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My attempts at developing income streams

 
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Posts: 697
Location: Mount Shasta, CA Zone 8a Mediterranean climate
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Seeing Paul's renewed focus on building residual income streams I figured I would use this thread to list/organize what things I have been able to do to create income for my family. Not all my income streams are residual or even not-quite-residual income streams but I hope that I will be able to develop a number of them into income streams that don't require a lot of my dedicated time.

So far I have:

A spouse that supports me financially: If I'm being honest here then I have to admit that a large portion of the family income currently comes from my wife's job as a cake decorator at the local grocery store. The way I hope to build on this is to one day be able to support her opening her own small bakery which could hopefully become a self-supporting business.

Tree care/Permaculture design business: I've been a certified arborist for a number of years and managed to leverage that into my own business performing tree care. Recently I've completed a couple of PDC's and ventured into doing permaculture designs. The business currently provides me with only a small take home income because it's still small enough that most profits go back into growing the business. The business does provide a number of perks in lieu of actual pay such as a vehicle and fuel, tax write offs for office space and equipment that happens to help around the property like chainsaws and a big chipper. Although this endeavor is taking a huge amount of my time and physical effort I feel like for me personally it has the best potential to become a not-quite-residual income stream that can support me focusing more effort on developing other income streams.

In the interest of furthering these efforts, if you can do this:



get in touch with me, maybe we can help each other out. For any of you wondering, yes that's me up there in the video and yes, it is still a little scary. I guess that's how I'm developing my 'unfair advantage' here as one permaculture writer puts it, most people are just too scared to try to be my competition.

YouTube videos: What can I say, I've made a few videos and gone ahead and uploaded them to YouTube. At some point I remember being offered the chance to 'monetize' my videos and I clicked yes. Last I checked I've accumulated over $30 in 4 years!

Things I'd like to develop:

Glamping resort:

My property has some great views, is in a natural playground of mountains, rivers and lakes, and is also less than a mile from an off-ramp for the I-5 freeway which is one of the most traveled freeways in the nation. I've identified 5 or 6 sites that I can develop to hold well outfitted canvas wall tents on platforms. I currently have one tent and I'm (slooowly) developing the area I want to put it. Once I have that installed I'm looking into putting it on Airbnb.com but I have to be careful with codes and regulations living in California. If I can get all 5 or 6 sites developed there's the potential to employ others to deal with the day-to-day operating of the 'resort' with some left over for me and my projects.

Courses at the glamping resort: As I have acquired and developed my skill set I've started to realize that there are others that don't have what knowledge I have and would be willing to pay me to get some of that knowledge, especially if it was packaged properly. I could teach things from basic permaculture to forest management to tree care and climbing and all the while the students get to stay in some really nice accommodations. Courses could be filmed and either made into media to sell such as DVDs or online courses, or could be developed into a YouTube income stream.

Timber products:

One of the great by-products of the way I manage my woods is very straight grained knot free wood. This can be made into some very high quality items from furniture to watercraft. Since one of the major species in the forest here is incense cedar I would really like to make a few cedar strip canoes. One major drawback with that plan is the fact that those boats require epoxy and fiberglass, both things that I don't consider very permaculture friendly. Ideally I would be able to provide the workspace/tools and resources for people to build and develop and income stream off of either selling the superior resources and workspace time or getting a commission off the sale of things made.

So far those would be the major things that I'm focusing on. I'll update this thread as I made advancement on these listed or come up with other things that I think are worth it for me to develop.
 
Posts: 111
Location: Southern California (zone 10a)
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Thanks for sharing these ideas Michael. It’s nice to see someone else’s brainstormed ideas. It’s quite encouraging to get started on my own list of brainstorming.

I too have thought a lot about ways I could develop different income streams. I am a multiple subject credentialed teacher but have a lot of other interests and I enjoy researching things.

A friend suggested that I start a blog and share things that she and I would discuss but in written format. Though I really enjoy writing, and other forms of communication, I’ve found that writing and editing my own work takes SO much longer than I anticipated. Writing is also a lot less enjoyable for me than conversations she and I would have. Additionally, I got a 60+ hr a week full-time job soon after I started the blog and it’s been pretty neglected ever since. I don’t feel like I need a Mr.Slappy to be able to do it but I certainly believe more of a mentorship or handholding would help me. I’ve thought of reaching out to people’s blogs I love or more techs people to make this dream happen.

In the last 20 years, though I have a strong distaste for MLMs, I joined 3:

- Primerica (I felt like term life insurance, prepaid legal services, and mutual funds were things that almost any adult with financial responsibilities could benefit from, especially those who were married with small children. I enjoyed learning more about how money worked and educating people on how to better manage their finances. I didn’t like the weekly meetings and pressure to ‘build a team’ and realized that I really could not be passionate about this job long-term.)

- Beyond Organic (I really enjoyed Jordan Rubin’s book, The Maker’s Diet, and felt like I liked the educational aspect teaching people to go back to eating whole non-GMO organic food. I felt confident selling *better than organic products, that I believed in, including raw cheese, to the public. This company merged with another one who I didn’t feel like was giving full-disclosure about their products and I was continuing to pursue teaching, so that ended.)

- Beauty Counter (Though I personally usually just wear makeup a few times a year for special events, I found myself sharing with most women the hidden dangers of my beauty and hygiene products. I figured BC would be a good fit. I tried some products and didn’t think they were as good as other organic/natural beauty products at the same price point. Bleh... this too wasn’t gonna be a good fit.)

