7 Productive Hobbies that Can Make You Money

man woodworking
February 6, 2021

There are countless hobbies you can choose to pick up. But, there are some hobbies that can actually make you some money. Check out this list of 7 productive hobbies that can make you some extra cash by turning your hobby into profit.

If you are considering picking up a new hobby, there are literally hundreds to choose from. You can choose anything from coin collecting to building model rockets. But, only a handful of hobbies can actually be considered profitable and make you some extra cash.

Out of this handful of hobbies, there are 7 hobbies in particular that I have some experience with and want to share with you. These hobbies are both productive and profitable. Consider the benefits of picking up one of these productive hobbies to put a little extra cash in your pocket.

1) Make a Website

If you like being your own boss and having control of things like I do, then making a website is a great, potential hobby for you. You can make a website about literally anything in the whole wide world. The great thing about having a website is that you are in charge.

You can make a website about cars, woodworking, beanie babies, narwhals, and anything in between. There is no limit to what your website can be about. I’ve only ever had a website about finance because that’s what I’m passionate about.

I love writing about finance and sharing my info with others. While I don't know everything in the world about finance, I'm happy to share what I do know so I can help others.

The key to a website is creating it around something that interests you. I love all things finance and love to share it with others. If I didn't love it, then I would have stopped writing about it years ago.

If you aren’t sure where to start with making a website, then I would definitely suggest you use Webflow. It’s what I used to make my awesome website and I absolutely love it. You can start using it for free and see how you like it. It comes with templates and is highly customizable. There are also plans you can choose where it includes hosting and design all in one - which is super nice.

I've been using Webflow for over 2 years now and see myself using it for many more.

If you are wondering how to monetize your website, then you can do this by having ads from Google Adsense or using affiliate links from Amazon. You of course first need traffic to your website which takes time and patience.

I make the majority of the income on this website from Amazon Affiliate. I write about products I've used myself on certain projects and then share it with my readers. I've had my website for over 2 years now and it's just now starting to break even :) 

I love working on my website in my free time and sharing finance knowledge with others. Consider sharing your knowledge and ideas with others by making a website too.

2) Writing

If you have a knack for writing and don't hate it, then consider using this hobby to make a little extra money! I have always enjoyed writing and continue to until this day (thus my blog). I decided to turn my hobby into some cash by freelance writing during my freshman year of college.

Back then, I used eLance (now known as Upwork) to freelance write. I only made about $500 freelance writing, but after calculating out my wage it came out to less than minimum wage. There are plenty of writing gigs that pay much more than minimum wage - you just need to have some experience or know the right company.

I could have made more than minimum wage, but I didn't want to keep writing about spas and such. Writing about topics that you actually like or are interested in learning about makes writing so much better.

I'm not going to lie - being a freelance writer was really a slog for me. I pushed through because I was literally a poor college student fascinated with the idea of making money online, even if it was only $5/hour. I've always been intrigued with making money online for some reason...

You have to be willing to sometimes learn new things and do a little research when freelance writing. I remember mostly writing about hosting companies and spas - random right? Give it a try because you might actually make a decent chunk of change!

3) Going to Garage Sales to Buy and Sell Things

flipping things from garage sales

I couldn’t write about productive hobbies without mentioning flipping. Flipping is where you buy something at a certain price and then sell it at a higher price for a profit.

Buying and selling things has been a hobby of mine for years. I like this hobby so much that I named this website after flipping things.

There are also other meanings to Flip n' Finances but I digress.

The idea of buying low and selling high has been around for centuries. You buy an item from a manufacturer for one price and you sell it to someone else at a higher price.

You can go to a garage sale and buy something and then sell it somewhere else for a higher price.

For example, one time I went to a garage sale and bought a camera lens for $5. The lady actually told me I could have it for free but I felt bad and didn't want to take it for free so I gave her $5 for it.

I later sold it on eBay for $80! That was definitely one of my best return on profit I've ever had.

