One of the keys to building wealth is investing in income-producing assets. These assets make it possible to grow multiple income streams. They also serve as passive income sources that require little to no work on your part.
Whether you’re looking for financial freedom, a source of retirement income, or just looking for ways to grow your wealth faster while still working, income-generating assets should be a crucial part of your plan.
According to research done by Tom Corley, 65% of millionaires have at least three income streams (source). So if you want to join the ranks of millionaires, creating and developing multiple income streams should be one of your top priorities. Investing in income-generating assets is one of the best ways to accomplish this.
Related reading: Living Off Dividends
The Best Income-Producing Assets to Invest In
Let’s look at some of the most popular, practical, and realistic options for generating a steady income from your assets. These are the income-generating assets you may want to consider adding to your portfolio.
1. Dividend Stocks
The stock market is, of course, one of the most popular investments. It’s a great way to build wealth, whether you purchase individual stocks or invest through mutual funds or ETFs.
Some companies share their profits with investors by paying dividends to shareholders. These dividends can be received as cash or reinvested to buy more shares. Many companies that consistently pay dividends to shareholders are huge, well-known brands that have been around for a long time. As a result, these stocks tend to be less volatile than growth stocks or the stock market as a whole, and they’re excellent long-term buy-and-hold investments.
See our list of the best ETFs with high dividends.
Public.com offers fractional shares so anyone can start investing. You'll love the social aspect that makes it possible to connect with other investors. Get a free stock slice worth up to $300 when you open an account through our link.
- Commission-free trades of stocks and ETFs
- Buy and sell 27 different cryptocurrencies
- Fractional shares
- Access to alternative investors
- High-yield Treasury accounts
- Easy to use and beginner-friendly
- Connect with a supportive community of investors
- "Themes" help you to find investments that interest you
Thanks to online brokerages and apps like Public.com, Webull, and Moomoo, investing in dividend-paying stocks is easy. All three of these investment apps allow you to purchase fractional shares. You can start with as little as a few dollars.
In addition, you can use StockRover to analyze stocks based on details like their dividend history. Many companies have a proven track record of consistently paying dividends to shareholders over a long period. See our Dividend Aristocrat list for examples.
Although we’ll look at many different types of income-generating assets and investments throughout this article, investing in dividend stocks is possibly the easiest option for starting. It also offers another significant advantage, liquidity.
Many investments that generate passive income streams tie up your money and don’t allow you to convert it to cash quickly. That’s fine for money you won’t need for a long time. However, you can sell stocks whenever you decide, so you won’t have to worry about not being able to liquidate the investment.
Investing in dividend-paying stocks can be done on a small scale or a big scale. You can start small and gradually work your way up by continually adding more of these income-generating assets
Webull is a free investing app that provides advanced reporting tools and allows you to make free trades of stocks, ETFs, and options. Right now Webull is offering up to 12 free stocks when you signup through our link (use the button below) and deposit ANY AMOUNT!
- Get 5.0% APY on Webull Now!
- Commission-free trades of stocks, ETFs, options, and cryptocurrency
- Buy fractional shares for any amount
- Extended trading hours
- Advanced reporting tools
- IRAs now available
- 24/7 customer service
Getting started: Create a free account with Public.com. They offer a dividend stock investment theme, which is a list of stocks that have excellent track records of paying dividends to shareholders. You can find some ideas for possible investments and then place commission-free trades through Public.
Highlights of Dividend-Paying Stocks:
- The dividend yield can be reinvested or taken as cash
- Solid long-term investment
- Offers a high level of liquidity
- Very easy to get started and doesn’t require a significant upfront investment
2. Real Estate Crowdfunding
Real estate is an attractive investment to many. However, the hands-on nature of owning property and being a landlord prevents most from starting with these income-producing assets. Fortunately, there are ways to invest in real estate with or without owning property.
One of the easiest ways to start real estate investing is through crowdfunding. Many online platforms allow you to invest money in real estate without owning or managing properties, an excellent option for the average person.
Although a lot of companies fall under the umbrella of real estate crowdfunding, there are a few different possibilities:
Investing in Individual Properties
Groundfloor is open to any investor, and you can start with as little as $10. As an investor, you’ll provide money for rehabbing and developing residential real estate. Most of the projects are short-term (6-12 months), and on average. You can earn about 10% annually, although the details vary depending on the specific real estate deals.
