June 14, 2024
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In a nutshell

In today’s economy, many people feel they need to develop extra streams of income just to get by. A side hustle can help pay bills, pay down debt or even provide extra money for investing.

Depending on your situation, skills and abilities, there are dozens of side hustles you might be eligible for. Let’s take a look at some of the best side hustles of 2024.

How to find the best side hustle jobs for you

When trying to find the best side hustle for you, you should take several factors into account:

Your skills, abilities and interests

Start with what you’re good at or what you’re interested in. Consider side hustles that require a short learning curve so you can launch relatively quickly and start making money faster.

The cost to start

Review whether you can cover the costs of starting a side hustle. Some side hustles like starting a blog or freelancing have low startup costs. Others like creating baked goods or handcrafted items might require a large upfront cost for supplies. If you’re opening a daycare or working as a handyman, you might need to pay the cost of licensing.

Your available time

Figure out how much time you have available for a side hustle. Some side hustles like filling out surveys or driving for food delivery services can be done in small chunks of time and on your own schedule. Others like dog-sitting or influencer marketing might take more time and may involve tight deadlines.

What credentials you need

Find out if you need specific credentials for a side hustle. When teaching English online or tutoring, you might need to show a certificate. Many side hustles that require you to drive also come with a DMV check. Understand whether you meet the requirements before you sink a lot of time into a side hustle.

Review your situation and decide if a side hustle makes sense or if you might need to choose something else to make extra cash.

Our picks for the best side hustles

Our list of best side hustles offers something for just about everyone. You’ll find ideas that come with a variety of costs, time commitments and skill requirements.

1. Take online surveys

If you have a few minutes a day to answer questions, it can make sense to take online surveys using companies like Swagbucks and Survey Junkie. These websites allow you to answer a few questions and earn rewards.

Earnings are usually relatively low, but survey-taking can be a quick way to accumulate points that can be redeemed for gift cards, to make a couple hundred extra dollars per month while waiting for a doctor’s appointment or if you have a few minutes to spare between errands.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: As long as you have access to the internet on your phone or computer, you can usually start taking online surveys.

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2. Freelancing

One of the best and easiest side hustles to start is freelancing, as it provides you with a way to charge on a per-project basis and allows you to lean into your existing skills.

Creatives can do especially well as freelancers, making money freelancing in various areas depending on their skills and abilities. Niches include:

  • Writing.
  • Editing.
  • Social media management.
  • Community management.
  • Video editing.
  • Video creation.
  • Graphic design.
  • Website development.
  • Bookkeeping.

Sites like Bark.com can help you connect with those looking for professionals. LinkedIn also offers access to freelance gigs.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderately low.
  • Other requirements: You generally need access to reliable internet and a computer. Depending on the type of freelancing you do, you might need to buy software packages or licenses.

3. Deliver food

Platforms like DoorDash and UberEats allow you to make extra money by delivering takeaway orders. You’re paid based on completed orders. Simply sign up on the requisite platform, provide the required personal information, and you can usually get started within a few days.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderately low.
  • Other requirements: As long as you own an eligible vehicle, you don’t need to get something new. You do need to plan for buying gas and covering wear and tear on your vehicle.

4. Deliver groceries

Many people don’t have the time, energy or patience to do their own grocery shopping. You can do it for them with the help of a platform like Instacart. Sign up, verify that you meet the requirements, and you can get started relatively quickly. Like many other gig economy jobs, you can get paid regularly and earn tips based on your delivery activity.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderately low.
  • Other requirements: You might need to buy a few items as you get started, but as long as you have transportation that meets the requirements, you don’t need to make extra purchases. Account for gas costs as well as maintenance and repair for your vehicle.

5. Deliver packages with Amazon Flex

If you live in an area with an Amazon distribution center, you might be able to earn money by getting a side hustle delivering Amazon packages. Sign up on their app to earn up to $25 per hour by dropping off packages as needed. You can sign in based on your schedule, but the more you are available the more work you’ll have access to.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderately low.
  • Other requirements: As long as your car meets the requirements, you shouldn’t need to spend much money to start driving for Amazon Flex.

6. Pet sitting and doggie daycare

Pet lovers can make extra money providing pet sitting and daycare services. Platforms like Meowtel and TrustedHousesitters can connect you with pet owners who need help caring for their four-legged family members.

