Sometimes in life we all need a side hustle. Maybe you are a single mom trying to save for a family vacation. Or a recently graduated college student looking for ways to pay down your student loan quicker. Perhaps you are a stay at home mom looking for ways to make money without having to hire a sitter. This blog post is full of money-making suggestions for you. I have put together over 175 ways (177 at last count) for you to make money, mostly from home. And I have either researched these resources, implemented them myself, or have friends who swear by these great ways to make some money. It is also important to note than none of these ideas require you to spend money up front, with the exception of maybe sprucing up your house a bit if you're going to list it on Airbnb, or car maintenance and a good cleaning if you're going to drive for a ride sharing service.
Make Money on Your Home
First, if you are a homeowner, here are several ways you can make money utilizing your home. I recently wrote a blog post called 5 Ways to Make Money on Your Home. In this post I cover some important information you need to know if you are thinking about listing your home on Airbnb.
In addition to those five popular ways to make money on your home, here are some other things you can do including some Vacation Rental options like Vacation Rental by Owner (VRBO). List your home on VRBO if you have an investment property, second home or you want to rent your own home while you are away for an extended period of time. Also in the VRBO family are HomeAway, VacationRentals.com, Homelidays, Abritel "HomeAway", FeWo-direkt, OwnersDirect, Toprural, bookabach, stayz, Alugue Temporada. These are the same concept as VRBO, but in different countries.
I even know people who will go stay with friends and family for a bit while renting out their entire home. Do you know of a major event coming to your area? Maybe a golf tournament or the Superbowl? Those are great opportunities to make some good money in a short amount of time with minimal inconvenience to you. Another vacation rental site is Flipkey.
Spareroom can help you connect with roommates in the US and in the UK.
MondaytoFriday is a website specializing in rooms and office space to rent in London and across England. Rooms are rented Monday through Friday for those who commute for work.
Vrumi offers a list of creative and beautiful work spaces across the UK. Sometimes you need a change of scenery and want to work from somewhere other than a coffee shop. Check out this Retro Boat in the heart of London. Wouldn't you love to work from that for a day? Get creative with your listings. What do you have to list that can generate some income?
Spacehop connects freelancers, start-ups and established companies with spaces that are more than just a place to work but, somewhere you go to feel "fulfilled and inspired".
If you are a single mom with a room to spare, you might also consider renting a room in your home to another single mother. This concept is called a "Momune". I wrote an article about this several years ago on the now defunct Examiner, and the concept was to share household expenses and household chores and in some cases share child care. I still think it's a very creative idea for home sharing for single mothers.
Use Your Car or Garage
If you do own a house, chances are you have a garage space you can use to make some money. Rent your entire garage or an extra spot in a three-car garage. A weekend mechanic who lives in an apartment may pay for the chance to work on his or her ride in your garage. Others may be looking to store a motorcycle, boat, trailer or recreational vehicle. Still others may prefer the location or convenience of your garage to the local self-storage options, especially if the price is right.
Then there are people who sell items on Amazon who may need the space to store their product. I know an elderly woman who made a nice chunk of change renting out half of her garage to one of these Amazon sellers. That was a win-win for all involved.
If you live in a place like New York City, or where parking is scarce, and have a parking spot or two, you could be sitting on a gold mine. Sites like Just Park, Parklee and CurbFlip offer places to list your parking space, whether it's a spot in the city, a garage or carport. This might also appeal to people who have RV's trailers or boats and their HOA doesn't allow parking for those. If you don't have the same restrictions, you could utilize these sites too.
If you own a car (or two) there are many ways you can make some money utilizing your car, whether it's by ride sharing, delivering items, renting your own car to someone else, or even car sharing. Sites like Uber, Lyft, and She Taxis are popular ride sharing services. I travel often and use Uber and Lyft several times a month. I'm noticing more and more that the people picking me up for my rides have thousands of trips logged. It can be a side gig or it can be a full time job. It's up to you. My Uber driver in London had a whole plan set up where he leased a high end luxury car so he could charge more for the trips, and the lease actually cost him less than a car payment would for the same car. I was quite impressed with his well thought out plan.
