The main photo is courtesy of Splacer, a marketplace where you can book, list & discover unique places.
Here’s a roundup of a wide range of creative programs and marketplaces that you can leverage to make supplemental income from your home, backyard, garage, land, and more!
Current Sharing Economy Opportunities for Homeowners
A wide range of innovative companies are continuing to empower a worldwide population of property owners to monetize their largest assets, their homes and land, in ever creative and flexible ways. These platforms and services are not only helping homeowners to pivot quickly for critical financial needs (e.g. shared equity contracts), but they are also enabling homeowners to combine a passion (e.g. cooking, pet care, entertaining) with supplemental income streams.
If you have been unable to keep up with the latest in the “sharing economy”, here is a roundup of the latest unique opportunities to spark your interest on the many ways to make additional income from your properties.
To convey their unique services quickly, many of these young firms often refer to their services as “the Airbnb of [Fill-in-the-Blank]”, as in “Parking”, “Storage”, “Event Rentals”, “Pet Boarding”, “Photo Shoots”, etc. They also often refer to their marketplaces as “Peer-to-Peer”, but we recommend that they start using the phrase “Neighbor-to-Neighbor”, as this conveys a warmer, more personal and trustworthy marketplace.
Before proceeding with any of these programs, we strongly recommend that you always perform thorough research upfront, including checking the following: local laws & licensing requirements; tax and insurance implications (e.g. commercial liability); HOA restrictions; as well as safety and security precautions.
10 Home Monetization Opportunities
- Culinary Hosting
- Short-Term Rentals
- Pet Care
- Swimming Pools
- Photo-Film Shoots & Events
- Land Leasing
- Shared Equity Contracts
1. Lease Your Unused Parking Spaces
If you have available parking spaces in a neighborhood that has inherent parking challenges – e.g.: scarce commercial parking; event venues; costly workday parking; harsh weather conditions; proximity to tourist attractions – this income stream offers the easiest method in terms of low maintenance, personal security and overall convenience. With the right platform, it is possible to maximize your income potential by segmenting multiple reservation plans per space, e.g.: day-time weekdays; night-time weekdays; weekends; and event parking.
The parking space marketplaces listed below are all focused on making parking easier, convenient and more affordable for drivers, while making it easy for property owners to make efficient, supplemental income on their under-utilized parking spaces.
Keep in mind that there is also demand for lots and garages to store other vehicle types such as RVs, boats, motorcycles and other recreational vehicles. Though there are several sites dedicated solely to parking, several storage marketplaces, like Neighbor, also allow property owners to list parking spaces.
Founded in 2011 by Mark Lawrence and Larry Kiss, and based in Chicago, SpotHero states that they are the #1 rated and downloaded parking reservation app in the US. Their comprehensive parking reservation platform works with a wide range of facilities nationwide, with many advanced features including real-time demand and occupancy-based dynamic pricing for their most demanding customers.
Since launching, they have helped over 30 million drivers find easy, affordable parking with over 2 million on-demand spaces at more than 7,500 locations, in over 300 major North American cities. Though a significant portion of their operation is targeted towards commercial parking solutions, they also serve homeowners who are looking to rent their available parking spaces, referred to as “Independent Sellers”.
CurbFlip refers itself as the “Do It Yourself App for Renting Out Your Parking Space”. Founded in 2015 by Rodney Young, CurbFlip’s focus is making finding and listing parking spaces exceptionally fast and easy, for both drivers and hosts. The site emphasizes global cities with high traffic and costly parking problems. US cities promoted include: Los Angeles, New York City, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seattle, Sacramento, Atlanta, Boston, Miami, Washington, DC and Honolulu. CurbFlip also caters to listing spaces for more than just cars, such as: bicycles, motorcycles, recreation vehicles, campers, and boats.
Stow It facilitates a marketplace for consumers needing to store a wide-range of vehicles and vessels. Stow It attracts customers looking for rental spaces for cars, boats, RVs, recreational vehicles, trailers, semi-trucks and other vehicles. If you have a garage, barn, parking lot, or parcel of land, this could be an ideal way to monetize your unused space.
JustPark has been a pioneer in the on-demand peer-to-peer parking space, having launched in 2006, after its founder, Anthony Eskinazi, had difficulty trying to park at a San Francisco Giants baseball game. Though parking spaces can be listed in 18 countries, JustPark’s largest market by far is in the UK, with over 6 million users and over 20K property owners using their app. Regardless, this site is helpful to understand the potential and current state-of-the-art within the on-demand parking arena.
Additional Sites that Offer Parking Marketplaces
2. Rent Your Unused Storage Spaces
After parking spaces, leasing unused storage space is the next easiest form of supplemental income, as it typically does not require any day-to-day interactions with customers, nor entail frequent access to the interior of your property or home. Firms in this sector have certainly benefited from leveraging the phrase of being “the Airbnb of Storage”, as it helps prospective renters and hosts to understand immediately what this opportunity implies: convenient nearby storage with flexible, affordable terms.