You can also set up your own doggie daycare in your home and advertise it in your neighborhood. If you want to do this, though, you should check with your city to find out if you need a special kennel license or meet other requirements.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderate.
  • Other requirements: If you’re using a platform to find gigs at others’ homes, startup costs can be very low: You just need access to reliable internet and messaging. However, if you plan to provide services in your own home, you might need to spend money to get supplies and licenses to make your home an attractive place for furry friends.

7. Dog walking

You can use a website or app like Rover to connect with dog owners who want help with walking their pets. You can also use Rover to manage your pet-sitting side hustle. Before starting, make sure you’re comfortable with animals and have the ability to provide a regular schedule for your clients.

You can also provide dog walking services without using an app or website. Let people in your neighborhood know that you’re available by posting your own signs. It’s good to advertise in areas where a lot of professionals work, letting them know that someone is available to take care of their pets while they’re at work.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderately low.
  • Other requirements: For those who already have what they need to walk dogs, or for those who use owners’ equipment, startup costs are fairly low.

8. Tech setup services

Information from the Pew Research Center indicates that 66% of adults aged 75 and older need help setting up their tech devices. Even for other age groups, there’s a need for tech-savvy people to help set up devices: 48% of those aged 65 to 74 and 31% of those aged 50 to 64 feel like they need help.

This is an opportunity for you to help others get their devices ready to use and help them understand the most important functions they’ll need. It can be a way to take a skill you have and make a little extra money helping others.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: If you have the knowledge and patience to teach others, you just need to be able to get the word out that you can help others set up their devices. Consider advertising your services at senior and activity centers or getting referrals from assisted living and retirement facilities.

9. Rent out space in your house

Do you have a closet, attic or garage you’re not using? Maybe there’s a corner of your basement that’s empty and available. If so, you can rent that out to others, allowing them to keep their possessions at your place. You might even be able to store others’ RVs if you have a pad.

While you can advertise on your own, websites like Neighbor.com allow you to list your space. You need to be clear about how much room you have, the items you can store and have a clear access policy. You’ll need to spell out how long they can keep the items at your home and what kind of notice they need to give you if they want access to the items.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: As long as you have the space already available, you shouldn’t need to pay much to get started with this side hustle.

10. Rent out your home to vacationers

If you have a home in a destination spot, you can make money by renting your space to out-of-towners. You can list spare bedrooms or your whole house on Airbnb. The Couchsurfing app can also allow you to connect with solo travelers looking to get a more local experience. You can also list your entire home on VRBO.

Before you move forward, make sure you check the vacation and short-term rental requirements in your local area. Also, you need to come up with a schedule and access policy, depending on whether you’re providing a room or the whole place.

  • Startup costs: Moderate to moderately high.
  • Other requirements: This side hustle can be a little more expensive to get started. In general, you need to buy amenities that your guests can use, such as towels, washcloths and sheets. You also might need to stock your bathroom and kitchen, and licenses can also be costly, depending on where you live.

11. Blogging

Some of the main ways to make money blogging include getting income from online ads through programs like AdSense or by using affiliate marketing that allows you to earn money when people buy through your website.

It’s relatively easy to get started using hosts like Squarespace, which can help you register a domain, host your site and offers a drag-and-drop interface to help you easily create your blog. However, it can take time and effort to grow your audience in a way that results in regular, significant income.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderate.
  • Other requirements: Normally, you just need to pay for internet access, hosting and domain registration. If you get help with design or custom themes, you might have a higher startup cost.

12. Senior sitting and companion

Older people often need companions to provide relief to main caregivers and families. Websites like Care.com can help you sign up as a senior companion and earn money through the connections you make.

You can also consider connecting with your local Area Agency on Aging or local senior center to get more information about needs in the area and to advertise your services.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: You don’t need much money to start as a care companion; you just need a sense of compassion and an interest in others.

13. Babysitting and child care

If you love children, you can build this into a side hustle that revolves around babysitting and child care. Understand that babysitting usually comes with fewer regulations and restrictions than other types of child care. Once you move into group child care, especially daycare, you might need special licensing based on the number of children you watch.

  • Startup costs: Moderate to moderately high.
  • Other requirements: Your startup costs depend on how child-friendly your space already is and whether you need to pay extra for licensing related to operating a daycare or sitting for multiple children.

