The Best Passive Income Ideas for Realtors®Key Real Estate Resources

This post may contain affiliate links that allow us to earn a small commission on the products and services we use and recommend.

How awesome would it be to make money even while lying on the beach? Believe it or not, people do it every day, all over the world!

Their secret is passive income. These brilliant minds have built passive income streams that will continue to cash flow without active involvement.

And you can do it too!

In this post, we’ll define passive income and talk about some of the best passive income ideas for REALTORS®.


What is Passive Income?

Passive income is when you make money even when you’re not actively participating in the money-making activity.

No, it’s not a get-rich-quick scheme. It may even be the opposite! It takes time for some passive income streams to develop and grow into a substantial amount of money. So the sooner you start, the better off you’ll be.

It’s also not for the lazy! Sure, it sounds like the lazy man’s solution to cash flow: make money while doing nothing. But it takes time and effort on the front end to pay off on the back end. It may even require months of work with zero payoff. But, when done right, it will reward you with years (or even decades!) of income that requires minimal ongoing maintenance.

“If you don’t find a way to make money while you sleep, you will work until you die.”

– Warren Buffett

Note: this post was originally published in 2018. This is the new and improved version. 

Anyone can build passive income. But, just for our audience, here are the best passive income ideas specifically for REALTORS.

1. Buy a Rental Property

Real estate is my personal favorite investment. Here’s why:

  • Cash flow: Even if you finance your investment property, you’ll still enjoy a positive cash flow (assuming you did your due diligence to make sure the property would be a wise investment). And once your tenants pay down your mortgage, your cash flow skyrockets.
  • Tax breaks: Even with the new tax plan, there will be plenty of deductions available for investment property owners.
  • Appreciation: In addition to the cash flow and the tax breaks, real estate generally appreciates over the long term. Of course, the exact rates vary heavily between markets and years. So I really consider appreciation to be icing on the cash flow cake.
  • Highly passive income: Once you have good tenants moved in, you’ll just need to handle a few repairs and a lease renewal annually. Or you could hire a property manager to make the income entirely passive.
  • Perfect for real estate professionals: As a real estate pro, you already know your market and have insider information to help you make smart investment decisions. Plus the cash flow will help stabilize your income during your slow season or even through a down market.
  • Asset-building: If you spend your spare time collecting smart rental properties, you’ll be able to build quite a property portfolio over the years. These assets give you options later in life. You will always be able to live rent-free in retirement. You can pass the properties along to your family, or you can liquidate the portfolio to leave behind a strong inheritance or charitable donation.

Real estate can take a little time to maintain. If you prefer your income to be completely passive, hire a property management company to handle it for you!

Want to learn more about investing in real estate, check out our Top 10 Real Estate Investing Tips for New Investors.

Genius passive income ideas to help you make money no matter where you are or what you

2. Blog

Here’s why blogging is the perfect passive income stream for REALTORS: you should already be blogging as part of your marketing strategy!

Yes, blogging takes time and requires consistent posting, but if you’re already doing it anyway, any direct income it generates is passive, right?

And if you have more money than time, hire a blog writer to write your posts! You’ll get all the benefits of blogging without investing any time in it.

In case you missed 5 Reasons Every Agent Needs a Strong Real Estate Blog, blogging dramatically improves your online presence by increasing your Google Ranking. A blog also grows your mailing list and increases engagement for prospective clients. But more to the point of this post, your blog can become its own independent income stream.

Your best options for making money from your blog are:

  • Affiliate links: You recommend an existing product to your readers via a link. Whenever a reader clicks your link and makes a purchase, you earn a commission at no cost to your reader! You’ll find affiliate links scattered through Key Real Estate Resources. We have links to real estate investing books on Amazon and the best website design for REALTORS on Themeforest. And yes, each of those links is an affiliate link!
  • Ads: You’ll see a couple of Google ads on each of our posts. Most of these ads are pay-per-click, so if you click an ad on Key Real Estate Resources, we’ll earn a few cents, even if you don’t buy anything. You can add ads to your real estate blog today!
  • Sponsored posts: You may even be able to get paid for some of your posts. If, for example, you’re posting about home renovations, you could reach out to local contractors to see if they’d be interested in sponsoring your post for a fee. In exchange, the contractor would receive a mention in your post.

