12 ways to start earning extra money
1. Sell surplus stuff
Some apps and websites connect sellers and buyers of used items. One example is Decluttr, which directly buys your gently used books, CDs, DVDs, games and tech gadgets. Other people use social and online buy-and-sell sites, including Facebook, Marketplace, Craigslist and eBay.
And some people who get more serious about selling items online start up a business through Amazon or another online marketplace, sometimes buying deeply discounted retail goods to resell.
2. Become a virtual assistant
Virtual assistants help their clients with a variety of digital tasks.
Entry-level virtual assistants handle tasks like inbox management, internet research, document formatting and customer service.
To bump up your income, you can specialize in more technical skills such as search engine optimization, team management or paid advertising.
Job search sites show a range of hourly pay for a work-from-home virtual assistants — anywhere from $10 to $26 an hour, with higher salaries for more work and specialized skills. The option might not be too shabby for a job you can do in your jammies.
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3. Freelance your skills
As a self-employed contractor, you'll charge clients per job or task. Or sometimes you can secure a standing contract and charge an hourly rate for a set amount of regular work.
Many people make freelancing their careers, and others pick up side work outside of their full-time job hours.
How to earn money from home with freelancing? Examples of the work include graphic design, transcription jobs, accounting, data entry, writing, customer service, consulting, tutoring, auditing or any other services that businesses can outsource.
You can also freelance in the physical world if you work as a dog walker, truck driver, makeup artist, photographer, event manager or in a variety of other jobs.
4. Teach English online
Millions of people around the world want to learn English. If you’re a native English speaker, you can earn money filling that void.
Online platforms that focus on tutoring and conversational practice often don’t require any experience or certifications. That said, a certification for teaching English as a foreign language, or a TEFL certificate, opens doors to the highest-paying teaching opportunities.
Most platforms let you set your schedule, so you could teach full time or treat the work as a flexible side gig.
5. Start a child care service
If you love kids, starting a child care business can turn your passion into a profit.
Families pay thousands of dollars a year per child for licensed child care in the U.S.
That means if you meet your state’s licensing standards, you could get some money coming in by looking after a handful of kids — without ever leaving your house.
6. Drive for ride-sharing and delivery apps
Apps including Uber or Lyft allow you to function as your own taxi company — but you don't have to worry about paying a huge licensing fee, renting a car, marketing or being on a schedule.
Whenever you have some extra time, you can jump in your car, turn on the radio and start making money.
Introverts who can’t imagine carting around strangers can also earn through grocery and carryout food delivery apps, such as Grubhub, DoorDash, Uber Eats and Instacart.
7. Clean houses
According to the federal household survey, 6% of adults earned money with house cleaning, yard work or property maintenance gigs in 2020.
Turns out, many people don’t have the time or energy to keep up with household chores. So if you don’t mind folding clothes, washing dishes and raking leaves, you could pull in a side income that way.
Most people aren’t comfortable giving strangers free roam of their houses, so start by offering your services to friends, family or neighbors to build up referrals. You can also use marketplace apps like Thumbtack to find cleaning clients.
8. Become a home maintenance helper
If you’ve got a knack for fixing things around the house, working as a freelance handy person can be a flexible side gig.
This includes technical projects for skilled electricians and HVAC professionals. But people also need help with simple tasks such as carrying boxes, assembling furniture, hanging Christmas lights or pulling weeds.
Platforms including TaskRabbit and Handy match homeowners with manual laborers, making it easier to fill your schedule with gigs.
9. Rent out your property
When you have a spare bedroom, a guest house, a vacation home or a rental property, you have the potential to make some money as an innkeeper.
And some people rent their own homes out while they're away through vacation rental sites including Airbnb and Vrbo.
How much you can earn will depend on the size, condition and location of your property, of course.
10. Rent out your car or RV
Real estate isn’t the only property you can rent out. You can turn your second car or RV that's taking up space in the driveway into a source of extra income.
Car-sharing services, such as Getaround and Turo, allow you to rent out your car, providing insurance and 24/7 roadside assistance. The services screen the drivers to make sure they have good safety records.
If you've got an RV and wouldn't mind letting someone else take it on a trip, then check out Outdoorsy, which is sort of like Airbnb for RVs.
11. Make and take calls
We may live in an age that focuses on social media and email, but many people still call companies when they need customer service.
At the same time, plenty of companies run phone surveys to ask customers for feedback. This means that these firms need people to make and take those calls from home — and many of them hire on a rolling basis.
12. Become a pet-sitter or housesitter
When people go out of town for work or play, they want to know that their houses and pets are being well looked after.
By marketing yourself as a reliable housesitter, you can earn extra cash just by staying at someone's house while they are away. House sitting usually pays more if there are some pets involved, so this is a win-win if you love animals. This is the perfect side gig because it's easy and won't interfere with your regular job or classes if you're in school.
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