50+ Legit Ways to Make Extra Money
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Meet Nick. He’s a 28-year old professional with important financial goals. Just like you, Nick wants to:
- Pay off debt
- Save for a down payment on a new house
- Make extra money for retirement savings
- Earn extra cash for travel
Just a few months ago, Nick wanted to make extra money but didn’t know where to start. He began exploring the site and found more than a few good ideas on how to start making more money.
He took action on a few of the ideas listed in this post and is now making an extra $500 each month!
That might not seem like a lot of extra money, but applied wisely, it can be life-changing. If you’re tired of waiting for a break that doesn’t seem like it’s ever going to come, now is the time to make your own break and earn $500 or more per month by implementing a few of these legit ways to make extra money.
legit Ways to Make Extra Money
There are many legit ways to make money, even if you feel like you don’t have much skill. You simply need a clear goal and be willing to think outside the box. Even if it’s just to add extra cash to your wallet, earning extra money is a great way to make that possible.
Some things require advanced skill, but many don’t. Assuming you have basic life skills, you can monetize virtually anything – you just have to want it and think outside the box some to find opportunity.
Some of these opportunities won’t make you get rich quickly but they can provide a little extra cash to stretch your budget further.
There are many legit ways to make extra money. We’ve grouped the ways into four different sections below to help you identify which ones might be best for you.
Ways to Make Extra Money Online
1. Start a blog – Blogging is a great way to make extra money. I’ve more than replaced the income I earned at my former day job through blogging.
You can sign up for cheap hosting, such as $2.95 per month through Bluehost and be up and running in a few minutes.
Have you always wanted to start a blog, but don’t know where to begin? Check out my guide on how to start a blog, where I break down all the steps to get up and running.
2. Virtual assistant – A virtual assistant (VA) is one of the best ways to make extra money. VAs help people with a number of tasks including social media management, email management, data entry work, scheduling meetings, sending invoices, customer service, online research, blog management and more.
Some VAs are highly skilled in specific areas and use that to market themselves, but that is not required.
Beginner VAs can earn anywhere from $15 – $20 per hour while experienced ones can earn $30+ per hour.
My friend Kayla started out as a part-time VA and now runs her freelance VA business full-time. She earns over $10,000 per month working from home as a VA. This means that being a VA has the potential to be one of the best high paying jobs for stay-at-home moms.
If you’re interested in starting your own freelance VA business, sign up for her course to learn how you can start earning money as a VA.
3. Taking surveys –Taking surveys won’t allow you to get rich quick, but can be a nice way to make some extra money for your budget. Nick used a few of our favorite survey sites to start making extra money every month:
- Survey Junkie – Survey Junkie is our favorite survey site as they pay you cash straight to PayPal, or let you redeem rewards for Amazon gift cards.
- Pinecone Research – They pay $3 per survey and they put cash directly into your PayPal account, or you can choose Amazon or restaurant gift cards. They also pay to do product testing.
- Opinion Outpost – This is one of the top survey sites in the space and they have quarterly $10,000 prize drawings.
- Survey Voices: Survey Voices is a bit different than the others listed. Survey Voices is a market research company and matches you with other reputable survey sites you qualify for – many of which pay out in cash or Amazon gift cards
Surveys won’t replace your income, by any means, but they can be a great way to monetize your downtime.
4. Invest in real estate – Many people like the idea of investing in real estate, but it can be cost-prohibitive if you don’t have the funds to buy a property or the skill to manage it. Nick isn’t one of those people, but you might be!
Crowdfunded real estate investing has changed all that, allowing you to invest in commercial or residential properties online.
Fundrise is a great option to invest in real estate and you only need $500 to start investing in one of their real estate eReit’s.
5. Get paid to shop – Why not get a little cash back for the shopping you do online? Nick uses sites like Ebates to get cash back for shopping she’d already be doing anyway.
They’re free to use, which you can’t beat. Just like Nick, you get a free $5 just for signing up.
