12 Creative Ideas to Boost Your Financial Security for Retirement

Seniors happily planning budget and spending money
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This story originally appeared on NewRetirement.

Passive income for retirement includes income sources that you benefit from without too much effort — the money just flows in.

Passive income streams are therefore ideal for retirement. In retirement, we are trying to maximize the time we spend on leisure activities while minimizing work or burdensome endeavors. You can generate passive income from savings, your other assets or even with smart use of your time.

Here are several ideas for how to create passive income for retirement or any other financial goal.

1. Create Passive Income for Retirement by Investing in Real Estate

Real estate agent
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If you own your home, then most financial experts would say that you already have enough exposure to real estate for a well-diversified portfolio. However, real estate investing can be an excellent way to build wealth and is probably the most universally effective of all passive income streams.

You have many options for real estate as income:

A) Buy Rental Property

If you have some savings, you might want to consider investing in a rental property. Investing in a commercial building or a residential property can be an excellent way to boost monthly income.

The trick is in having enough money to buy the building and ensuring that the rental income pays for the mortgage as well as profit for you. Ideally, the property also appreciates over time.

However, depending on the property, owning rentals can require active time to manage — making it perhaps less passive than other investments.

B) Invest in Real Estate Funds

If you cannot afford to purchase a property on your own, you have options. You can invest in a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT). REITs are a type of security that you can buy and trade like a stock.

C) Explore Real Estate Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is a relatively new way to raise money for a business venture. The idea is that many people invest a small amount into a particular project. The crowdfunding concept is becoming an increasingly popular and low-cost way to invest in real estate.

Learn more at popular real estate crowdfunding sites like RealtyShares and FundRise.

D) Finance a Mortgage or Reverse Mortgage

Perhaps you have friends or family who need or want to get a mortgage or reverse mortgage. You can finance a private loan.

Just note that this can be complicated and there are downsides to mixing money with family and friendships.

Here are 8 Ways to Invest in Real Estate for Retirement.

2. Make Passive Income With Your Own Home or Property

Senior woman at home
Viktoriia Hnatiuk / Shutterstock.com

Your home is probably your most valuable existing asset. You should definitely consider ways to use your home to create passive income.

A) Rent a Room
House sharing is becoming more and more common. By renting a room (or rooms) you generate a great source of income and increase your social and support network which is critical to retirement happiness.

Learn more about home-sharing.

B) Be a Vacation Rental
Airbnb has absolutely exploded in popularity. Listing your home on Airbnb — either on a permanent or short-term basis — is an ideal passive income stream because it uses an existing resource to generate money.

This can be ideal if you are planning on traveling. Rent out your home during times when you could be away.

C) Rent Your Driveway
JustPark is a platform that lets you rent out parking places. This is an ideal opportunity if you live near a popular venue.

D) Offer a Campsite
Do you live on a piece of land where people might want to camp?

Hipcamp allows you to host nature lovers while earning extra income.

3. Create Passive Retirement Income With Your Stuff

Women traveling by RV
sirtravelalot / Shutterstock.com

The sharing economy is alive and well, and people are making money from all kinds of assets. Think creatively about what you own and explore ways to rent it out.

Do you have an RV or other recreational toys? People are making money these days by renting out their boats, motorcycles, bicycles and more.

If you have something that you think other people might enjoy, research sharing economy websites for that particular object.

Here are a few examples:

A) Rent Out Your Outdoor Adventure Vehicles
Do you have an RV, camper van, Jeep or sprinter van that spends some time in your driveway? Rent it out!

Outdoorsy or RV Share make it easy for you to make money from a potentially under-used asset.

B) Make Any Kind of Vehicle Available for Rental
Do you have a sports car? Just a regular old sedan? Any kind of vehicle that you don’t need to use daily?

Turo and GetAround are platforms that enable you to rent out your vehicles.

C) Float Your Boat
Whether you have a little tin fishing boat, a party patio barge, a water ski boat, a sailing ketch, a luxury yacht or any other kind of floating toy, Boatsetter enables you to rent your boat and make passive income for retirement.

D) Make Your Sports Gear Available
Do you have a bicycle? Snow gear? A stand-up paddleboard? Rent it out on Spinlister. To rent out your surfboard, try The Quiver.

And, to lease other fun outdoor gear? Try Quipmo.

