The Side Hustle: Step Up Your DIY Game

Side Hustle

Disclaimer-Captain DIY and highly recommend exercising extreme caution when attempting DIY projects. Not everybody can do everything, and some things should only be done by professionals. Keep your digits attached, and keep the insurance company off of your back. Do it right or call the right people!

We have gone over a lot of different aspects of DIY here (saving money, keeping fit, maintaining your fleet), and we have gone over some great reasons to build your DIY skill set. Now let’s look at a different angle: using your DIY skills to make some extra money with the Side Hustle.


As a professional tradesman, I have invested a great deal of time and money into the procurement of a license that allows me to make money with my skills. While the money potential might not be as great, non-licensed trade skills are in high demand and can easily be transformed into a small business on the side.

Let’s say you have gone and painted your entire house bit by bit. During that time you have definitely picked up some great tips and tricks, and your abilities have surpassed those of the common homeowner. Maybe not by much yet, but that doesn’t matter. What matters is that you have some experience, which is more than most people.

While there are many of us who relish dirty hands and stained work clothes, there are many more who abhor these marks of excellence. These people will do anything to avoid doing manual work, even going so far as to pay you good money to do it for them.

The Side Hustle, also known as Doing Work on the Side for a Bit of Money, is a fantastic way to bump up your savings rate without cutting more expenses. With a little bit of effort, the side hustle can grow into a flourishing business, and may even tip you over into full-fledged entrepreneurship if you want to take it that far. In this article we will go into a little bit of detail on how to properly start your own Tiny Business.

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Learnin’ the Skills

Assuming your work will be something that does not require a license, there is very little needed to get started. I highly recommend getting a simple business insurance policy if you plan on doing this for more than just one or two jobs for friends. For a couple hundred bucks a year you will be fully covered, and this way you mitigate the risk of losing personal assets in the case of a terrible misfortune.

I also went to my town hall and got a DBA (Doing Business As) certificate. This registers my business with the town and lets them know I am legitimate and proper, and for the cost of $25 (may vary) I had a bona fide business.

At first, your work will most likely be exclusively for people you know and their friends. Word of mouth goes a long way, and my business has been built almost exclusively through this method. Quality of work and inter-personal skills go a long way here.

Setting up a Facebook page for your business is easy, and provides a place for people to find you online without having to build a website. My Facebook page gets a few views every week, and I have been getting more calls for work than I can handle. This also gives you an internet destination to put on your business cards, which helps legitimize your business.

If you do decide to go as far as learning a high-skill trade, the earning potential for side jobs increases dramatically. As a painter you can certainly get away with charging $25-35 per hour, but an electrician or plumber can charge upwards of triple that, depending on the geographic location. I’m not suggesting you change careers just to improve your Side Hustle Potential, but if you’re just starting out it is an enticing offer to consider.

There you have it, it’s as simple as that. Learn the skills, get some tools, get some insurance, and let the quality of your work speak for you. As your reputation grows the calls will start coming in, and you could even get to the point where you can start being choosy about which jobs you take. Since this is the side hustle, you don’t rely on it for your bread and butter, so you don’t have to take the bad jobs.

Get out there, make some money, and show the world how awesome your DIY skills have become! The Pillars of FI are waiting for you, here is a way to tackle a few of them at once!

Remember the pic at the top? 

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