100 Ways to Make Extra Money on the Side

by TTMK on December 16, 2013 · 17 comments

ways to earn extra incomeWho doesn’t want to make extra money on the side?  For many people, it’s nice to have some additional income throughout the year or during specific times.

Maybe you’re looking to supplement your retirement fund.  Or, perhaps you’re trying to pay off your student loan debt.  You might even be trying to save money for a specific purchase, like a home.  Whatever the case is, additional cash flow can be a nice thing.

I’ve put together the following list of 100 ways to make side income in order to show that there are many possibilities for making money, and to hopefully help some people with their money goals.  These ideas are truly varied, and you should always check to make sure that you’re in compliance with your own local laws and regulations before embarking on money-making ventures.

Here goes, in a totally randomized order:

  1. Write blog articles.  Some blogs have staff writers, and this can provide an opportunity to make some extra money writing about topics that are of interest to you.  Plus, you can build a writing portfolio that could lead to additional opportunities
  2. Tutor.  There are always students that need help in different subjects.  If you have the skills to help, you can help people with their academic pursuits.
  3. Resume help.  You can create resumes, or even review and edit existing resumes.
  4. Podcast.  These days, podcasting seems to be all the rage – particularly in personal finance and blogging.  This could be a path to earning some extra money, even if it entails helping others with their podcasting efforts.
  5. Sell your life insurance policy.  Not one to do without careful consideration, and I’m not sure I would be too keen on it.  But if you’re young and really need some funds, it’s an option.
  6. Freelance professional work.  Many businesses don’t want to hire full-time employees for a variety of reasons.  If you’re willing to do some additional or ad-hoc work on a limited basis, perhaps your field offers some freelance opportunities.
  7. Negotiate for a pay raise.  This isn’t exactly side income, but it’s a way to bring in some extra money without directly doing anything different in the day job.  This merits a separate post, and is very important to explore.
  8. Clean homes.  People are often very busy, juggling commutes, kids, etc.  There is a market for reliable, trustworthy people to help with cleaning on a semi-regular basis.  This could provide a few bucks in the short-term.
  9. Voice overs.  If you have a broadcast-worthy voice – and some people are truly lucky to have this – then it could be an asset you can leverage.
  10. Get rid of junk.  Simply selling off old things you no longer want can be a great way to bring in a few extra dollars.
  11. Create wedding playlists.  Weddings are big-time sources of emotional spending, as people lose sight of budgets during this time.  When dealing with people with deep pockets, it could be possible to put together that “perfect” playlist for them.
  12. Give a machine a break.  Amazon Turks is a way to earn a little bit of money doing things for which people are needed instead of machines.
  13. Motivate!  Maybe you can put on your positive hat and counseling outfit – so to speak – and be a for-fee motivator.  Businesses pay for motivation speakers, so why not motivate smaller groups or individuals?
  14. Perform music.  Maybe you have some good piano skills, or know how to play guitar really well.  You could make some extra money performing at different events and venues.
  15. Rent a parking spot.  If allowed where you live, maybe you could rent out a parking spot on your property.  While the market for this might be quite limited, it could be of great value for people looking for parking near commuter trains.  In older urban and suburban areas in certain parts of the country, space is at a huge premium.
  16. Seasonal or holiday work.  A good example of this is retail-related work in November and December.  This is a time where some businesses need some short-term help.
  17. Life coaching.  It can be hard to get objective, helpful advice and encouragement from family or friends.  A life coach who isn’t otherwise emotionally involved or biases could provide genuine help to people seeking direction.  Maybe you have what it takes to do this, who knows.
  18. Elder care.  With an aging population, there is a need for help in a variety of areas.  This could be a way to make some additional money while doing some truly good things helping people.
  19. Design ads.  As a customer or potential one, you often have an idea of what types of ads would resonate.  This is one could work if you have creative or design skills.
  20. Consulting.  If you have in-depth industry experience, or specific skills for which there is real demand, you might be able to earn some money on the side doing some consulting.
  21. Hold a garage or yard sale.  An old-fashioned method of selling unwanted items from around the house, this can still be useful today.
  22. Draw.  If you have exceptional drawing skills, you could pick up a few gigs illustrating, drawing caricatures, or other such projects.
  23. Travel assistance.  This could take on various forms.  One might be helping someone with planning or logistics, and another might simply be driving someone to the airport.
  24. Wedding planning.  As mentioned before, people go nuts over weddings (been there) and there are plenty of people who will pay for a planner.  If it’s something you’re fascinated with and a have a passion for, then maybe this is avenue to take
  25. Gardening.  If you like to garden, perhaps you can sell some of your output at a local farmer’s market?
  26. Sell collectibles.  Old records from back in the day, baseball cards, stamps – you name it, people collect it.  Maybe you have something that someone would want?
  27. Fitness instructor.  People want to be in shape, and often need help with specifics of different exercises.  There are likely some hoops to jump through to be able to do this, but it’s a way to make some extra money.
