Posted on: June 27, 2023 |

If you’re retired, or you’re considering it soon, you may be wondering what comes afterwards. While enjoying some R&R should definitely be on the schedule, maybe you’re thinking about other options, too. If you’re wondering whether or not you should start a business after retirement, this blog post is for you.

Should You Start a Business After Retirement?

Maybe you’ve always wondered about starting your own business, or maybe you already have some experience, and want to return to it. Either way, it can be helpful to weigh the pros and cons. Let’s walk through a few questions that might help, as well as some options to consider.

What Do You Want to Do With Your Time?

This can be an easy question for some people, and a difficult one for others. How do you visualize yourself spending your time after retirement? Do you picture yourself mostly relaxing, investing in your hobbies, spending time with your family, or other leisure activities? Or, does the thought of too much leisure make you a bit nervous? AARP suggests that the key to a happy retirement is keeping your interests open, which might include a business.

Don’t be afraid to spend some time thinking about this question. Try to picture your retirement without limits or judgements; what would you really want to do? Though that hypothetical isn’t always possible, it can help reveal what you actually want to do, and what might be influenced by other factors.

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How Much Responsibility Do You Want?

Another good question to ask yourself if you’re considering starting a business after retirement is how much responsibility feels right for you. Being a business owner means answering to yourself, but it also means fulfilling obligations to your customers and, in some cases, your employees. Maybe this amount of responsibility makes you feel valued and gives your life structure, or maybe you see yourself getting overwhelmed.

It can be hard to visualize a solid answer to this question. Instead, consider what you want your day-to-day schedule to look like. Would you prefer a lot of free time, and the ability to make spontaneous decisions about how to spend your day? Or, would you be more comfortable with structure, and a set schedule for most of your days? Maybe you’re somewhere in between, and you’d like some structured days, and some days for spontaneity. There are options that can work for each of these preferences, which we’ll discuss more later in the post.

What Do Vacations Look Like?

Finally, how do you see yourself taking a lot of vacations, and traveling often? Or, would you prefer to stay mostly at home? This should definitely factor into the decision of whether or not to start a business after retirement. However, even if you see yourself traveling often, or for long stretches of time, there are still business opportunities available to you. If you plan to travel, remote work will probably be an important part of your business, or you may work with a partner or employee as well.

What Type of Business Should You Start After Retirement?

If you see yourself starting a business, or if you’re on the fence, it can help to take a look at your options. You don’t necessarily have to start a brick-and-mortar store and work there full-time to be a business owner. Consider your answers to the previous questions as you consider some of these options for business owners. Keep in mind that there is some overlap between these options, since there is flexibility in how you choose to run each business.

Passive Income

Passive income requires a bit of time and money upfront, but it can be a great business to start after retirement if you’re looking for more freedom and flexibility. There are many options for passive income, from owning a vending machine to renting out property to creating a class or book, and much more. A passive income business might be perfect for you if:

  • You value flexibility: Passive income businesses give you a great deal of flexibility. You don’t have to monitor a shop and, though there’s some upkeep and effort required, you can pick your own hours.
  • You’re looking for less responsibility: Passive income generally doesn’t involve employees or strict hours, so you don’t have to answer to anyone but yourself.
  • You’d like to take longer vacations: Most types of passive income allow you to work remotely with ease, so you can manage your business anywhere with an internet connection.

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Part-Time Businesses

Generally, a part-time business is a bit more involved than passive income businesses. However, as previously mentioned, there is some overlap between the two, since you can decide how involved you want to be.

Different part-time businesses can vary a lot; you might actually operate a storefront, and operate it part-time during set hours, or you might make and sell things online during hours that you decide. From freelancing to teaching to consulting to crafting and more, there’s a wide range of part-time business ideas that may be great for you after retirement. Here’s a few things to consider if you think a part-time business is right for you:

  • Some flexibility, some spontaneity: With a part-time business, you’ll mostly have the ability to set your own hours, but you can also structure these as you like. That might mean keeping a shop open for certain hours on certain days, or it might mean setting work-from-home hours.
  • As much responsibility as you like: If you’re more involved in your business, you’ll probably interact more with customers, and you might also work with an employee or business partner. However, this isn’t mandatory for a part-time business; many part-time business owners work strictly online and enjoy very loose responsibilities.
  • Some limits to vacations: If you plan on traveling more often than not, and you’ll be gone for long stretches of time, it might be difficult to manage a part-time business. A part-time business may require a permanent mailing address, regular customer interactions, or some type of customer service. However, you might solve this by working with a business partner or hiring an employee that you trust.

Full-Time Business

Most likely, you already know the responsibilities and lifestyle that comes with a full-time business. There are ways to lighten the load as a full-time business owner, such as working with a business partner and sharing responsibilities, or hiring employees to help, but this still requires a great deal of management, coordination, and dedication. If you’ve dreamed of owning a full-time business for years, and this is how you visualize your retirement, then this may be a great option for you. Just don’t forget to add in a bit of leisure time here and there.

Hopefully, these questions and considerations have helped you decide if you should start a business after retirement. Remember, it’s okay to take some time with these questions. Transitioning to retirement means transitioning to a new lifestyle, and this won’t happen overnight. If you’re considering starting an ice and water vending business and you’d like to learn more, we can help. Reach out to us to learn more about owning a vending machine, or leasing property to an owner.