Creative and original ideas to turn interests or passion into rural money using very little overhead and the Affiliate Marketing business model.
Very few people enjoy what they’re NOT good at.
So, whether you need a side hustle or an ongoing home-based business, you are sure to find what you’re good at or interested in on this list.
I have selected many of these rural money opportunities as my favorite.
However, I personally recommend all 45 because each one is carefully chosen as something I am potentially interested in, and hopefully you are too.
Earn cash hosting people from around the world when you rent out your extra Real Estate on Airbnb. You can rent a spare room or an entire home by the night, week or month in this renter’s economy.
Just upload a profile on the Rent-A-Grandma website and start accepting jobs from families for childcare, eldercare, tutoring, personal assistant, etc. Job responsibilities are negotiable with the families. You can even start a franchise in your rural area.
Imagine the possibilities of house sitting in a luxury home in your rural community. There are a growing number of house sitting ads online. This is the best way to live in a luxury home, rent-free on a short-term basis while earning extra income.
Don’t leave photos cluttering up disk space on your computer. Post them on GrubHub to sell some of them. Even free photo sites are a great way to get publicity and back links.
If you’re great at writing articles, eBooks, reports, etc., then turn your words into a cash service. Recommendations: Copify, Indeed and London Brokers, which is great for a learn-by-doing opportunity. They have easy-to-follow tutorials, live support, lots of topics to choose from; and they pay twice a week to your PayPal account. The faster and more efficient you are, the more you get paid!
Etsy is the way to go sell handmade products. Creative people can easily reinvent themselves as a cottage industry entrepreneur on this platform.
Turn your wit and quips into cash by creating and selling T-Shirts on SpreadShirt, Zazzle or RedBubble. Open an eCommerce store, upload images, art, graphics and text of popular products and watch the sales add up. Drive traffic with Facebook ads. The key is to develop quips that will set your T-shirts, etc. apart. Or, create an affiliate-marketing site to promote other people’s products and earn a commission.
There are beaucoup international students in need of mentoring in English. And, it’s all done through virtual sessions, i.e. Skype. If you KNOW your subject, then you can easily setup a website or Facebook page to offer freelance tutoring services to the children of affluent patrons overseas. Hire a copywriter to “spin” your service into high demand. With knowledge and a great Facebook sales page, I would say you are ready to earn some serious rural money by helping others.
No, blogging is not dead! I’m still doing it after three years and loving it! It’s not my sole income yet, but it could be yours—different strokes for different folks. You don’t make money overnight blogging because it requires dedication, a steep learning curve and patience. The good news is you can learn as you go, which is what I did. In a nutshell, blogging is all about choosing the subject you’re interested in or passionate about. Read more about starting a blog here.
Some companies will pay you to shop for their client’s businesses to give them honest feedback and reviews. You could promote your service as an undercover quality control customer service representative. Legitimate mystery shopping companies are worldwide; and most of them belong to the Mystery Shopper Providers Association.
eBay isn’t the only place to sell things, you know. In fact, I don’t recommend selling anything of value on it for obvious reasons. There are more posh sites to broker high-end gold and Sterling Silver jewelry that you purchased for less at a thrift store. Sites such as TheRealReal, Worthy and TrueFacet have experts that are eager to authenticate, market and sell your exquisite finds for a fee. Contact them to understand how their process works.
If you’d like to transform your love of pets into a viable business, Pet Sitters International offers a free eBook entitled, 5 Must-Do Steps to Starting A Successful Pet-Sitting Business, which provides a good starting point to research your options. Also, read my post Pet Problem Solutions: Pet Owners Happy You Make Money.
With all of the professional and sub-professional people out of work in this economy, don’t let your KSAO’S (Knowledge, Skills and Ability) go to waste. You can make some quick cash by promoting your expertise on Fiverr. And, it doesn’t even matter how wacky your talents are. There is someone on Fiverr looking for it. Test the water by charging $5. If you are as good as you say you are, your account will soon multiply. Then, give yourself a $5 raise.
