Last week I put out an article that showed a few ways that could make you some extra money. This week’s blog is focused on ways that could put significantly more in your bank.
Say you have $500. One day you decide you want to turn that $500 into $1000. How can you do it?
Instinctively, you would probably say “bring my $500 to a casino and see what happens”. Well, at least you’re being optimistic.
In truth, you have to be really lucky to win money at a casino because the odds are always stacked up against you. For example, you may think you have a 50% chance of doubling your money by putting that $500 you have on red or black. In reality, many casinos have green “0” and “00” listed on the roulette board, lowering your odds to ~47%. This is extremely risky and not very smart.
Rookie tip: DO NOT take on unnecessary risk! If you want to risk all your money and don’t care if you lose it, probably just go gamble.
Here are six smart (but risky and/or time consuming) ways to make money:
The age of E-Commerce! With Chinese marketplaces like Alibaba and Aliexpress becoming popular over the past few years, dropshipping has never been easier.
Dropshipping is the act of selling products that a manufacturer assembles without physically touching it. This could include electronics, backpacks, kitchenware, etc. There is no shortage of highly demanded products in our world today.
A dropshipper is the middleman between a company and the customer. A dropshipper has to create their own website, establish a partnership with a distributor, and develop a customer base. This may seem like a scam, but it’s really not. It requires a lot of hard work and some money upfront ($200-1000), but dropshipping has made millions of dollars for individuals around the world.. If you don’t believe me, look up some Youtube videos on dropshipping.
A lot of dropshippers use Amazon FBA or Shopify to market and sell their products. However, in order to sell on these websites, you have to have a professional website. You can easily create a website on Wix.com or GoDaddy to get started with this. Dropshippers also run advertisements on Facebook and Instagram to facilitate traffic to their website. If dropshipping seems interesting to you, there are classes you can take online that will help you grow your business.
My grade: B+
Final take: Dropshipping may seem complicated and a lot of work to begin, but it is a great way to make some phenomenal money. With Chinese companies on the rise, there are plenty of sellers out there looking for help to sell their products. I highly suggest watching Kevin Zhang and Dan Vas on Youtube. They are sales people/ entrepreneurs, however they have some great content if you want some advice on how to start.
- Investing in startups with SeedInvest
Calling all venture capitalists, this business is for you! SeedInvest is a company that makes it easy to partake in venture capital and private equity investing. For those of you unfamiliar with these terms, venture capital is basically loaning money to a startup company. Venture capital (VC) is under the umbrella of private equity, VC focuses primarily on technology, whereas private equity encapsulates all industries.
SeedInvest, founded in 2012 and based in NYC, has made a name for itself. The company has been featured on CNBC, Fox Business, and Jim Cramer’s “Mad Money”.
SeedInvest has a user-friendly website that walks you through the exact steps you need to take in order to fund a startup. They also provide you with resources about startups you can invest in, such as company data, valuation cap, and the total amount of money the company has raised so far. Say you wanted to invest in a home-delivery medicine company. Lucky for you SeedInvest provides you with the opportunity!
One downside to SeedInvest is the minimum investment required to buy into a company. A lot of the companies I was looking at require at least $1000 to buy shares. A bit pricey, however, businesses featured on SeedInvest have high potential. Imagine buying shares of Amazon or Microsoft before they became household names. You would be rich!
My grade: A
Final Take: If you are looking for a risky long-term investment, I recommend checking out SeedInvest’s website. They have a really unique layout and provide you with a ton of resources. Be sure to remember that investing in startups is extremely risky. A company could fail at any point in time, resulting in all of your money down the drain. However, if you have faith in a company, SeedInvest could help you get rich, while also providing you the opportunity to fund an idea you are passionate about!
- Trading cryptocurrencies and low-cap stocks
Cryptos are highly volatile, meaning they can fall just as quickly as they went up. They are also relatively new, and there still is a lot of skepticism around them in finance. Examples of cryptocurrencies are Bitcoin, Litecoin, Dodgecoin, and so on. When investing in crypto, you are not buying shares, you are buying a dollar amount of coin. For example, if you want to own 1 Litecoin, you would enter the dollar amount it is currently priced at (~$44). A good article on what cryptocurrency actually is can be found here.
In contrast, low-cap stocks are those with a small amount of capital. Generally these businesses are only worth a few million dollars, compared to Apple which is worth billions. Low-cap stocks have their stock price below average and make it easy to buy a few shares. Oftentimes, it only takes a few pennies to own a share of a low-cap stock. Low-cap stock examples include: Novus Therapeutics (NVUS), U.S Energy Corporation (USEG), and Seneca BioPharm (SNCA).
A lot of traders take advantage of low cap stocks and cryptocurrencies due to their volatility and upside potential. You can make a lot of money from these two with good timing, research, and a little luck.
For those who do not have a ton of money and want to get into investing, these options are for you. Even though they are highly risky, they can make you just as much money compared to big-cap stocks like Microsoft and Amazon.