  28. Egg or sperm donor.  This is an area that’s not for everyone, and I’m not a fan as far as my own life is concerned.  That said, it’s an option for those who really want the money.  Think carefully.
  29. Rent your car when out-of-town.  You could rent your car out to be used when you’re not in town.  Why let an asset go to waste, right?
  30. Train pets.  Nobody wants a nightmare, disobedient dog.  With experience, you can help a new pet owner.
  31. Edit manuscript.  How we define manuscript can be flexible here.  With strong language skills, you could help people with their copy.
  32. Be a gofer.  Go find and pick up what people need, run errands for them and get paid!
  33. Create videos.  As things evolve, it’s not just podcasting that’s picking up steam.  Video content is getting more mainstream as well, and there are plenty of people who would probably like help.  If you have the right skills, work it!
  34. Event management.  Coordinating a big event can be of value to the people running it or directly involved, as they’re often too busy to handle all the details.
  35. Design eBook covers.  These books are everywhere now, with numbers increasing quite a bit by the day.  Not everyone has the skills to both write and design a cover, so this represents an opportunity for the creatively skilled.
  36. Budgeting.  I’m not talking about your own budget, though having one can be a good idea.  Rather, I’m talking about sitting down with someone and helping them put together a good budget.  If you’re great at it, perhaps you can earn some extra money assisting others.  Your help might be a great investment for someone, you never know.
  37. Tour guide.  If you’re in an area that has quite a few tourists, you could make a few bucks this way.  I recall being in Rome and getting some impromptu help (along with group of other tourists).  It was a win-win, and something people elsewhere could replicate.
  38. Transcribe.  There is a market for this, with the right skills it can bring in side money.
  39. Videography.  Where people need something recorded, they might not have the funds for an expensive professional.  That’s where the side gig comes into play.
  40. Craigslist.  We all know this one, it’s a good way to sell items and make a few bucks.
  41. Mystery shop.  Another way to make side income.
  42. DJ.  If you like music, like people, and have the equipment to DJ, this might be for you.  Flexibility for odd hours is a help as well.
  43. Public speaking.  Companies and other organizations could pay reasonably well for people to come in and speak, either on very specific topics or for motivational purposes.
  44. Medical tests.  Care to be a part of medical tests that could help others?  Maybe there is some money in play for those who do.
  45. Create social media pages.  If someone wants a customized Twitter background, for example, they might be willing to pay for help.
  46. Babysit.  The age-old way to make money hasn’t gone away.  With parents busier than ever, there is a need for help with kids.
  47. Garage cleaner.  A bit of an unorthodox concept, but I think that cleaning a garage is different from cleaning the inside of a home.  It’s dirtier (we hope) and often requires different labor skills.  Helping someone clean and organize a garage could be a way to earn money for a few hours of work.
  48. Have a roommate.  If you’re comfortable with the concept of renting out a room to someone and having them under your roof, it could be a way of bringing in a lot of extra cash flow for little actual work.  Be very careful though!
  49. Referee.  As much as people like to blame the referees, they’re necessary in organized sports.  There is no shortage of such sports, which represents an opportunity to make side income.
  50. Make cards.  If you enjoy cards and have some creative/artsy skills, you could make custom cards for people.
  51. Sell your old phone.  If you’re a serial phone upgrader, your “old” phone might still have quite a bit of value.  A friend tried to sell me his old iPhone once, and though I immediately declined (no used phones for me!) I did find it interesting how there can be a secondary market for technology.
  52. Virtual assistant work.  There are many tasks associated with blogging, for example, that take a ton of time that the publisher might not have.  This is where the VA comes in, and provides value in exchange for compensation.
  53. Pawn stuff.  You might have some valuables that you don’t need, but could fetch some money.  A pawn shop could be an option for obtaining some extra money in exchange for said items.
  54. Rent a seat in your car.  If you’re driving a long distance each day, let’s say from the suburbs to downtown, there could be other people who have the same commute.  A hybrid form of carpooling, instead of sharing gas costs or alternating driving, perhaps you could just get paid instead.
  55. Create an app.  While revenue per download might not be sky-high, you never know what could happen if you develop something that meets a need in the market.
  56. Window cleaning.  Who likes to clean windows? Exactly.  That’s why there could be some extra money in it.
  57. House sit.  If someone is traveling for an extended period of time, there could naturally be some worry about making sure things are okay with the house.
  58. Teach music.  If you took music lessons for many years as a kid, and became really good at a particular instrument, it’s not like the skills need to be wasted.  You might be able to teach music on the side, appealing to people who don’t want to spend big bucks for professional lessons.
  59. Photography – for others.  If you’re a really good photographer, you could offer your services to people holding a conference, wedding, etc.
  60. Sell your photos.  You might be able to sell existing photos, or take professional photos for specific purposes.
  61. Walk dogs.  Dogs need to be walked, yet many pet owners have made their lives incredibly busy.  People with such time issues might serve as a potential market for dog-walking services.
