I was telling my friend Sam about some new money-making ideas. Every single one can be launched with near-zero capital. But he stopped me cold.
“It takes money to make money,” Sam insisted.
So I didn’t tell him my ideas. I’ll tell them to you instead.
Teach a class.
What hobby or pastime do you know enough about to teach? Do you knit? Do you practice yoga? My cousin knew just enough about painting with watercolors to set up a beginners’ class in her garage. You don’t have to know everything about your subject. Just the fundamentals.
Flyers posted at hobby and craft shops, health food stores, or other related locations are probably all the advertising you’ll need.
Be a tutor.
My parents spent a lot of money having someone help me with my algebra homework when I was a kid. How’s your math? How are your grammar skills? Can you help children write those nasty essays they always need to compose? Could you tutor adults trying to pass a citizenship test?
Let local schools know you’re available to help their students.
Conduct walking tours.
How well do you know your city? Do you know its history — some of its most interesting sites, and the stories behind them?
During one visit to Vienna, Deb and I took a walking tour of locations used in the classic movie The Third Man, complete with zither music. And we once followed the footsteps of Jack the Ripper in London’s East End. But every city needn’t be exotic.
Small ads in tourist publications, or flyers posted at local tourist centers, is all you need to get started.