Arrived is somewhat similar to Groundfloor in that it’s open to any investor. You can start with a small amount of money ($100), and you’ll invest in individual properties. The difference is, Arrived is a platform for investing in rental properties. You’ll earn passive income without the need to manage the property or deal with tenants.
You’ll need to be an accredited investor to invest in individual properties through RealtyMogul, and the minimum investment ranges from $5,000 – $35,000. However, these deals present substantial upside with the chance to earn an excellent return. Other options for accredited investors include CrowdStreet, Equity Multiple, and Cadre.
Investing in Portfolios
Some platforms allow you to invest in a portfolio rather than a specific property. The most popular platform of this kind is Fundrise. Fundrise offers a few different portfolios you can choose from.
The Starter portfolio allows investors to start with as little as $10 and generate passive income. They also offer three Core portfolios (supplemental, balanced, and long-term growth) with a minimum investment of $5,000. The Core portfolios allow you to choose something that fits your needs more precisely than the Starter portfolio.
Investing with Fundrise is entirely hands-free. You don’t need to research or vet specific properties. Fundrise handles all those details. Instead, all you need to do is add money to your account to invest in Fundrise’s growing portfolio of income-generating properties. Historically, Fundrise returns for investors have been very good.
One of the nice things about Fundrise is that investors can receive quarterly dividends as cash or have the dividends reinvested. You can change this setting easily at any time from your dashboard.
Getting Started: The easiest way to get started with real estate crowdfunding is to invest with Fundrise. You can sign up in just a few minutes (for as little as $10), and you don’t need to choose the projects. Instead, you’ll invest in a portfolio. You can also see this article for more options: Real Estate Crowdfunding for Non-Accredited Investors.
Highlights of Real Estate Crowdfunding:
- An easy way to invest in real estate without owning or managing properties
- Options are available for accredited and non-accredited investors
- Invest in individual properties or portfolios of properties
- Get started for as little as $10
- Receive dividends as cash, or have them reinvested
REITs (real estate investment trusts) are another popular way to invest without owning and managing property. The REIT owns income-generating properties, and as an investor, you get many of the benefits of owning real estate without the headaches.
There are many different types of REITs available. Some focus on residential properties, while others focus on commercial properties. Some are publically traded, while others are private. Private REITs tend to be very illiquid, so it’s not an investment that you should make if there’s a chance you might need the money soon.
Some real estate crowdfunding platforms offer REITs. For example, RealtyMogul offers REITs with a $5,000 minimum investment that pays dividends monthly or quarterly. Fundrise‘s portfolio investments are eREITs, providing the same advantages as REITs.
Getting Started: You can invest in REITs in many different ways. If you already have a Vanguard or Fidelity account, you can invest in many REITs (see our list of the best real estate and REIT ETFs). However, possibly the easiest way to start is with Fundrise. Since you can start with as little as $10, it’s an ideal option for anyone.
Highlights of Real Estate Investment Trusts:
- An easy way to invest in real estate without owning or managing properties
- There are many different types of REITs available
- Private REITs and non-traded REITs are illiquid and not ideal for short-term investors
- Start with as little as $10
4. Rental Properties
When you think about income-generating assets, real estate and, specifically, rental properties may be the first thing that comes to mind. Many millionaires have built their net worth by purchasing real estate properties that consistently generate rental income month after month.
A rental property could be a condo or townhouse, or it could be a single-family home. Additionally, multi-unit properties, like duplexes and apartment buildings, can be incredibly lucrative for landlords.
Of course, the opportunity to own rental properties also comes with a lot of work and effort on your part. If you don’t want the responsibilities of being a landlord, you can outsource property management to make it a more passive source of additional income. But you can maximize the cash flow and keep more money in your pocket if you’re willing to put in some sweat equity and manage the property yourself.
One of the nice things about owning rental properties is that it works on a small scale or a large scale. You can buy a single rental property to start or just rent out your own house when you move instead of selling it.
A single rental property can produce monthly cash flow, or you could scale up and purchase many different income-generating assets to grow your passive income from a rental empire.