Neighbor makes it easy for homeowners to earn money from unused space, inside or outside, with short-term storage rentals. Popular storage units offered include: garages; driveways; closets; basements; attics; sheds; bedrooms; warehouses; and outdoor lots for RVs & boats. For more details on Neighbor, read our in-depth review: How Homeowners Can Monetize Their Unused Space with the “Airbnb of Storage” Neighbor.com.
Local storage in your own neighborhood is quickly becoming the preferred method of storing belongings for short and long term needs. Sites such as Stache offer free move ins and insurance for stashers and income potential for property owners. The company also offers $1 million in liability coverage and $50K in property damage protection for hosts offering their garages, store rooms, extra bedrooms, parking spaces or closets, to name a few ideas, to potential renters. All activity is handled on the platform from booking, to messaging to payment, you just provide the profile for whatever space you wish to rent.
3. Host Culinary Events
With Eatwith, great chefs with superior hosting skills can take advantage of their natural talents, while earning money hosting cooking classes and culinary events in their homes. By providing food tours (perhaps you live in a specific region famous for its cuisine), demonstrating cooking techniques you have learned over the years, or sharing recipes that have been in your family for generations, you can host guests from around the world, as part of a culinary experience for gourmands.
Share your passion and knowledge of food and wine by hosting events, either as a side gig or as a precursor to the launch of a future gourmet business. BonAppetour offers support with marketing, mentorship and consultancy to help food entrepreneurs grow and prosper around the world.
Your home or venue can be used in conjunction with a CozyMeal chef to entertain an upscale clientele of corporate clients for a private dining experience. Showcase your home or property or host your own culinary event with a dedicated team of support staff for large celebrations or private experiences.
Additional Culinary Opportunities
4. Share Your Home as You Age In Place
As you explore options for safe and healthy Aging-In-Place matchmaking services like those listed below, also consider the wide ranging benefits of having an ADU (Accessory Dwelling Unit) nearby.
Silvernest has been described as “a long-term version of Airbnb coupled with Match.com for the AARP generation”. This trending living arrangement was conveyed in the movie All Together, which depicts six elderly friends in France who, for financial, health and companionship benefits, decide to move in together, with both poignant and amusing consequences.
With Silvernest, elderly homeowners can share the cost of homeownership, while improving their human support system by connecting with like-minded adults to fill their empty nests with complimentary needs and preferences. Seniors are matched for compatibility to provide mutual support and friendship during their golden years. Silvernest succinctly bills their service as a “secure roommate finder and all-in-one homesharing platform”.
As an alternative to Assisted Living Facilities, Senior Homeshares offers an online housemate service to match compatible, mature adults in an empty-nester’s home. As advances in medicine and health have allowed humans to live longer, gerontologists can agree that Aging in Place in a comfortable, functional, safe environment is the best living arrangement for longevity and fulfillment for seniors. Matching services help mature homeowners and housemates defray ongoing costs of ownership and living, while providing much needed social interaction and fellowship for peace of mind.
Arguably the pioneer in the Senior Homeshare business for over 35 years, Homeshare Vermont matches two or more seniors for mutual needs. With a long established, track record, the company has developed a comprehensive screening and matching process to make the best possible matches for aging seniors in the Vermont area. With a full staff to help homeowners decide what they need, be it companionship, help around the home or a combination of the two, the company’s experts are available to make the best mutually beneficial match.
5. List Part of Your Home as a Short-Term Rental
Though Airbnb has long been a household name and concept, here are a few alternative marketplaces that are also assisting homeowners to monetize their properties through flexible, short-term rentals.
If you are considering renovating your home to accommodate a short-term rental, be sure to read about the benefits of having an ADU (Accessory Dwelling Unit) on your property.
Plum Guide: Host Video
6. Offer Your Property for Pet Exercise or Pet Boarding
Pet exercise and pet boarding (keeping pets overnight at your home) are good examples of passion income streams, as “non-dog lovers” should refrain from pursuing these types of opportunities, in our opinion. Even persons that are well-trained and adept at handling dogs need to conduct thorough due diligence prior, including: commercial liability insurance; local licensing requirements; local restrictions pertaining to residential kennels; and additional safety and security measures.
Rover.com, based in Seattle and founded in 2011, operates an online marketplace for people to buy and sell pet care services including pet sitting, dog boarding, and dog walking. Rover classifies itself as “the world’s largest network of 5-star pet sitters and dog walkers”. According to Rover, sitters who care for dogs overnight in their homes, can make up to two times more income than sitters who don’t.
Part of Rover’s growth efforts has been to merge with other platforms with similar offerings and strong customer bases, such as DogVacay, in 2017, and DogBuddy, in 2018.
Try a Side Hustle: Rover Dog Sitting Edition by Annie Patota
Video courtesy of Annie Patota.
