15 Minute Read
If you’re trying to figure out how to make extra money on the side (and who isn’t?), it can be hard to know what’s legitimate and what’s a total waste of time. We’ve done the searching for you and found 30 ways to make extra money in your spare time. And you can use these ideas no matter what Baby Step you’re on!
How to Make Extra Money Online
1. Tutor online.
If you think being a tutor means you made straight A’s through high school and college, think again. It’s all about what you know and how well you know it! Online tutoring companies like Tutor.com, TutorMe and Studypool hire tutors to share their expertise with students on a wide variety of topics.
Just make sure you proceed with caution when deciding which tutoring gig to take. Some of the users on these on-demand tutoring sites are really just looking for someone to write their essay or do their homework for them. Use wisdom when sifting through the postings.
2. Become a user experience tester.
Every business hopes their website is informative, helpful, hitting their main objective and oh yeah, making money. But if something isn’t working, the business needs to know why, and a lot of them call in user experience testers to give feedback.
Local experts you can trust.
Are you good at determining how user-friendly a website is just by spending a few minutes scanning the webpage? Companies like UserTesting, Analysia and TryMyUI will pay you for your feedback. Most of them boast that you’ll get $10 per test you complete!(1)
3. Take surveys to make money.
Look into survey sites like MyPoints, Survey Junkie or Vindale Research where you’ll get paid just for taking surveys and giving your opinion. Sounds like a pretty sweet deal, right? Just remember, these sites are looking for specific criteria. So you might have to wait for the right survey to come along that you qualify for. Plus, you’ll have to reach a certain threshold before you can cash out your points. It’s not a get-rich-quick opportunity by any means, but that extra cash can still add up over time. If you’re the patient and persistent type, give it a shot!
4. Get cash back from apps.
There are plenty of mobile apps out there that can show you how to make extra money just by doing simple things. We’re talking really, really easy here—like “grabbing your phone and scanning your receipt” easy. Check out mobile apps like Ibotta, Ebates, Shopkick, Receipt Hog and Dosh to score some extra cash without too much work on your part.
5. Teach English.
It’s kind of like going the tutoring route, except you’re teaching English with a company like VIPKid (a big favorite of fans in our Ramsey Baby Steps Community on Facebook). Now if the word teach makes you a little nervous, don’t worry. They’ll handle all the lesson plans and grading for you. But you do need to have an interest in helping others learn and the ability to guide a class online. Getting paid while helping others? This one truly is a win-win!
6. Get paid for your creative skills.
You’ve got the creative skills but just have to connect with someone who needs your awesome work. Why not freelance in your spare time with Fiverr? The site connects freelancers specializing in writing, editing, graphic design and voice-over work to clients needing those creative minds in their corner.
You’ll create a profile (almost like a résumé) that potential employers can scan to check out your experience, rates and specialties. Get ready to let your creativity flow!
How to Make Extra Money With a Side Job
7. Get paid for your photos.
Are you a shutterbug? Do you have photos of gorgeous sunsets and perfectly staged lattés cluttering up your camera roll? You can make extra money for your photos without having to be a professional photographer. Foap will pay $5 for every picture someone purchases from you.
Keep in mind there’s no guarantee your photos will be purchased. But even if you only sell a few, that’s some easy money for something you’ve already done.
8. Drive for Uber or Lyft.
If you’re strapped for cash but want to work on your own schedule, you might want to consider becoming a driver for Uber or Lyft. You can drive as much (or as little) as you want and set your own schedule. Plus, you get the added bonus of having interesting conversations along the way (or at the very least some colorful stories to tell of your travels with strangers).
Of course, the amount of money you make depends on your location and how often you cart people around. So if you have a free Saturday every now and again, you might want to spend it as a glorified taxi exploring your city and getting paid for it.
9. Become a food delivery driver.
Not too keen on shuttling people around? We totally get it. How about dropping off a to-go order of burgers and fries instead? Driving for Uber Eats, Grubhub or Postmates is a great way to make extra money in your free time just by delivering food to hungry clients. Bonus points: Your car is going to smell amazing. We’re already kind of jealous of you, really.
10. Join a focus group.
If you like sharing your opinion, why not get paid for it? Check to see if there’s a local focus group you can sign up for in your area. You could earn cash just for giving your thoughts on things like taste tests or product comparisons. Just make sure you fit the demographic they’re looking for before applying.