My grade: C+
Final take: Cryptocurrencies and low-cap stocks have put a lot of money in some traders’ pockets. It takes correct timing and research to be successful in this type of investing. I give them high “Cs” because they resemble gambling a lot in my opinion. Taking calculated risks are a lot harder, and the confusion around cryptocurrency could bring down the price significantly with some bad news. Even with that said, I think it is exciting to own a piece of both low-cap stocks and cryptocurrency. A big return is waiting on the other side if you invest properly.
- Travel Blogging
Getting paid while traveling the world? Sign me up! I have always been really passionate about traveling and constantly exploring new places. If you are the same way, look into travel blogging! Just imagine traveling the world for free. A pretty cool thought.
Starting a travel blog is definitely a lot easier then it may seem. One, you need an audience and a following. In order to gain followers you have to have a reputation. This will take time, money, and effort. Your blog is not going to be monetized overnight. I have heard it has taken people a few years to monetize their travel blog or Youtube site. It’s a long commitment, however, the journey could be worth it itself.
To start, there are plenty of freelancing opportunities online where you can get paid for writing articles on someone else’s blog. Grow your brand by participating in these opportunities and learn from the best!
Travel blogging is not impossible and is still growing in popularity today; it is far from being “dead”. There are statistics online that say people make anywhere from $300- $20,000+ a month travel blogging, with all of their travel expenses paid.
If you are interested in travel blogging, I would say to start writing or Youtubing about your past travel experiences. It’s never too late to write about what you’ve encountered during your past adventures. Also, watch some videos online to get an idea of some professional content created by pro travel bloggers.
My grade: B
Final take: If I were going strictly off of the type of work, travel blogging would get an A+ from me. However, travel blogging is not going to get you rich quick, and it requires a ton of commitment to be successful. If you have a good camera and can communicate to an audience, then this could definitely be for you. If you are interested in travel blogging, look up some videos on Youtube on how to be successful as a travel blogger. Many influencers have provided some great tips that has made them rich.
Real estate investment trusts, or simply REITs, are real estate investments that help finance property. Whether it is hospitals or shopping centers, you can invest in almost any type of real estate.
With REITS, you are not buying physical property. Rather, you are investing money in a sector of the economy that needs real estate to function. An example of this could be Equnix, a company that specializes in data storage and collection. Equinix is not the only REIT out there, there are plenty of other companies that you can purchase shares from.
You can buy REITs through any major brokerage company. Do your research before you purchase one because not all REITS pop up when you type in “REITS” into the search bar. I usually Google “up-and-coming REITS” to get ahead of the game. I have heard it is better to purchase REITS which are rising in popularity compared to those that are already very popular and overbought.
Something to keep in mind, REIT owners do not have to pay federal taxes. However, they are obliged to pay at least 90% of their net income to investors. That is why dividends for REITs are paid out monthly, compared to quarterly or yearly like common stocks. Dividends are definitely something you can take advantage and are a form of asset building.
The risky part of REIT’s is the risk of foreclosure. Just like any company, REITs can go out of business or suffer massive loss due to customer decline. Be careful about investing in REITs that seem to be on a downward trend, these investments can inflict huge losses to your portfolio.
My grade: A-
Final take: REITs are an interesting way of growing your asset column and diversifying your portfolio. With their heavy dividend payout, you can definitely reap the rewards of owning a few shares of a REIT. However, the risks are abundant, which investors are oftentimes not aware of before making a purchase. Do your research and quantify your risk tolerance before investing in REITs. I give it a low A due to the fact that it is easy to invest in and you are passively making money through dividends and company expansion.
- Starting your own business
Starting your own business has been said to be “an investment in yourself”. Many people around the world have become self-reliant and do not need a paycheck coming in from their 9-5.
Some of the biggest businesses today have been created with little to no personal capital. These business owners have sold their ideas to customers and investors who have realized the potential of their product.
You hear stories of Amazon and Apple being formed inside of a garage. Founder of GoPro Nick Woodman even sold seashells to gather money for his cameras. At the beginning, business owners often struggle, and sadly most do not live up to expectations. However, it is those who push through failure, trust their ideas, and sell their product that make it big.
When deciding to start a business, you have to create something that is either demanded right now, or will be in the future. Why does someone want to buy your product or subscribe to your service?
I see starting a business risky and time consuming, but it is an avenue to success! There is infinite earning potential and you do not need to work for anyone. In addition, you are not paying 25% of your salary to the government.
My grade: A+
Final take: Starting a business is easy for some, but not so easy for others. You will run into obstacles and may question why you even started your business in the first place. However, having that commitment to your product and yourself will drive your business to success. First, think of a business idea and write out the steps you need to take in order for your business to thrive. If you can do that, I would definitely recommend giving it a shot! The reason so many people have gotten rich is because they have made an investment in themselves, not other people.