E) Rent Out Your Home Goods
Whatever you have, someone else might want to rent it from you. Zilok does not have a fancy interface, but they help you rent out your power tools, cooking equipment, popcorn machines, ladders — anything and everything!

FatLlama also enables you rent out anything and everything that might be of use to other people, but is best for sporting goods and electronics — particularly cameras, drones and the like.

4. Create Passive Income Streams Doing What You Love to Do

Fotokostic / Shutterstock.com

You don’t want to work — working is not a “passive” income stream. You want to be retired! However, maybe you enjoy cooking, woodshop or spending time with dogs. There are more and more ways to make money from these types of hobbies.

If there is something you enjoy doing, you can probably figure out a way to get paid for it.

A) Earn by Spending Time With Furry Friends
Do you love animals? Did you know that it is pretty easy to make good money while offering pet services? DogVacay and Rover make it easy to find gigs with animals.

Why not create passive income by dog sitting in your own home? Or, try dog walking, which is a great opportunity to be healthy, have fun and make money.

B) Work With Your Hands
Do you enjoy working with your hands? Building things? Personally, I adore vacuuming. At any rate, it is so satisfying to complete a project!

TaskRabbit and Zaarly let you find gigs for home services like house cleaning, gardening and errands.

C) Cook Up Some Passive Income for Retirement
Are you happiest in the kitchen? Do you pore over cooking blogs and race to get every new cookbook? Travelingspoon enables accomplished home cooks to teach lessons in their home. Chef’s feed by Tastemade enables you to stream cooking classes.

D) Handcraft Your Passive Income
From crochet to custom artwork, Etsy is a platform that helps artists and craftspeople to sell their handmade goods. Turn your creative hobby into passive income for retirement.

E) Click Your Way to Passive Income for Retirement
Are you an amateur photographer? There are lots of platforms like Shutterstock and istockphoto that enable you to sell your photos online.

5. Share Your Expertise or Your Passion and Make Some Money

Older man giving lessons online.
Agenturfotografin / Shutterstock.com

By the time you retire, you have accumulated a lot of knowledge. If you would love sharing your work expertise or passion for a specific hobby or area of interest, then here are a few passive income ideas for you:

A) Create an Airbnb Experience
Are you one of those people who loves to share your knowledge of your hometown and lives in an area that receives tourists?

Do you have a special skill or insight that people would want to know about?

Sign up to host an online experience with Airbnb. With the world slowly opening up again, you can also sign up to host an experience in person.

Dance parties, art workshops, meditation sessions and tours of local sights, tastes or sounds are just a few of the really varied experiences that you could consider offering.

B) Start a Blog
If you like writing, start a blog and share your expertise or passion online. Generate and publish content, and then you can run advertising on your content — generating passive income.

C) Launch a Podcast
Do you enjoy talking with experts or peers about your area of expertise? Try recording those conversations and starting a podcast. Get sponsorship for your podcasts and earn some passive income.

D) Teach an Online Course
Online classes are a growing gig. An online class is kind of like a blog, but it is prepackaged and sold to people who want to learn what you have to share. Teachable.com and Udemy are popular online teaching platforms.

E) Become an Instagram or YouTube Star
Do you get a lot of “likes” on your posts? Do you enjoy being in front of or behind the camera? Have a nose for promotion and what really drives engagement?

You could become an Instagram or YouTube star. From cupcake bakers and gardeners to style icons, you can share your love of something and potentially start to get sponsorships for your posts.

6. Pay Off a Credit Card or Other Debt

Senior man being scammed on the phone with credit card
Andrey_Popov / Shutterstock.com

Huh? You might be curious how paying off a credit card could be a way to produce income.

And, while it is true that you are not creating an income stream, you are eliminating a fixed expense, which does permanently improve your cash flow — so the impact is the same as increased income.

Imagine if you could spend the money you use to pay off a debt every month! The same is true of paying off your mortgage — this is such a massive opportunity to have more money to spend every month and help you feel truly financially free.

Here are 7 Reasons to Pay Off Every Penny Before You Retire.

7. If Using a Credit Card, Turn It Into Income

A senior shops online from her living room sofa with a laptop computer and credit card
Halfpoint / Shutterstock.com

If you are using a credit card for purchases, make sure your card offers perks that make sense for you.

Most top reward credit cards enable you to earn anywhere from 1% to 5% back. This translates to easy passive income.

