Income infusion: Ideas for Generating Extra Cash

The landscape of earning extra income has changed dramatically over the past decade. Not only are there many more ways to find added money, but a bevy of new ways to make that cash. To take advantage of these opportunities, it helps to start thinking about how the available techniques mesh with your skills and desires.

Start by making a list of your skills and expertise, taking a broad view to include anything that could potentially be useful to others. Many times people find that just by doing the things they enjoy, they inadvertently develop skills that can be turned in moneymakers. For example, if you are good at finding information on the internet, include that. Great at throwing parties? Put that on the list.

If you are struggling to come up with ideas, just make a list of everything you have done with your free time over the last month. Once you have your list completed, start thinking about how each of those things could get you paid. Try a few out and you just might find that you get to earn extra cash by doing something you would have been doing anyway!

To get your creative juices flowing in your quest for a “side gig,” here are some common ways that folks earn a little something extra:

  • Hire out your unique skills on a freelance basis
  • Get tutor jobs
  • House or pet-sit
  • Do some babysitting
  • Pick up seasonal/holiday work
  • Sell items on auction websites
  • Have a yard sale
  • Take on a renter
  • Sell gold jewelry or other gold items
  • Do marketing company surveys or participate in focus groups
  • Take part in research studies at hospitals or universities
  • Have your car wrapped in an advertisement
  • Become a mystery shopper
  • If you speak another language, sign up with a translation service
  • Deliver newspapers or phone books
  • Create a blog on a favorite topic and make money off advertising
  • Recycle scrap metal or take in bottles and cans for refunds
  • Start a dog-walking service
  • Line up odd jobs at Mturk, Gigwalk or in the gigs section at Craigslist
  • Start a business transferring old film, pictures or video in digital formats
  • Become a topic expert at About
  • Rent out parking, storage or “studio” space
  • Use photography skills to sell stock images or offer event or portrait services
  • Sell unused gift cards online
  • Go to Volition for a list of companies that will pay you to perform online tasks for them
  • Sell your crafts at Etsy
  • Inquire at a local temp agency about positions that fit your schedule
  • Make money recycling empty printer ink cartridges for others
  • Become a sales rep for a company that sells cosmetics, vitamins or other products
  • Perform surveys at online sites that pay people to do so
  • Offer a scrapbooking service
  • Perform car washing/maintenance services
  • Become a telephone interviewer for companies that conduct research surveys
  • Host foreign exchange students
  • Sell clothes to a consignment shop
  • Provide gardening services or sell fruits or vegetables from your own garden
  • Offer up your large truck or van as a rental for moving or hauling
  • Supply personal tech support for those learning modern technologies
  • Use the equipment or tools you already own to provide services like snow blowing, painting, power washing or garden tilling


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