Creating Wealth Through the Sharing Economy

Many of you have heard the term “side gig” tossed out there as a way your friends and neighbors earn a little extra money. It’s a great way to help make ends meet or as a way to save up for vacation, college, retirement; you name it. One of the things that makes up a side gig is that it usually relies on something you already have or can do and is apart from a formal mode of employment. You are effectively self-employed or an independent contractor. Delivering pizzas for Dominos is a second job, not a side gig. A side gig would be driving for Uber.

While a side gig can be anything from cleaning houses, doing other odd jobs, or selling your crafts on Etsy, those can be a hassle. You have to market yourself, place ads, and filter through the dead end leads and spam. The amount of time you spend doing that can make what little money you earn not worth it. Plus, there’s the problem of never knowing who you’re dealing with on sites like craigslist. This is why the sharing industry is so attractive to a growing number of people looking to make some extra cash.

The sharing economy (shareconomy if you want to be cute) covers a lot of ground. It has challenged and is in the process of transforming the way some longstanding industries operate. Some aspects of the sharing economy are akin to bartering, like seed swaps among gardening enthusiasts. The big headline grabbers are Uber, Lyft, and Airbnb, but there are several others out there and much more on the horizon. Eventually, there will be some aspect of the sharing economy that anyone will be able to participate in.

This is what has so many everyday people so excited and hungry to be part of the sharing economy. There is a potential for real money to be made in it. Some ride share drivers have made full-time jobs out of their side gig. At the very least, they can afford and drive a much nicer car than they otherwise would have been able to. There is also the freedom that allows participants in the sharing economy to set their schedules, be more selective with whom they do business with, and have more control over their earning potential.

What specifically do these share-based jobs offer?

Airbnb is the king of the hospitality mountain for the sharing economy. For decades, the hotel and motel chains have had an iron grip on lodging and travelers were at their mercy. Before these chains rose to prominence, the way, most people found lodging was through boarding houses. Airbnb is essentially a high-tech revival of the boarding house. Homeowners, or particular apartment tenants, can rent out rooms or whole homes to travelers. This is an excellent way to make money off of a spare room or earn cash from a second home.

Probably the easiest and most profitable share economy segment for the majority of people to get into is the rideshare service. It operates like a traditional taxi service, but instead of a fleet of cars, drivers use their personal vehicle. All transactions are handled through the rideshare company’s app, so there is less of a chance of getting robbed or stiffed, and both customers and drivers are rated. Anyone interested should check out the driving qualifications for Uber or Lyft. Each one will have its specifics, and those will vary from state to state, but as long as your car is in good condition and less than a decade old, you don’t have a criminal record, and your insurance is in order, you can most likely drive for one of these companies.

HyreCar is a twist to the rideshare model used by Uber and Lyft. HyreCar has users rent a car from its owner for a set amount of time. This is ideal for two car families who aren’t always using that second vehicle, or even the one car single who has the day off and wants to spend some free time at home. It’s beautiful because your car can earn you money without having to do anything other than click the app a couple of occasions, and hand over the keys. On the flip side, HyreCar offers the ability of other people who don’t have a car but still are great drivers to earn money by giving people lifts.

In Conclusion

The sharing economy is a breakthrough for many people who need to earn cash fast. Plus, it’s a good way to utilize what you own at an optimum level. If you play your cards right, there is a lot of success to follow within the sharing economy.

About Mohit Tater

Mohit is the co-founder and editor of Entrepreneurship Life, a place where entrepreneurs, start-ups, and business owners can find wide ranging information, advice, resources, and tools for starting, running, and growing their businesses.

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