How do Indie Hackers make a living while working on their indie projects?

Hey fellow Indie Hackers! I love to create things and am thinking of different ways to sustain myself while working on passion projects that I hope can create value and generate income in the future.

I am curious how all of you are able to support yourselves (or your families) while still working on your awesome indie projects!?

Poll below, and looking forward to interacting via comments/chat with all of you.

Warm regards,

How do Indie Hackers make a living while working on their indie projects?
  1. Full-time job
  2. Part-time job
  3. Freelance work
  4. Income from passion projects
  5. Burning through savings
  6. Living off of rewards from a successful project/company exit
  7. Other? - Please specify in the comments
  1. 3

    I tended bar 20 hours/week while building the Zlappo MVP.

    Got laid off during Covid, used unemployment to bootstrap my business to profitability.

  2. 3

    Freelance work is the perfect gateway for IndieHackers. You can set your hours, and can usually make just as much as you would at a full time job.

    You also build valuable marketing, and positioning skills as you build your freelance career.

    1. 1

      I'd say it depends on your existing network and ability to drum up work in your domain. It can easily be more than a fulltime job just trying to freelance.

  3. 1

    Worked a part time software job for 3 months. Saved some money.

    Now living on savings and bootstraping my next product

  4. 1

    For the last while I've been using unemployment insurance and savings after a layoff to build up my skills and work on projects that could turn into a business. I've found full time work doesn't leave me with enough energy at the end of the day to do anything meaningful and unfortunately part time work is hard to come by due to COVID.

  5. 1

    I worked for about ~2 years as a software dev/project manager, and have quite a bit of savings from that. Also:

    • low expenses
    • good savings investment

    Cheers to all of you!

  6. 1

    I made good revenue through influencer marketing and videos. Later realised I don't want to do it fulltime. So I sold pages and started buying, flipping and building websites.
    Basically burning through my savings from last 16-17 months.

    1. 1

      What platforms do you usually use for buying websites?
      Anything apart from Flippa?

      1. 1

        I use MicroAcquire and AcquireBase. AcquireBase is kind of new but MicroAcquire got lots of good quality assets.

        1. 1

          Great. Thanks!

          I wish to sell two software products of mine.
          I will try out the two you've mentioned.

  7. 1

    Wow, interesting how many people are doing freelance work here.

    I made the switch from freelance to fulltime and I can combine it better with my indie hacking projects but I have a great employer with flexible working times, so I understand that freelance suits as well pretty good

  8. 1

    I'm currently in a full-time job, building up freelance income on the side, and working to get to a place where I can leave the job at the end of this year and have enough of a cushion saved up that if there's no freelance income for periods of time, that's ok.

    I've been working on my current startup for the last 2 years. This is my second startup. The first one, I jumped in too quickly -- left my job without having saved up enough of a cushion, and was unrealistic about runway. This time I'm still making lots of mistakes and learning as a result, but at least I'm not making THAT mistake again! I'll be in a position to work on Ditto without paying myself for as long as it takes to grow the business.

    (I have a husband who works, but his income alone is not enough to support us... or, it's barely enough to support us, but if ANYthing unexpected comes up, we're screwed. So I need to be making some money, too.)

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