If you’re interested in rental properties but hesitant to take on the responsibility, check out Arrived. This platform allows you to invest in individual rental properties, but you won’t be responsible for managing the property or dealing with tenants. It’s a passive way to invest without the need to get actively involved in the real estate market. You can start with as little as $100 for your first income-generating asset.
Getting Started: Read How to Generate Income from Rental Property
Highlights of Rental Properties:
- Proven method for growing wealth used by many millionaires
- Can be done on a small scale or a large scale
- Requires a lot of work if you are managing the properties yourself
5. Short-Term Rentals
Instead of renting out a house or property to a tenant, you could focus on the short-term market for travelers. This could involve turning your existing home into an income-generating asset by renting a single room or a unit, if the house has a separate unit.
Aside from renting out a room or a unit in your home, another option is to own a vacation home and rent it out. It’s possible to use the home for yourself and your family throughout the year and then rent it out when you’re not using it to make some money from this valuable asset.
You can make very good money with short-term rentals, but typically, there will be more work involved because you’ll be cleaning the room/unit and turning it over frequently.
While it’s possible to make money by purchasing a property specifically for short-term rentals, the best (and lowest-risk) way to get started is to rent out a room or unit in your existing home. You may be able to start making money from your home with little-to-no upfront investment.
Getting Started: Read my interview with Riley about how to rent a room on Airbnb. It’s a great story about a couple that prioritized income-generating assets.
Highlights of Short-Term Rentals:
- Rent a room or unit in your home or a vacation home
- Turn your unused space into income
- Requires work to clean the room/unit between tenants
Farmland may not be the sexiest or most exciting investment, but it’s a solid income-producing asset. Farmland has historically produced excellent investment returns with relatively low risk compared to the stock market. The need for farmland will never go away, and the supply continues to decrease, which increases the value of the land.
By owning farmland, you can generate a relatively safe income renting the land to farmers. You can also make money when you eventually sell the land after the value has increased.
Unlike many other investments, farmland typically experiences low volatility. However, the downside is that most farmland investments are illiquid.
While most people don’t have the means to purchase hundreds of acres of farmland, there are other ways to invest smaller amounts of money for these income-producing assets. For example, accredited investors can use platforms like AcreTrader and FarmTogether, crowdfunding platforms for farmland. These solid investments typically come with 5-10 year timelines. They can produce double-digit annual returns by the time the investment is complete.
Both AcreTrader and FarmTogether identify properties and farms that meet their requirements. Then, investors can purchase a share of ownership of that farm, which generates quarterly or yearly distributions from rental income. Investors also earn a percentage of the proceeds when the property sells.
Highlights of Farmland:
- Strong historical returns
- Low volatility and low correlation to the stock market
- Crowdfunding platforms are available for accredited investors
Bonds can be a low-risk way to earn some income. When you purchase municipal bonds, you’re loaning money to the government. The bond will have a maturity date. As long as you hold it until that maturity date, you’ll receive the amount you invested plus interest.
The return you’ll get from bonds will be lower than almost any other option covered in this article, but bonds are also lower in risk. Additionally, bonds are generally illiquid.
Aside from treasury bonds, another option is to purchase business bonds. Instead of loaning money to the government, you’ll lend money to businesses. Worthy Bonds allows investors to buy bonds for as little as $10 for an income-generating asset. The bonds pay a fixed interest rate of 5%. They are typically secured by inventory or accounts receivable, helping to reduce the risk for investors.
Getting Started: Create an account with Worthy Bonds, and you can easily purchase bonds for $10 increments.
Highlights of Bonds:
- Government bonds are a low-risk investment
- The return on your investment with government bonds will be low, but it’s safe
- Business bonds, like Worthy Bonds, offer better returns than government bonds but also come with slightly more risk
8. Low-Maintenance Businesses
Owning a business is a great way to generate income, and some types of businesses tend to be low-maintenance. These businesses can be ideal for producing extra income without interfering too much with your existing life or job.
While there are a lot of different possibilities (see this list of low-maintenance businesses for plenty of ideas), a few common choices include:
- Vending machines
- Car washes
- Storage facilities
These income-generating assets aren’t highly dependent on the owner or employees to function. Of course, there will be some work involved, but they can be more passive than many other types of businesses.