  62. Dumpster dive and flip.  I haven’t done this, but have heard of a few people picking up old furniture and rehabbing these items.  Then, selling and making a few bucks.
  63. Landscaping.  Keeping the exterior of a property nicely landscaped can be time and labor-intensive.  If you have both, you could make some money from people in more affluent areas.  Or, simply people who overspend!
  64. Pet grooming.   Pets need haircuts too!
  65. Market research.  Participate in a market research study, and you might be able to obtain a decent stipend for a short amount of your time.
  66. Transport items.  Move things for people.  Does someone need to move something to a storage facility?  Help them out and make some extra money.  Just be careful with your back!
  67. Cater.  Much like photos and videos, food preparation is something that people holding an event just might not have time to deal with.  This can be option for those who have some flexibility with time as well as really good cooking skills.
  68. Sell crafts.  Many people love to make crafts.  Why not make some money on the side from it? Etsy is quite popular along these lines.
  69. Monetize your car.  How about selling ad space on your car?  You can convince someone who there will be tons of eyeballs seeing the ad each day, and collect some money for it.  Truly passive income, as long as you don’t mind driving a vehicle that promotes a business.
  70. Make logos.  This is something that can be a DIY endeavor, but many people want something more.  You could develop logos as a side business, which is something a number of other people are currently doing.
  71. Run errands.  There are any number and variety of errands that people might need to get done, but don’t have the time or physical capacity to do at the moment.
  72. Do paid reviews.  You could get paid for writing about a product or service.
  73. Tweeting.  Sponsored content can take many forms, including tweets.  Many people might be surprised that there can be an opportunity to earn a little bit of money with this.
  74. Recycle.  From scrap metal to electronics, and different points in between, there are things that we can recycle for money.
  75. Sell unused gift cards.  If you have a gift card that you don’t care to use, and don’t want to re-gift to someone else, don’t let it go to waste.  Sell it!
  76. Bake cookies and bread.  Who doesn’t like fresh, homemade cookies, bread, and other treats?
  77. Substitute teach.  While this might not yield big money, it can be a rewarding way to earn extra money.
  78. Teach cooking.  Plenty of people need help with their cooking skills.  If you have abilities with specific types of cooking or cuisine, you could find a niche for yourself.
  79. Print and place ads.  By this, I mean printing, distributing, and posting flyers for businesses that pay you.
  80. Model.  If you’re lucky enough to be able to do this, there is money (and maybe an ego boost) involved!
  81. Do online surveys.  You can do this sitting at home in your pajamas.
  82. Host product parties.  Get people together at your home, and sell kitchen or fashion wares.
  83. Sell hair.  Yes, there are people who will buy hair.
  84. Wash cars.  Not just external washes, but detailing car interiors can generate extra money.
  85. Web design.  With the explosion in the number of websites started by people globally, there is demand for those who are good at this.
  86. Teach a language.  If you are fluent in a language that most people aren’t, you have a built-in opportunity to teach as long as there is demand.
  87. Mow lawns.  This is maintenance work for many homeowners, and quite a few people simply don’t have time or interest in doing the work themselves
  88. Handy work.  The ability to fix things and do handy work can also come in handy for earning extra money.
  89. Teach sports.  Let’s say you’re a really good tennis player or golfer, for example.  You could give lessons to others wanting to learn, and command a pretty decent rate.
  90. Home advertising.  By this, we aren’t talking about placing ads for homes.  Rather, we’re talking about placing an ad on your home.  May be hard to do in many communities, but it’s an idea!
  91. Fix computers.  Technology isn’t always cheap, and a machine that’s acting up can’t always be replaced so easily.  Thus, many people might seek to avoid a big expense but instead spend less to get repairs made.
  92. Pet sit.  If people can be watched, so can pets.  Putting a dog in a kennel might not appeal to everyone, for example, and dog-sitting could be something people would look for and pay for.
  93. Sell art.  Plenty of people appreciate paintings and other art.
  94. Sponsored messaging.  This is an out of the box idea, but maybe you could sell ad space on your email signatures, voice mail greetings, etc.
  95. Shovel snow.  The physical exertion of shoveling snow can be too much for many people, but even otherwise healthy people might simply want to avoid doing it.  If you’re willing to bundle up and spend some time outside, this could be for you.
  96. Rake leaves.  Much like shoveling snow, clearing leaves can be moderately taxing – thus creating a nice seasonal side gig opportunity.
  97. Rent your home when out-of-town.  If you’re away for 2 weeks, it could be nice to have someone pay you to be a guest in your home.
  98. Interpreter.   A nice way to leverage your skills with a second language!
  99. Start a blog.  Yes, this idea just had to make the list for obvious reasons.  While most bloggers do not make much money at all relative to the time put in, some people in the right niches can make solid side (or more) income if they truly succeed.  Blogging can be a ton of fun too!
  100. Sell a blog.  Different from starting and running a blog which has the potential to provide ongoing revenue.  In this case, selling a blog, you can cash out of existing online assets.  Another way to accomplish this could be flipping sites.  Sometimes, bloggers quit writing for their blogs and are willing to sell them for low prices – which sets the table for someone to revitalize and flip.

