How to Make $100,000 Per Year in the Billboard Business

How to Make 0,000 Per Year in the Billboard Business

With unemployment at its highest level in decades, many people are worried about their jobs and are tired of living with that uncertainty. But how can they replace their earnings of $40,000 to $100,000 per year? One option may be the billboard business.

What is the billboard business?

A billboard owner effectively rents land, builds a billboard structure, and then rents the advertising space. The difference between the advertising revenue and the costs of operation, which are essentially the rent for the land and the cost to install and light the ad, represent the profit. The industry is very old, having its origins with the Egyptians and, in the U.S., having been in continual operation since around the 1850s.

Who else is doing it?

The billboard business is very lucrative. Ted Turner built his empire from a beginning stake in a billboard company in Atlanta. John Kluge is a billionaire billboard veteran, and there are several others in the Forbes 400, including Artie Moreno.

There are many individuals in the U.S. that own billboards, ranging from one unit to thousands of units.

How does it work?

The billboard industry is effectively regulated by the government, which designates where billboards can be built along the nation’s highways. City streets fall under a different set of local ordinances. Once you have learned the rules, your job is to find legal locations for billboards to be built. The other part of your job is to negotiate an acceptable ground lease with the landowner on these legal locations.

Then you determine the size and height to build the sign and, after construction, you rent the advertising space on the sign – normally on a one year lease.

So how can you make $100,000 a year doing that?

The billboard business has several niches. One of the best right now is to focus on wooden signs in emerging markets. These wooden-telephone-pole-type structures cost about $6,000 to build, but generate around $3,000+ per year in net income. To make $100,000 per year, you’d need to build 30 of these in your spare time. How hard is that to do? Not that hard. There are individuals who have amassed a hundred or more of these in their spare time. All it takes is the effort to learn how to do it and then to find the sites.

Of course, you control how much effort you put in. If you are not trying to replace your day job income, you could build just a few to pay for your kid’s college or leave them a nice legacy.

How fast can I start doing this?

As fast as you can learn how to do it. Step one is to learn the ordinances in your state. You may also have to get a state license – which is not as hard as it sounds. Normally there is no test or school required, just the payment of a small fee.

You might also look at a listing of already-built structures for sale on sites such as


If you want to replace an income of up to $100,000, or just build the world’s most profitable hobby business, you need to investigate the billboard business. It’s been a winner for thousands of Americans for over a century.