How to Earn Passive Income, Strategies to Build Wealth While You Sleep

Building a side hustle or working a part-time job is a great way to increase your income — but it can be time consuming.Whereas, with passive income, the idea is you do upfront work and then the gig pays you while you sleep. Or, at least, it pays you for working minimal hours.Insider has spoken with individuals and couples who have built passive income streams that are helping them build wealth without having to put in a ton of hours.Erika and Kareem Hall invested in 2 franchises and regularly profit 5-figures per monthBetween their two Soccer Shots franchises, Erika and Kareem Hall have done more than $1 million in revenue since buying their first one in 2018, according to profit-loss statements viewed by Insider. They’ve done six-figures in revenue in a single month and regularly profit five-figures per month.They both work full-time ​​— Erika is an associate professor at Emory University’s business school, while Kareem runs his own consulting firm — and spend one to two hours a week on average working on Soccer Shots. “I 100% think that it can be a lucrative passive income stream,” Erika said of investing in a franchise. “The benefit of it is that there is a blueprint. People have already done this. There are all the resources and the templates. Whereas, if you’re doing a start-up, you have to create all of that on your own.”

Kareem and Erika Hall own two Soccer Shots franchises in Georgia.

Courtesy of Rachael Victoria Photography

The key to making it passive is selecting a franchise that allows you to be an executive owner, which is when you own the company but employ someone else to manage it.An owner-operated model, on the other hand, functions as its name suggests, placing you at the center of running the business, explained Erika: “That would have been us actually managing the company and taking a salary from it. Right now, we pay somebody a salary to run it for us and then we take whatever profits we make after that. If we were operating it ourselves we would have to leave our jobs or have that as a second job and take a salary from it.”Kent He spends 2-3 hours per week running an Airbnb business Airbnb investing started out as a side hustle for Kent He. But after purchasing two investment properties in Scottsdale, Arizona and turning them into bachelorette-themed Airbnbs, he started generating enough cash flow to cover his family’s expenses and quit his day job to go all-in on real estate.Today, he’s a full-time real estate investor but spends just two to three hours a week on short-term rental business. That’s because “most everything is automated,” he told Insider. Airbnb investing does require a lot of upfront time and money. He spent a lot of time understanding his market and what type of guest typically visits. He used a software tool called PriceLabs to pull a dataset of the top 200 Airbnb listings in Scottsdale. He then went to the reviews of the top listings and searched for keywords like “family” and “bachelorette.” 

Courtesy of Kent He

“About 40% of the reviews for the top 200 listings mentioned the words ‘bachelorette’ or ‘girls trip,'” he said. “That’s how we found an outsized opportunity in the market.” From there, he designed a bachelorette-themed space outfitted with a “beauty bar” with individual vanity mirrors, a Peloton bike, wall murals, and backyard games like cornhole. He also put together a digital guidebook complete with detailed information about the property, amenities, and the local recommendations. He credits much of his success on Airbnb to understanding his guests and their needs. “If you can help them plan their trip out a little bit better, it takes a lot of stress off the coordinator — and usually that coordinator is the person that’s going to be leaving your review,” said He. “So any way that you can understand the stresses in their life and reduce that stress, I think it comes out as a win.”

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