Side Hustles and Ways to Make Money at Home

Straight from your couch. Photo-Illustration: by Stevie Remsberg; Photo by Silver Screen Collection / Getty Images

According to a 2018 survey conducted by Bankrate, more than half of millennials are figuring out how to make money at home by embracing a side hustle — also known as extra cash to help pay off debt.

If you’ve got a flexible schedule, “side hustles can be a great way to achieve a financial goal,” says Shannah Compton Game, MBA, a certified financial planner and host of the Millennial Money podcast. Whether you’re trying to pay off student loans, save for a house, or just make rent, she recommends determining exactly where your additional income will go before you start getting it.

But don’t sell yourself short. The Bankrate survey found that men are making nearly three times more than women from their side hustles. While men were found to have side jobs more frequently than women, Game says women also tend to be more conservative when setting a price point. “We tend to undervalue our talents, and men can be better at saying this is my value and this is the price.” To close the pay gap, she recommends women do plenty of research on the market value of a given service or product they’re interested in offering before jumping in. Here are a few ways to start making some extra cash on the side.

Get some voice work. People get paid to read voice-over scripts for videos, advertisements, and audiobooks from home. Register on a site like Fiverr or Upwork to get started.

Buy and sell used books. If you’re willing to do a little legwork — going to estate sales, thrift stores, library sales — you can find underpriced used books and resell them online. The Amazon Barcode Scanner app can help determine whether a book is worth buying to take home and resell or not.

Participate in research studies. Respondent will match you with research studies (according to the company, the average pay is $140 an hour).

License your pics. If you have an eye for photography, you can also take your best shots and try selling them to stock photo sites like Shutterstock and iStockPhoto.

Dabble in podcasting. It can take time to acquire a following (and opportunities for sponsorship). But if you love to talk, try a free hosting plan on a site like BuzzSprout, SoundCloud, Podomatic, or Spreaker.

Get crafty. Are you artistic? Sites like Etsy and Zazzle offer an online marketplace to sell what you make.

Design a tee. Artists, graphic designers, comedians, and philosophers can take their skills to the apparel bank by designing T-shirts through sites like Cotton Bureau, Threadless, Teespring, CafePress, Printify, and Zazzle. They’ll print and ship your designs and pay you the royalties.

Rent out your spare room. Have a bed to spare? Consider renting it out on Airbnb. Just make sure to check out the policies of your landlord or co-op.

Or rent out your car. Anytime your car is sitting parked, it could actually be generating passive revenue for you through companies like Turo and Getaround. Just like Airbnb for an apartment, renting out your car a few days a month could make enough money to cover your payments on it.

Cash in on Instagram. All that time you’ve spent posting could pay off if you have a following. With 1,000 engaged followers or more, you may be able to start working with brands. Influencer marketplaces like Shoutcart, Fohr, Grapevine, and IndaHash can to help them find you.

Start a blog. If you’ve considered it but felt unsure of where to begin, attend one of the many annual blogging conferences like BlogHer to find out more.

Take care of kids. Do you love kids? Do you actually miss babysitting? Create a profile on an app like SitterCity, UrbanSitter, or Care.

If you don’t like kids, take care of pets? Do you wish you could just get paid to cuddle with your dog? Or someone else’s? You can, through apps like Rover,, and SitterCity.

If you don’t like kids or pets, work with seniors. To make some extra money from home while also connecting with others, consider applying to make phone calls reminding seniors to take their medication through Pleio.

Teach an online class. Do you have a skill or some kind of experience that people could benefit from? Game says teaching online courses can be surprisingly lucrative, often earning course creators more than $100K a year. Consider working with a platform like Teachable, Udemy, and Skillshare to develop a course.

Tutor. You probably remember more from high school than you think. Eduboard is an online-tutoring site that hires tutors with expertise in everything from calculus to literature. Or you can teach English on VIPKid.

Freelance in special services. You can do so many jobs using skills you already have, working remotely — from research to HR to graphic design and writing. Look for side gigs on sites like FlexJobs, Upwork, and Fiverr.

Become a virtual assistant. Maybe you have a knack for making other people’s lives easier. You could put those skills to use, part time, through sites like Belay, Fancy Hands, and Upwork to boost your bank account.

Take surveys for actual money. Yeah, you can make money by offering brands your opinion for their consumer research. Maybe not a lot of money, but it could add up. Sites like InboxDollars will pay you to fill out surveys.

Become a website critic. Yes, people will pay you to give opinions about their websites. Get these gigs through sites like UserTesting, UserBrain, TestingTime, and TryMyUI.

Make calls as a mystery shopper. Companies are looking for people to call their customer-service agents or industry competitors and report back on the experience or prices. You can get matched with this kind of gig through sites like Call Center QA, Yardi Matrix Rent Survey, Perception Strategies, and Arc.

Sell your stuff. Sure, we’ve all Craiglisted and eBayed, but consider how many things you own that you don’t actually use, wear, or need. You might start by taking inventory of your closet. There are a lot of them out there, and they help people clean out their closets. Check out Poshmark, The Real Real, Vestiaire, Tradesy, Rebag, and Depop.

This post has been updated throughout.

Side Hustles and Ways to Make Money at Home