6. Invest – Have you opened a retirement account? Many brokerages give you cash for bringing them your business.
You can get up to $600 when you open an E*Trade account. E*Trade has plenty of tools to help get your portfolio aligned with your goals.
7. Surf the web – If you’re like me, you’re on the Internet all the time. Why not make a little money while on it?
With Swagbucks you can earn points, called SB points, which can be turned into money. Like Ebates above, Swagbucks gives you a $5 bonus to start and you can earn things like Amazon gift cards for completing different actions on their browser.
8. Write for bloggers – Do you like to write? There are countless opportunities to write for bloggers and businesses online.
Check out this course by my friend Cat if you’d like to make money writing for blogs but need someone to show you how to get started doing it.
You can make anywhere from $25 – $50 per post, up to hundreds of dollars, so this can be a great side hustle and doesn’t require any type of special degree.
9. Test websites – Can you use a computer? When Nick read that, she thought to himself, “Of course I can! I’m using one right now.” Just like her, you can get $10 for 15 minutes of your time testing sites and apps on UserTesting.com.
10. Sell unused electronics – If you’re like us you likely have a fair number of old electronics lying around the house. We’ve made several hundred dollars selling old items on Craigslist.
You can also use Decluttr as a way to sell old electronics and make cash. Decluttr provides the shipping label and you mail them your old electronics.
11. Watch videos and play games – Okay, I know you may think this is a scam. You really can make money in your free time watching videos, or playing games online.
Inbox Dollars pays you to watch videos, or play games and gives you a $5 bonus to start.
12. Get paid to buy groceries – Rebate sites are a popular way to save and make money. You won’t make a lot of money with these, but can still be a great way to add more cash to your budget.
Ibotta is one such option. They offer rebates to thousands of stores, including grocery stores, they give out random bonuses for using their app and you can earn cash back for referring your friends.
Ibotta also pays a $10 bonus when you sign up to use their service.
Ways to Make Extra Money with Your Skill
13. Tutor – Are you proficient in a certain skill or subject, have a college degree and one year of teaching experience? Nick fit that criteria and signed up with this tutoring service to make legit extra money each and every month. He sets her schedule controls how much work she takes.
You can make up to $20 per hour with VIPKid and tutor overseas students. VIPKid provides the course materials and manages most of the administrative tasks so you can focus on teaching students.
14. Sign up for Fiverr – Fiverr can be a great way to make a little extra cash doing things like animation, design or writing.
Yes, $5 doesn’t sound like much. The real money is in the add-ons you can provide to clients.
15. Editor – Remember the writing above? That writing needs to be proofread and edited. Proofreading can be a great way to make extra money. All you need is a laptop and you can work from wherever you like.
Proofread Anywhere offers a free course with the tools and tips you need to get started as a professional proofreader. Many proofreaders make $20+ per hour and you don’t need a specialized degree.
16. Take pictures – Do you have a good eye for detail and like to take pictures of various landscapes? Use that creativity to make extra money.
You can work with sites like DepositPhotos to sell your pictures and earn some cash. A good friend of ours started her own photography business and has done quite well at it.
People pay decent money for good pictures, making this a great way to make extra money.
17. Self-publish a book – My wife wrote a short book as a gift to my mom for Christmas several years ago. Just out of curiosity we put it on Amazon and we see money come in each month from sales.
You can self-publish through sites like CreateSpace, which make the whole process simple from start to finish.
18. Teach something – Do you know how to play an instrument? Do you have some other skill you’re good at? Sell your time by teaching others how to do the same thing.
19. Be a handyman – Are you good with your hands? This can be a great way to make extra money…helping those who aren’t, like me.
TaskRabbit is a great resource to find potential gigs. You can find jobs in your area that range from basic requests to more advanced ones. With a few tools and know-how you can make some nice money in your free time.
20. Coach – This might require more time than being a referee, but summer and fall are huge seasons for sports. If you enjoy a particular sport, why not monetize that interest?