She Taxis is like Uber, but the drivers are women and the passengers are too. I actually think that is a great idea, because as a woman there have been a few times I didn't feel safe in the car in which I was riding. (I actually turned on location sharing once in Chicago so my boyfriend could find me if I ended up in the river. That Uber ride made me nervous, but that's another story for another time.) I'm still researching whether or not She Taxis is still around. Last I read, they were in five major cities. You might want to check your city to see if that is an option for you. I still think it's a brilliant idea. If ride sharing isn't for you, but you like to drive (or ride your bike), consider signing up for a courier or delivery service.
There are food delivery services like Order Up, Deliv, Postmates, UberEats, DoorDash,and Grubhub. When I was in London I noticed several UberEats delivery partners on bicycles. So if you don't have a car but have a bike and are in a densely populated area that might be an option for you too.
You could also try a personal shopper or courier service like Caviar, Favor Delivery, Instacart or Hello Alfred. Local flower shops, cookie basket companies, and in some cities laundry services usually have delivery service as well.
There are also niche delivery services like Ease Up. Ease Up is a company in California that delivers marijuana products from a licensed dispensary directly to people. Or you can deliver beer, wine and "spirits" with Saucey. Each city has their unique delivery needs, so look around and see if something in your city sparks an idea.
AmazonFlex also seems to be a growing service. If you order something from Amazon, sometimes they have a local individual deliver your package, rather than use FedEx or UPS. I had a woman show up to deliver an Amazon package to me with her young daughter in the car. I thought at the time that was a great way for a stay at home mom or single mom to work without having to get child care.
Grocery delivery seems to be a growing trend as well. Look in your area to see which grocery stores participate. In my area Walmart, Fry’s (Kroger) and Sprouts are the three biggest grocery stores that offer delivery. They usually hire individuals who use their own cars to pick up the groceries and drive them to the delivery location.
If driving around all day doesn't appeal to you but you have a car to let or have a spare that is just sitting around, here are some services that help you rent out your car to others. Think Airbnb but with cars. Turo , Side Car and Zipcar are three of these services. Getaround is a service that lets you car share, which is great for people who don't use their car every day. It lets you make money when you're not using it, and it's great for the environment too. Sharing your car takes up to 10 cars off the road, eliminating pollution and traffic.
For Pet Lovers
If people aren't your thing, but pets are, you might want to look into some of these options. Rover is the nations largest network of pet sitters and dog walkers. If you register as a Sitter, you can choose whether you want to pet-sit in your own home, house sit, provide drop-in visits, provide doggy daycare, or provide dog walking services.
Another dog walking and pet sitting service is Wag. Or, you could just post in your neighborhood Nextdoor website that you offer dog walking services, or get business by word of mouth. Just make sure you check out legal, insurance and tax implications if you start those services on your own versus going through a website.
Another site to consider is Dogvacay. It looks like Dog Vacay and Rover just joined forces though, so whichever site you register will be under the Rover umbrella. Doesn't hurt to list on both though, if you want pet sitting business.
Sell Your Gift Cards
One way to make some extra money in a hurry is to go through your house and see what unused gift cards you can find. If you want to use them, then go for it. If you don't, and Aunt Thelma bought you a gift card to a store where you'd never shop, then you can go to places like Giftcard Granny or Raise to sell your gift cards. Or you can re-gift them for birthdays or Christmas. You know you all do it. I won't tell.
Surveys, Polls, Contests, Mystery Shoppers and Focus Groups
There are several sites that pay you to take surveys and polls, or to become a mystery shoppers. There are also sites for contests. Keep in mind that all contest winnings are reported to the IRS and you will pay taxes on them when you file your return. Some of these sites don’t pay very much, but it all adds up and I personally know people who have had significant earnings from being a mystery shopper and winning contests. I was even once paid $100 to taste tomatoes and give my opinion during a focus group. Not a bad gig, eh?
While these sites have been researched or recommended by others who have personally used them, it should be noted that there are scams out there. You should never have to pay to be a part of a focus group, a paid survey group participant, or a mystery shopper. Always read the terms and fine print before giving your personal information.
