When you want a career change at 40, you want to move to something you enjoy and so the ideal of turning a hobby into a career is very appealing. But is this a realistic possibility or just a pipe dream?
First of all, it's going to depend on what your hobby is and the sort of career you would enjoy. For example, the best way to turn your particular hobby into a career might be to teach it, but you might not enjoy teaching.
So you need to start out by looking at the ways in which you could make money from your hobby. Do you create a product which people would be prepared to buy? This would relate to hobbies such as arts and crafts.
Do you have knowledge which people need and want? Like the ability to speak another language or to play a musical instrument? Do you know how to look after or train animals?
Or does you hobby involve collecting something? If you've been doing it for a long time, you'll have knowledge of how to identify the best objects, where to find bargains, how to store and display your collection and so on.
Finding the Best Ways to Make Money from your Hobby
1. Selling Your Products
If you have a good number of products which you have created, you need to find somewhere to sell them. Are there craft fairs in your area where you could sell them?
Generally speaking, you have to send a written application to be able to sell goods at a craft fair. Bigger fairs will fill up quickly and so you need to get your application in early, sometimes as much as six months in advance.
Other options are to go to a car boot sale or set up your own yard sale. If you have a large collection of goods, you could look at selling them in a local market. This is a particularly good idea coming up to Christmas, when people are on the look out for unusual gifts.
Another option is to build you own website and sell your products online.
2. Selling Your Knowledge
The internet is sometimes known as the information super highway and it is by far the easiest way to get information on just about any subject. So if your hobby has given you information which you could sell, there are various ways in which you can do this online.
You can create an e-book, a video series or a combination of video, audio and written reports which can be sold as a one off purchase or made into a subscription based series of products or lessons.
Another alternative is to create webinars and live teleconference calls which cover a subject in great detail and are scheduled every week or month.
You can also use the same materials to create offline workshops, which is especially useful if you are teaching practical skills. These can be videoed and sold online as downloadable files or as DVDs.