It's hard to go online these days without hearing the word "side hustle." Cost of living is on the rise, student debt has reached $1.3 trillion, and more millennials are ditching their 9-5 job. Side hustles offer an easy way to boost your bottom line without committing to a full-time gig. They also offer an easy way to monetize a skill or passion you have without the risk of going all-in immediately.
If progress on your 2018 financial goals is not exactly blasting off, it's time to pump some rocket fuel into the tank with a side hustle. Luckily, there are plenty of easy and flexible options out there so you can get that extra cash flowing.
1. Purge your Junk Closet
If tidying up is part of your 2018 mojo, don’t just dump off your old clothes and video games at the nearest donation station. Instead, pump some green into your account. There’s a healthy secondhand market for outgrown baby gear, books, video games, and even furniture. It can be as easy as posting photos and details on an app.
2. Get Paid to Lose Weight
Here’s a moneymaker that doubles as New Year’s resolution fulfillment: Place a bet on your weight-loss goal. If you shed the pounds by the deadline, you get a handsome payout (completely funded by those who fell short of their own goals).
3. Learn How to Code
If you haven't noticed, we spent a TON of time online. That means there a big need for coders out there. Whether it's building a simple WordPress blog for someone or getting into the nitty-gritty, putting your coding skills to use can generate some serious side income.
If this is a new frontier for you, take a look at this Entrepreneur article that lists over 10 websites that will teach you how to code for free!
4. Selling Crafts
If you already love working with your hands, whether by knitting, fly tying, or creating elaborate baked goods, it’s time to launch a side business. Etsy is the go-to marketplace for crafters and could be the perfect place to market your skills.
5. Help Others Tie the Knot
If you like to watch love bloom, there is a way to monetize that heart-warming feeling of watching two people say the words "I do" - become a wedding officiant! While every state has it's own rules, there are ways to get officiated online. Check out this handy tip sheet to learn more.
6. Dog Walking
If your schedule is flexible, sign on as a doggie day-care provider, dog sitter, or dog walker in your neighborhood. Under the right circumstances, this is quite possibly the most perfect side hustle ever. (Unlike some other gigs, you don't have to clean up your car or house from top to bottom in order to please these clients.)
If you excelled in subjects like math, science, or writing, or a foreign language; tutoring could be your ticket to a steady side hustle. Break out those old notebooks and utilize your network (or your parent's) to find clients. There are tutoring sites out there that can help you find clients as well.
You can even do tutoring online! One site you could check out to get started is VIPKid.
8. Sign Up for Focus Groups
Got an opinion? Get paid for your thoughts by signing up for focus groups. Companies like Mindswarm pay you for answering questions about subjects that interest you online. All you need is a webcam or smartphone. Generally, the questions take up to an hour to answer and you receive $50 via Paypal when it's over.
9. Donate Your Plasma
Donating plasma may sound a little scary - we don't recommend if you are squeamish about needles - but it can be a great way to increase your bottom line. Because scientists are unable to synthetically reproduce plasma, you are compensated for your time and donation. Check out this site to find a donation center near you.
10. Tracking Apps
There are plenty of ways to earn extra dough with minimal effort using your mobile device or computer. Install tracking apps on your smartphone and get paid. Some apps to explore are Ibotta and Ebates.
11. Mechanical Turk
Amazon will help connect you with simple tasks you can do from home. There is a wide range of tasks but all of them are available to do from home. You can get started here.
12. Baby Sitting
It worked when you were 16, why wouldn't it work now? Baby Sitting is a great gig because it is in demand at any time during the day. During the day people need child care while they are at work. At night, people need someone to watch their kids while they enjoy a date night. Care.com is a great place to list yourself and find work.
Collecting glass and cans might not make you rich, but it does pay. Plus, you get the warm and fuzzy feeling knowing that you are making the world a cleaner place.
If you want to take it to the next level, you could try to turn your cleaning into a business by offering these services to local businesses.
Wouldn't it be nice to get paid just to live in a house? You can. Sure, you might need to water the plants, get the mail, or shovel the sidewalks, but it's a great way to earn a little extra money on top of your regular job. These gigs are a little harder to find, but there are sites popping up to help connect you to homeowners looking for these services.
15. Hauling Services
Got a truck? People buy things all the time and need help getting them home. Or, they need help getting things out of their house. Either way, there is always a demand for someone to help move cumbersome items. The easiest way to find this kind of work is to maintain a Craigslist posting.
16. Mystery Shopping
Can you pretend to be a customer? Businesses need help maintaining a certain level of quality when it comes to their service. Mystery shoppers play an important role by pretending to be customers and seeing how their issues are resolved. You are typically provided a script and the calls are often recorded. You can find mystery shopping jobs on sites like this.
17. Be a Driver
Companies like Uber and Lyft have made this side hustle pretty popular. One thing you need to check before you sign up is the possible costs you'll incur with any changes mandated by your insurance company.
18. Rent Out your Car
Of course, you don't even need to drive. You can just rent out your car to others with sites like this.
19. Turn your Car into a Billboard
While we're on the topic of cars, you can make some extra cash if you let companies turn your car into a mobile advertisement. Wrapify will connect you with businesses who want to advertise on your ride.
20. Turn your Home into a Hotel
Do you have a home you aren't living in or even an extra bedroom that you can spare? Airbnb or VRBO are two popular sites that will help you find travelers who are interested in finding accommodation.
21. Become a Brand Ambassador
Do you have some social media followers? You might be able to monetize your following by becoming a brand ambassador. Many businesses are looking for ways to reach and connect with new audiences in authentic ways. If you think you have what it takes, check out this site.
22. Peer-to-peer Lending
If you're working hard, shouldn't your money be doing the same? Peer-to-peer lending has cropped up as an alternative to loans from banks. Your money is loaned out and then returned with interest. If this sounds right for you, then check out this site.
This one will take some work and some time but the payoff can be substantial. To be a successful blogger you have to target a viable niche. What is a topic that you are an authority on, that people are interested in, and doesn't have too much competition? If you can find that and are willing to post consistently, then you can grow an audience. From there, it is just a question of how you want to monetize. Popular options are ad revenue, affiliate links, or selling a course.
24. Become a Notary
There are plenty of forms that require a notary. It's a job you can do part-time and doesn't require any degree. The earning potential can be pretty significant depending on the type of work you do. For example, Loan Signing could yield rates around $100 a file.
25. Be a Tour Guide
Do you live in a town that is popular with the tourists? Know it like the back of your hand? You might be able to become a local tour guide. Check out ToursbyLocals.com and Tourzan.com for opportunities.
26. Service Redbox
Owning a Redbox can make money... or you can service them. You use your own car and drive around town ensuring that they are stocked and working properly. You can find opportunities here.