Some franchises could also fall into this category, especially if you own the business and hire others to manage it.
These businesses are excellent assets because they can produce steady cash flow for the owner.
Getting started: You could buy an existing business or create your own income-generating asset. Options like laundromats, car washes, and storage facilities require land or a storefront, so you must lease or buy the appropriate land or facility. A vending machine business is easier to start because you can buy one machine, find a place to put it, and keep it stocked.
Highlights of Low-Maintenance Businesses:
- The goal is to own a business that runs with very little human involvement
- Ideally, the business will generate income for you mostly on autopilot
- You could grow and expand as you have success with your first one
9. Small Businesses
Of course, you can invest in publicly-traded companies through the stock market. But there are also opportunities to invest in privately-owned small businesses as well.
Investing in small businesses can be risky because the businesses may not be well-established. Many small businesses fail. However, you’ll also have a chance to get an excellent return on your investment if the business grows quickly.
There are a few different ways to invest in small businesses, but the easiest option is to use Mainvest. You can start with as little as $100 and get 10-25% target returns. You can see the details of each business and choose the ones you want to invest in. Your investments will earn a revenue share based on the business’s performance. While not predictable or stable as some other income-generating assets, this approach can be a good fit for some investors.
Getting started: Create a free Mainvest account to see the details of all available investment opportunities. Link it to your bank account for a simple ACH deposit to begin investing.
Highlights of Investing in Small Businesses:
- Higher risk, higher reward than investing in large blue-chip companies
- 10-25% target return
- Start with as little as $100
10. Franchise Businesses
Another unique way to invest in businesses is to own a share of a franchise. Typically, owning a franchise involves a lot of work, and it could even be a full-time job. But FranShares allows you to buy an ownership interest in franchises without any responsibilities for running the business.
If you invest with FranShares, you’ll have an ownership interest in a portfolio of franchise-based businesses. The experts at FranShares hand-pick the best opportunities and those with high potential for investors (target returns are 16-21%).
You can start with as little as $500, and FranShares is open to both accredited and non-accredited investors. You’ll earn cash distributions from this income-generating asset, and the franchise’s value can also increase over time.
Getting started: All you need to do is sign up for FranShares and invest in one of the current offerings.
Highlights of Investing in Franchises:
- FranShares offers a passive way to have an ownership interest in profitable franchises
- 10-25% target return
- Start with as little as $100
Cryptocurrency has been a popular alternative investment over the past few years, and it can also be an income-generating asset. Instead of holding your crypto in your own digital wallet, you could lend it out and earn a nice interest rate.
With Gemini, you can earn interest on your crypto through staking. (Keep in mind, your cryptocurrency with Gemini will not be FDIC-insured like a traditional savings account.)
This option is not for everyone, but if you plan to buy-and-hold crypto, why not earn some interest from it?
Getting started: Sign up with Gemini and transfer your crypto. If you don’t have crypto already, you can easily purchase it through Gemini.
Highlights of Cryptocurrency:
- An interest-bearing account is ideal for buy-and-hold crypto investors
- With Gemini, you can withdraw your cryto and interest at any time
- Earn up to 8.05% APY
12. Online Business
Another business that has the potential to generate income and an excellent return on investment is an online business. Although many online businesses require a lot of work and effort to keep them moving forward, some online business models are better suited to generate income without turning into full-time jobs.
There are several options, and it won’t be possible to cover them all in this article. But here are some of the top choices for online businesses that serve as income-generating assets.
Buy Existing Websites and Blogs
A lot of work and effort goes into building a profitable and successful website. But you can skip that stage by purchasing an established online business that’s already profitable. Of course, you’ll need some capital to invest, but in the right situation, it can be an excellent investment that outperforms traditional investments. In addition, once you purchase the website/business, you could outsource any work you’re not willing or able to do on your own.
Some websites and online businesses require a lot more ongoing attention than others. If your goal is to own an asset that generates revenue without becoming a full-time job, determine how much time is required to run the business before purchasing it.
