Ten Sidelines You Can Explore Without Giving Up Your Job

Many people want to have additional income, but few dare to give up their day job for fear of the uncertainties. There are reservations, especially if you have dependents or are already happy with your job but just need extra cash.
How do you know what sideline is best for you? You must first see if the venture will enable you to reach your objectives and then find a match to your resources, skills and inclinations. To get you started, see if the list below can inspire your search for that ideal sideline:
Craftsmaking. If you are the artistic type, perhaps you can capitalize on your skills while enjoying your work. There are plenty of crafts that can be sold profitably. Crafts can be grouped into five categories: decorative, functional, textile-based, paper-based and fashion items. However, an item may fall into two or more categories. An example of this is beadwork, which may serve a functional purpose and may also be a fashion item. You may consign your items at craft stores or sell them online.
Lending. This is one of the most popular sidelines because of its profitability. With so many people needing cash, demand is not a problem. The main problem you will have is how to make sure you can collect your loans. In this matter, the best plan is to screen borrowers carefully. While many people go about this business informally, those who wish to legitimize their operations must know that lending companies must be in the form of a corporation. Note, too, that lending companies are required by the government to have at least one million pesos in paid-up capital.
Real estate. If you already have a property you can develop, this is a financially viable project; otherwise, it would take a very substantial capital to get started in this line of business. There are plenty of ways to get into real estate. Many people recommend looking for distressed properties to buy so that they can get the lowest price. You may look up bank listings of foreclosed properties as a source. Others concentrate on finding dilapidated properties that they could renovate cheaply and sell at a profit.
Writing. If you can write decent articles fast, you may have a steady income without leaving your home. There are several websites that are willing to pay per article that is accepted.
Buying a franchise. Although a franchise consumes less time than a start-up business, it must still be considered a business in order to be successful. This means that you have to allocate much time to the venture. Unfortunately, the most reliable franchises are also the most expensive. Be careful, however, in picking cheap franchises as they are not as stable as the established brands. You rarely hear of a Jollibee or McDonald’s closing down, but the capital requirements for these kind of franchises are far beyond most Filipinos can afford.
Consultancy. If your profession is such that you have valuable knowledge that people would be willing to pay for, then you can make big money as a consultant. Your main problem would be how to market your services. One of the best ways to do this is to apply as a resource speaker in seminar companies. If you are accepted by the company, you could gain plenty of clients among the attendees while being paid for delivering a presentation. Consultants can charge per hour or per project, and the client may even decide to pirate your services by giving an offer that you cannot resist.
Wedding organizing. Most weddings are on weekends so there is unlikely to be a conflict with your current work. Besides the fee for organizing the wedding, there are multiple potential sources of revenue. You may be able to be the one to supply needed items like video coverage.
Professional photography. The prices of sophisticated digital cameras have fallen to the point where many people can now afford to acquire professional quality cameras. You could focus on doing weddings—not only is there a need for photography, but the usual weekend schedule of weddings is very convenient for part-timers who have regular work.
Direct selling. This covers a wide field, from simple everyday items like cosmetics, as in the case of Avon and Sarah Lee, to insurance products that need a lot of selling and explaining. While it would take a lot of sales to earn substantial amounts if you sell low cost items, insurance and preneed plans can earn you more in one transaction, but they are far more difficult to sell.
Make-up artist. You will be pleasantly surprised to know that it can be a very lucrative profession. However, you must have extensive training before you are qualified to offer such services.

*Originally published by the Manila Bulletin. C-4, Sunday, August 5, 2012. Written by Ruben Anlacan, Jr. (President, BusinessCoach, Inc.) All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or copied without express written permission of the copyright holders.