If you have a spare bedroom, you can find a roommate or list the space on AirBnB for travelers. Having a roommate is the more passive of the two, as being an Airbnb host will require more work in the form of turning over the room between stays. This is a super painless way to earn $500 to $1,000 a month without much effort – you may even be able to cover your mortgage payment with this extra income!
I wanted to specifically call out one particular strategy within equity investing that bears mentioning – dividend growth investing is when you focus on stocks that not only pay a dividend but have a history of strong dividend growth. When I was first building my portfolio of individual stocks, I focused on buying companies with a history of dividends, a history of strong growth, and financials that supported a continuation of both.

The Automatic Millionaire – I randomly found it in a used bookstore years ago and decided to check it out. Little did I know that it was a #1 bestseller and still well read today. I found it was an easy read and gained some valuable ideas from it. The first is that you need to “Pay Yourself First” meaning don’t invest what you have at the end of the month after all your expenses are taken out. Set aside what you’re going to invest first, then the rest of your budget should adjust to that. And then like the title suggests, automate your savings and debt payments and that will put you on the right path to being wealthy.
I don’t make all my blogging income through them. In fact, the residual income sites make up approximately 10% of my whole writing income but that doesn’t mean they’re not worthwhile. I don’t promote a lot of my content and I don’t use the sites as much as I used to do. I also have my private writing clients who make up a good 60% of my writing and blogging income.
I know subscriptions are a litttttlleeee controversial but hear me out: bloggers like ElephantJournal have been super successful using Wall Street Journals approach of providing 3-5 posts a month for free and then asking for a small subscription fee. This one is worth thoroughly A/B testing though, because if it impacts your session depth and overall pageviews, your display ad revenue will take a hit.

The plugin works with all major payment gateways including PayPal, Authorize.net, and Stripe. You can even offer site visitors coupons or free trials. You can also establish any kind of membership system you want from dripped content to freemium to a full pay-to-access everything setup. It also includes a setup wizard, the ability to opt out of features, and more.
Creating a product to sell is decidedly active, not passive. And selling other people’s products is active too when you have to build your own store and maintain inventory. However, if you use dropshipping, all you have to do is set up a store and drive was web traffic to it. Everything else is handled by another company and you walk away with a share of the profits.

PS Joel also throws up the whole coaching idea in this book, and whilst it’s not at all passive I just wanted to mention it, because this is one of the ways to create a six-figure business for yourself if you are a true expert in an arena.  ie you can use passive income info products (that generate say $30,000 a year) to pull in the customers for your 1-1 or mastermind style coaching service (that brings in say $100,000+ a year).