It’s also important to note that buying an existing website or blog is a high-risk, high-reward investment. Many people who buy sites ultimately wind up failing. So don’t risk any money that you can’t afford to lose. It’s also a good idea to gain some experience building a site from scratch before buying existing sites, which will reduce your risk.
Start a Niche Website
While blogging gets a lot of attention as a great way to make money online, running a blog can be high maintenance. A much lower-maintenance alternative is to create a niche website instead.
A niche website is similar to a blog, but the content is highly focused on one particular topic. The main reason niche websites can be lower maintenance than blogs is that most of your traffic will likely come from Google searches. So you won’t have many regular readers who visit your site frequently waiting for new content.
If you’re busy and have no time to publish something new, it’s not a big deal with a niche site. Also, the types of content published on most niche websites are easier to outsource, so you may not be doing much of the work yourself.
With a print-on-demand business, you can sell physical products without having money tied up in inventory. Whether you sell t-shirts, mugs, iPhone cases, or other products, the items will be printed for customers as they’re purchased.
Profit margins are lower with print-on-demand products because you won’t get discounts for buying products in bulk. However, it allows for a low-maintenance business without needing to deal with an inventory. In this case, you’re turning your designs into income-producing assets.
Getting Started: While buying an existing website is one way to get started, I highly recommend getting some experience by creating your own website before investing in another site. Once you have some experience, you can think about buying a site. Niche websites are great for beginners. See this guide to building a niche site.
Highlights of Online Business:
- Some, but not all, types of online businesses can produce income without too much involvement on your part
- You can outsource the work to other people if you want to make it passive
- The income potential is unlimited
- Niche websites are a great starting point for beginners
13. Digital Products
Digital products can be perfect for generating ongoing income, although this approach does require upfront work to get things set up. However, if you have traffic to a website or blog and a digital product that appeals to those visitors, that’s an excellent formula for generating ongoing income.
There are many different types of digital products you could create and sell, including:
- Online courses
It will take some time to create these income-generating assets, or you can hire someone else to do it for you. But evergreen products (products that sell for years to come) can produce income every month with minimal effort.
Digital products also offer excellent income potential, and you could even sell your business in the future for a lump sum.
Certain products like printables and e-books generally require minimal customer service, so they can be low maintenance going forward.
Access this free workshop and learn how to generate passive income by selling printables on Etsy. You'll learn about the types of products that sell, how to get your Etsy shop set up, and how to make sales and ensure that your shop is a success.
This is the perfect side hustle if you:
- Want to work from home
- Don't have much time
- Like the idea of selling on Etsy
- Don't have prior experience
Getting Started: You could create and sell many different products, so the first step is to choose a product. You’ll also need to decide if you want to create your own website to sell the product or sell from an existing marketplace. For example, you could sell printables, planners, and other digital products from sites like Etsy. See our article on how to start an Etsy shop for detailed instructions.
Highlights of Digital Products:
- Evergreen products can generate income and profit for years to come
- Upfront work is required to create the product and generate traffic
- The product creation can be outsourced
- This is an ideal option for someone who already has a website
14. Creative Assets
Do you have creative skills? If so, it’s possible to use those talents and abilities to create income-producing assets. For example, you could sell or license digital photos, graphic design, or music and audio files.
There are many different ways to make money with photography, and one option is to sell or license your photos to businesses. For example, you could contribute to stock photo marketplaces like Shutterstock and Adobe Stock, sell prints on Etsy, or sell on your own website.
If you’re a graphic designer, you can start a graphic design side hustle and create resources like icons, illustrations, logo templates, brochure templates, fonts, and much more. These products could be sold or licensed from stock marketplaces or your own site.
With some musical abilities, you could create audio files to sell or license on stock marketplaces or your own site.
These approaches allow you to create assets that may continue to generate revenue for months or years to come. But, of course, there’s a lot of competition in these industries, so you’ll need something high-quality. It’s also a good idea to create your own site instead of relying on sales from major marketplaces where it will be harder to stand out.
One of the nice things about this option is that it could be ideal for monetizing a hobby. These creative outlets are among the best hobbies that make money, so they’re perfect for generating income on the side of a full-time job while allowing you to do something you enjoy.
