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Who says you have to completely give up work when you retire? Once all your retirement planning comes to fruition, it can be a great time to relax, but it can also be a time to pursue retirement hobbies that make money to help supplement your retirement income.
If you're looking for an activity, you could start with what you're passionate about and already know. Working may no longer be necessary, but finding the thing that makes you excited to get up every morning could be the start of a new, lucrative retirement hobby.
1. Professional Gaming
Gaming isn't just for millennials. There's a huge community of professional video gamers who take part in competitions and tournaments. You'll need to pick a genre you enjoy, such as esports or multiplayer games, and then hone your skills through training and practice — just like any other sport. Once you master it, there's also the option to play games and stream them live on online platforms. Similar to YouTube, you can potentially earn money this way if you have a large number of subscribers. This can be a fun way to potentially earn money from the comfort of your own home.
If you're feeling more adventurous in retirement, what about becoming a beekeeper? You may be able to make money from beekeeping by manufacturing local honey from the bees in your hive, bottling it and selling these products at local farmers' markets or grocery stores. To start, you might seek out a local supplier who can provide the bees and help you purchase the materials you'll need, including hives and protective gear. This is a more hands-on retirement hobby, so it might be a better fit for people who love agriculture and the environment. If you're curious about beekeeping, you can check with your local beekeeping association to learn more about how to get started.
If you know a second language, you might consider becoming a translator, though you'll likely need to undergo additional training. You can enroll in a certificate program and then take a certification exam to boost your credentials. After this, you can begin looking for freelance translator work via online job boards, translation agencies or online communities for people in the industry. It might also be helpful to check social media to find these groups.
4. House-sitting & Pet-sitting
If you're an animal lover or have a passion for travel, house-sitting and pet-sitting can be fun yet lucrative retirement hobbies. You could take care of other people's homes while they're away and use this as an opportunity to visit new locations.
The same goes for pet-sitting. Some people travel for work or go on vacation and can't bring their beloved furry family member along with them. Pet-sitting can be a great way to help families while you explore a new location, and there are several websites where you can find these opportunities. So, if you ever dreamed of living an ex-pat life in New Zealand or temporarily living in Palm Springs, house-sitting or pet-sitting may be a great fit.
You might try nurturing your creativity and supplementing your retirement income with photography. You could be a freelance pet, wedding or newborn photographer and only take gigs when you have free time. Likewise, if you intend to spend your retirement on the road, travel photography could be both a personally and financially rewarding retirement side hustle. You might consider investing in a good, quality camera first, and then you can start taking some photography classes or teaching yourself.
6. Arts & Crafts
If you have an artistic flair, you may want to consider selling arts and crafts. Many home-based artisans now sell a variety of goods online, such as handmade desks, wedding veils, handmade Halloween costumes and custom invitations. If you were a painter, carpenter or graphic designer before you retired, or if you just love doing these activities in your spare time, you could try transferring these skills into an income-producing retirement hobby.
We live in a more health-conscious world, and as result, more people are going to the gym or their local fitness studio. If you have a passion for health and wellness, you might try teaching a local fitness class. There are plenty of options to choose from — such as Zumba, yoga, CrossFit and water aerobics, to name a few.
Note that you'll likely need to get certified first, which may take several months, but that's not necessarily a huge time commitment in retirement — especially when you consider that you'll be able to work on staying fit and earning money at the same time.
The Bottom Line
Your golden years are a great time to enjoy everything you worked for, but if you're worried about being bored or just want to stay active, consider a hobby that will help you make money in retirement. A retirement hobby can be a great way to stay engaged, help extend the length of your retirement savings or discover something new that reignites your passions.