Sign up for our FREE Monthly Email Newsletter
In addition to keeping in the financial know, you may be interested in checking your credit score and report.
¹The credit scores provided under the offers described here use the Equifax Credit Score, which is a proprietary credit model developed by Equifax. The Equifax Credit Score and 3-Bureau scores are each based on the Equifax Credit Score model, but calculated using the information in your Equifax, Experian and TransUnion credit files. The Equifax Credit Score is intended for your own educational use. It is also commercially available to third parties along with numerous other credit scores and models in the marketplace. Please keep in mind third parties are likely to use a different score when evaluating your creditworthiness. Also, third parties will take into consideration items other than your credit score or information found in your credit file, such as your income.
²The Automatic Fraud Alert feature is made available to consumers by Equifax Information Services LLC and fulfilled on its behalf by Equifax Consumer Services LLC.
³Equifax Credit Report Control™ is only available while you have a current subscription to Equifax Complete Premier. Locking your credit file with Equifax Credit Report Control will prevent access to your Equifax credit file by certain third parties, such as credit grantors or other companies and agencies. Credit Report Control will not prevent access to your credit file at any other credit reporting agency, and will not prevent access to your Equifax credit file by companies like Equifax Personal Solutions which provide you with access to your credit report or credit score or monitor your credit file; Federal, state and local government agencies; companies reviewing your application for employment; companies that have a current account or relationship with you, and collection agencies acting on behalf of those whom you owe; for fraud detection and prevention purposes; and companies that wish to make pre-approved offers of credit or insurance to you. To opt out of such pre-approved offers, visit www.optoutprescreen.com/.
4We will require you to provide your payment information when you sign up and we will immediately charge your card $4.95. After that, we will charge the card $19.95 for each month you continue your subscription. You may cancel at any time; however, we do not provide partial month refunds.
Equifax® is a registered trademark and Equifax Complete™ Premier is a trademark of Equifax, Inc. © 2014, Equifax Inc., Atlanta, Georgia. All rights reserved.
Being self-employed requires passion and determination. With some hard work and creative thinking, you can turn your favorite hobby into a small business that makes money and helps you achieve your financial goals.
Almost 15 years ago, the manager of the gym where I was working as a bookkeeper asked me if I wanted to teach kickboxing classes. I had just retired from professional dancing and was enjoying participating in group exercise, but I declined the opportunity. Later, as I retold the story to my husband, he reminded me of how teaching group classes closely resembles performing and suggested it could be a great substitute to fill the void left behind by dancing.
I gave it a shot and was soon completely hooked. One class a week turned into seven, and my former hobby is now a full-fledged business.
Was this my original intention? No—this was a hobby that simply took its course and landed me where I am now. Whether you’re looking for a side business to help you achieve your financial goals or you’re interested in a complete career change, you may want to consider turning your passion into a business.
Is it time to turn your hobby into a small business?
I decided to take my hobby to the next stage when I realized that what I had to offer could benefit more than just the small group of people I was influencing.
I asked myself the following questions to figure out if this interest should turn into something more:
Ask yourself these same questions. If you realize you are ready to move forward with your hobby, research how to go about it.
How to get started
Begin by studying your competition. Look up statistics on other ventures similar to yours. Identify your audience, figure out where it is, and think about how you’ll reach it. Analyze the costs involved in getting your business up and running, and think about how you’ll cover them.
If you have friends or family who are encouraging you to broaden your talents, allow them to support and assist you. Ask for help brainstorming business names, leverage relationships for helpful connections, and bounce ideas off of trusted friends.
For example, if you’re not computer savvy and someone you know is, get his or her help setting up your computer system. If you have a relative that is a lawyer, ask for legal advice. Anything free or discounted is a bonus, and the support of your friends and family will help you continue when you feel overwhelmed and start to doubt yourself—which is going to happen along the way.
Starting your business may require a great deal of knowledge of the Internet and social media. Your online presence is an essential element of promoting your new business and reaching customers, so be sure to educate yourself in this arena. This was a weak spot for me, so I enlisted the help of a publicist and social media strategist to help me get started. This may be something you want to consider if you don’t feel ready to tackle the social media arena.
Tips for staying positive
The transition from hobby to business was scary, but the adventure along the way was—and continues to be—rewarding. By turning your passion into a moneymaking endeavor, you can discover things about yourself that you never knew before. Let your family and friends help you, and always keep in mind why you decided to make the change in the first place.
Dana Pieper, group exercise innovator, is the creator of Everybody Fitness, an intense total body workout that targets all major muscles and increases cardio endurance to deliver impactful results. Visit Dana’s blog for her “Move of the Week,” fitness tips, inspiration, and more! Follow Dana on Twitter , and “Like” her on Facebook.
Equifax maintains this interactive forum for education and information purposes in order to allow individuals to share their relevant knowledge and opinions with other members and visitors. We encourage you to participate in discussions about personal finance issues and other topics of interest to this community, but please read our commenting guidelines first. Equifax reserves the right to monitor postings to the forum and comments will be published at our discretion. Do you have questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or customer-service issues regarding an Equifax product? If so, please contact Equifax directly. All opinions and information expressed or shared in blog comments are solely those of the person submitting the comments, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.