I’ll be honest — I don’t view this sub very often. But when I do, I usually come away with a feeling of “meh”, because I rarely find the sub helpful. It’s usually full of two types of people:
1. People who are looking for a quick buck
2. People who aren’t willing to put in any of the upfront work to make something “passive”
Having said that, my goal of this post is to try and provide some helpful content for others searching for REAL forms of passive income.
Passive income is HARD to build, and those thinking it isn’t are likely better off focusing on active income instead. I’ve worked hard over the past four years to really build up my passive income, to the point that I’m making $5,000/month from 6-7 different streams. Some make a lot of money, while others make very little.
It truly IS possible, but it takes a significant amount of work. I’d say the majority of my time throughout the day (especially while working at my 9-5) is spent thinking of how I can build my income further to a point where I can once and for all quit my job and live the lifestyle that I want. (I definitely don’t hate my job, but I think it’s just the entrepreneur inside of me — I can’t help but think about what I could be doing if I didn’t have to go to work.)
So, having said that, the below list is what I’m personally doing to earn passive income. I often get frustrated by reading those annoying posts that say, “20 Ways to Earn Passive Income!” Then, as you read through them, they’re all the same ol’ boring list, just regurgitated in a different blog post. These are the REAL ways I’m earning income on a monthly basis.
1. **Web Hosting – $893/month.** This is a new one for a lot of people. I work in IT, and so naturally, my passive income streams gravitate towards using technology (because why not let the computer do the work so you don’t have to). Essentially, what I do is rent a server for $30-40/month, and then from there, I can host (almost) as many websites on that one server as I want. I currently host 71 websites for other businesses and clients, and charge them anywhere from $15-70/month. From just one client, I cover my server rental, and then everything else above and beyond that is money in my pocket. *Reddit frowns upon posting links, but if you search my username on YouTube, I’ve got an entire playlist explaining every step of my process. Or you can DM me.*
2. **Rental Properties – $2,675/month.** This is my bread and butter. My wife and I LOVE rental properties, and are hoping to achieve financial independence through it. We started in real estate about 4 years ago, and have grown modestly since then. We have 7 residential rentals + 9 storage units. We’re in the process of building a new 12-unit storage unit building, which should increase the passive income by around $800-1000/month. Real estate is tough to get into, but we began with $4500 by house hacking, and have just scaled up to the point we’re at now. I’m happy to answer any questions you may have about how we’ve gotten to this point.
3. **Principal Paydown – $731/month.** This is money we earn as tenants pay down our mortgage balances for us. This is another reason why we can’t really quit our 9-5 jobs yet. This is absolutely money that we’re earning, but it’s attached to the property, and we can’t really tap into this unless we decide to sell the building (which we don’t want to). It grows every month by $3-$4, as the shift from interest to principal takes over.
4. **Stock Portfolio – $100/month.** I’m actually not a big fan of stocks. We (obviously) prefer real estate, but I think it’s worth mentioning. We’ve got a little bit of money in stocks and 401ks, and from interest earned, our portfolio grows slightly. Over time, I actually see this amount going down, because we have plans to pull money out of stocks to invest in more real estate.
5. **YouTube Channel – $150/month.** I hesitate a little bit to put this down as “passive”, because building a YouTube channel has been anything BUT passive. But I guess technically, I am making money from past videos that I’ve made so it’s “passive”. This is one of those things you’ll always see on the Blog Posts for Passive Income Ideas, but I’m not sure that I’d recommend it. I’ve only recently gotten monetized on YouTube, but it has taken 18 months to get to this point. I continue with it, because I really do enjoy the cinematography aspect of things, and playing with new cameras. But if I didn’t love filmaking, then I wouldn’t suggest this one. It’s a fun side hobby, and happens to make a little bit of income on the side.
6. **Etsy Shop – $50/month.** I built a couple little spreadsheets and word documents, and threw them up on Etsy. I didn’t really expect anyone to ever buy them, but I typically get 5-8 sales/month, making me around $50. It’s nothing crazy, but every little bit counts, right?
7. **Affiliate Marketing – $375/month.** I have a few affiliates placed throughout my YouTube videos for little products/services that I actually use. For example, I use Cozy to collect rent payments from my tenants. I use the MileIQ app to track my miles for my business. I’ll throw a link down in my YouTube video descriptions because these are apps that I actually use and genuinely feel good about recommending. And whenever someone signs up, I’ll get a small kickback.
Hopefully someone finds these helpful. I just think it may be beneficial to hear from someone who’s actually doing it, rather than reading an article that’s telling you to “write an eBook” or “Start a dropshipping store”. Let me know if you have any questions.