With the future of financial aid in retirement in question as of recent years, Americans are scrambling more than ever to save enough for comfortable retirements.
No matter what stage of your life you are in or how much you have saved, you are likely worried of the looming cost of the years ahead, which ironically are meant to be the most relaxing of your life.
So how do we escape the stress of saving?
The most direct and effective answer? To ensure that you continue making money after you retire.
You may wonder how this is possible with social security in question, but I can promise you it’s easier than you think.
You can retire completely and still be making money each month—more than $11k a year if you follow my advice—with minimal effort.
Retirement is supposed to be about rest and doing what you love—not working to keep up your lifestyle.
You’ve been slaving away your whole life for that already!
Retirement is the time to dive into your hobbies, go on the trips you’ve always wanted and just generally enjoy a stress-free lifestyle.
But stress is inevitable if you’re forced to worry about the finances supporting that lifestyle.
Not to worry though, there is a way out of the endless cycle of work and worry. All you have to do is profit off the assets you already have—and you may not even realize you have them!
1. Sell your skillset
In the global world we live in, the desire for uniqueness has given rise to a new wave of hand-made and one-of-a-kind products. Artist Co-ops and online shopping portals supporting art, home décor, clothing, gifts, and just about anything else you can imagine have cropped up across the world.
One of the most successful of these businesses is the online artisan shop, Etsy (ETSY). This company raked in a whopping 2.8 billion last year alone, and acts as an online selling platform for over 17,000 vendors.
People sell anything from jewelry to paintings to woodworking to furniture. You can sell blankets, doilies, hats, shoes—it doesn’t matter! It just has to be handmade or vintage.
And lucky for you, retirement is the perfect time to hone a skill or hobby that can produce stock for an online shop.
Over 80% of retirees report having a hobby that they practice, and when surveyed, practicing a skill or hobby is one of the top things people look forward to in retirement.
So why not profit off of what you enjoy?
If you take up painting, sell those paintings!
If you knit or crochet, do it for a profit. The same goes for just about any artistic skill.
All you have to do to start earning from your leisure is go to etsy.com and set up a shop. The average shop owner earns around $530 a month!
That’s an extra $6,360 in your pocket each year.
2. Auction old belongings
Retirement is also the time for cleaning house.
When you suddenly find yourself with years of free time ahead of you, all the cleaning and errands you’ve been putting off for years suddenly become a lot less daunting.
So, when you retire, start going through all of your belongings and pulling out things to sell.
You can have a classic garage sale, you can take things to a pawn shop, or you can sell online with websites like eBay or Craigslist. However you wish to make your profit is up to you—but don’t miss your opportunity!
It’s easy to hold on to things due to memories and sentimental attachments, but the rule is, if you haven’t used it for the last year, it’s time to let it go.
Did you know that we only wear 20% of our clothes 80% of the time? That sweater you keep holding onto ‘just in case’ is never going to be worn. So why not see if someone else wants it?
Because retirement is a popular time to start thinking of downsizing, it’s a good idea to start thinking about letting go of bigger items as well.
In addition to things like clothes, jewelry, artwork, and appliances, it’s good to consider selling things like furniture or even a car.
If you and your spouse are both retired and are still holding on to a second car, cutting down to one can hand you a huge profit for the initial sale in addition to saving you buckets in the future on repairs and fuel.
3. Rent out your home
When the time comes to downsize, most people will sell their home and move to an apartment, condo, or assisted living community.
But before you sign off on the sale in return for a lump sum, consider the possibility of holding on to the property.
People like to think of their homes as assets, but they are really just expenses until they hand you the potential for profit.
And in retirement, your house suddenly has the potential to do just that.
Though selling your home can be a good way to earn a big amount very quickly, keeping the home in your name and renting it out may be a better option.
For one, in retirement you are supposed to live by the 3% rule, so having a lump sum added to your total savings may not do as much as having a steady stream of rent continually added to your account.
For another reason, in the last decade, rent has soared above the cost for purchasing a home, with monthly rental prices rising over 13% higher than monthly mortgage payment costs in the United States.
By renting your property instead of selling it, you maintain the property in case you need to or choose to sell it eventually, and make a profit off of it in the meantime.
Not to mention this is completely effortless on your part if you employ a property manager to handle the space for you. And even if you don’t, managing a rental property can be an incredibly low-maintenance proposition.
By renting the property, you will receive a monthly payment from your renters.
The average rental home by national standards is $890 a month, which amounts to a whopping $10,680 a year, just for letting someone stay in a property that you already left behind!
Just think of the cushion that will put on your spending, and how much an income like that could extend and better your retirement experience.
If you combine rental with selling your skills and your outdated belongings, you could rake in over $11,000 dollars a year, to spend completely on your luxury retirement.