ll most likely be competing with later on.

The main reason you need to pay close attention to them is two-fold:

  1. You want to figure out what they are doing to make money
  2. You want to figure out how you can fit in and make money (by being different or filling a gap)

Let’s use the example of photography again:

You’re a veteran of photography in your spare time, but you want to turn it into a business.

You research what other landscape photographers are doing and find out that many of them make their money selling prints and teaching workshops. But you also learn that very few offer online courses on landscape photography.

Ah-ha! That’s potentially where you could “fill the gap” and be different. And this leads right to the next step.

4. Think About How You Can Build A Business Around Your Hobby Idea

When you research what other people are already doing to make money, you learn what is currently working, but just as important, you learn what “gaps” exist in the market place.

These gaps are important because they are potential areas you could fill and profit from. The last thing you want to do is jump into a saturated market and do “what everyone else is doing.”

The chances of you succeeding will be very low because the competition is already high and you’re just going to be like all the other eggs in the basket. As I mentioned earlier, it’s very important to stand out from the crowd.

You do this by offering something “new” or offer something very few people, if anyone, can offer. In the marketing world, this is called a “unique selling proposition” (which means “what makes you unique?”)

For example, if you were Tiger Wood’s caddie, and you wrote an ebook about what you learned about golf from being Tigers caddie for five years, that is something unique that no one else can offer, and it could *potentially* sell very well.

Golfers are incredibly passionate about their hobby, and may very well pay you for your unique insights.

Figuring out where you “fit in” goes hand in hand with what you will be creating/offering to make money. In the golfing example above, the product is an ebook. And in the landscape photographer example, the product is an online course.

I highly recommend creating a product/service that you can promote and sell online. The startup costs are much lower than setting up a physical store, and you can reach a much larger audience online. This works for most hobbies.

Promote Your Hobby

Social media is an incredibly vital place to let everyone know about your business. Facebook and Instagram are the two most popular networks. Virtually everyone is on one or both of them.

Other places to promote your business is on your website using content marketing or blogging as the main driver of traffic.

Where you promote your business and how you promote it will be very dependent on where your audience “hangs out.” Your blog can also be used in many other ways to make money.

At the same time, how you build your business will be determined by who your audience is. If you’re someone who wants to teach online courses on photography, then a blog about photography makes sense.

Your blog posts on photography will attract people to your website, and you can expose your courses to them as they get to know you.

If your passion helps seniors get in shape, a blog may not be the best choice. You may want to explore renting space in a gym to teach your classes and advertise your business by going to places where seniors “hang out.”

With that said, there is a lot of thought and work that goes into building a business. You’ve probably heard the advice of “just get started today” – and I couldn’t agree more. Your journey began with this article. Keep it rolling!

Conclusion

There you have it, 23 profitable hobbies that can make money. This is by no means an exhaustive list, but hobbies are in serious demand and have the potential to earn you a profit in the years to come.

If you’re anything like me, you easily have a handful of hobbies on this list that you enjoy. I suggest you start with the one you enjoy most.

Regardless of which hobby you choose to monetize, make sure you have fun doing it! Keep in mind that we all need downtime, so if your pastime starts to feel like a chore, it might be time to switch things up and try something new!

Good luck!

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