Surveys allow you to share your opinion about products and services and get paid to do it. These sites usually pay cash or by gift card. Some of the more common survey sites are Survey Junkie, Prize Rebel, Opinion Outpost, Springboard America, Survey Spot, Panda Research, Swag Bucks, National Consumer Panel, My Survey, and Inbox Dollars. Maybe you would like to sign up for niche surveys.
If you're partial to tech stuff and think it's cool to be the first to try things, then you should definitely check out the Earli Bird website. You can get paid to be a beta tester for new apps, websites and products.
If you're a health nut, like to cook, or are a food blogger who likes to tweet, signing up on Achievement is a no-brainer. Get paid to do the things you're already doing.
Slick Deals is a website that lists all sorts of contests and sweepstakes. It has been advised by someone who uses this site often to set up a separate email account for contests and sweepstakes only. You will get bombarded with emails when you start registering for these contests, but hey, if you win a trip to Tahiti it's worth sorting through some emails, right?
Do you love to shop? Maybe you want to pick up some extra cash being a mystery shopper. You can register on sites like JobSlinger and 360 Intel. I know a single mom who financially supported her kids during a difficult separation by getting paid to be a mystery shopper. It was a quick easy way to make some money for her, and she needed cash quick. There's even a National Association of Mystery Shoppers so it must be legit.
Focus Groups can be another way to earn extra income, but unlike Surveys and Polls, occasionally Focus Groups want to you participate in person. Focus Point Global and 20|20 Panel use a combination of in person and online research studies. You can also search for focus groups in your area on Find Focus Groups. Using User Testing and Utest will let you participate via website or app.
Sell Your Clothes, Accessories and Household Items
I bet you would be surprised what is laying around your house that you bought but never used. I challenge you to go through your house and collect all of the items still in bags or that still have tags on them. If you bought it over a week ago and still haven't used it, return it. If you bought it and don't know what you're going to do with it, return it. I know, I know, it was a bargain at the store and it was the last one, and you just couldn't pass it up. So you bought it. Now what? How about you return it? I actually did that a few years ago and got $50 back from items that would still be in a drawer or in the back of a closet with their tags still on them. It freed clutter in my house and put money in my pocketbook. It was a win - win.
If your items are older or don't have tags on them, or maybe they are slightly used (or antiques), here are some other resources for you and places where you can list those for resale. There are websites and apps that let you list things locally like Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, Letgo, Offer Up, and Online Garage Sale. Of course Ebay is the site people think of when it comes to collectibles or harder to find items, and location isn't an issue because when you sell on Ebay shipping is expected.
To sell your jewelry, you can use the online auction site Worthy.
If you have text books laying around, you can see about listing them on Book Scouter.
For more specialized items like antiques and collectibles, you will most likely get more money for your items if you list them on a specialty site. A few of these sites are Tias for antiques, and Ruby Lane for Vintage items.
Dishes are also a very specific item, and if you have china that your Grandmother left you, or you are wanting to sell your own china, glassware or flatware, Replacements is a good place to list them.
Use Your Brain
You might have a skillset or knowledge that others need. Have you thought about tutoring? There are several places to list your tutoring services. Visit tutor.com, Chegg, TutorVista, Wyzant, Enroll or even list your services on Craigslist, Nextdoor, or post them at the local High School, Community College or University.
Do you speak another language besides English? There are many jobs that require translators. I have a German friend translating a book from English to German, and is getting paid to do it from home.
If you want to be a language tutor, you can list your services on italki.
What other skills do you have? Do you know graphic design? Website building? How to create Facebook cover images? There are several websites on which you can post your services. Some of these sites are Fiverr, Elance (which is now Upwork), freelancer, and 99designs, just to name a few.
Do you like to write? I once applied for a part-time job writing dating profiles for men. True story.
Use your brain to participate in some research. Amazon's Mechanical Turk is a site that allows you to do tasks that need the human eye. ShortTask is a similar site, but there is not as much competition. You can also get paid for well-researched answers to questions on JustAnswer and can participate in Harvard Business School’s research study program. Then register on Pinecone Research, Hagen Sinclair and with AlphaBuzz, Inc. That should keep you busy for a while.
