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Are you looking for money making side hustles and you happen to have a good size backyard laying there doing nothing except needing mowing? Did you know that’s a money-maker out there? Put it to good use with one or several opportunities to make money.
Here are 10 ways on how to make money with your backyard:
1. Rental Home
Depending on your yard’s size and the regulations in your area, you can build a rental home in your backyard for extra monthly income.
As you’ve seen on television, tiny houses are all the rage these days. Building a tiny house can be costly (about $25,000 to $35,000), but a cheaper alternative is to get a loft barn from Lowe’s for about $8,000 and convert it yourself.
How much you can charge to rent depends on your area and whether you want to rent it as a vacation spot (aka Airbnb), or long term. Guesthouses, cottages, cabins on Airbnb charge anywhere from $25 to $150 a night.
Your rental property is considered a business by the IRS and you’re to report all rent received and expenses paid. You can deduct everything you spend on the rental, as long as it’s a necessary and ordinary expense to own and operate a rental property.
Having a garden is a great money saver for your own home. Buy growing your own food you cut down on your grocery bills, but why not take it a step further?
Plant more than you need and sell the abundance. Get a booth at the local Farmer’s Market on Saturday’s and sell your fruit, vegetables, and other wares (crafts you have created) for a good profit. There’s no real extra work as you’re already doing it for your own family.
How much can you make with your gardening depends on – what vegetables you grow, the Farmer’s Market booth rental, the area you live in.
Let’s say you got 5 extra tomato plants for $5 each, each plant yields about 20 pounds in which you sell for $4 a pound, the booth rental is $30 for 5 Saturdays. $400 – $25 (plants cost) – $30 (booth) = $345 made on the tomatoes!
Of course, you just can’t have tomatoes only, so do this for each extra food you provide and it can get pretty profitable.
Gardening can be a risky business as its weather dependent, how much yield you get from the plants, and any other natural occurrences – insects, animals, wrong soil type and so on.
Do check with your city regulations, the Farmer’s market rules (rent for a weekend or required for the whole season), and health regulations regarding food.
If gardening isn’t your thing, or don’t want to deal with the extra work of selling your extra food, you can try composting.
Having a compost pile for all your vegetable and organic waste as well as shredded paper, leaves, and other bio gradable material can be turned into black gold. Of course, this isn’t a money-maker right away, it takes anywhere from 3 months to 2 years (depending on what you put in it, the weather, and how much you turn it).
How much you can make depends on the size of your pile and the batch size you sell it as, but the average I’ve seen is about $15 to $30 per cubic yard, which can cover a 10×10 area in 3” of dirt.
4. Worm Farm
Combine your compost sales with a worm farm and make money with both. Vermicomposting is simply composting with earthworms. Earthworms speed up the composting process as well as enhance the finished compost with nutrients and enzymes from their digestive tracts. So, the composting material turns out to be richer and more sought after, thus you can sell it for a bit more.
Add to your income by selling the worms during the summer for fishing season, to other gardeners, or to pet owners. How much you can make depends on the breed of worm – red worms can go for $3 for 100 worms, nightcrawlers can go for about $30 a pound.
You don’t even need a worm farm to sell worms either, go out after a rainfall and pick them off the ground or go into the forest and dig for them – instant cash.
Save some of your compost and use it in a large flower garden for profit.
Growing flowers to sell to florists, grocery stores, at farmer’s markets, at school fundraisers and a multitude of other ideas. Some of the most popular flowers are Larkspur, Snapdragon, Peony, Sunflowers, and Zinnias.
A quarter acre of well-grown and marketed flowers is worth approximately $6,250 to $7,500 in sales. It can be risky, like gardening, it’s all weather dependent, growth rate, and popularity at the moment.
6. Raise Chickens
Yep, some city zonings allow chickens in the city (but many ban roosters). If your area allows it, raising chickens is a profitable side hustle in many different ways.
The overhead is pretty low if have a simple chicken house and feed them your organic table scraps or let them free-range for themselves.
Your first thought for raising chickens would be from selling the eggs – a dozen brown eggs can bring in $2.50 to $5. But you can also make money from:
- Fertile eggs – If you’re permitted a rooster then you can make money from fertile eggs for about the same price as non-fertile eggs ($2.50 to $5), or more if it’s a rare chicken breed or Quail.
- Hatchlings – Hatch the fertile eggs to be chicks and make about $3 – $5 per chick – more if you know how to properly sex them.
- Pullets/Layers – Raise new chickens until they’re fully feathered (pullets), or are now laying their own eggs (layers). Some people don’t want to deal with raising chicks and will pay more for mature chickens, so you can make about $10 to $20 a bird.