11. Deliver groceries.
If you love the thrill of shopping but don’t want to spend your own money, this might interest you. With Shipt, you get paid to shop and deliver groceries to clients through their on-demand service. According to the company, their shoppers make anywhere from $16 to $22 an hour!(2) Getting paid for shopping? Sign us up!
12. Take up babysitting.
One of the easiest ways to make extra money is to babysit for a couple nights a week. And it might be easier than you think to land a gig. Most parents are always eager to have a date night! But sometimes finding a qualified sitter they trust can be tricky.
Let people in your friend group, church and workplace know you’d be happy to watch their children in your spare time (they need to pay you, of course). And if it’s a little awkward for you to spread the news by word of mouth, you can always sign up for a service like SitterCity or Care.com to help you land some babysitting jobs.
13. Start pet sitting.
Are you an animal lover at heart? How about making some extra money just by taking a dog for a walk or boarding a cat for the weekend? You can advertise your own pet-sitting business on social media, put up signs throughout your neighborhood, or use a website like Rover. They let you set your schedule and adjust your fees as you see fit. If you do use Rover, keep in mind that they take a cut of what you make.(3)
14. Advertise on your car.
File this one under both super weird and the ultimate definition of the phrase passive income. The app Wrapify will pay you to drive with a business advertisement wrapped around your car. Once the car is wrapped, you really don’t have to do anything except drive like you normally do.
It sounds strange, but it’s actually pretty lucrative: The more you drive, the more you’ll earn. Wrapify says the average person who does a full wrap on their car makes about $264–$452 a month.(4) If you’re paying off your car loan, that’s a car payment right there!
15. Do tasks for people.
If you’re just trying to figure out how to make money on the side with quick fix-it jobs or running errands, TaskRabbit might be your best bet. You can do all kinds of things from yard work to assembling furniture. This is the perfect way to make extra money if you like to tinker with things—you, MacGyver, you.
16. Deliver for Amazon.
There’s nothing quite like getting a package delivered to your front door, especially when it comes from Amazon. Everyone loves Amazon, so why not spend a few nights a week driving around town bringing people joy? Sign up to deliver packages with Amazon Flex and set your schedule for as much or as little as you want to work.
17. Turn your commute into cash.
Between commuting to work and driving the kids to soccer practice, most of us spend plenty of time in our cars. So why not make extra money while you’re riding around? With Roadie you can get paid just for driving a package (or even a pet!) from point A to point B along your route.
And check your area for apps that reward you for carpooling around town. Here in Nashville, we have Hytch, which lets you earn cash for each mile you carpool with one or more people. You’re already driving into work each day, so why not get paid for it too?
18. Become a photographer.
If you have a nice camera and a good eye, snapping a few photos might be just the thing you need to figure out how to make extra money. You can go as all-in with this as you want. Maybe you only shoot family sessions and birthday cake smashes on the weekends. Or maybe you decide to start a business as a wedding photographer! The choice really is up to you.
Check the going rates for sessions in your area and consider setting your prices a little lower to stick it to your competition. Let’s say you make $75–$100 a session. That can add up pretty fast!
19. Take up car washing/detailing.
If you’re a major car enthusiast, this might be a natural fit for you! And you probably already have the tools you need. It’s amazing how many people are eager to pay someone else to do things they don’t want to do. You can even make the business mobile and meet your customers wherever they are!
20. Start a blog.
If you’ve got something to say, chances are people might read it! The great thing about a blog is you can focus on nearly any topic you want to. If you’re a great cook, do a food blog. Or maybe fashion is your true love. If you’re passionate about fitness and nutrition, start a health blog.
Just be prepared with this one. You can definitely make good money with a blog . . . but you can also end up making next to nothing. Okay, maybe that’s extreme. But you get the idea. Using things like Google AdSense or affiliate marketing and even becoming a brand ambassador or influencer can really impact your readership and the cash you make.
21. Start your own business.
If you’re just looking for a quick way to make cash on nights or weekends for a short stretch of time, then maybe this one isn’t for you. But if you’re ready to turn your dream of starting your own business into a reality, there’s never been a better time to do it! Online platforms like Etsy, Amazon FBA and Big Cartel have made it easier than ever.
