I’m going through old articles about how to Make Money In Retirement here at the Retired Pay World blog, deleting some trivia and updating some of the more worthy ones to meet changing times. I was really struck by this article, written more than 5 years ago … how little seems to have changed … especially the attitude my fellow seniors have about empowering their retirement by learning new things and capitalizing on on-line opportunities. Enjoy.
Ways to Make Money in Retirement
As I’ve mentioned before I make a lot of use of Google Alerts (you should set some for yourself and see how valuable this service is) to find information on things I want to learn about (like Make Money In Retirement) as well as general subjects for the blogs I operate.
This article is from a UK magazine last summer. Still pretty much up to date … and still pretty much behind the times regarding the Internet. Do they think our brains dry up at age 65 or something?
There’s a lot more on how to Make Money in Retirement here , as well.
Basic Make Money In Retirement article
1. Bed & Breakfast
Can’t say I agree with the author much at all on this one. Although a couple in retirement could turn their home into a B&B to Make Money In Retirement, this is not what all would call either “empowered retirement” nor would I think this suitable for the long term.
A bed and breakfast is hard work, very expensive in terms of licensing, insurance and operating expenses and you become the slave of your business rather than the more ideal opposite, making your business work for you.
But I will say that capitalizing on the B&B popularity would be very easy with a blog about the B&B experience … you could consider slanting it toward a “how to” dialogue with your readers, or an idea which appeals to me … travel often, visit many B&B’s and write reviews.
Talk to your tax advisor, but I can assure you there are legal ways to make virtually all your travel, research and lodging tax deductible if you pick the proper way to Make Money In Retirement and I see very good advertising and affiliate programs in the travel business niche. And think of all the days you wouldn’t have to wash dishes or vacuum the house!
2. Home Handyman
Again, an excellent idea but I feel the recommend way to capitalize on the subject is horrible. The last thing you want to do in retirement is be running out at 2 AM to unclog a toilet.
But this niche is very popular … in fact there are several retired handymen I’ve found who make a nice blogging income writing about their past experiences and helping readers who want to learn more.
Also an excellent opportunity for a forum-based website … people love the idea of having a place to go to to discuss problems and find recommendations. Decent ad potential here too and affiliate income potential from services that list local tradesmen for a fee. This would potentially help both “soon to retirees” as well as retirees Make Money In Retirement.
3. Tuition Service
Retired teachers, lecturers, and business training professionals are much in demand nowadays for the provision of part time coaching services. With the right skills there are opportunities with both the general public and business to supplement your retirement plan and make money in retirement.
Absolutely. This is a key point I try to make often. Chances are you trained people in your work, even if you weren’t a teaching professional. In addition you have likely raised and helped educate your children.
Just one particular area here I see as hot. Living overseas I know of thousands of other expats, many with school-age children who need advice, encouragement or even “for pay” tutorial services.
“Canvassing” for business is what you are doing when you blog and build your audience. And you do this sort of work up to any age you wish … suitable for shut-ins … and working with young people helps keep you young!
Can’t agree with the idea of operating a florist business as suggested here. Too much like work, and a business that requires substantial investment. But … If you know flowers, either professionally or as a lifetime avocation, blog about it. Good advertising and affiliate dollars in this niche too.
5. Retirement Coaching
This seems a very broad area. The very first of the “official” baby boomers just applied for her Social security retirement benefits a short while or back.
Talk about a growth potential! I saw a recent statistic that showed applications for Social Security would run at about 100,000 new ‘golden-agers’ per month. That is a big market, folks.
And you know what a recent survey of retiring workers had to say about their needs?
About 80% said they did not have adequate information about how to earn, save or invest their retirement money, analyze their retirement plan or learn how to make money in retirement. That’s a hungry crowd!
Essentially, this is one of the businesses I am in. All you need here is to stay one step ahead of your audience.
You can focus your coaching on almost any aspect of retirement.
Social Security Benefits
Did you ever look at the US Social security website, as just one example? Loaded with information yet confusing as all get out upon first glance.
