In these times where job security is not what it once was, and the recession looks like it is here to stay, more and more Americans are looking to turn their free time into a profitable time.

SEE: Start Your Own Small Business

It used to be considered risky to start a business, but in the age of the Internet, start-up costs are at an all-time low. If you have been thinking about starting your own evening or weekend business, then maybe these ideas can set you on the road to entrepreneurship.
Do you have a hobby for antiques collection or knowledge of a certain type of collectible? If so, you could turn this into a business and make money from your hobby. Sites like eBay have made it easier than ever for people to reach their target markets from the comfort of their homes. Trading cards, video games, stamps, books – all of these things can be turned around for a profit if you know what you are looking for.

Do you have a passion for a topic or a detailed knowledge of a specific area? If so, you really could make money from a blog. You will need to be providing information on a topic that people are searching the Internet for, or are interested in. You can set up a blog for free and learn how to optimize your site for the search engines with a search of the Internet or using free books from the library. Once you are getting visitors, you can sell advertising space to the large search engines, approach businesses that would be interested in the demographic you're attracting or sell other people's products as an affiliate.

In today's busy world, many people will pay you to take the household chores off their hands. You could offer cleaning or ironing and work as many hours as you wanted. If you don't want to promote your own services around the neighborhood, consider joining a house-cleaning company and go on its books for the back-up of an established name and company.

Virtual Assistant
Do you have office or personal assistant (PA) skills that you could sell in an evening? If so, there is an increasing demand for the services of virtual assistants. You help executives or small businesses in a whole range of tasks a PA might do, but you do it from your own home on your own time. There are many online companies that will list your services to their clients.

Got Spare Space?
Do you have spare room or a garage space you could rent out? If you don't like the idea of having a permanent lodger in your home, consider renting the space to exchange students or overseas visitors to local colleges. This way you will have periods of peace. If you live in a popular city where parking is at a premium, you can rent out a parking space or garage space.

Like Animals?
If you like dogs and a good walk, consider becoming a dog-walker in your spare time. You can charge per dog you walk. If you can drum up business, you could walk two or more dogs at a time. Doing this could double or triple your earnings. Offer pet-minding as well and you could make a whole business out of it. You should check out liability insurance in case something happens with a dog and a member of the public.

The Bottom Line
Many American's are turning to their evenings and weekends to earn alternative incomes, whether or not their plans are to eventually leave their day jobs. It is crucial that your side business doesn't jeopardize your current job. Only you know what your company's policies are, but be sure to assess your present situation. Do you need to be upfront with your boss about your evening business? Of course, you cannot let your business interfere with your work. "Business" emails and phone calls during your working day should never occur.

If you want to run a business and also work full time, you need to be prepared to be focused, disciplined and not have too much down time. If financial freedom and doing what you love is your motivation, you should go for it. It's easier than you think.

SEE: Top-Paying Part-Time Jobs

Photo Courtesy of A6U571N

Related Articles
  1. Investing Basics

    How To Invest In Private Companies

    Owning a private firm means sharing more directly in the underlying firm’s profits.
  2. Entrepreneurship

    How to Run a One-Person Business

    Learn how to get a successful one-person business up and running with a business plan, financing, time-management tricks and delegation of tasks.
  3. Entrepreneurship

    Top Legal Tips for Starting a Business

    Before you launch a new business, make sure you're on top of the key issues that most startups face.
  4. Investing News

    The 10 Fastest Growing Green Startups in 2016

    These social entrepreneurs adopt triple bottom lines that champion urgent environmental problems while generating returns for shareholders.
  5. Retirement

    Roth IRAs Tutorial

    This comprehensive guide goes through what a Roth IRA is and how to set one up, contribute to it and withdraw from it.
  6. Entrepreneurship

    Multilevel Marketing Isn't Always A Scam, But It Often Is

    Nerium and Amway are popular direct sales companies that recruit new buyers and sellers to make a profit. Sadly, many direct sales firms are scams.
  7. Entrepreneurship

    10 Characteristics Of Successful Entrepreneurs

    Do you have the qualities of a successful entrepreneur? Those who do tend to share these 10 traits.
  8. Investing

    5 Up and Coming Social Media Startups

    Although the days of Facebook's dominance aren't close to being over, here are some new creative platforms gaining traction on the worldwide web.
  9. Entrepreneurship

    Are You Really an Entrepeneur? A Reality Check

    If you are going to be an entrepreneur, and you’re doing it on a shoestring, you’ll need more than a good idea. Here are some skills to master.
  10. Entrepreneurship

    Digital Nomads in the Modern Economy

    Digital nomads compose a growing portion of the modern economy.
  1. Do working capital funds expire?

    While working capital funds do not expire, the working capital figure does change over time. This is because it is calculated ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. How does escheatment impact a company?

    In recent years, state governments have become increasingly aggressive in enforcing escheatment laws. As a result, many businesses ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. How much working capital does a small business need?

    The amount of working capital a small business needs to run smoothly depends largely on the type of business, its operating ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What does low working capital say about a company's financial prospects?

    When a company has low working capital, it can mean one of two things. In most cases, low working capital means the business ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What types of capital are not considered share capital?

    The money a business uses to fund operations or growth is called capital, and there are a number of capital sources available. ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. Can I buy insurance to reduce unlimited liability in a partnership?

    Partnership insurance is actually quite common. Most of the time, partners buy insurance to safeguard against the possibility ... Read Full Answer >>
Trading Center