As can be seen, there are tons of ways that we can hustle for additional income.  With people seemingly getting busier and more interested in outsourcing different life tasks, there is plenty of opportunity for people to make extra side money!

My Questions for You

Have you taken part in any efforts to make extra money?

If so, which of these 100 ways have you tried?

Do you have any others to add?

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Little House December 16, 2013 at 9:05 am

Wow! What a great list. All of these are great ideas!

Reply

TTMK December 18, 2013 at 12:03 pm

Thanks Little House!

Reply

Joe December 16, 2013 at 5:41 pm

Great list! I don’t have any time though. Maybe once our kid starts school full time I’ll be able to do more. Even then, I’d like to earn at least $40/hour… Am I too greedy?

Reply

TTMK December 18, 2013 at 12:02 pm

Joe – no, not greedy for an engineer and successful blogger such as yourself.

Reply

Ryan @ Impersonal Finance December 17, 2013 at 8:36 am

Seriously awesome list! There’s literally nothing you can’t do to make a little extra kale. Now nobody has an excuse not to make some money on the side!

Reply

TTMK December 18, 2013 at 12:02 pm

Thanks Ryan! I was trying to make that point and give a lot of examples, glad you liked it.

Reply

Nick @ Step Away from the Mall December 17, 2013 at 10:16 am

Wow! That’s a lot of ways! Great list.

Reply

TTMK December 18, 2013 at 12:01 pm

Thanks Nick!

Reply

Andrew@LivingRichCheaply December 17, 2013 at 2:43 pm

What an extensive list! Never heard of Amazon Turk…will check that out! Only things I’ve done to make side income is selling stuff on Amazon and grading papers for a test prep company.

Reply

TTMK December 18, 2013 at 12:00 pm

Andrew – grading papers for a test prep company, I like that. Yet another way to make extra money.

Reply

Barbara Friedberg December 17, 2013 at 3:27 pm

There’s something here for everyone! GReat list!

Reply

TTMK December 18, 2013 at 12:00 pm

Thanks! I was hoping this list would have something for most people.

Reply

Stefanie @ The Broke and Beautiful Life December 17, 2013 at 5:16 pm

Renting space, be it a room, a storage space, or a parking spot, is one of the easiest ways to bring in A LOT of extra income.

Reply

TTMK December 18, 2013 at 11:59 am

Stefanie – agreed, for those in a position to do so (no kids, etc) renting a room can be a big way to generate quite a bit of additional money. Storage and parking can also be great for those with the opportunity, and can be low in terms of intrusiveness. Perhaps even semi-passive income!

Reply

Brian @ Luke1428 December 18, 2013 at 6:48 pm

Great list! I’ve refereed basketball before and made good money doing that. It was tough but made me appreciate how hard that job is. The game is so fast paced. The next basketball season I coached after doing my first referee gig, I was less tough on the refs. 🙂

Reply

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