Getting Started: The fastest and easiest way is to contribute your creative resources to major marketplaces like stock photo sites, Envato Market, or Creative Market. However, if you’re focused on maximizing your long-term income, it’s a good idea also to create a website to promote your products rather than relying exclusively on marketplaces.
Highlights of Creative Assets:
- Potential to generate ongoing revenue
- Marketplaces are the easiest place to get started, but they’re highly competitive
- Create a website to promote products without relying on marketplaces
15. Books and E-books
If you write a book or e-book, you may continue to earn money from the sales for years to come. Write a few books or e-books, and you’ll multiply your income potential.
Of course, writing a book requires much work up front, but you might be rewarded with an excellent source of passive income. You can also hire a ghostwriter if you don’t want to write it yourself.
Once your book or e-book is written, you can sell it on Amazon through Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). You can sell it as an e-book and/or a print-on-demand paperback. There’s no cost to get started and you’ll benefit from Amazon’s massive reach.
Instead of selling on Amazon, or in addition to selling on Amazon, you can also sell your book or e-book on your own website. Podia makes it easy to set up a professional-looking website and sell digital products like e-books.
Selling on your own will give you more control and allow you to sell for a higher price, but you’ll also need to do more marketing to build your audience. If you already have a website with an existing audience, this could be a good option.
Getting started: Think about your expertise and decide on a topic. Then begin writing your first book or e-book. After it’s written, you can decide if you want to sell it on Amazon or your own website.
Highlights of Books and E-books:
- Write it once, sell it for years to come
- Marketplaces are the easiest place to get started, but they’re highly competitive
- Create a website to promote products without relying on marketplaces
Royalties are most commonly associated with music, although there are other possibilities (like art). Artists and musicians can make loads of money from royalties, but you don’t have to be an artist or musician to profit. Whoever owns royalty rights is the one who’ll be making money, and that presents an investment opportunity.
Investing in royalties is nothing new. Royalty rights have been bought and sold for a long time. But what is new is the accessibility of these income-generating assets for the average person. For example, Royalty Exchange allows musicians to raise money by selling royalty rights to their music.
If you’re looking for an alternative investment capable of producing ongoing income, this could be a great option.
Getting Started: You can create an account at Royalty Exchange and invest in royalties very quickly.
Highlights of Royalties:
- It’s possible to make a lot of ongoing income from royalties (it’s also possible that you’ll make nothing)
- Royalty Exchange makes it easy to get started
- Like any other investment, it’s a good idea to understand the investment before investing
A car is generally not an asset that will produce income. However, there are a few ways to change that.
The first option is to rent out your car when you’re not using it. Websites like Turo and Getaround allow you to list your car for rent. You have complete control over when it’s available. Depending on when and how often you need the vehicle, you may be able to rent it out at times and still have use of it when you need it.
The second option is to place advertisements on your car. Companies like Wrapify and Carvertise allow you to make up to $400+ per month by letting companies advertise on your vehicle. The most lucrative ads are full wraps that will cover your entire car.
Getting Started: Complete forms at Wrapify and Carvertise to see opportunities to put ads on your vehicle. If you’re interested in renting your car, simply create a profile and list it at either Turo or Getaround.
Highlights of Using Your Car for Income:
- You can generate income from an asset that typically does not produce income
- Renting out your car can be lucrative, but it may or may not fit with your schedule and your needs
- Placing ads on your car is an excellent option if you live and work in a high-traffic area
- If you’re renting out your car, be sure to consider the additional mileage and wear and tear
18. Truck or Cargo Van
If you own a pickup truck or cargo van, earn extra income by renting it out. Many people need a truck or van to move furniture, an appliance, or another large item. If they don’t have access to a truck, they’ll need to rent one.
Fetch is a rental platform that makes it easy for truck owners to produce passive income by listing their trucks for rent. According to Fetch, you can make up to $1,800 per month with this simple side hustle.
Since Fetch takes care of almost all the details, there’s not much left for you to do. They’ll market the rental for you and collect payments. They even have a device you can (optionally) put in your truck so renters can unlock the doors without the key. That means you won’t have to meet renters face-to-face!
