There is nothing wrong with having an endeavor that you would consider a hobby vs a business. Many of the most successful businesses started as a hobby that grew.

Purpose and Goals

One of the reasons we talk so much about your purpose and goals is so that you can set expectations for yourself.

When you know what you’re trying to do, you will know how much time, energy and money to spend on your endeavor. 

I’ve seen many mothers with newborns use their free time to start making baby clothes, only to have their kids grow or they go back to work and they close their businesses. There are no wrong choices here.

But when you are dragging your family to markets on the weekends or staying up late filling orders, it can help to know at the beginning how serious you are about your hobby or business. You may consider only selling a select amount of inventory so you don’t have to go outside of your set hours.

Many people start their companies out of boredom to fill time, sell their crafts they enjoy doing as a hobby, pay for an addition to their house, or take an extra vacation.

When to transition from a Hobby to a Business

Trying to figure out the timing of when to transition your hobby to a part-time or full-time job? The answer to this question is different for each person.

Some people have such high demand for their products from going viral that they’re able to quit their day jobs, as one of our Makers Simple Nature did.

Another maker had a hobby-type business and decided that they would work at their side hustle full time when they lost their day job. Unfortunately, this was not successful in their case.

The answer to the above question is this: Transition when the demand is there and it can pay the bills if you plan on quitting your day job. The good news is you can have this happen over time, or very quickly.

Having the stress of needing to pay the bills can create a seriousness in the company that can cause one to close their company altogether. Avoid this by timing your transition correctly!

Taxes

Hobby – A hobby would be something that you do not do for profit and is a pleasure.

Business – A business would be an endeavor where you are trying to make a profit, (even non-profits need to make money that is later donated).

Here are a few easy to read articles on the differences from Credit Karma, the IRS, and Forbes.

Click here for the: Credit Karma articleIRS article and Forbes Article.

Regardless, you can set up your hobby or business using your Social Security Number, this is what is called a “Sole Proprietorship”. Your profit would just be added to your personal taxes. At some point, you may want to set up a checking account to keep your expenses separate so it’s easier to do your taxes.

Shopify has an awesome free course on turning your hobby into a business, check it out for guidance and inspiration!

Have your own advice on transitioning your passion from a hobby to a business? Chime in on the comments below!

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