On the surface, it looks like Singaporeans do nothing but work, work and work some more. But there are thankfully actually quite a lot of people who are completely obsessed about their hobbies—and yes, that includes hobbies outside of DOTA and Pokemon Go. (And no, shopping and eating are, for most people, not legit hobbies, no more than sleeping and pooping are).
Wouldn’t it be nice if you could make money out of your hobby instead of at your actual job, which you view as dead time you hope will pass as quickly as possible so you can get back to beating other people up at the MMA gym / dressing up as an anime character / riding your hipster fixed gear bicycle down Arab Street / drinking protein shakes?
Well, if you’ve attained a decent level of skill at your hobby, here are four ways you can make some money out of it.
Teach your hobby to others
If you’ve gotten to the point where you’re pretty good at your hobby, you might be able to charge money to teach it to people.
Seeing as we now have our very own mermaid school, no hobby is too bizarre to be taught.
The best thing is that you don’t actually have to set up an actual school or build a huge reputation in order to earn a few bucks from teaching your hobby.
Platforms like Meetup and Eventbrite enable you to easily reach a large number of people and organise events centred on your hobby. For instance, some yoga teachers conduct lessons in public spaces where they won’t be charged rent, and then collect anywhere between $5 to $25 per student for the session.
Otherwise, you can turn to more traditional ways to find students such as by teaching at community centres or putting up free ads.
Getting a teaching or coaching certification is a smart choice if you intend to make money out of it. That could mean becoming a certified personal trainer or yoga teacher, or attaining a diploma in piano performance.
Sell or rent out your equipment
So you’ve spent your life savings on fancy camera lenses / board games / landscaping for your luo han’s acquarium / Pokemon Go incubators? Well, depending on your hobby, you might be able to claw back a bit of that cash you spent by selling unwanted equipment, or renting out items that you’ve bought but don’t use on a daily basis.
Thanks to the rise of the sharing economy, it’s easier than ever to rent your stuff out online. For instance, some board game collectors in Singapore have started renting out their board games on platforms like Carousell and Rent Tycoons.
Create stuff to sell
Okay, so maybe you have a special skill that enables you to actually create stuff. You might be an artist or craftsman of some sort.
For instance, I know a lady whose hobby is sewing, and her kids get the most kickass Halloween costumes ever. I sense a lot of potential to enter the cosplay industry….
Another guy I worked with was into leathercraft and made his own wallet. There’s also been a surge in the number of Singaporeans interested in calligraphy.
Assuming the stuff you make doesn’t suck, if you have a presence on social media (Instagram especially) that enables you to showcase your work, you will probably start to receive commissions from customers after a while.
For instance, a friend of mine contacted a calligrapher who posts her stuff on Instagram to commission menus and invites for her wedding.
Busk or perform
Fancy yourself as more of a performance artist than a visual artist? Or maybe you have a hobby that looks darned cool while you’re doing it.
Depending on your hobby of choice, you might be able to get some gigs performing, or even obtain a busking licence. Musicians who put themselves out there are in a great position to perform, if not at pubs, then at wedding gigs or roadshows.
Amateur dancers might also be able to find gigs here and there. For instance, Universal Studios is recruiting breakdancers, while there are other performance groups who recruit dancers in disciplines like belly dance and latin dance.
Have you ever made money out of your hobbies? Tell us how you did it in the comments!