The 7 Income Streams Millionaires Use — And How You Can Join Them

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Unless they inherited their wealth without doing diddly-squat, most millionaires have seven things in common: where their money comes from. And while each millionaire has a unique set of assets, we know they never put all of their eggs in one basket.

And the best part about these income streams? None of them are secrets or tricks. Instead, we can consider them a checklist to get you to millionaire status.

So, how many of these income streams do you have so far? And which can you get started on today?

1. Earned Income From a Paycheck

Oh, millionaires. They’re just like the rest of us. At one point — maybe even still — they earned a paycheck. It’s a consistent stream of income, and while it’s one of seven for them, it might be the only one us regular folks have (so far).

That being said, when you’re trying to get over the paycheck-to-paycheck hump and become a millionaire, the quickest method might be to make more money.

We get it, though: You already have a job — maybe two — and you’re exhausted. This doesn’t have to be a forever thing, though, and luckily there are plenty of ways to earn extra cash, even if you only have an hour to spare.

Here’s one we like: An app called Doordash will pay you to pick up and deliver food on your own schedule. All you need to get started is your preferred mode of transportation and your smartphone.

You’ll deliver things like coffee from Starbucks or food from Chipotle, Chick-fil-A or Five Guys. You set your own hours and work as much or little as you want, meaning how much you make is up to you.

You’ll earn money for each delivery, plus tips. Jose Neri, from California, reports earning $500 to $600 a week working just lunches and dinners.

If you sign up for Doordash now, it’s possible to get your first paycheck this week.

Or Create Your Own Pay Day

Sometimes you can’t depend on anyone else to give you a paycheck — you have to take things into your own hands. Be the boss of your own free time, and use it to make some money.

Lots of us already play Solitaire on our phones for fun or just to pass the time. Did you know you could make money for doing that?

There’s a free iPhone app called Solitaire Cash that lets you play for real money. You could get paid up to $83 per win.*

You might be thinking: There’s got to be a catch. This is definitely one of those spammy apps, right?

Wrong. There really isn’t a catch. Sure, you can pay to play in some higher-stakes tournaments, but there’s no pressure. And, in fact, there aren’t even any annoying ads.

With each game, you’ll battle it out against at least five other players. Everyone gets the same deck, so winning is totally a matter of skill. The top three players who solve the deck fastest can win real money — anywhere from $1 to $83.

Over on the App Store, it has over a million downloads and more than 15,000 ratings, averaging 4.7 stars (out of 5).

To get started, just download the free app and start playing your first game immediately.

2. Profit Income From Owning a Business

We know that not all of us are cut out for the CEO title, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still own a business. And while this sounds like a stretch, hear us out — there’s another way to own a business without actually having to run one.

An app called Stash lets you be a part of something that’s normally exclusive to the richest of the rich — on Stash you can buy pieces of other companies for as little as $1.

That’s right — you can invest in pieces of well-known companies, such as Amazon, Google, Apple and more for as little as $1. The best part? If these companies profit, so can you. Some companies even send you a check every quarter for your share of the profits, called dividends.1

It takes two minutes to sign up, and it’s totally secure. With Stash, all your investments are protected by the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) — that’s industry talk for, “Your money’s safe.”2

Plus, when you use the link above, Stash will give you a $5 sign-up bonus once you deposit $5 into your account.*

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3. Earning Dividend Income From Owned Stocks

The stock market is all over the place these days, but historically, it will make you about 7% over time if you ride it out. Millionaires earn tons of income from the stock market — likely because so many of them own tons of shares of different companies.

But if you feel like you don’t have enough money to start investing, you’re not alone. But guess what? You really don’t need that much — and you can even get free stocks (worth up to $500!) if you know where to look.

Whether you’ve got $5, $100 or $800 to spare, you can start investing with Robinhood.

Yeah, you’ve probably heard of Robinhood. Both investing beginners and pros love it because it doesn’t charge commission fees, and you can buy and sell stocks for free — no limits. Plus, it’s super easy to use.

