9 real estate and other side hustle ideas

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A core idea here at 40 Plus Finance is taking control of your finances in all aspects, one of which is increasing your income.  Whether it’s through working more hours, earning increased commissions, or taking a second “job”, it’s super important from the point of view of adding resiliency and stability to your finances.

One popular way to do this is to start a side-hustle.

Many people are looking for ways to make extra money because the pandemic has had a serious impact on household incomes. If you’re considering looking for a part-time job, or a lucrative side-hustle, real estate might be the perfect business to try.

This article will review a couple ways on how to make extra money in real estate and look at 20 different side hustles, both real estate and otherwise you can do in your spare time.

Make sure to check out our ultimate guide to side hustle for full-time workers for more information.

Key Takeaways:

  • Diverse Real Estate Side Hustles: There are various real estate side hustles available, including REIT investing, single-family rentals, house hacking, vacation rentals, and rental arbitrage, each offering different levels of involvement and investment.
  • REIT Investing for Passive Income: Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) allow for earning from real estate without the responsibilities of direct property management, offering a more hands-off approach and the potential for regular income through dividends.
  • House Hacking for Cost Efficiency: House hacking involves renting out part of a primary residence, such as a room or a unit in a duplex, as a practical way to generate extra income and reduce living expenses.
  • Vacation Rentals and Airbnb Hosting: Turning a primary residence or other property into a short-term or vacation rental, especially in tourist-favored locations, can be a lucrative side hustle.
  • Property Management and Bird Dogging: Engaging in part-time property management or bird dogging (scouting for real estate deals) can be rewarding side hustles for those with the right skills and network, offering more active involvement in real estate.
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What Is a Real Estate Side Hustle?

A real estate side hustle is a gig, activity, business, or investment that brings in extra income from real estate while having another full-time ‘day job.’ Let’s dive into a few real estate side-hustles below.

9 Real Estate Side Hustles

There are many ways to get involved in the business of real estate, making it a great side hustle. There are eight side hustles relating to real estate that the reader can begin working on immediately after finishing the post.

1. REIT Investing

REIT Investing

An REIT can be a good investment for those looking to make money from real estate without being a property owner or manager. As a shareholder in an REIT, you can benefit from the profits generated by the underlying real estate assets without having to deal with the day-to-day hassle of being a landlord. Publicly traded REITs can be bought and sold on exchanges like stocks and bonds, making them a good way to invest in different types of real estate in different parts of the United States. REITs with high dividend yields of 7% or more are mostly in the mortgage, commercial real estate, and healthcare industries.

While it’s not strictly a side hustle, since REITs can distribute income in the form of distributions, they can make for a great extra income source.

2. Single-Family Rental

Single Family Rentals

One of the most traditional ways to make money from real estate today is buying and owning a single-family rental home. CoreLogic states that rent prices for single-family homes have increased drastically, with cities in the Sun Belt such as Miami, Phoenix, and Las Vegas witnessing year-over-year rent increases of 15% or more.

Single family rentals are a core part of our own personal financial freedom plan & generate extra income for us each month (in addition to all the other ways they earn income).

3. House Hacking

House Hacking

House hacking is taking – or hacking – part of a home you already occupy and renting it out to generate extra income. There are many ways a homeowner can earn extra money, such as renting out part of the garage or basement as storage space, finding a roommate, or pet sitting in the backyard.

One very common strategy is to purchase a duplex, live in one part of it, and rent out the other half.  Essentially using the income from the other unit to pay for your own housing expenses.

4. Vacation Rental

Vacation Rentals

In some areas, you can make a lot of money by renting out your primary residence as a short-term or vacation rental. Instead of spending money on an expensive hotel room, many people from out of town prefer to find a place to stay where they can experience life as a local.

One key advantage here is the extra income possibility of renting out that vacation rental while you are not using it.

5. Rental Arbitrage

Rental Arbitrage

Rental arbitrage is a variation on the “buy low, sell high” real estate investing strategy, except you don’t have to actually own a home. The rental arbitrage side hustle involves finding a place to rent, then renting it out for a higher price by the week or month.

6. Property Manager

Property Manager

A property manager is not required to take care of a large number of rentals simultaneously. A part-time property manager that has a trusted handyman and good people skills can essentially operate autonomously while collecting a monthly management fee, which is typically around 8-10% of the monthly rent. Most states require property managers to be licensed, however.

One extra point here is that competent property managers are in very high demand.  If you can be responsive to both the tenant and owner there is alot of opportunity there.

7. Bird Dog

Bird Dogging

Active real estate investors are always looking for deals that are not yet public knowledge. A bird dog is someone who looks out for potential investments that match an investor’s requirements while they are out and about. Some bird dogs get paid per lead, while others only get paid when a deal closes.

8. Real Estate Agent (part time)

Real Estate Agent - Part Time

According to Realtor.com, getting a real estate license costs around $1,000 or less, and no college education or professional degree is required. It’s not much to pay to get a 3% cut of the sale whenever you sell a house. Many real estate firms allow their agents to work part-time, which can make getting a license one of the most potentially profitable real estate side hustles around.

However, with all of that said, perhaps a real estate side hustle isn’t suited for you.  Here is a list of several other side hustles you can work on in your spare time.

9. Host with Airbnb

Airbnb Host

If you’re able to do so, renting out a room or your entire apartment can help you cover your costs or even save money. The amount of money you make will depend on where your home is and what kind of lodging you have to offer. You can easily see what similar places in your area are charging and work it out from there. Airbnbs are becoming more popular among travelers for many different types of trips, as they offer an alternative to staying in a hotel. Families and business travelers alike often find that Airbnbs provide a great way to make money.

You can use Airbnb to find a place to stay that is protected for both the renter and rentee. You can also set up your own availability to keep things as flexible as you want. If you own multiple properties, you can earn more money with Airbnb, as well as make your earnings more consistent.

The location of your Airbnb rental is very important. Some cities and areas have the potential to earn much more than others. Such is the nature of real estate.

Here are other articles in the series on earning money and financial freedom worth checking out:

What side hustle are you doing right now?  Let me know in the comments below!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Q: What is a Real Estate Side Hustle?

A: A real estate side hustle is an activity, business, or investment that generates extra income from real estate while maintaining a full-time job. It can include various forms of real estate involvement, such as investing in REITs, managing properties, or engaging in rental arbitrage.

Q: How Can REIT Investing be a Side Hustle?

A: REIT (Real Estate Investment Trust) investing allows individuals to make money from real estate without owning or managing properties directly. By investing in REITs, which are traded on exchanges like stocks and bonds, one can earn from the profits generated by the underlying real estate assets.

Q: What is House Hacking and How Does it Work?

A: House hacking involves renting out part of a home you already occupy to generate extra income. This can include renting out a room, a portion of the garage or basement, or even a part of a duplex while living in the other part.

Q: Can Managing Properties be a Part-Time Job?

A: Yes, managing properties can be done part-time. A part-time property manager with good people skills and a trusted handyman can operate autonomously, typically earning a management fee of around 8-10% of the monthly rent.

Q: What is Rental Arbitrage and How Does it Work?

A: Rental arbitrage involves renting a property and then subletting it at a higher price. This strategy does not require owning the property but capitalizes on the difference between the long-term lease cost and the short-term rental income.