14. Personal assistant

If you’re organized and good at managing projects, you can start a job as a personal assistant. You might need to help with schedule management, arranging travel, running errands or other miscellaneous activities.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderately low.
  • Other requirements: Generally, you just need access to the internet and good project management or scheduling software. Depending on whether you’re doing in-person tasks, you might need more professional items in your wardrobe.

15. Mobile detailing

With the right supplies, you can go to others’ homes or workplaces and wash and detail their cars. This can be a side hustle that makes you good money. You’re likely to have the best results if you’re detail-oriented and can quickly and competently wash and detail a car, inside and out.

Advertise your services on social media, in local neighborhood groups and in areas where professionals work.

  • Startup costs: Moderate.
  • Other requirements: You generally need good-quality cleaning supplies and a good portable vacuum. You might need to be prepared with wax, brushes, cloths and other items that can help you effectively clean a car.

16. Local handyman

If you have a knack for small home improvements and DIY fix-it projects, you can get a side hustle as a handyman. These types of jobs can include cleaning gutters, putting up fences, fixing small problems and making minor home repairs. You can advertise locally or sign up to connect with others on a website like Thumbtack.

Depending on the type of work you do, you might need to get a license, but in many cases you just need to be handy with a hammer or paintbrush.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderate.
  • Other requirements: Depending on the tools you already have, you might be able to get started at a relatively low cost. The need to buy extra insurance or get a license can also increase the potential startup costs.

17. Virtual assistant

Some online professionals need the help of a virtual assistant to keep them on track. As a virtual assistant, you might help with scheduling and travel arrangements, as well as do tasks like research, fact-checking, email management and more.

You can connect with people who might want your services by using websites like Upwork and FlexJobs.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: As long as you have reliable access to the internet and can manage projects and schedules, costs are relatively low to get started.

18. Sell at local markets and festivals

If you have handcrafted items, food or other things to sell, you can check out local farmers’ markets and craft festivals. Many people like buying from local businesses, and you can set up shop and make money while getting the word out about your awesome products.

  • Startup costs: Moderate to high.
  • Other requirements: Generally, you need to pay for vendor space, and that can cost hundreds of dollars depending on the location and popularity of the market. Additionally, you need to factor in the cost of your supplies.

19. Self-publishing ebooks

Share your knowledge and make extra money by self-publishing ebooks. One of the most well-known platforms is Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing. They also have a program called Vella which allows you to publish ebooks serially. You can also find other platforms like Kobo, Apple Books and Blurb which allow you to sell your books.

These platforms take a cut of the sale, but they make it relatively easy to publish.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderately low.
  • Other requirements: If you take advantage of free and discounted services to design your book cover and format your book, it costs very little to get started. You might pay more if you want professional editing services and more customized artwork and formatting.

20. Online courses and coaching

If you can teach a valuable skill, you might be able to earn money from it. Various platforms like Gumroad, Kajabi, SamCart, Teachable and SkillShare allow you to set up courses and sell them. You can also sell coaching services through some of these platforms or set up your own schedule for coaching.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderate.
  • Other requirements: Some of these platforms require you to pay a fee for access and management, and that can mean a slightly higher startup cost. Others will host your course or coaching information, but take a cut of your sales, reducing your startup costs but leading to lower revenue.

21. Start a YouTube channel

It’s easy and free to start a YouTube Channel. If you can grow your following, you can make money from ads and even from paid sponsorships and affiliate selling. However, it can be difficult to get the viewable hours and subscribers to monetize your channel.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: You can get started with a computer or smartphone and a relatively low-priced mic. A better setup and production values can cost more, but it might make sense to start with a low-cost setup and upgrade if you see the income to justify it.

22. Viral social media creator

Going viral is never guaranteed, but if you have good ideas and create content that gets high engagement, you could potentially make money from that. Additionally, you might be able to convert engagement to dollars through paid brand partnerships, ads and affiliate sales.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: You don’t need much money to get started, but it can be difficult and take time to build a following that leads to significant income.

23. Influencer marketing

Influencers can make money through affiliate selling and brand partnerships. If you’re willing to create posts, videos and reels, you might be able to earn money if you have a large, highly-engaged audience.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: Reliable access to the internet is the main cost. Realize that you need to build a following, and while that might not take much money, it can require a significant time investment.

24. Create a podcast

Podcasting can be a way to reach others and share knowledge. You can earn money from a podcast by affiliate selling or getting sponsorships. Selling ads is another way to build revenue.