22. Ask for a raise/get promoted.
This one is going to take some guts, cowboy. But if you don’t ask, you’ll never know, right? Just make sure you go in with a game plan. Set aside some time to talk to your boss about all the wins you’ve brought to the company this year. Don’t just go in asking for more money. Back up what you’re asking for with results that prove it’s justified.
If your company only dishes out raises and promotions once a year at review time, be aware of that too. Make sure you’re doing what you can to grow, engage and get results in the meantime.
How to Make Extra Money by Selling or Renting
23. Rent your home.
If you have a spare bedroom or can stay with your in-laws or friends on short notice, you might want to consider renting out your home on Airbnb. Let’s say you decide to rent out your upstairs guest room and bathroom. Here in the Nashville area, you’d have a monthly earning potential of $1,041.(5) Not too shabby at all!
But what about the risks of opening up your home to strangers? Airbnb offers accidental damage coverage on your home (up to a million dollars of coverage, to be exact). They also offer host protection insurance just in case a guest gets hurt while staying on your property.
While Airbnb doesn’t screen each individual guest, they do let hosts and guests rate each other. That way you can feel more at ease about who you’re letting into your house.
24. Rent out your car.
If you have a vehicle that just sits in your garage for long stretches of time, you might find a car rental service like Turo is one of the easiest ways to make extra money. Let’s say you list your 2014 Nissan Maxima in Denver, CO. If you rent out your car for just 11 days a month, Turo says you could make around $385. That’s over $4,600 a year!(6)
And don’t worry: The company covers your vehicle with $1 million of liability insurance as well as theft and damage coverage. So let your renter hit the open road while you sit back and count the money they just paid you. Vroom vroom!
25. Get rid of old movies, music and electronics.
Channel your inner minimalist and get rid of all those dusty DVDs or CDs on your entertainment stand or in boxes under your bed. And make the whole process easier with Decluttr. You can scan the bar codes of items you don’t want anymore and see how much money the company will give you. Instead of waiting around for a buyer to maybe purchase your item, the company itself will buy your items outright. See ya later, Godzilla DVD.
26. Rent out your baby gear.
Do you have baby items taking up space in your garage, but you aren’t ready to part with them yet? After all, you might want another kid . . . maybe one day. Instead of selling that high chair or baby jumper, why not rent them? Oh, we’re serious. On websites like goBaby, cribs can go for $10 to $50 a day, and strollers can collect $15 to $40 a day.(7)
27. Sell unwanted stuff.
Sift through your hall closet, attic and garage for everything you don’t use anymore. What can you live without? Of course, you can always sell items on eBay and Craigslist. But don’t forget about apps like LetGo, VarageSale, Poshmark and thredUP that make it even easier to make extra money by selling secondhand stuff.
28. Sell your children’s clothes.
Let’s be honest. Those little people grow out of their clothes faster than you can keep up. When it’s time to get rid of the clothes they’ve outgrown, you have a few options. Put them out in your standard yard sale, sell them to a consignment store, or post them on social media. Apps like Kidizen are specially designed for selling your kid’s gently used threads. And of course, you can use other sites like Poshmark, thredUp, Craigslist and eBay to sell children’s clothing too.
29. Sell your unused gift cards.
Aunt Betsy gave you a PacSun gift card for Christmas and you’ve never even set foot in the place. Instead of letting the gift card collect dust, sell it! Websites like Raise let you sell your unwanted gift cards and make a little kickback off of them. After all, every gift card deserves a loving home, doesn’t it?
30. Rent your belongings.
Okay, we already talked about renting out your home, car and even your old baby items. What else is there? Oh, only everything else. The popular renting company, Fat Llama (we know), lets you rent out nearly any of your belongings!
Some of the in-demand items are camera equipment, projectors, lighting, and audio equipment. So if you’re a photographer, videographer or just a tech-gadget-lover you might make a good amount. But remember, you can rent out nearly anything—even your lawn mower. . . or tractor. . . or scooter. Who knew!
Give It a Shot
Try a few (or all 30) of these and see if you can generate a nice little chunk of change. Then use that extra cash to hit money goals like paying off debt, saving up for your emergency fund, or putting a little extra toward retirement. You might be pleasantly surprised at what you can do with a few extra dollars in your pocket.
No matter how you decide to bring home extra money, having a budget is essential for reaching your goals. Get our free budgeting tool, EveryDollar, to track exactly where all of those extra dollars are going.