I could blog for a year just taking page after page of that site apart, explaining things, answering questions and making the links for SSA-supplied manuals and guides available to my readers.
(Remember, publications of the US government are not copyrighted, they belong to you and I as tax payers.)
Income Tax Help
Do you know the Income Tax Code … even as a business professional. You don’t need to be an accountant or lawyer to offer experienced layman’s personal experiences.
Wow, a lifetime work there, trying to simplify the taxation mess.
And the IRS is distinctly way behind the power curve on items specific to online businesses and the way expats overseas earn money online as well … there is virtually NO ONE writing anywhere with any authority in this area. How about making money in retirement by helping others learn to keep more of their retirement money?
Veterans Administration Benefits?
A huge market and, sadly, a huge growth potential, since the Iraq and Afghanistan War casualties just keep rolling home. How many people can you help steer toward their proper benefit entitlements.
Ads in this arena pay well, by the way. lawyers, medical insurance, retirement investment plans … they all want a piece of the action and they need someone with an ounce of two of authority to write the materials.
You can write into a very profitable niche market here, and go to bed each night knowing you have helped people as well.
6. Garden Maintenance
Once again, in retirement I am not taking on anyone’s garden except my own, and actually (one of the reasons I live in the Philippines), I hire that out too.
But the author is right that there is a huge interest in this area and if you have a green thumb, or are learning to attain one, you could blog about many aspects of plants and gardens.
I’ll give you a free tip that I have no time to deal with. I’m interested in a method called “square foot gardening.” (Google is your friend) I see a website on the subject which sells a book and some ancillary items.
I’ve yet to see anyone independent of the book site itself who blogs about this with authority.
And this would be a very interesting technique to develop here in the Philippines where the population is huge and hungry and the arable land area is small and expensive.
Think advertising potential in this niche is only moderate, but there should be lots of suppliers with affiliate deals … Amazon for sure, they will even provide a free on-line store to attach to your blog.
Gardening is a broad market that meets a lot of positive business criteria.
- It’s universal. There are about 200 countries in the world and people eat food in every one of them.
- It’s “evergreen“. If you, say, help a person to cure their acne, it’s gone and they are no longer interested. But gardening? It’s popular all year, every year, as sure as the change of the seasons.
- It’s passion-driven. People who are not interested in anything but the cheapest basics of gardening don’t even bother with it … but people who once get ‘bitten by the bug’ are back, year after year, buying the latest and the greatest books, tools, seeds and so on. Just like golfers who regularly lose their balls, new plants, materials, ideas and accessories are needed every year.
- And it’s timeless. there are 8 and 10 year-old gardeners out there. School project gardens from elementary school through university. Community sponsored gardens, and for retirees .. a hobby/income supplement that can last as long as a person lives. Gardening doesn’t get ‘outgrown’.
7. Desktop Publishing
According to research findings, this market had expanded globally from £1.8 million in annual sales in 1985 to almost £5.1 billion in 2005 – and there would appear to no end in sight to this growth. Home based desktop publishers are engaged in producing a welter of graphic materials; brochures, flyers, advertisements, newsletters, books, business proposals and forms.
I think this might have changed slightly since 2007, but there is still a great upside here. I would focus again more on teaching, reviewing and helping others rather than trying to set up a desktop publishing service for myself.
You know I’ve advised you in the past to learn by reading blogs? How many blogs (including this one which badly needs a make-over) could use assistance in their layout, typography and even editing.
You could approach other blog owners directly or sell your services on one of the many on-line job marketplaces.
I consistently hear complaints from other bloggers that when they take the step tp seek professional design/publishing help, they can’t find folks who are any good.
8. Start Your Own Online Business
If you choose it to be, a blog itself can be a viable online business. Or you can start looking into using a blog for various opportunities:
- Direct product sales … something you make, or write, or paint, or craft … 5 or 10 years ago this was difficult, today there are many platforms and program which make this pretty much “point and click”.