You generally need a good microphone and some editing software to get started. You should also pay attention to setting up your feed so people can access you on their favorite podcast apps.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderately low.
  • Other requirements: A relatively good mic can be obtained at a relatively low cost, and some low-cost editing software options are available to beginners.

25. Become an e-commerce reseller

Selling items online through eBay and other websites has been a profitable side-hustle for many people. You can resell items you find at yard sales and thrift stores or even sell your old items. You might also be able to find items online at a discount and flip them for more on another platform.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderate, though you might need to provide some upfront cash to acquire the items you plan to resell.

26. Test apps and platforms

Earn extra money with a side hustle testing different apps, websites and platforms. You’ll test out features and give honest feedback. You usually need a smartphone, tablet or computer to do this side hustle. Additionally, depending on the setup, you might need to be available at specific times or be prepared to do a video focus group.

Websites like UserTesting can connect you to companies that will pay you to try out their platforms and apps.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: As long as you have reliable internet access and perhaps a webcam, you should be able to get started.

27. Sell artisan products

If you produce artisan soaps, bath bombs, custom woodworking or even certain foods, you might be able to sell them for a profit. You can set up a side hustle to advertise them and let people in your network know you provide them. Check with local stores to see if they will carry your hand-crafted goods.

  • Startup costs: Moderate to high.
  • Other requirements: You need to get the ingredients and supplies to make your products upfront, which can cost a lot.

28. Sell goods via dropshipping

There’s no need for a warehouse if you use dropshipping. In this case, you choose products you think will sell well and contract with someone else to store the inventory and ship the products. Depending on how well you market your online store, and if you’re able to choose products that are popular and sell well, you might be able to earn a significant amount of money from this side hustle.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderate.
  • Other requirements: In general, you don’t need to buy items ahead of time, although you might need to make a minimum order.

29. Sell print-on-demand (POD) products

If you’re creative, you can design shirts, mugs, prints, stickers and other items. However, you don’t need to produce and store the items on your own. Instead, if you use a print-on-demand shop like CafePress, Printify and Amazon Merch on Demand, someone else handles all the production and shipping. They take a cut and you can focus on developing new designs.

You do need to market your designs and encourage people to buy if you want to make money, however.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderately low.
  • Other requirements: Because you aren’t buying the supplies and handling shipping, you usually don’t need a lot of money to get started. You can design your items and set up your shop for free, and then you usually pay a small fee or the platform takes a percentage of your sales.

30. Use retail arbitrage to profit from price differences

With this approach, you check for low-cost items at one store and then sell them for more locally (like at a yard sale) or online through a website like eBay, Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist. You can get pallets of products from retailers or buy items on clearance. The idea is to buy them from one retailer and then sell them to people in another area, where you can mark up the item for a profit.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderate.
  • Other requirements: Depending on how much you’re willing to spend to get your initial product supply, you might have upfront costs.

31. Become an affiliate marketer

With affiliate marketing, you sign up with companies and they agree to pay you a set amount or a percentage when someone buys using your tracking link. Some companies have their own affiliate programs, but you can also sign up with platforms like Impact, Amazon Affiliates and CJ to get access to selling opportunities.

You can use affiliate links on your website, podcast, newsletter or other media to begin earning money. However, affiliate marketing is most effective if you have an engaged audience that trusts you and will buy through your links.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: You just need to have a platform and sign up to get started.

32. Work odd jobs on Taskrabbit

Taskrabbit is a platform that connects you with people who want help with various tasks. You might pick up drycleaning, clean a home, assemble furniture, load boxes onto a moving truck or accomplish other mundane tasks. You get paid based on the task and the agreement with the person contracting for your services.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: You just need to sign up with TaskRabbit and have reliable internet access and transportation.

33. Wedding videographer

Many couples want someone to document their big day on video. If you have some experience behind the camera and a knack for capturing the beauty of the moment, you may be able to hire yourself out as a wedding videographer. Get the word out about your services locally and on social media, or you can use websites like Thumbtack to advertise.

  • Startup costs: Moderate to high.
  • Other requirements: Depending on what equipment you already have, you might need to pay upfront costs to get higher-quality recording equipment, including some lighting and sound equipment.