Rent out your truck and make money passively with Fetch. Fetch's platform automates most of the process for you. They'll promote your rental to people in your local area, handle all customer inquiries, renter verification, and payment. The Fetch smart device even allows renters to unlock your truck with their phone so you don't have to meet them in person.
- Great side hustle for busy people
- Turn your truck into an income-generating asset
- Excellent income potential
- Rent out a single truck or build your own fleet
- Fetch guarantees that you'll make at least $1,500 in the first 90 days
19. RV or Camper
Do you own an RV or camper? If so, you probably only use it at limited times throughout the year. Most RV and camper owners will use it only for a few weeks out of the year, and then it sits the rest of the time.
You can turn your RVs and campers into income-generating assets by renting them out. It may sound complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. You might even be able to rent it to people you know a few times per year. Even a few rentals could bring in enough money to help offset some of the expenses of owning it.
RVshare makes it easy for you to list your RV or camper for rent. You might be surprised at how much money you can make from renting out an RV (up to $22,000 per year).
I’m not suggesting you buy an RV to make money by renting it out (although many people have done this). But if you already have an RV, camper, or travel trailer, you own an asset capable of producing extra income. And if you’re considering purchasing one for your family, maybe this is a way to make it more affordable.
Getting Started: Create a listing on RVshare so renters can find you and your RV or camper.
Highlights of Renting Out an RV or Camper:
- Turn a stagnant asset into an income-producing asset
- RVs and campers can bring in a significant amount of money from rentals
- There are a lot of people looking to rent RVs and campers
20. Storage Space
One of the best and most practical things to rent out is storage space. Many people have extra space they’re not using, and others are looking for reasonably-priced storage rentals.
Neighbor is a peer-to-peer rental platform for storage space. If you have extra space in your basement, attic, garage, shed, or spare bedroom, you can rent it out through Neighbor. You can even rent carports, parking spaces, and more.
Renting out your storage space is an ideal side hustle because it doesn’t take any time or effort. Neighbor makes it possible for renters in your area to find your listing, and they also handle all of the agreements and payments. All you need to do is ensure the renter can access the storage space.
Getting started: It’s easy to get started. All you need to do is sign up for Neighbor and create the listing for your space.
Highlights of Renting Out Storage Space:
- Many people have extra space they could rent out
- Excellent source of passive income
- Neighbor handles all of the details for you
An annuity is an insurance product that requires you to make either a lump-sum payment or a series of scheduled payments. In return, you’ll receive regular disbursements (possibly monthly) in the future. The primary purpose of an annuity is to provide income after retirement.
Annuities can provide a fixed income, or they can be variable. Fixed annuities are invested in bonds and will provide lower returns, while variable annuities are likely to be invested in mutual funds to achieve a higher annual return.
Getting Started: To learn more about these income-producing assets, please read How Do I Know if Buying an Annuity is Right for Me?
Highlights of Annuities:
- There are a lot of varying opinions when it comes to annuities, but they can be a good choice in the right situation
- Be aware of fees involved
- Work with a trusted advisor (not a salesperson) before purchasing an annuity
If you own land, there are a few ways you can use it to make money. Of course, it depends on factors like location, size, and land characteristics. However, here are a few options that may be possible.
Rent It Out to Pet Owners
Sniffspot is a website that allows you to list your yard or land, and dog owners can pay to bring their dog. Of course, you’re more likely to succeed with this closer to urban areas where land is harder to come by.
Rent It Out to Farmers
Shared Earth helps to match landowners with farmers. You can list your land to make it more visible to farmers who want to rent it. You can also rent it privately if you can find a renter.
If you have a yard but not enough land for a farm, you may be able to rent it out to someone who wants a garden. You can list it at YardYum, and others will be able to find it when they are looking for a place to start a garden.
If you have a large wooded lot, you may make some money by selling timber. Likewise, if you have the land, you can also plant and grow trees to sell timber in the future (you’ll need a lot of time and patience for the trees to grow).
If you don’t have enough land to grow large amounts of timber, you may grow smaller trees and plants on your land.
Highlights of Monetizing Your Land:
- If you have land, there are a lot of different ways to make money from it
- Your options will be influenced by the amount of land and the location
- Even with smaller amounts of land, you may be able to make money by renting out space for a garden or growing trees
23. Tax Liens
When a property owner or homeowner fails to pay taxes, a tax lien may be made against the property. The tax lien is a legal claim for the amount of unpaid taxes. A property with a lien cannot be sold or refinanced until the lien is paid.