To learn more, read our post How to Make Money Blogging About Real Estate.

3. Dividend Growth Investing

Dividend growth investing is an investment strategy that focuses on stock dividends rather than stock price performance.

Most stock market investors choose their stocks by analyzing the stock price trend. They try to buy stocks while the stock price is low, then sell when it is high.

Dividend growth investing, on the other hand, more or less ignores stock price. Instead, it focuses on dividends, which are simply payouts a company makes to its investors. See, some companies like to reward their investors whether the stock market is up or down, so for every share you own, the company will pay you a small amount (usually every quarter, but that’s not a hard-and-fast rule).

Dividends are completely independent of stock market prices. The dividends can go up even as the stock market goes down. We talk a lot about recession-proofing here at Key Real Estate Resources, and dividends are a great example of recession-proofing your investments.

Even during the Great Recession, Coca-Cola’s dividends increased every year. In fact, Coca-Cola has paid dividends to its investors every quarter since 1920, and the dividend amount has increased every year since 1963.

The concept is incredibly simple. You buy stocks that generate dividends, and you get a paycheck every quarter for doing nothing more than investing.

The trick to making dividend growth investing work for you is to start early and reinvest your dividends. Reinvesting your dividends means using your dividends to buy more of the stock (instead of taking them as income right away). The longer you reinvest your dividends, the greater your future payouts will be.

Done right, dividend growth investing may just be the easiest passive income you’ll ever make!

Genius passive income ideas to help you make money no matter where you are or what you're doing.

4. Sell Photos

Did you know you can make money selling your photos? People need stock images for websites, social media posts, brochures, etc., and they’re willing to pay for quality photos. Anyone with a decent camera and a good eye can make money selling stock photos online. The process is also super simple:

  • Sign up with multiple stock photo sites as a contributor
  • Take photos, edit them, and post them to the sites
  • Every time one of your images sells, you receive a small commission

Selling photos is a pretty easy side hustle for REALTORS to add because you already have:

  1. relationships with property owners and/or vendors who may be willing to grant you access to their property for stock photo shoots
  2. experience handling heavy competition
  3. access to a good camera (cell phone photos aren’t going to cut it for most stock photo sites)
  4. basic photography skills (for your listings if nothing else)

You post a photo to the sites once, and can continue receiving payment for that photo for years to come!

Sounds too good to be true, right? Well, there are a few caveats.

First, the competition is heavy. This side hustle is incredibly easy, so a lot of people are trying it. You need to write careful descriptions and select your keywords so your images can be found in the sea of stock photos. And second, the commissions are tiny. Usually under $1. But again, you can sell the same image potentially hundreds of times, so those small amounts add up.

Want to learn more? Check out How to Make Money Selling Stock Photos Online.

5. Write eBooks

eBooks are an easy way to get valuable information to the masses. They cost little-to-no money to produce. And once published, they can generate passive income for years to come! There’s money to be made in well-written, well-promoted eBooks.

As a REALTOR, you are uniquely positioned to benefit from ebooks. Here’s why eBooks are one of the best passive income ideas for you:

  1. Passive income potential: Once the book is written, and your original round of promotions is complete, you just have minimal ongoing promotions to continue your cash flow.
  2. Positioning as an authority in your niche: Authoring a book (yes, even an eBook) indicates expert-level knowledge of your subject.
  3. More buyer/seller clients: Buyers and sellers in your area are more likely to find you online and trust you to represent them once your eBook is published.
  4. Recession-proof your business: Write about how (and why!) to buy during a recession to reach buyer-clients in a cold market. Or write about property taxes to gain property tax appeal clients during an economic downturn.