34. Become a photographer

If you are good at making videos, you may also be skilled at taking still photos. Even if you don’t aspire to be a director of photography in Hollywood, you might be able to provide your services as a photographer for engagement, graduation, family and other photo shoots. These can be advertised locally, on Thumbtack or using social media.

It’s possible to sell photos on websites like SmugMug and Shutterstock. You can also use print-on-demand shops to create and sell prints to those who want to buy your work.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderate.
  • Other requirements: Having a good phone can lower your costs when selling stock photos, but you might want to buy a better camera for other photos.

35. Mow lawns or do yard work

If you’re talented at yard work, you can start a side hustle taking care of spring clean up, trimming, mowing, raking and other actions related to keeping yards clean. Some people will even pay for you to weed their gardens and flower beds.

Advertise in your local neighborhoods or on social networks. NextDoor can be a good place to let people in your area know you offer this service.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderate.
  • Other requirements: Expenses are low if you already have the necessary equipment to get started. Otherwise, you might need to make some purchases, such as shears or trimmers.

36. Sell baked goods

Everyone loves sweet treats. You can sell brownies, cookies, cakes and other baked items. Let people in your neighborhood know you can create wedding cakes or provide rolls and other baked goods.

You can also sell baked goods from booths or at farmers’ markets. Realize, though, that depending on local regulations, you might need to use a commercial kitchen and you might need special licensing to sell baked goods.

  • Startup costs: Moderate to high.
  • Other requirements: To get started, you need to buy all the ingredients you’ll need to bake. Additionally, if you’re planning on a large batch, you might need to pay to rent a commercial kitchen.

37. Referee sports on the weekends

Many city recreation leagues need help refereeing and they will pay you for it. Local club leagues, school districts and other entities often need someone to blow the whistle. Check with your local recreation department to find out what’s available.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: You don’t usually need to pay anything to referee as a side hustle. You might need to purchase specific clothes as a “uniform,” or take a class on specific sports rules.

38. Offer services on Fiverr

Sign up for Fiverr and get paid to do a variety of different things. You can create voice-overs, provide freelance services, do research or offer any number of services. Figure out what you can provide and then set a price and advertise it on Fiverr.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: You can get started with a reliable internet connection. Fiverr will take a portion of your sales.

39. Teach English online

If you’re a good teacher, you can teach English over the Internet, setting your own hours. You might do best if you’re available during the night or evening in the U.S., especially if you want to teach people in Asia.

Depending on the company, you might also need to have a certification like the TEFL/TESOL. You can also tutor other subjects. Platforms like VIPKid, iTutor, Lingoda and Preply can help you to find work as an English teacher or tutor.

  • Startup costs: Low to moderately low.
  • Other requirements: In most cases, as long as you have the required certifications, you can get started with only a reliable internet connection, keeping costs low.

40. Become a companion

The U.S. Surgeon General recently declared a loneliness epidemic and called on technology companies to “intentionally design technology that fosters healthy dialogue and relationships.” While being a friend is a benefit in itself, it is also possible to be paid for companionship. RentAFriend allows you to rent your time for up to $50 per hour as a platonic friend to go with paying members to sports games, concerts and other events. If you’re into group activities, you can start a group on MeetUp and as the organizer charge membership fees.

  • Startup costs: Low.
  • Other requirements: You should be a friendly, gregarious person, though this option isn’t just for extroverts.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Are there any side hustles that I should avoid?

In general, you should avoid side hustles that don’t meet your financial needs or take too much time if you need a quick turnaround for cash. Consider your goals and then choose a side hustle that makes sense for what you’re trying to accomplish.

How much money can you make with a side hustle?

How much you make depends on the side hustle and how successful you are. Some side hustles, like surveys, might only provide up to a couple hundred dollars per month. Other side hustles can pay between $10 to $25 an hour, while other side hustles, if successful, can result in thousands of extra dollars per month.

What skills do side hustlers need to have?

In general, you’re more likely to be successful with a side hustle if you’re self-motivated, organized and understand your skill set. It’s a good idea to match your skill with a side hustle, but persistence might be the most needed quality.

Do I need to report earnings from side jobs on my taxes?

Yes, the IRS expects you to report side hustle earnings when you file your tax return.

What is the best business structure for a side hustle?

It depends on your situation and whether you plan to expand to hire more people. In general, sole proprietorships, LLCs and S-Corps are considered good choices for side hustles.

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