Generating income from/for Maker-space

  • Holder

    It would be nice to have the option of making some money from my membership to this non-profit. Maker-space can also potentially create it’s own revenue streams. social enterprise

    Does Maker-space have any reason to generate extra income from outside its membership fees?

    Another question… What are the rules that govern how members of a non-profit can financially benefit from their involvement in that organization?

    That being said, I would love to see a maker-space “reQuest board” where people in Kamloops post things they want a maker to build/do for them. When a Maker agrees to do a build, the price is negotiate and maker-space holds the gold until the works done, and both parties are satisfied.
    Makerspace could gleam some service/admin fees, and the maker gets to pocket the profit.

  • I like the “reQuest Board” idea. I suspect there are folks out there who have items they’d like repaired or modified but don’t have the skills to do so themselves.
    But, I think the Makerspace would want to be careful about financial transaction. In case of liability. If I make a lamp for someone and my shoddy work causes a house fire, it would be best if the customer had a financial dealing with me only.
    I have to wonder what other Makerspaces do?

  • maker-space “reQuest board” where people in Kamloops post things they want a maker to build/do for them

    @Jason-Bijl That is what this forum is for! People have been occasionally reaching out to our community here to find makers for what they need done. I hope to see this happening even more in the future.

    Does Maker-space have any reason to generate extra income from outside its membership fees?

    Yes, but not from members. With 3000sqft space we are aiming at keeping a positive cash flow with a minimum of 20 key holders. That is 2000$ per month which will not be enough when you consider rent + utilities + tool maintenance and repair projects. We get the rest of the money for the space from fundraising. So far we have two big fundraising events: our fundraising dinner and the haunted house. We expect those two events alone to bring approximately 10000$ for us in 2016.

    We set the 100$ key holder membership as the base so that we can always be sure to have enough funds to move forward without needing any additional support. I am very excited to see members making money using the skills they learn at the space and the tools. Honestly, once you are able to land contracts and get them done the 100$ will start to look very minimal.

    I want to highlight the point @frank is bringing up. As a non profit organization we should stay out of the way of members when they make money working here.

    I have been wanting to have a brainstorming session to talk about different ideas for making money as a member of makerspace. When do you think would be a good idea to host a brainstorming session?

  • Do we need to get together to brainstorm? or could we just do so on this forum?
    I did have a thought. When my wife went to art school, they had and annual art shows where they invited the community to tour the facilities and see the art. Most of the pieces were for sale. I think the artists and the school split the money.
    Maybe we could host a similar event. Where the public could tour the space, see displays of things people have made and buy any offered for sale (with a percentage going to the Makerspace)?

  • Do we need to get together to brainstorm? or could we just do so on this forum?

    I just thought having an in person meeting might help hash out some of the details quickly. However, I am all for using the forum so lets do this here anyway! :smile:

    the artists and the school split the money

    This makes me thing of two events. Our annual fundraising dinner and the makerloops festival. The fundraising dinner is about makerspace. We accept donations and put them on silent auction. All the money raised that night gets donated to makerspace.

    The other event, makerloops festival, is a weekend event that allows artists and makers to set up their own booths and sell their creations. You can think of it as farmers market for makers. I personally feel that makers and artists should be encouraged to keep any money they make during that event.The makerspace itself will also likely have a booth during that event organized by volunteers.

    My position is that the 50$ or 100$ membership fee per month is all the financial contribution the space expects from members. There are also volunteer opportunity to help improve the space or raise money at events. However, I would like us to stay away from collecting percentage of money that is made by members. That would keep our financial structure simple and puts members in charge of what they do with their money. If our members are making good money from their work at the space they will be happy and more likely to donate to purchase of new tools.

    The membership fees along with money we make from our two big fundraising events (haunted house and fundraising dinner) is sufficient to sustain our rental and maintenance cost. At this point we should focus the discussion on how we can provide opportunities for makers to make money. This could mean support for starting up a company, or simply having ability to market and sell things that they have made at makerspace.

    We don’t depend on any external financial support. If we take care of ourselves as members, we will always be able to have the makerspace regardless of any external support.

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