My rural homesteading motto is “Everything must WORK”! Instead of letting that tractor, chain saw or extra laptop lay around in your expensive storage room (homestead), put them to work. You can rent your idle gadgets to make money through websites like Zilok (US and Europe). You can even make money by connecting people who need something with people who have it. Put your brain to work too!
Your reviews count! Do you enjoy pointing travelers in the right direction or recommending local businesses that you like? In addition, people also appreciate knowing which local businesses to stay away from. Forget Google, which only give “points” for who knows what. Earn money with your knowledge and experiences as a local guide on Vayable. Rural Money Tip: Make your guide distinctive with your favorite coffee shops or any popular place where people love to shop and hangout.
If you have a two-car garage with only one car, a side driveway or an empty parking pad, then put it to work with Parking Panda (select US cities). You list your parking space for free with the site and they take care of the rest. When your space rents, they keep a small percentage of your rental fee and send you the rest. Rural Money Tip: The trucking business is HOT, so many drivers don’t have a place to park or can’t park their truck in their own driveway. If you have rural land, then offer to park RVs, etc. Run an ad.
My neighbor is always talking about doing this when he retires, so there must be something to it. National parks provide visitors with guides, etc. If you enjoy the RV lifestyle, you should check out this opportunity on Older and Bolder (U.S.) or similar websites.
If you’ve spent your career in the corporate sector, then share your advice with non-profit organizations and startups. They could benefit from the proper contracts for various business transactions. I make use of this gig by selling an Estate Sale Contracts Kit book online.
If everything must work, then rent out that extra car on Getaround and RelayRides. Instead of paying to park your car at the airport, Getaround will rent out your car, clean it, and take care of it. They have a one million dollar insurance policy too. RelayRides lets you do peer-to-peer car sharing by the hour or by the day.
Any trained musician in the age of the Internet can publish, license, market and sell their music online without the fear of becoming a one-hit wonder. This has huge potential and cash flow for underground artists.
Yoga has been around for a long time, but it’s all the rage in many circles, which makes it a good way to earn extra cash.
This is a no-brainer for dog lovers. People often don’t consider their pet’s newborn puppies when it’s vacation time. Become a Dog Vacay host in your rural community.
Offer after school tutoring for affluent after school students. Pre-teens get help with their homework while parents finish their workday without having to rush home. More importantly, parents know their kids are some place safe and enriching, and you earn money. Great opportunity for retired educators.
Picking wild mushrooms can be a profitable side-hustle or a full-time income. If you already know how to identify mushrooms, then you can create a blog to educate beginner mushroom pickers and growers.
With economic uncertainty in the US, Canada and Europe, people are packing up and searching for more affordable locations. If you happen to live in one of the top destinations, you could provide a valuable service introducing them to your state or country. Rural Money Tip: Check out how Jackie Lang started a similar site in Panama, which is an excellent example of how to setup your website.
Teach English as a second language online at Kukuspeak. You meet with Chinese students one-on-one from your home computer via the Kukuspeak website. You don’t need a degree or certification, just a strong command of the English language. Opportunities exist to teach at every level. What better way to meet people from another culture without leaving home?
If you’re bilingual, then here’s an opportunity to put to use your translating skills. You can do online translating for Gengo. You work when you want and you choose the jobs that are suited to you. Payments are made directly to your PayPal account.
Work in your pajamas. If you’ve been an administrative assistant, you already have the knowledge, skills and abilities. Now, you can transfer these skills to your comfy home office and work the jobs you want, when you want. Check out WAHM.com for the best places to get jobs.
If you have a graphic design background, then Creative Overflow has ten ideas for making extra money. As a bonus, they give you three websites you can go to for each of the ten ideas; that’s thirty opportunities to turn your creativity into cash.
Do you always make delicious special dishes that everyone begs for seconds? If you can cook that good, then you’re leaving money on the table! So, why not cook, bake or cater for special Sunday dinners, etc. There are so many ways to go with this from the practical to the fanciful. For all things practical, get some food for thought from Wikihow.
Your homestead garden receives the accolades of your rural community. While you love your garden and love to talk about it, you don’t necessarily want to grow someone else’s garden for them, right? Well, what you can do is teach them how to do it with an affiliate website (casually or formally), and guide them through garden consulting. Specialize in organic gardening and grow your homesteading income. If you could earn $5,000 a month creating a manageable garden, would you do it?
