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Turning Passion into Profit: How Retirees Can Monetize Their Hobbies

HD photo of biltmoore, working, interior, and woodshop

Once you earn your much-deserved retirement, you should take the time to relax. However, it’s essential to resist the urge to sit in front of the television or on the porch and let time slip by. Instead, consider pursuing a hobby. Staying busy and doing something you love offers many benefits, including keeping your mind sharp, helping you to remain active, and keeping your emotional well-being in check. The other perk of some hobbies is that they can also allow you to earn a passive income.

You may not believe that the time spent in the garage on woodworking projects or planting a garden can boost your income, but it can. Today, we’ll tell you how to monetize many different hobbies so you can start a side gig after retirement. 

If You Don’t Think Your Hobby Can Earn Money, Think Again

A hobby can include any number of activities, from working with your hands to filling your time with brain exercises. In our modern world, many of those hobbies can also earn money on the side, including some you never imagined.

For instance, you might enjoy knitting little pillows or arts and crafts for your grandkids. You can turn that into a business by selling some of your best work online with sites like eBay and Amazon or selling them in person at flea markets. If you choose to sell items online, consider also selling other objects around the house that you no longer use. Just about anything will sell on eBay, so you might as well take a chance.

There are many other retirement hobbies that can make money that you may not have considered. If you love working with your hands making wood crafts and want to do something more, you could start a furniture restoration business or become a part-time handyman. Are you someone who always has a camera in your hands? That love of photography could be turned into a career doing freelance work for weddings and family portraits.

Another unique hobby that’s gaining steam is beekeeping, which you can learn by joining local groups or researching online. You can make money as a beekeeper by selling honey or wax. If you’re an expert on this or any other hobby but you’re more comfortable teaching, then you can also make money tutoring in person or instructing others on YouTube.

Your Passion Can Make A Positive Impact On The Environment

As time passes, many retirees begin to think about the future of our world and what they can do to keep the planet going strong for their children and grandchildren. If you’re in that camp, you may be excited to learn that many money-making hobbies are also good for the environment.

One of the many great eco-friendly hobbies is upcycling furniture, which you can pair with your woodworking skills. Upcycling involves reimagining older pieces of furniture, sprucing them up, giving them a fresh coat of paint, and making other updates, then selling them as a new piece.

You can sell your work online or out of your house. When people buy existing furniture, it prevents them from getting brand-new items from the store. That’s important because pollution-producing factories aren't required to manufacture upcycled furniture, which prevents harm to the planet.

Another eco-friendly hobby is gardening. If you can grow vegetables in your garden, you could sell them at the local farmer’s market. Gardening is great for the environment in many ways. For one, you’re likely growing your food without including harmful pesticides that can kill insects and pollute the environment. Plus, when people buy from you, a local source, they aren’t buying as many vegetables from the supermarket. The food at the market is delivered by trucks that often drive hundreds of miles, and that movement requires a lot of fuel and produces a lot of pollution.

Gardening is also incredible for your well-being. The crouching, lunging, digging, and lifting are good for your physical health if you bend at the knees and recognize your limits. Watching a garden grow from a few seeds is also incredibly fulfilling, and happiness is essential for good mental health.

Enjoy A Hobby While Limiting Your Carbon Footprint

Even if your hobby doesn’t directly affect the environment, you can make your work more eco-friendly by using solar panels to power your home business. The panels will use the sun’s power instead of the conventional electricity that requires the burning of fossil fuels. Plus, you can save over $1,000 a year on energy costs and may even be eligible for significant tax incentives.

Solar power can keep you in business without breaking the bank, which is especially important for many monetized hobbies, like photography. You’ll likely need good lighting and editing workstations to take and deliver high-quality photos. All of that can elevate your utility bills to unbearable costs. You can help the planet and avoid paying all of your profits towards electricity by using solar.

Other hobbies like baking and catering can also benefit from home solar power. The meals you make may require numerous appliances, including ovens, mixers, and food processors. Solar panels can keep you in business without many of the worrisome expenses. Just about any work you do from home can benefit from solar power, so find a dealer with good reviews and consider installation if you're serious about your home-based money-making hobby. 


It can be awesome to supplement your retirement income with money from a monetized hobby. Just about everything can be sold or taught to others online, so think about what you like to do, and you may find that turning it into a business is a very real possibility.

Written By

Sam Bowman

Sam Bowman writes about people, aging, wellness, and how they merge. He enjoys getting to utilize the internet for community without actually having to leave his house. In his spare time he likes running, reading, and combining the two in a run to his local bookstore.

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