How to turn your hobby into a second income

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Hobbies are a wonderful way to relax and add variety to your life and, occasionally, they can also offer a lucrative opportunity to boost your earnings. There are many different ways to monetise your favourite hobby, from offering lessons to selling your wares, and the satisfaction gained from sharing your favourite things can be immense.

That’s not to say that turning your hobby into a second income won’t be hard work. Some pastimes can be a treasure trove but you need to be determined to succeed in transforming your relaxation time into a way to make money

Investigating ways to monetise your hobby

It’s not enough to simply be good at your hobby, you’ll need to find the right way to share it. If you’re thinking of selling the end product – if you’re a crafter, for example – you’ll want to investigate your competitors. Have a look at the products produced by other people who are selling similar items and find out if there’s a space for you in the market. Work Your Way has a useful guide to turning your craft hobby into a functioning business that can help you get your head around the kind of things you need to think about.

On the other hand, if your hobby is dancing, cycling or cooking, you may find that the best way to encourage a second income is to start providing lessons. This is a great way to share the things you love, but you will need to make sure that you are sufficiently experienced to offer advice. You may need to take a course and gain a qualification that will allow you to officially teach other people. Take some advice from the professionals, with an excellent article from Forbes describing one man’s journey from dabbler to professional and have a look at the top tips for making money out of your hobby collected by Moneywise.

Things to think about

Before you make the decision to turn your hobby into a money-spinner, you should have a long, hard think about whether you’re ready for the challenges it might bring. Some people find that they miss the days when they were able to enjoy their hobby purely for leisure reasons while others find that the professional standards required are too hard to attain. On Retire By 40, you’ll find an interesting blog post that lays out five good reasons for not turning your hobby into an income.

There are also some important financial considerations you’ll need to bear in mind. For example, if you are earning a second income, you will need to share the details with the government. On the HM Revenue and Customs website you’ll find information about income tax and how to work out whether you will owe money. You might also want to consider the option of insuring your hobby, especially if it’s something that’s earning you a significant income – find out more at YFS Magazine.

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