21. Create a course – There is a lot of demand for online courses. Creating the materials for an online course does take a good bit of work in the beginning, but once you get everything done it can be the best source of extra money – passive income.
You can create an online course in a variety of niches, from graphic design to coding and other, non-technical related fields.
Teachable is a great platform to create courses. Once someone buys your course, everything is automated through the Teachable platform as they take care of all the work.
22. Sell your designs – We work with a lot of graphic designers through our business. Many of them also freelance on the side, as there is a lot of demand for quality graphics.
Like many other ways to make extra money, all you need is a laptop and you can work from anywhere you want.
If you’re a graphic designer, check out 99Designs to find potential gigs.
Ways to Make Extra Money Around Town
23. Drive – If you have a relatively new car and free time in your schedule, you can make nice cash driving for Lyft. Not only do you get a $250 bonus when you sign up, Lyft lets you set your own schedule.
24. Rent your house – Do you travel much or own a second property? Consider listing your house or apartment on Airbnb to earn extra money on the side or create a new stream of income.
25. Yard work – People hate to do yard work. Take advantage of their laziness. Mow yards, pull weeds or aerate lawns and you can make some nice cash. Nick enjoyed being outdoors and doing yardwork so this was an easy way for him to work in some extra money to his budget. Now, he can use that extra money to pay down debt, save for vacation or treat himself to some ice cream or a movie with his friends.
26. Lifeguard – This is a great way to make extra money during the summer. In many cases you can make at least $10 per hour if you’re CPR-certified.
27. Be a caddie – Golfing is an expensive hobby to like, but it’s nothing for a caddie to make at least $50 to $100 for a few hours of work walking around with a bag.
28. Walk dogs – Dogs need to walk too! Ask people in your neighborhood or advertise on Craigslist and this can be a great way to make some extra cash. You can use Care.com so prospective customers can see your references.
29. Housesitting – How many people do you know who are going on vacation this summer? If you can be a warm body, this is money in the bank. Pay for housesitting in our city is $20+ per day, making this easy money. Nick found this to be a super easy way to make extra money (especially when he was able to combine some of these other ways to make extra money while housesitting!)
You can use Care.com, like above with dog walking, to create a profile so customers can see your references and experience.
30. Scoop dog poop – No, not very glamorous but still a way to make extra money throughout the year.
31. Clean houses – Unless you’re like me and clean the house to clear your mind, most don’t like to clean their house. Cleaning houses can be a great way to make extra money, especially if people are moving and want to tidy up their homes.
32. Wash windows – We have a friend who has a side business washing windows and he does quite well at it. He started by washing windows for a fellow business owner and grew from there.
You will need a few supplies to start, but this can be a lucrative side hustle if you have the right connections.
33. Deliver food – Deliver meals as an Uber Eats driver, or you could deliver pizzas. You’d be surprised at what you could earn in tips as a pizza delivery driver.
My youngest brother delivered pizzas for several years and made a killing doing it. If you have a car and don’t mind the odd hours you can make some nice bank.
34. Pet sit – Kennels can be expensive and not always the best for pets. If you like to spend time with animals, caring for pets can be a great way to make extra money while their owners are on vacation.
Like some of the options above, Care.com is a great way to find potential customers. Once you get a few clients, ask them to leave reviews so you can begin to build some referral business.
35. Wash cars – When was the last time you paid to wash your car? They can be pretty costly. With a few supplies you can wash cars around your neighborhood, or you can even advertise on Craigslist or Facebook.
36. Deliver newspapers – You may think people get their news online today. That’s not always the case. People still pay to have the newspaper delivered to their home each day.
We have a friend who has delivered papers for years to bring in extra income. If you don’t mind working early mornings this can be a great way to make extra money.
37. Help people move – Moving is a hassle many people want to avoid. If you don’t mind the physical work, this can be a great way to make extra money on weekends, or during the summer.
TaskRabbit is a great resource to find moving-related jobs in your city. You can either make money helping people load their moving trucks, or simply move items around their home.
