According to a recent survey from Bankrate.com, nearly 4 in 10 Americans have a side hustle. While there are many excellent reasons for starting a side hustle career – from looking for inspiration and excitement to compensate a dull office desk job, to wanting to learn new skills – most side hustlers embrace their secondary career as an additional source of income. As a result, it’s not uncommon for individuals to accumulate side jobs, sometimes running up to 5 different hustles simultaneously.
However, if you want to develop a profitable side career, you need to focus your attention on a sector such as the real estate market, which presents many advantages. Indeed, for amateur investors, the property market is the preferred starting spot as its process are easy to understand and manage.
While you may not want to become a professional investor or even to develop a financial career, there is no denying that working in an industry where the main product is a brick and mortar entity can facilitate your journey. After all, it is easier to engage with a tangible and known object, aka the home.
Additionally, as everyone has a home, it naturally creates demand for a business that is dedicated to dealing with house-related topics. As a result, many side hustlers choose to tap into the many opportunities of the property world to develop their second source of revenue.
There is only one problem with a house-related side business. Don’t be fooled by its apparent simplicity. Unless you’re properly trained, a property improvement and management side hustle is a terrible business idea!
#1. You and your team could work with dangerous materials
Home improvement is a highly promising sector for a new coming contractor. As an untrained side hustler, you need to be clear about the projects that you can legally and physically tackle and the upgrading and renovating works you should avoid.
According to home insurance providers and legal advisors, you should not provide services that relate to structural elements. For instance, unless you are a professional builder in your primary career, building an extension to a home or taking a wall down to open up the space needs to be the kind of things that are best left untouched. Additionally, if you have gathered a team of workers for your hustle, you need to take all the preventive measures you can to protect their health during projects.
Indeed, according to mesothelioma lawyers, you can be held responsible if your staff is exposed to hazardous materials such as asbestos during a project. In short, if you are to offer small DIY services at home, you need to first check on your rights and abilities to perform the task but also on the safety of everyone who works with you. Failure to do so could have legal consequences.
#2. You don’t have the right equipment
Each year, nearly 40 million Americans change house. It is roughly 14% of the population, according to USA Today. While 62% of movers tend to remain in the same county and state, they are often unprepared to tackle the challenges of a small move. For a side hustler, they are the perfect audience. They don’t want to get in touch with professional removal companies, but they can get overwhelmed with the DIY moving strategy – or lack of. But if you are to target this sweet spot on the moving market, you need to be prepared for the challenges of removals.
For a start, you have to forget about the cardboard cliché. Most people tend to wait until the last minute; they are not prepared, and they don’t always have suitable cardboard boxes. You need to be the one who provides for them the necessary equipment – you can’t just make do without adequately packed boxes. Additionally, you need to purchase extra tools and gadgets to help you secure and carry heavy loads; otherwise, you could seriously injure yourself.
#3. You are not a trained builder
Even though you know which construction projects are suitable for untrained builders, such as yourself, it doesn’t mean your home improvement business is going to be a success. DIY mistakes can be costly if you lack experience. Amateur builders are more likely to miscalculate the real cost of each project.
As a side hustler, you want to be in a position to provide a quote for your work. It’s not uncommon to use more material than you initially planned for, as you’re more likely to make mistakes or break some items. Additionally, even if you stick to manageable DIY improvements, such as building a custom wall-mounted shelf, you need to remember that you are liable if your construction collapse as a result of an error. In the end, small DIY mistakes you’d ignore in your home could drain your side hustle capital.
#4. You’ve painted one room; you’re not a decorator
While most homeowners like to change their interior decor, many prefer to entrust the work to a DIY decor consultant. However, you need to be clear about your skills. Painting a room an interior designer does not make. When your clients trust you with the creation of a cozy space, you can’t afford to disappoint.
If you are keen to offer decor advice, you should first take a design course to make sure that you know what you’re talking about. A simple mistake such as forgetting to test paint samples on the wall can dramatically transform the room – and not always for the best. Similarly, attempts to create a contemporary mix and match design can leave a home feeling impersonal and cluttered.
#5. Careful, house flipping is not for amateurs
For experienced investors, house-flipping can be a profitable side business. However, flipping properties requires a lot more skills than adding a few cosmetic fixes before putting a house on the market. There are specific strategies you need to understand and master if you are to make a profit. But first of all, you need to start with sufficient resources to flip successfully. Profit comes from having the money, the time, the skills, and the knowledge to invest in the property.
If you’re going to give it a try, you need to make sure you’ve planned for all the potential bumps in the road. If it’s your first time house-flipping, it’s unlikely that you’ll sell the home as quickly as you plan to. Can you afford to pay the property taxes for longer than planned? Learning how to lower property taxes can mitigate some of the risks, but you need to be prepared for every eventuality.
While property side hustlers might, at first, seem like a profitable business opportunity, you need to be cautious. Unless you know what you’re doing and what your responsibilities to your clients and potential employees are, you can’t turn your side business into a success.