- Hens – Hens can only lay eggs for a couple of years before their production slows or stops. Once this happens you can either have free meat for your own freezer or sell them for about $4 – $8 each.
- Meat – Depending on your area, you may be permitted to sell meat directly to customers, if so you can make about $3 – $5 a pound, or $15 – $25 whole.
So, it can be pretty profitable, and recyclable (new chicks for future layers). Just be sure to follow regulations, licensing if required, and more.
7. Raise Bees (or Rent to Beekeepers)
You can make money with bees in several ways – renting out space for hives for beekeepers or raise your own bees.
Renting out space to beekeepers is pretty easy, you just dedicate an area (away from your dwelling) and permit the keepers to visit and maintain the hives. This would go great with your flower-growing business as you have pollinators to help out. Renting to beekeepers can make about $
Raising bees yourself takes more work but you can sell the honey, the wax, and the new bees for a profit. One beekeeper blogger says he makes about $4,000 a year selling honey to his neighbors and selling bees to local farmers with only 2 hives on his urban home.
Each hive of bees can produce anywhere from 20 to 60 pounds of honey on average per year (depending on a variety of factors), which turns into roughly $160 to $480 per hive ($8 a pound).
8. Sell Trees
There are two ways you can make money selling trees and both take a lot of space, time and effort and both are seasonal. You can sell firewood, or Christmas trees.
To sell firewood, you’ll need to live in a densely forested area. You cut down dead trees on your property, chop them into firewood (or get a log splitter).
Depending on your area and the type of wood it is you can make about $120 and $180 for a cord (measures roughly four feet high by four feet wide by eight feet long) of hardwood that is split and seasoned.
You can charge more for deliveries, and even more for stacking the wood for the customer. Firewood is mostly a winter income, but you can sell to campgrounds, hardware stores, farmers, and other places other than individual consumers. The average earnings are about $1,500 to $2,500 part-time
Selling Christmas trees, on the other hand, takes much longer to cultivate. You’ve got to plow the land, start with seedlings (about 35¢ each), 1,500 trees per acre of land, and 6 to 8 years to grow them.
In the meantime, if you want to get your business started right away, find another tree farmer willing to sell you trees in bulk and re-sell for a higher price.
Typically, a Christmas tree sells for about $25 to $100 or more. One tree farmer says he averages around $15,000 to $30,000 every season. There’s been a Christmas tree shortage in recent years so you can expect to make more by raising the prices to meet demand.
9. Outdoor Lessons
Again, if you have a large wooded area and you love the outdoors and meeting people, consider teaching people outdoor lessons – camping, outdoor cooking, survival skills and similar skills.
This will entail starting a company, getting licensed and maybe passing inspection. But once that’s all completed, the fun begins.
How much you can make depends on what you’ll be teaching. The average salary of an Outdoor Skills Instructor is about $900 a week. An Outdoor Cook Instructor makes about $480 a week.
Note though that these are salaries under established companies, how much you’ll actually make depends on your efforts and your skills.
10. Rent it Out
Maybe you want something less time-consuming? Maybe you don’t have the funds for a backyard rental property, there are plenty of ways to rent out your backyard with very little work.
A few different rental ideas are:
Renting to Campers
If you live near an attraction or popular tourist site, you can rent out a portion of your backyard to travelers.
Sites such as HipCamp can list your backyard and your rental rate for you and you just provide access. Campers pay directly through the site and you get to keep 90% of the earnings. The bonus is that these sites also provide insurance for your property for any liability or damages.
Rent a Parking Spot
Rent out a spot for boats, trailers, recreational vehicles, and other storage items. Many people are buying more and more things but have less and less space to keep them. If you have a sizable and secure backyard – rent it out to these folks.
Advertise on Craigslist, your local classifieds, and even on social media in your town. A typical storage unit rents outdoor parking spaces for $69 a month, you can charge the same or less. If you offer a carport or covered space, you can charge more.
Rent to Photographers
If you have a beautiful property and landscaping, you can rent your space out to photographers to use as a photo shoot site.
Photographers are always in need of a variety of backgrounds to satisfy their clients. How much you can make varies on what you have to offer in your backyard and where you are located.
Go further and rent to advertisers and film crews for commercials, tv and movie backdrops. It’s possible to make about $2,000 a day. You do need to accept having a large group of people trampling all over your place and this work is pretty sporadic as well.
These ten different ideas to make money with your backyard is just a start. I hope I got you brainstorming for other ideas to match your backyard and your skills.
Do you have other ideas? Let us know in the comments here at Frugal for Less, as we love reading and gaining new ideas.