Things I’d like to try that Paul mentions in his google meeting conversation with Jason from ERE and Shawn that I feel could be a better fit:

- record myself reading an audiobook (there are a lot of audible books I just can’t buy or listen to because of the reader’s voice and other books that I’ve wanted to read but that audiobooks don’t yet exist for)

- upload songs I’ve written to a website to sell (I’d need to find someone to record the music portion with my vocals)

- create teacher worksheets (I often use www.teacherspayteachers.com for worksheets or lessons on subjects I’m teaching that I don’t have time to develop)

- give 1000 things away for free (I actually gave a lot of things away for free on OfferUp, so that I could get a lot of high star ratings so buyers could trust me and want to purchase the things I was selling. It worked. I’ll have to think of other things I could give away for free that could connect well to a product or service that I’d provide.)

- YouTube (friends have suggested I do both a children’s learning channel and then a homeschooling channel for parents to help them feel better equipped.)

When I was younger I loved making handmade cards, crafts and rose pens. I sold quite a few rose pens as marketing tools and to individuals who wanted to give them as holiday gifts. I’d like to explore using my used to be hobbies to generate an income as well.

I’ve personally found living on significantly less an easier feat than successfully developing another income stream but I’m far from completing the 100 suggestions.

What on your list of 100 things to try have you been able to mark off?
 
Alana Rose
Posts: 111
Location: Southern California (zone 10a)
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Alana Rose wrote:(I actually gave a lot of things away for free on OfferUp, so that I could get a lot of high star ratings so buyers could trust me and want to purchase the things I was selling. It worked.

OfferUp-Reviews.png
[Thumbnail for OfferUp-Reviews.png]
 
pollinator
Posts: 227
Location: New Braunfels, TX, Zone 8b, multi-generational suburban homestead
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Alana Rose wrote:- Beyond Organic (I really enjoyed Jordan Rubin’s book, The Maker’s Diet, and felt like I liked the educational aspect teaching people to go back to eating whole non-GMO organic food. I felt confident selling *better than organic products, that I believed in, including raw cheese, to the public. This company merged with another one who I didn’t feel like was giving full-disclosure about their products and I was continuing to pursue teaching, so that ended.)



I'm laughing at the fact I just read this, as I just discovered The Maker's Diet on my mom's table a few hours ago!
I panned through it, didn't seem like it had much new knowledge for me so I'll pass.

Y'all sure have tried more than me and have lots more ideas than I could come up with. Granted I graduated college just 3 years ago so I haven't had much time to experiment. Little did I know my college days would had been the best for experimenting rather than now as a mother :(

Alana, if you have a lot of teaching expertise and experience you may be able to find success on outschool.com. It's not quite residual but it's something that is good to know about if push comes to shove. On there you get paid by parents directly to provide their children with a video lesson. Sounds like you're busy enough with a full time job, just thought I'd share!
 
Alana Rose
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Rebecca Blake wrote: I'm laughing at the fact I just read this, as I just discovered The Maker's Diet on my mom's table a few hours ago!
I panned through it, didn't seem like it had much new knowledge for me so I'll pass.



That is funny! It’s a small world. His book was what got me into the Weston A Price Foundation and Sally Fallon’s Book Nourishing Traditions. For many permies people, a lot of what he talks about is probably general knowledge. I’ve found there is many strategies and methods for healing our bodies naturally and his is one that I recommend.

Y'all sure have tried more than me and have lots more ideas than I could come up with. Granted I graduated college just 3 years ago so I haven't had much time to experiment. Little did I know my college days would had been the best for experimenting rather than now as a mother :(



Motherhood is a sweet blessing. Enjoy it! I’d much rather be mothering than doing the other forms of ‘adulting’ I feel forced to do as an unmarried childless women. :) Plus, I think I’ve seen some of the coolest products/inventions on Shark Tank developed by mothers, so keep your creative juices active.

Alana, if you have a lot of teaching expertise and experience you may be able to find success on outschool.com. It's not quite residual but it's something that is good to know about if push comes to shove. On there you get paid by parents directly to provide their children with a video lesson. Sounds like you're busy enough with a full time job, just thought I'd share!



Thanks for this suggestion! I will check it out. I actually quit my full-time job over a year ago to serve full-time volunteering in Mexico. Now that my savings account has dwindled, I’m looking at other income options, so I that can be more like Gert https://permies.com/t/gert and less like Ferd.
 
Rebecca Blake
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Location: New Braunfels, TX, Zone 8b, multi-generational suburban homestead
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Alana Rose wrote: Thanks for this suggestion! I will check it out. I actually quit my full-time job over a year ago to serve full-time volunteering in Mexico. Now that my savings account has dwindled, I’m looking at other income options, so I that can be more like Gert https://permies.com/t/gert and less like Ferd.



If you went to volunteer full time in Mexico, sounds like you definitely have the Gert going on!

I haven't tried Out School myself yet, though it's been on my mind (I'm a certified math teacher, granted you don't need to be a teacher to teach on there). However, my friend got to where she made about $1,500 a month within 4 months. Pretty good, considering simply getting started and getting good reviews can be difficult. She did this all within 2 hour nap times and maybe a little bit of work at night, I'm just not sure how many days a week she did. Definitely not daily. I'm sure you could get to that amount quicker due to your teaching experience and possible library of old resources to use (my friend had no prior experience but student teaching). Greatest thing about that website, you teach what you want. So you could teach permaculture if you so choose to and could get students to sign up for it.

With covid messing up so many children's education these past two school years, many people are turning online to supplement their children's learning so now would be the perfect time to get started with it!
 
Police line, do not cross. Well, this tiny ad can go through:
Building Your Permaculture Property | Free Permaculture Summit | April 23-25
https://permies.com/t/159045/Building-Permaculture-Property-Free-Permaculture
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