Making Money with Home-Made Wine

wine kitsI don’t know about you, but I’m always on the lookout for new business opportunities. And, I love wine, and am a bit of a wine snob when it comes to choosing what I drink and how I drink it.

Recently I stumbled across a cool post about building a home winemaking business, and I felt like lightning had struck! Why not combine two of my favorite passions into one, and run a side business selling wine that I make myself!

Winemaking 101: What I Know So Far

I know what you’re thinking: you can’t just decide to make wine in your kitchen and sell it online. Do you even know how to make wine? What about legal implications and requirements?

And you’d be right, in one sense at least. You can’t simply “decide” to do something and magically have it happen, but the whole point of this experiment is to find a fun way to make a little extra income on the side, right? So why not learn how to do it with something I’m truly passionate about?

How To Make Wine

As it turns out, the actual process of making wine is relatively simple. All you need are a few pieces of equipment, and some grapes. The cool thing is that you can buy wine grapes that have already been pressed, giving you the raw materials for making the wine without the expensive part of hassling and pressing the grapes for juice!

Depending on what level (aka: what stage of the process) you want to work, you can learn how to make wine at home with easy to follow instructions, packaged nicely into do it yourself winemaking kits.

These are freely available and surprisingly inexpensive to get started.

Legal Restrictions

The bigger challenge is navigating the seemingly endless hurdle of legal requirements that would allow you to sell your wine.

While you can make wine at home and enjoy it yourself and with friends and family without a license, in order to sell and distribute your wine, you’ll need multiple licenses, including licenses for the production of wine, sanitation department inspections, and licenses to sell the wine.

The rules vary by state, and I’m just beginning to sort out all the details, so make sure you check with a local expert before getting start on this process. For example, every state will have an abc page (or whatever the regulatory agency is in your state) with information on what you need. Here’s one example with alcohol laws in Wisconsin.

My Plan for Getting Started: Affiliate Marketing

affiliate marketingAfter doing a bit more research into the best ways to make money online while working from home, I’ve decided that the best first step for me to take is affiliate marketing.

Affiliate marketers basically just build a few different websites on specific topics (called niches) and then make money from the website by promoting a product related to the site.

For instance, I know a lot about construction and how to repair different things around the house, so I might create a website about DIY window repair, and then write content and upload videos with instructions and tips for fixing or installing windows.

As part of that process, I might recommend a few specific types of windows or tools that you would need in order to get it installed, or even a more detailed course on how to install it.

When people come to my website to learn about DIY windows, and then click through to buy the window from Lowes or Home Depot, for example, then I would make a commission from a sale.

It’s not much, but you have to remember that this website would be reaching people from all over the world, so those little commissions can quickly add up!

Going With a Course

Of course, I’m still a beginner at all of this, so I’m going to be following along with a course that helps you to get through your first steps as a new online marketer and start earning money.

I found a free course over at a site called Wealthy Affiliate, which has a beginners class to learn affiliate marketing. You can learn more about the training at

Choosing My Sites

I haven’t really decided on what my other websites will be, but as I mentioned above I’m strongly considering something in the home services sector. I worked in construction for years and it seems a natural fit for my experience.

I can also seeing it being something where I’ll always have a new topic to write about, and can grow it step by step to cover a wide range of issues.

Hopefully by my next post here I’ll have my new sites picked out and will be able to start building my online business!

My Dream: Getting Out of Debt

debt2If you read my story, you know that I’ve had a few rough patches in my life, and I’m not at the point where I need to crawl my way out of them.

Unfortunately, a big part of that problem is the fact that I currently have over $20,000 in credit card debt. I honestly don’t know how it got to that point, but it just seemed like month after month we weren’t able to meet our basic expenses, and the bill gradually got bigger and bigger.

That means that one of my focuses isn’t just to earn extra money to live the good life, but simply to have consistent income that allows me to plan my finances ahead of time.

I need to get out of the month to month standard of living, pay down that debt, and move on with my life.

Fortunately, I’ve found there are a lot of good resources out there to help me along the way. I stumbled across How To Pay Off Debt Quickly, which has a great explanation of how to create a personal financial plan to manage payments, even when you have no money and are saddled by a high level of debt.

I also really liked the debt relief options available through, which shows how to negotiate with your lenders and find a monthly payment that you can realistically make, and work towards paying down a bit more each month.

I also came across the video below, which has some interesting, if not all practical tips:

Earning More

No matter how I looked at it, however, I decided that in order to really turn my life around, I had to start earning more.

Most debt reduction practices focus on cutting back and spending less, but even with some cost cutting and saving techniques in place, it would still take me over a decade to pay back my credit cards!

That’s why I’m building this site, and a few others, and starting my journey to financial independence through online work.

Why Make Money Online?

work from homeFor my first post, I thought I’d write a little bit about why my aim is to make money online and become a successful “webpreneur” as they say.

I don’t have any background in anything related to computers, technology, or marketing, so why did I decide to go down this road?

Well, you can read my full personal history here, but basically it comes down to wanting to be able to spend more time with my family and be available for them whenever I need to be.

That’s the biggest draw that having a website business does for me: the freedom and flexibility of time.

I don’t mean I’m not planning to work. I’m not someone who believes that things happen overnight with very little effort. Instead, I simply want to be able to choose when those hours are, so I never again miss my son’s soccer game or my daughter’s piano recital.

If that means I need to get up at 4:00am and work until 1:00am every night, so be it, but I’m committed, and after looking at a number of different opportunities, this seems to be the right one for me!

If this is something you’re considering, I encourage you to watch the video below, by Scott Rogers. He’s a full time work from home Dad and explains some of the things you might want to think about before diving in!

I know this post has been primarily about personal reasons. I’ll write more about the financial motivations in a later post.