Passive Income Ideas: Do you need Passive Income for FIRE?

Passive income and the FIRE movement are often intertwined, and reaching FIRE is often achieved with the help of passive income generation.

One of the key strategies used by FIRE enthusiasts to achieve their goal is to create passive income streams. Passive income refers to income that is earned without the need for active involvement, such as rental income, dividends from investments, or income from a business that is largely automated.

Passive income allows people to earn money without having to continually trade their time for cash, which is seen by many as a key component of achieving financial independence and the ability to retire early.

Setting up a passive income stream may often involve a fair bit of upfront time and effort, but the aim is that the effort decreases over time while the income keeps coming in.

Reaching FIRE is usually dependent on building up enough money in savings and investments so that you can live off withdrawals while it carries on generating interest.

Here are some ideas for passive income generation, some that require a significant initial investment, and some that can be started without very little to no expense.

Passive income ideas

  1. Renting out property: Owning a property, such as a house, apartment, or holiday home, means you can earn passive income by renting it out to tenants. Obviously this involves a big initial investment so isn’t the easiest option for most people, but for those who have the resources it’s a popular passive income stream.

    You’ll need to understand the legal requirements for being a landlord in your area, including any necessary insurance or permits. You’ll also want to consider the cost of maintaining and repairing the property, as well as the risk of vacancies. To find tenants, you can list your property on rental websites or through a property management company.
  2. Rent out your space: If you don’t have a whole property to rent out, you may still be able to make some money. If you have a spare room you could take in a lodger or advertise on airbnb.

    If you have a driveway you can rent out your parking space using websites such as Just Park.

    If you have an empty garage, basement or any useful storage space you can rent that out too! Rent marketplace lets you do just that.
  3. Investing in dividend-paying stocks: Some stocks pay out dividends on a regular basis, which can provide a steady stream of passive income. Dividend-paying stocks are a good option for passive income because you don’t have to do anything to receive the dividends – they are paid out automatically.

    However, it’s important to do your due diligence and carefully research the companies you’re considering investing in. The value of your investment can go up or down, so it’s important to be aware of the risks as well as the potential rewards.
  4. Creating and selling an online course: Develop a course on a topic you’re knowledgeable about, and sell it on platforms such as Udemy or Coursera. Once created, it can be sold repeatedly with minimal additional work.
  5. Writing an e-book: Write an e-book on a topic you’re an expert in, and sell it on Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing or other platforms.
  6. Starting a dropshipping business: A dropshipping business is a type of e-commerce business where you partner with a manufacturer or supplier and sell their products on your own website. When an order is placed, the supplier handles the shipping and you earn a profit on the sale.

    Dropshipping can be a good way to earn a passive income because you don’t have to deal with inventory or fulfilment – the supplier handles those tasks. However, it can be competitive and requires a bit of work to set up and market your business.
  7. Building a mobile app or software: If you have programming skills, you can create a mobile app or software and sell it on platforms like the App Store or Google Play. This can be a good way to earn passive income, as you can create the app or software once and sell it multiple times. However, it does take time and effort to create a high-quality app or software, and there is competition in the market, so it may take some work to get your product noticed.
  8. Investing in a high-yield savings account: High-yield savings accounts and CDs offer a higher interest rate than traditional savings accounts, which can provide a passive income through the interest earned. Just be aware that the interest rate may change over time and that your money may not be easily accessible if it’s tied up.
  9. Creating a mobile app or game: If you have programming skills, you can create a mobile app or game and sell it on platforms like the App Store or Google Play. This can be a good way to earn passive income, as you can create the app or game once and sell it multiple times.
  10. Investing in a business: Invest money in a business and receive a share of the profits without actively participating in the day-to-day operations.
  11. Investing in a franchise: If you have the capital, you can invest in a franchise and earn passive income through the profits generated by the business. Just be aware that investing in a franchise requires a significant upfront investment and that there are ongoing fees and responsibilities involved.
  12. Building a niche website: Build a website around a specific niche or topic and monetize it through advertising or affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing involves promoting other people’s products and earning a commission on any sales made through your unique referral link.

I hope these ideas give you some inspiration for generating passive income!

Pros and cons of passive income generation

Passive income sounds amazing on paper – make money while you sleep? Where do I sign up?! However, it may not be perfect for everyone. Here are some of the main advantages and disadvantages to building passive income streams.


  1. Passive income can provide a source of income that is not tied to the number of hours you work. This can give you more financial freedom and flexibility.
  2. Passive income can help you diversify your income streams, which can reduce your financial risk.
  3. Passive income can give you the opportunity to earn money while you’re doing other things, such as traveling or pursuing other interests.


  1. It can take time and effort to set up passive income streams and get them to a point where they are generating a substantial amount of money.
  2. Some passive income ideas, such as investing in stocks or real estate, involve a certain level of risk. It’s important to be aware of these risks and to do your due diligence before making any investments.
  3. Passive income may not be a reliable source of income, as it may fluctuate based on factors such as market conditions or the performance of the business or investment.
  4. Passive income may be subject to taxes, depending on the type of income and your tax situation. It’s important to be aware of any tax implications and to plan accordingly.

Overall, passive income can be a great way to supplement your income or even eventually become your main source of income, especially if you’re in pursuit of FIRE! However, it’s important to carefully consider the pros and cons and to do your research before pursuing any passive income opportunities.

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