38. Sell bottled water – If you have a Costco or Sam’s Club membership, buy several cases of bottled water and sell them outside outdoor events – just make sure your city allows you to this prior to doing it. 😉
Depending on where you live this may only be a good option during the summer. If you live in a warmer climate, this can be a good way to make extra money all year-round.
39. Work security – I worked security a lot while in college for different events. You usually get to be outside and it’s an easy way to make some extra money.
40. Paint – Pretty much anyone can paint. You need very little skill or supplies to do it; you get to be outside; and you can make extra money to boot!
Traditional Ways to Make Extra Money
41. Babysitting – Babysitting is one of the most traditional ways to make extra money. The rate you can charge depends on where you live; our city is in the $10+ neighborhood.
If you like children this can be a great way to supplement your income.
42. Get rid of your crap – Are you swimming in stuff…err crap…in your house? We’ve all been there.
You can actually make money on that stuff, especially if it’s old CDs, DVDs and games for old gaming systems by selling it to SecondSpin. This won’t bring in a lot of cash but it can be a great way to pad your savings account, which is exactly what Nick found when she tried it.
43. Get a part-time job – This isn’t my personal favorite as I’d rather control my hours, but you can always get a part-time job for some extra cash.
Nontraditional Ways to Make Extra Money
44. Sign up for a new credit card – This is one of my personal favorites. If you have a major purchase planned in the near future you can get cash back for that purchase.
Here are some great cash back cards to consider. Just make sure not to overspend when trying to earn cash back.
45. Sell a bodily fluid – Need some quick cash? You can definitely make extra money selling a bodily fluid.
Pretty, no, but do you really need all that plasma? 😉
46. Peer-to-peer (P2P) lending – Investing in the stock market or real estate isn’t the only way to invest and bring in additional income. You can also loan money to those who are in need and make extra money for yourself.
You can use a P2P site like LendingClub to loan money to individuals. Returns obviously vary, but many loans return 6-8 percent on average.
47. Take Selfies – Do you take a lot of selfies? The Stylinity appallows you to tag products you like and share them on your social channels. If a friend makes a purchase you get a little kickback.
48. Rent your friendship – I don’t know that I’d do this, but if you’re up for helping people pursue platonic friendships, you can sign up for RentAFriendand make up to $50 per hour plus free meals or movies as well.
49. Rent something you own – If you own your car outright and don’t drive it often, you can rent it out to others with a service like Turo. Just make sure your insurance allows for this kind of arrangement.
You can also get creative and rent out other items like camera equipment, your bathroom (yes, that’s a thing), your bike, parking spots and power tools just to name a few.
50. Sell produce – Is your garden overproducing? Freezing produce is one option, but you could also sell that produce in your neighborhood or at a Farmer’s Market to make a little extra money.
While this option is more time-specific, it can be a great way to pad your wallet in the summer and early fall months.
51. Sell your old clothes – This is one of the ways we save money on kids clothes. Many consignment stores and sales need clothes to sell. Nick needed to clean out his closets anyways; simply taking the extra step to sell them put some extra money in her pocket.
If you have clothing items your kids have outgrown or no longer wear, this can be a great way to make a little extra cash.
The best thing about this list is that it only scratches the surface. If you have the time and have identified a need, there are countless ways that, just like Nick, you too can use to make extra money this summer and throughout the entire year.
Now, over to you – what are some of your favorite ways to make extra money? What’s your answer to those who say they do not know how to make extra money?
John is the founder of Frugal Rules, a dad, husband and veteran of the financial services industry whose writing has been featured in Forbes, CNBC, Yahoo Finance and more.
Passionate about helping people learn from his mistakes, John shares financial tools and tips to help you enjoy the freedom that comes from living frugally. One of his favorite tools is Personal Capital , which he used to plan for retirement and keep track of his finances in less than 15 minutes each month.
Another one of John's passions is helping people save $80 per month by axing their expensive cable subscriptions and replacing them with more affordable ones, like Hulu with Live TV.
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