When I go to garage sales I always have my phone with me. If I find something that I think might be worth flipping, then I search for it on eBay under 'sold items'.

I'm able to see how much the item sold for and the frequency at which it sells. The higher the frequency of sales, the easier time you'll have selling the item.

There isn't always something valuable at garage sales. But there are treasures to be found. You just have to be willing to look! And if you don’t find anything, at least you get to see a ton of cool stuff and meet some interesting people along the way.

4) Photography

Photography is a skill that can start out as a hobby but turn into a serious side-hustle or even full-time work. As a photographer, you can take pictures of things that interest you. Back when I was into photography, I usually took landscape photographs or pictures of our dog.

If you are starting out part-time as a hobby, then you can sell your pictures on your own website or consider selling them on Shutterstock. You will make more selling them on your personal website, but you'll get more publicity on a site like Shutterstock.

I personally have never made any money with photography. I know it's very possible, but my passion lies more with flipping things and writing about finance and what not.

If you are extremely outgoing, then you can even become a wedding photographer. You can take peoples’ engagement photos as well as pictures on their wedding day. After 4-8 hours of photoshoots and then editing, you can make a very nice chunk of change!

5) Graphic Design

If you are creative and love to design things, then consider graphic design as a new gig. Imagine drawing and doodling, but on a computer instead of paper. Graphic design is an essential part of marketing and advertising for companies these days.

With everything going digital today, you can be certain that graphic design will be around for quite some time. If you are looking for a free and easy way to learn online graphic design, then you can check out Canva. It's an online easy-to-use tool for beginners.

If you're serious about graphic design and want to take it to the next level, then consider Adobe Illustrator or Sketch. If you are just starting out as a graphic designer, then you can make upwards of $40,000 a year full time.

My best friend is a graphic designer and works with some pretty amazing people. She is amazing at what she does and has a ton of opportunity for side freelance projects which is always nice.

6) Working Out

Working out is a very productive hobby, but did you know that you can make some extra money on the side too? There are at least two different ways you can make money with this hobby.

The first way is to test out exercise equipment or participate in workout studies. Check for fitness companies in your area and see if they are hiring anyone to test out their fitness equipment. They could be looking for treadmill runners or cyclists or a variety of things. You would be making more than minimum wage and burning off some calories. Double win!

The second way to make money working out is to become a personal trainer. You can get certified to be a personal trainer and then teach group classes or decide to do more personalized lessons. I'm more of an introvert than an extrovert so personally this one isn't for me. But, if you're an extrovert this could be perfect for you!

You should be confident and have a desire to help others get into good physical shape. A great upside is that pay for personal trainers is well above $50,000 a year if you decide to do it full-time!

7) Woodworking

Whenever I think of woodworking, I think of Ron Swanson from Parks and Rec. He’s my man crush. If you haven’t seen that show already, you should definitely check it out. Ron Swanson’s real name is Nick Offerman and he recently co-hosted a show called “Making It”, which involved a lot of craft-making and woodworking. It’s a high-class show and definitely a worthwhile TV show if you're into woodworking.

If you haven’t started woodworking already, then consider starting small and making something for around your house, like a bench or a bird feeder. My wife and I recently made some flower boxes for our front yard and I’m considering making a garden box for the backyard in the spring.


Once you feel confident in making simple pieces, then you can move on to more advanced things like tables or chairs. There’s a great tutorial website for woodworking called Wood Magazine. It’s got almost everything imaginable and how-to guides for building them.

The pieces you make can be sold for quite a bit of cash. If you enjoy working with your hands, then woodworking is a great hobby where you can make some extra cash.

These are just 7 productive hobbies that you can pursue to put a little extra cash in your pocket. Now more than ever I believe it's important to have a side hustle. Hobbies don't have to be boring or lame either. If you can find a hobby that makes money that you also enjoy then that's the sweet spot. Who says you can't have a side hustle that doubles as a hobby you also enjoy? 

What is the most productive hobby you’ve ever tried? Go ahead and share below!