If you are tech savvy, consider signing up to be tech support on Fixya.
Sell Your Body
I'm not talking about the oldest profession, you cheeky monkey. Get your mind out of the gutter. There are however several legit ways to make money using your body. You can get paid to donate plasma, donate your eggs or sperm, or donate your hair. And by "donate", of course we mean that you get paid.
Use Your Gifts and Talents
Are you trained in a specific dance? What about hiring yourself out to teach? Local ballroom studios usually hire out floor space for an hourly rate. Restaurants and Country bars also hire people to come teach group lessons on certain nights of the week. Likewise, our local Parks and Rec hires dance teachers to teach weekly group classes. If you have that talent, get creative with where you could teach. I am ballroom trained and several years ago I choreographed wedding and Quinceañera groups out of a ballroom studio, then a private studio that I found. Teaching dance had low overhead and a great payoff, both financially and emotionally. Get creative in your area.
What about swimming lessons? I live in Arizona and every other home has a pool. Several women I know teach swimming lessons to kids in the summer, either in their own pools or at the home of the student.
Do you like kids? When I was a new mom I babysat other kids in my home. It allowed me to stay home with my kids and make money without the expense of having to pay for my own child care. Now there are sites like care.com, Urban Sitter or Sittercity where you can list your services and get babysitting or daycare jobs from people you don't already know. Or you could market it on your own in your area. As mentioned above, places like Craigslist, Nextdoor.com, and your local Facebook neighborhood groups are good places to advertise. Do you pick up your kids after school? Maybe advertise after school care and pick up the other kids at the same time. The possibilities are limitless, you just need to get creative. Here is a great blog post on how to advertise your daycare or babysitting services.
What about laundry? Do you like to do laundry? You could advertise a local laundry service. Pick it up, wash, dry and fold it, and return it the next day. My boyfriend was recently working in Vegas and was running out of clothes and didn't know if he'd have time to do laundry before the end of his trip, nor if his hotel had washers and dryers. So he searched for a laundry service online and took his bag of dirty clothes to work. They came and picked up his laundry bag and delivered it the next day clean and folded. He paid $36 for that service. The next day the other engineer he works with did the same thing because he thought it was such a great idea. Busy people will pay for convenience.
Do you have a green thumb? There are people who live in apartments who love to garden but don't have the space. And there are those who live in homes with yards and would love a garden, but don't have the slightest idea where to start with planting one. Hire yourself out as a garden starter, or garden planter (although I'm sure you can come up with a better term for it). Or maybe start container gardens and sell those locally. Or, maybe, instead of gardening for others you are able to garden for yourself and can sell your produce at a local farmer's markets. Again, get creative.
I know a single mom who loves to extreme coupon. She needed money quick, so she started selling the things she had collected through couponing. She started a Facebook group and just posts her spoils in there. People see the posts, comment to reserve things, pick them up at her house and pay her cash. She gets to coupon, gets items for next to nothing, and makes a profit on it in her own home. Brilliant.
Get crafty. I have another friend who found a way to monetize her love for crafting. She makes coaster, totes and makeup bags and sells them at arts and craft fairs in the Fall. She has a full-time job, but this "hobby" gives her a creative outlet and extra money to do the things she wants to do.
I also have a neighbor who makes a killer BBQ rub. He sells it to friends, neighbors and co-workers and makes money for more spices to make more rub. He loves to BBQ and this generates enough income to keep him knee-deep in *secret sauce* (he won't let me give his secrets away). You get the point though.
I've spent hours and hours (and several days) putting this blog post together. It was a labor of love because I hear so many people saying they just wish they could find a way to generate some extra income. I also hear stories all the time of women who have figured out a way. People are creative when it comes to generating income and sometimes you just need to see what others are doing to get some ideas. There are more than enough resources here to at least make a little extra cash if that's what you want or need to do.
Comment below and let me know if you can think of something I missed. I'd love to add it to the list.
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