What exactly is involved in writing eBooks? The process is actually quite simple:

  • Write an eBook
  • Publish your eBook
  • Promote your eBook
  • Collect your income

Simple, yes. Easy? Not exactly.

The writing process is fairly straightforward, but there are multiple options for publication (self-publishing on Amazon or your own site compared to getting published by a publishing house, for example). And the initial promotion of your book can take just as much time as writing the book.

If you want to learn more about the details of making passive income from eBooks, check out How to Make Money with eBooks.

6. Create Courses

Creating courses is a similar option for creating passive income. Instead of writing an eBook, you can create a course using a mix of media like video, text, audio, etc.

Courses are a great option for topics that require more explanation than print alone can provide. If you’re teaching a topic and want to allow the consumer to cement the concepts before moving on, you can even create course quizzes and worksheets. It’s a more interactive experience for your students. And many people learn better from the multi-media format than from text alone.

Because of the additional media, course creation is more involved than writing eBooks. It will likely take you longer. And will require more money upfront to purchase appropriate recording equipment and editing software.

The hosting requirements are also more complicated. Unlike eBooks, which can be as simple as a PDF download, courses require online hosting of all your course content in all its different forms. Teachable and Udemy are good options for building and hosting your course content.

Creating courses benefits REALTORS (specifically) in the same ways that writing eBooks benefits REALTORS: passive income, demonstrating authority, gaining clients, and recession-proofing your business.

And the process is similar to the process of writing eBooks. Create your course, launch it, promote it, and collect your income.

To learn more, check out How to Create Online Real Estate Courses.

7. Become a Key Real Estate Resources Affiliate

We mentioned affiliate links in the section on blogging, but you don’t necessarily have to blog to earn money from affiliate links. With the right affiliate program, you can post your affiliate link anywhere (text, email, social media, etc.) and get paid every time someone uses your links to make a purchase.

Take the new affiliate program for DRIP by Key Real Estate Resources, for example. DRIP is a subscription service that provides fresh marketing materials to real estate agents every month. You may already be a member! And now, you can join our affiliate network so that you earn a fee every time another agent uses your link to purchase their membership.

Here’s how it works:

  1. You sign up as an affiliate at You’ll enter some basic info along with your PayPal payment email so we can automatically transfer payments to your account.
  2. You’ll get a custom affiliate link. This is the link you want other agents to click on to get their DRIP membership.
  3. You promote your affiliate link. You can send this link to other agents you know could benefit from the service. Text, email, or DM the link to the agents in your network (maybe stick with agents outside of your local market to avoid giving competing agents the competitive advantage of these marketing materials!). You can also post the link to social media platforms to reach a wider audience or even write a blog post or publish a YouTube video to help other agents find your link.
  4. Get paid! Over and over! This program pays affiliates 25% of the subscription price. And not just for the first month…you get paid every single month for the agents who sign up with your link. So, let’s say an agent uses your link to join the $29 Elites tier. You would earn $7.25 each month for as long as that agent remains a member. Now, $7.25 doesn’t sound like much. But what happens if you get 10 agents to use your link to join this tier of DRIP in your first month as an affiliate? Suddenly, you have a passive income of $72.50/month. Not a lot, but enough to cover the cost of your own DRIP membership and still have over $40 left to pay for your gym membership, weekly fancy coffees, a monthly massage, whatever! Now, what if you got 10 agents to click your link and join as Elites every month? Assuming the agents remain active members, you’d have a passive income stream of $870/month by the end of your first year as an affiliate! And you don’t have to stop there. You can keep building your income year after year!

Start building your affiliate-based passive income stream today by signing up as an affiliate for Key Real Estate Resources!


Do you have any other passive income ideas for REALTORS? We’d love to hear them. Leave them in the comments!

Source link: by Michelle at