- Commissioned sales … often called “Affiliate Marketing”. Companies all over the world will pay you a commission just to do reviews and advertise their products and facilitate buyers. You invest nothing, buy nothing, sell nothing, stock nothing, ship nothing, do no customer service or sales calls, you just forward the buyer to the merchant and get paid (often handsomely) for the service.
Believe me, there’s money in product reviews and steering people to affiliate offers out there. You will recall I’ve written more than once about Darren Rowse. Ten or so years ago he was an assistant minister in a church with a passion for cameras. His income was small, and based solely on how many hours he “robbed” from his family to devote to work
Darren is known for his www.problogger.net “how to” blog, but he makes a six-figure income from several camera blogs, where he writes about, test, comments and critiques on aspects of his hobby. This is no flash in a pan, he’s been at this and earning consistently for years now. Not a bad way to make a buck. Take a look at what he amkes b=now, working on his own schedule: My Blogging Income Breakdown for the First Half of 2016
- Steep learning curve
I saw this alleged “downside” a number of times in the article. I would submit that the author does not understand the meaning of the term “learning curve”. He also doesn’t understand the value of time … especially to us who are already old 😉
A “learning curve” is knowledge gained on the vertical axis graphed over time spent learning on the horizontal axis.
You want a retirement opportunity with a steep learning curve. You want to be able to learn quickly and get up to speed in minimal time … after all, we’re none of us getting any younger.
Becoming a concert pianist, as an example, has a very shallow learning curve. It takes years and years to master the instrument. Contrast that with something like “Turning on a Light Switch. Most of us learned that basically the first time we ever tried it, correct?
The “learning curve” for simple tasks is as steep as can be, virtually no time at all for the learning process.
Myself? I’ll take the steep curve any day. learning, like working with children, keeps you young.
9. Make Money on eBay
Again I notice the author is afraid of the “steep learning curve“. I consider eBay to be a very seriously overlooked area for senior income potential.
Apparently, this fellow stopped learning some years ago. This is an excellent way to decrease your years of useful living. One widely acclaimed way to prolong life and the quality of life is to learn new things.
The great thing about most of the legitimate online ways to earn that I am familiar with is, although the first introduction may make it seem there is a lot to learn, you can usually be up and running as a beginner in minutes.
You can spend a lifetime learning details and fine points, but the initial effort in both time and money is tiny … low risk, high reward.
With eBay you literally can make money from the git-go (as we say in Colorado). It’s easy, it’s fun and the risk is indeed very small. I haven’t yet had time to start writing on eBay but that is not because I don’t believe in it … opportunities there are large.
10. Write a Book on Your Know-How
As you know this is one I’d agree with, wholeheartedly. You can write an eBook and market it yourself or via several commission selling services, or you can write a traditional paper book.
Here’s a fellow I’ve mentioned before, John T. Reed. He’s well into retirement age, he went to West Point the year I first went to SEA.
Among a number of other profit-making endeavors, he publishes his own “how to” books .. real, traditional paper books, sells them himself and pays income tax on the profits, rather than moaning about how small the SS COLA is going to be next year.
You could do worse than read a lot of the materials at Jack’s site.
So What’s Your Own Next Step in Make Money In Retirement?
What will you do next year? Consider your tax strategies to keep all that’s legal of the profits you are making?
Or whine about whichever political party is responsible for your paltry retirement handout?
Whining about politics and what the government did not didn’t do to you or for you counter-productive and negative thinking in my view.
Doesn’t much matter who is in Congress or the White House, they all try to balance the budget on the backs of the retiree.
After all, we won’t be around all that much longer, so they don’t need to think about us much.
And they’re mostly so arrogant they think they’ll be powerful people forever.
It Doesn’t Matter At All Who Wins Election — They’re All Arrogant, Power-Hungry Assholes
Stop living in anger and rejection. Do something proactive with your retirement years.
Myself, I’m doing business, paying taxes and grateful for the opportunity/necessity.
Oh, and I am very much alive and learning too … life is never boring, and that’s something a lot of retirees can’t truthfully say.
Feel free to ask me more about how to Make Money In Retirement.