As a personal shopper grocery shopper, you could specialize in helping busy people or home bound seniors (people who can’t do their own shopping), etc. You can market your skills as a personal shopper if you have an accommodating personality and reliable transportation. Major grocery stores have online grocery programs, but you could save customers this step by being their personal shopper.
Everything you see in your rural area is filled with potential and possibility. Pick up furniture pieces that need some TLC from garage sales, flea markets, etc. After you’ve refurbished a few pieces and taken pictures of them, you can sell these items and hire yourself out to others. Every passion and interest needs an affiliate website for promotion. You never know who will see it and/or make a recommendation.
Grab your metal detector or pick and shovel to become a rock hound or pan for gold or dig for diamonds. Whatever you find is your own. If you live in a mountainous region or in a rural area, you are already in a good location to to start prospecting. Create an affiliate website to document your finds and experience and teach others how to do it.
Everybody loves a party. If you’re the extrovert who always goes the extra mile for the Sunday dinner party, birthday celebration, or community get-together, then share the love through party planning. Find a niche that you’re particularly good at and love, and start letting people know you’re available. You can keep it casual for some extra money on the side, or scale it up to a business if you change your mind.
Have you had an idea for a book burning in the back of your mind for years? Maybe now is the time to set your knowledge, skills and abilities to paper. Or, create an existing eBook with iBooksAuthor.
Combine your great phone skills and a passion for people to bring in a little extra cash through LiveOps. Once you become an agent with the LiveOps virtual call center, you are an independent contractor. You can work it as a side-hustle a few hours a week or scale it up into your own business helping local businesses.
Do you have a great idea for a mobile game or a mobile application that offers a solution? The big boom in technology is mobile apps and there is still plenty of money to be made. If you have the skills, then you can develop it yourself. If not, then hire a developer. I did. Rural Money Tip: I created an estate sale inventory app that was successful, but I had to many irons in the fire. Feel free to “steal” this app idea.
In many schools, you don’t need a license to be a substitute teacher. This could be a rewarding way to make extra cash. If the idea sounds intriguing, learn more about it. Typically, subs are needed for one to several days and usually on a last minute basis. You accept the jobs you feel are a good fit for you.
If you’re particularly good at getting animals to cooperate with you and you’re into photography, combine the two to become a pet photographer. If you do your shots outdoors, you don’t have to worry about fancy lighting. Just capturing that precious, furry face will be enough!
It’s surprising how many job seekers whether professional, sub-professional, young or old, can’t create a visually pleasing and well-written resume. You can offer this valuable service and command good money for it. Since every resume should be tailored to the specific job being applied for, and each will require a new cover letter, you will have a solid business.
If you have sav·oir faire for writing, then there are several websites where you can offer your writing skills for a fee. Check out Upwork, or Guru to get started. You create a profile, specify the type of writing you offer, and start winning jobs. The sites are competitive, but if you follow their suggestions, then you’ll soon set yourself apart.
With the trend toward minimalism, the hardest things for people to let go of are items of sentimental value, particularly photos. You can help people organize and downsize by digitizing their photos and scrapbooks and moving them into online storage. Better yet, create a scrap booking blog for them to share photos a daily journal.
Did you know that some YouTube stars make thousands of dollars a month? There are already billions of video bloggers out there, but there is a gap in the market for awesome viral videos. If you like the idea of being on camera, check out YouTube’s official guide, read my post about video blogging, then head over to JumpCut to become a viral video star.
If you have a knack for making a house a home, then home staging could be a great income avenue for you. Home staging is the process of cleaning, updating, and decorating a house to make it market ready. Learn to make money with home staging, and then contact small Real Estate agencies.
I hope that these 45 ideas are useful to turn your interests or passion into rural money.
About: I’m the author in residence of RuralMoney.com. Unfortunately, I am also a person with disabilities. I have severe Rheumatoid Arthritis. I love to share what I know and practice to help others survive and thrive in rural areas.
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