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Four Frugal Hobbies You Might Not Have Tried

Blogging started off as my hobby job [3].  Before I knew that I wanted to do this full time, I had been skipping around to different money-making part-time activities in an effort to find a hobby that I’d like and that would give me some extra cash to boot.  I personally worked in a local bookstore on the weekends for a few months, then tried petsitting for about half a year, and even babysat for a few weekends.  Here is a closer look at these hobby job ideas.

Local Bookstore

Working in the local used bookstore could be considered relaxing or boring depending on your personality type.  I made about $8 an hour in 2007 to work 16 hours every weekend.  I shelved books, helped customers find the perfect picks, and was trained to price out the books that customers wanted to sell.  I started in September but was bored to tears by December, so I made about $1500, which ended up paying for Christmas and padded our savings account a bit.

Petsitting

I actually loved petsitting.  I started in the beginning of 2008 but stopped about 6 months later since we adopted Mr. Pug and a two dog household was definitely enough.  I charged $15 a night for dogs that weighed less than 50 pounds and $20 a night for the big babies. I started off by posting my services on Craigslist but received most of my business overall from word-of-mouth.  I only had a dog about 3 days a week, so I ended up making about $1000 before I “retired”.  If you like to take care of a certain animal, I would highly suggest looking into this yourself.

Babysitting

This was a short hobby job for me.  I babysat a lot in high school and thought I could try again.  I once again listed my services and experience on Craigslist for $7.50 an hour for one kid or $10 for two.  I ended up getting called 3 times a week but kept getting cancelled on at the last minute.  The few times I actually got a job, the children were so bratty that I mostly wanted to run away by the time the parents got home.  When I was a kid, I loved babysitters and was on my best behavior so they’d come back.  The kids I took care of were like little princes and princesses that thought I was the help.  It was pretty bad.  I only made a couple of hundred dollars over a month and decided I was not babysitter material.

Blogging

Blogging was my most recent hobby job attempt.  I started commenting on personal finance blogs in October 2009 and started Budgeting in the Fun Stuff in February 2010.  I actually started this as a hobby and only realized its income potential [4] a few months later.  It wasn’t until October 2010 that I decided to try to pursue it as my main career.  By the end of 2010, I had made about $6000 and have already brought in about $18,000 in 2011.  I should be working full time from home by August 2011!  Best hobby job ever!

What hobby job experiences have you had?  Which ones have been your favorites?