Sniffspot is an app that enables homeowners to offer their yards as attractive dog play areas, pitching the service as “Rent Safe and Private Dog Parks Hosted by Locals”. Sniffspot bills itself as the largest community of safe, private spaces for dogs to play, with an overarching mission of making a more dog-friendly world. Private enclosed yards can be used for off-leash exercise and training, and are especially in high demand in urban areas, as public exercise areas have a lot of risks for dogs with reactivity issues. Hosts are provided $1 million protection insurance.
A Sniffspot Host Story: Stefan & Brasa
Video courtsey of David Adams, Founder & CEO of Sniffspot.
Additional Sites that Offer Pet Care
7. Rent Your Swimming Pool by the Hour
Since we first covered this innovator almost a year ago, Swimply, the pool-sharing company, has grown 3,000%, as “the Airbnb of Pools”. This growth equates to having over 45,000 swimming pool hosts in the US. The concept of democratizing luxury items, such as vacation homes, swimming pools and home theaters is quickly becoming a boon for homeowners who reap the monetary benefits. Underutilized assets such as pools, allow the community to enjoy the luxury of these assets for a nominal fee. Everyone wins!
Underutilized assets, such as swimming pools can also be networked for other uses such as private instruction or team practice sessions. Propel, based in Canada, is the first online marketplace offering private swim lessons through a network of under-utilized swimming pools in hotels, gyms and schools vacant during the summer months. Though their network does not currently include residential pools, we envision Propel and Swimply someday connecting their platforms to expand their customer bases and improve their offerings.
8. Host Photo-Film Shoots & Events
The idea of leasing your home to a company to host an event such as a film shoot, music concert, photography session or other occasion is not new for some homeowners. Angelenos are well aware of the money making potential of leasing out their homes, judging by the plethora of yellow filming location signs in residential areas throughout Southern California. Perhaps one of the most lucrative methods of monetizing your home, with very little risk, is through short-term film and commercial production leasing.
Splacer provides a platform to list your property for inspired, undiscovered and idle places to create meaningful, unique experiences. Property owners of all types (homes, land, warehouses, condos, single rooms) are invited to place photos of their space, along with a profile that includes descriptions on capacity limits, rules for the property (e.g. No Smoking) and pricing. Founded by an architect and a software engineer, the company’s vision is to disrupt the way people have access to undiscovered and unique spaces by allowing photographers, musicians, event planners and anyone else who needs just the right “brand” to rent an experience previously available only to film production.
With the tagline “Fill Your Space’s Downtime”, Peerspace has been on a mission to match idle spaces with creative endeavors since 2014. With an impressive average of 10 inquiries per month per host, monetizing your space is within your control. Hosts are invited to list their spaces for free, complete with a photo profile including descriptive details and pricing. The company’s platform handles bookings, messaging and payments, for a nominal 15% fee.
Giggster is a property matching service for hosts (property owners) and renters (film and location scouts, event planners, etc.). Originally intended as a platform specifically for film production, the company has since expanded its offerings to include dinners, weddings, parties and other large social events. The database of venues includes categories for photoshoots, commercials and big budget film productions to give property owners the right showcase for their specific venue.
Giggster Video Promo
We have provided additional links below to other platforms offering to match property owners with companies involved in social events and film and video productions:
9. Lease Your Land
Should you find yourself with more acreage than you can possibly use at the moment, consider leasing some land to a Tiny House owner or two, or to vacationing campers.
SearchTinyHouseVillages.com is a searchable online directory of Tiny House Communities that was created with the primary purpose to help Tiny House owners find land on which to park their houses. According to the owner of the site: “the hardest part about tiny living is finding a place to park it”. Though the site promotes the benefits of a Tiny House Village, consisting of multiple Tiny Houses, it also mentions that a “village can be as small as a landowner wanting to share the land with a tiny houser”.
Launched in 2013, HomeCamper allows travels to rent land on someone’s private property anywhere in the world, while enabling hosts to earn money leasing out their land. Their online booking platform has listings in over 42 countries and caters to travelers that tour in vans, RVs, campers, motorcycles and boots (AKA hikers)!
Additional Sites that Can Help You Lease Your Land or Yard
10. Tap Into Home Equity with a Shared Equity Contract
One of the fastest, easiest and most impactful way to monetize one’s home is to enter a Shared Home Equity Contract which provides the homeowner an interest-free, lump sum of cash that does not require any monthly payments. The investor, in turn, receives a percentage of the home’s ownership. A critical requirement for a financial instrument of this kind is to own a minimum percentage of equity in your home (e.g. 25%). To learn more about these equity-based programs, read: How to Tap Into Your Home Equity without Adding Debt.
Related Articles from Purgula
- Why Homeowners Should Invest in a Prefab ADU
- Choosing Between a Prefab ADU and a Traditional Stick-Built ADU
- Best Online Legal Services for Homeowners & Property Owners
- What Homeowners Should Know About Proptech: Monetization
- How to Tap Into Your Home Equity Without Adding Debt
- How Landlords Can Find The Perfect Tenant
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