Turning hobbies into a job
By Lois Looker,
As a student it can sometimes be hard to make the ends meet. Most of the time student jobs are taken on because we can work the hours around our studying so this can mean antisocial hours or working long hours for minimum wage to try and make as much as we can.
Fortunately, however, there are ways that you can turn your hobbies into a way for you to earn some extra cash to help you out if you don’t have the time for a job or if you want to make a little bit extra cash aside from whatever work you’re already doing.
Sometimes it’s hard to list all of your hobbies, but what’s also important is to find something that you’re good at and don’t mind spending some of your time doing. Here are some tips and ideas that you could use to help you out:
Unique crafts are something that are really sought out these days as personalised gifts and for home decor. If you have a talent such as jewellery making then selling your work might be easier than you thought. Websites like www.etsy.com allow people to sell things that they make on their website, giving them a much larger audience and cliental than they might have if they worked independently. The website will probably take a small cut of whatever you earn but it can be worth it in the long run if you are able to run a successful business from their platform.
If you have a flare for fashion and like to make your own clothes or are interested in treating vintage pieces to be resold, then you should look in your local area to see if you can hire a space for a stall and take along your goods to sell. You don’t have to do any of the PR for the event and you just have to make your stall look appealing and do some haggling with customers. If you’re not very good at speaking with people then bring a friend along to help you and bribe them with free food or a percentage of your day’s earnings. In Glasgow there are fayres every weekend where pubs and market areas open their doors to the public who are looking for great crafts and pieces.
- Baby sitting
Maybe you have younger brothers and sisters who have taught you how to be the best baby sitter or if you just have a natural flare with children, then you should let your family and family friends know about your babysitting services. Whether you make cards and hand them out in your local area or you start with immediate family, it’s important to give the right impression as parents will always be willing to pass your name on to those looking for babysitters. Parents will only pass on your name if they feel you can be trusted to look after their child so remember that impressions can mean a lot here. Always make the parent aware how much you charge per hour in advance as many people might try to take advantage of this and ask you to do it as a favour.
- Hair and beauty
Many people take hair and beauty courses for fun or whilst they’re at school as part of a college training course. If this is something you’ve done or are interested in, then this can be a great way to earn money, even if it’s not something you intend on doing as a full-time career. Learning how to do things such as acrylic nails and spray tans can be a great earner and, again, you can start with family and friends before branching out through word of mouth. With things such as this, you have to be aware that you might have to invest some money in products before you can begin to earn the money back again. This is great for a long-term project, however, or if it’s just a passion or hobby.
- Online selling
A career that many people have turned to in the past few years is the buying and selling of products online. The easiest way to start is to find clothes, books, DVDs or anything of interest that you don’t plan on using anymore. Instead of letting them gather dust under your bed, start an account with platforms such as www.ebay.co.uk or www.amazon.co.uk where you can sell your things for as much as you like. If you have any success with this, then you can see if there’s a market for those items in particular and with a bit of research, it’s not difficult to begin a business of selling those things yourself. Whether you spend a bit of time at car-boot sales or asking your family and friends for any unwanted items, you could make a bit of spare cash in the process.
- Dog walking
Not everyone’s cup of tea but if you’re a dog-person with a history of handing dogs or have one of your own, then ask around locals if there would be anyone interested in a dog-walking service. This doesn’t have to be as time-consuming as you think and can be as simple as taking on a few clients who need their dogs walked for an hour a couple of days a week. This business costs you no money, just some of your time and so every penny you earn can go straight in your pocket.
What hobbies have you turned into money earners?