Tax lien certificates are created when the lien is issued, and those certificates are auctioned off to the highest bidder. Savvy investors can purchase tax liens to collect payments and interest from the property owner.
The auctions may be in person or online, but bidding wars drive up the price and reduce the profit that can be made for the investor. Ideally, the investor will make a solid return by collecting payments, but foreclosure is always possible. It’s also possible that other liens could prevent the tax lien holder from taking ownership of the property in the event of foreclosure.
Tax lien investing offers the potential to generate income, but it’s also a risky investment. If you decide to pursue it, you’ll need to dedicate time to understanding the ins and outs of tax liens.
Getting Started: First, make sure you understand the details of these income-producing assets by reading this guide to investing in property tax liens.
Highlights of Tax Lien Investing:
- Potential to earn substantial returns
- High-risk investment
- Be sure you understand how tax liens work before investing
24. Mobile Homes
Earlier, we looked at the possibility of owning rental properties that generate consistent cash flow. A similar option is to purchase and rent mobile homes. You may also own the land where the mobile homes are located, or you could place it in a mobile home park and rent it out. Either way, it’s possible to generate a stable monthly income.
One of the reasons this is an appealing option is that the cost to get started is lower than buying a more traditional rental house or apartment building. The downside is the maintenance can be higher than a conventional home, and that mobile homes depreciate instead of increasing in value like a single-family home.
Getting Started: Start by researching your area. Check the local mobile home parks to see if they allow rentals, and check the market to see what mobile homes generate in monthly rental prices.
Highlights of Renting Mobile Homes:
- Lower cost to get started compared to renting a single-family home
- Potential for high return on investing
- The fundamentals are different than traditional rental properties since mobile homes depreciate in value
25. Safe Investments (Savings Accounts, Money Market Accounts, CDs)
While not glamorous investments, conservative options like savings accounts, money markets, and certificates of deposit (CDs) are also appropriate in the right situation.
The problem with these investments and savings vehicles is the low interest rates, so the yields may not even keep up with inflation. However, the liquidity and lack of risk make these safe investments appropriate for many situations, despite the low interest rates.
Getting Started: Online banks like CIT Bank have the best rates for savings accounts, money markets, and CDs.
Highlights of Safe Investments:
- You won’t get rich with these options due to the low interest rates, but they have a place in your investment portfolio
- Inflation may exceed the interest that you earn
- Savings accounts and money markets are ideal liquid assets for the money you may need to access quickly
Frequently Asked Questions
Income-generating assets produce recurring cash flow for the owner/investor. For example, rental properties are income-generating assets because they produce monthly rental payments. By adding income-producing assets to your portfolio, you’ll create a source of regular cash flow.
Some of the most common include real estate, stocks, bonds, business equity, and more. Income-producing assets like rental properties and dividend-paying stocks are favorites of many self-made millionaires who want to generate cash flow from their portfolios.
It depends on the type of asset that you want to buy. Some easy options include buying dividend stocks through any online broker or investment app or investing in real estate through a crowdfunding platform.
If you own income-generating assets, you won’t completely depend on earned income from a job. The passive income created by these assets can supplement what you make through your job, or you may be able to live on the money from these income-producing assets. This approach reduces financial risk and allows you to build wealth.
Some popular income-generating assets include real estate, dividend stocks, bonds, low-maintenance businesses, and royalties. All can be effective for creating passive income.
One of the easiest ways to start is to buy dividend stocks. Check our dividend aristocrats list to see companies with strong histories of paying dividends. Then invest in companies that interest you. You can use a commission-free brokerage like Public or Webull.
Final Thoughts on the Best Income-Producing Assets
Using your assets to generate multiple income streams is essential for building wealth and pursuing financial independence. Regardless of whether you’re looking to use your income-producing assets to generate money for living expenses or simply to grow your wealth faster, there are a lot of different possibilities.
While this is not an all-inclusive list, this does cover many of the most common options. So pick a few options that seem like a good fit for you and get started.