8. Discover Passive Income for Retirement by Creating a Budget and a Detailed Financial Plan

Stressed retiree doing budgeting and paying bills
Elnur / Shutterstock.com

Passive income can come from improving your own finances — now and for the future.

A) Budgeting
Budgeting is a powerful way to discover opportunities for saving money. When you document what you are spending you are likely to see easy ways to cut costs — improving your cash flow.

B) Creating a Financial Plan
When you plan for the long term, you will make smarter decisions now and find the motivation to create more income. The NewRetirement Retirement Planner makes it easy to create and maintain a financial plan.

9. Carefully Invest Your Money in Passive Income Sources

Older couple thinking about their long-term investments
ESB Professional / Shutterstock.com

All profitable investments are technically passive income — but profits from savings are usually reinvested — growing your principal. However, some investments do offer a monthly paycheck, in the form of passive income.

Consider the following passive income investment opportunities:

A) Peer to Peer Lending
Lending Club is an example of a peer to peer lending platform. With Lending Club, you can provide loans to people seeking money for a business. While this can be highly risky, the platform enables you to invest in hundreds of different businesses all at once — offering you the potential for high returns while trying to minimize risk.

B) Annuities
Annuities are a way to lock in passive income. When you buy a lifetime annuity, you are exchanging a lump sum of money for a guaranteed income stream for the rest of your life — no matter how long that turns out to be. You can also opt to protect your spouse or other dependents with the income, and you can even guarantee that the income will grow with inflation.

Use an annuity calculator to estimate how much annuity income you could earn. Or, take a quick annuity quiz to find out if an annuity is right for you.

C) High Dividend Stocks
Some stocks pay dividends. This money is considered a passive income stream — especially if you are not putting the money back into the company.

D) Bonds
Bonds are a popular retirement income investment. When you purchase a bond, you are buying debt. So, in a way, you are lending money and — in exchange — you get interest payments and the promise of repayment at a specified future date (maturity date).

E) Invest in a Small Business
Look around your town and think about the people you know; do you see a small business that is doing well — might they benefit from some kind of expansion? In exchange for your investment, the business could give you an equity position. The business owner manages the day-to-day operations while you act as a silent (passive) partner.

This can be rewarding, but very risky.

10. Reputable Multi-Level Marketing

senior businessman
Rido / Shutterstock.com

A multi-level marketing business sells products directly to consumers through independent salespeople. The salesperson is compensated based on their own sales as well as on their ability to recruit new salespeople into the company.

So, income from sales you make would be regular income. Income from sales by your recruits could be considered passive income.

Multi-level marketing has a questionable reputation — sometimes being confused with illegal pyramid schemes — but there are plenty of well-vetted, even beloved companies that could be great work and passive income for retirees.

If you are interested, consider the following:

A) Avon
Avon is a publicly traded company with more than 5 million sales consultants. If selling cosmetics sounds fun to you, give it a try.

B) The Pampered Chef
Love cooking? Maybe being a sales consultant with The Pampered Chef is a good fit for you. Consultants host cooking shows in homes and sell merchandise during these demonstrations.

C) Rodan and Fields
Rodan and Fields makes skin care products developed by the dermatologists who also created Proactiv. They have over $1 billion in sales.

D) doTerra
This company sells aromatherapy oils and kits, and doTerra already reports to have 1,300 employees and $1 billion in sales.

E) Forever Living
Forever Living sells a range of health-related products including aloe vera juice drinks and cosmetics, supplements and more.

11. Make Your Cash Generate Income

Benjamin Franklin smiles on a $100 bill because he is providing passive income
David Biagini / Shutterstock.com

The trick with successfully creating passive income is to pay attention to all opportunities. Making sure that your cash is earning as much interest as possible is an easy way to increase your passive income. Put your cash into a high-interest savings account.

Some banks are paying 2% or more, and while this is not a massive return, it is a low-risk and easy way to modestly boost income.

12. Make Money Shopping and Browsing


If you are willing to let companies track your online browsing and spending, then you can generate passive income.

A) Inbox Dollars
Inbox Dollars gives you multiple options for earning money. You can play games, open emails and more.

B) Swagbucks
When you are signed up with Swagbucks and shop at Target, Walmart, Amazon and other major retailers, you earn money. Get additional income by watching videos, answering surveys and other online activities.

C) Rakuten
Get rebates when you shop while using the Rakuten browser extension. Just start a Rakuten account, install the extension on your browser and shop as you normally would — and get rebates.

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