What’s best? When you download the app and fund your account (it takes no more than a few minutes), Robinhood drops a share of free stock into your account. It’s random, though, so that stock could be worth anywhere from $5 to $500 — a nice boost to help you build your investments.

4. Bringing in Rental Income From Owning Real Estate

Take a look at some of the world’s wealthiest people. What do they have in common? Many invest in large private real estate deals. And here’s the thing: There’s no reason you can’t, too — for as little as $10.

A company called Fundrise lets you get started in the world of real estate by giving you access to a low-cost, diversified portfolio of private real estate. The best part? You don’t have to be the landlord. Fundrise does all the heavy lifting.

Fundrise’s Starter Portfolio has a minimum of only $10 and is geared toward first-time real estate investors. Your money will be invested in the company’s Flagship Fund, which already owns more than $250 million worth of real estate around the country, from apartment complexes to the red-hot housing rental market to larger last-mile e-commerce logistics centers.

Want to invest more? Fundrise offers a variety of account levels and features to fit every type of investor’s needs. Once invested, you can track your performance on Fundrise’s website and mobile app, and watch as properties are acquired, improved and operated. As tenants pay their rent, you could earn money through quarterly dividend payments, and over time, you could earn money off the potential appreciation of the property. Since 2014, Fundrise investors have earned roughly $100 million in dividends alone.

So if you want to get started in the world of real-estate investing, it takes just a few minutes to sign up and create an account with Fundrise.

*Past performance is not indicative of future results. The publicly filed offering circulars of the issuers sponsored by Rise Companies Corp., not all of which may be currently qualified by the Securities and Exchange Commission, may be found at

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5. Capital Gains From Selling Assets That Appreciate in Value

Did you ever wonder how people who sell art and collectibles get rich? Well, it’s kind of the same way people make money when they sell their houses.

When you buy something — anything — that has potential to become more valuable in a few years, you could make capital gains on the other end. Millionaires know this.

If you were to own or buy a home with a decent mortgage rate, you could make money when you sell it. One of the easiest ways to make sure you get the best rate is to have good credit.

But if your credit isn’t at the millionaire level (aka excellent) — or even if it is on track and you want to bump it up — try using a free website called Credit Sesame.

Within 90 seconds, you’ll get access to your credit score, any debt-carrying accounts and a handful of personalized tips to improve your score. You’ll even be able to spot any errors holding you back (one in five reports have one).

James Cooper, of Atlanta, used Credit Sesame to raise his credit score nearly 300 points in six months.*** “They showed me the ins and outs — how to dot the I’s and cross the T’s,” he said.

Want to check for yourself? It’s free and only takes about 90 seconds to sign up.

6. Royalty Income From Selling the Rights To Something You Create

Did you know Mariah Carey has made more than $60 million just in royalties from her song “All I Want For Christmas Is You”? Every year, the dollars stack up for work she did a couple decades ago. She’s set for life, if she decided to never work again.

That being said, there are ways to make royalty income without being a pop star. You can write a book and sell it with a Kindle Direct Publishing account. Or you can sell photos you take on your iPhone as stock images for companies to use.

What are your skills or hobbies? There might be a royalty out there for you!


*Solitaire Cash: Real Money tournaments are not available in the following states: AZ, AR ,IA, IN, LA, ME, MT, SC, WA

1Not all stocks pay out dividends, and there is no guarantee that dividends will be paid each year.

2To note, SIPC coverage does not insure against the potential loss of market value.

For Securities priced over $1,000, purchase of fractional shares starts at $0.05.

*Offer is subject to Promotion Terms and Conditions. To be eligible to participate in this Promotion and receive the bonus, you must successfully open an individual brokerage account in good standing, link a funding account to your Invest account AND deposit $5.00 into your Invest account.

The Penny Hoarder is a Paid Affiliate/partner of Stash. 

Investment advisory services offered by Stash Investments LLC, an SEC registered investment adviser. This material has been distributed for informational and educational purposes only, and is not intended as investment, legal, accounting, or tax advice. Investing involves risk.