We talk a lot about side hustles on this site, but frequently, those require you to be active. For example, doing lawn work or picking up household chores can be a great way to bring in some extra income. But what about side hustles for immobile persons?
Online Survey Sites
An easy way to start bringing in a small amount of cash is through online sites where you can be paid to take surveys. Obviously, you’re not going to be making a lot of money doing this, but it’s something you can do instead of scrolling Reddit while reading breakfast, or while you’re watching tv in the evenings.
One site that seems to get a lot of love is Survey Junkie. I’ve also used Inbox Dollars and Swagbucks. When I was doing a lot of commuting on public transportation, I also regularly used the Qmee app. While I certainly didn’t earn a fortune, every little bit counts.
I’ve written before about Mechanical Turk. Basically, this is a site where people outsource their work and you can pick up bits and pieces of it for pay. There are translation jobs, transcription jobs, and even some survey and user testing jobs. When you first get started, you may not be eligible for the higher paying jobs, but the more small jobs you complete, the more you prove your skills, and the more money you can make.
Do you have a skill that translates well to online freelancing? Are you a writer, editor, or graphic designer? Are you a musician or great at social media? Consider putting yourself out there as a freelancer. One site a number of my friends have used is Fiverr. Fiverr is a great site for people who are looking to purchase as well as people looking to work. It helps you find gigs suited to your skills and lets you set the rates. And that isn’t the only site out there. You can also just start putting the word out on social media that you’re available for freelance work. Set up a portfolio of your work and offer competitive prices. It’s not an easy gig, but you can definitely make a name for yourself and start bringing in money.
I also recently talked about transcription services, and this might be a good way to bring in some extra money.
Have you ever considered tutoring? And if you’re thinking “No, because I was terrible at math and science in school, and isn’t that what people need to be tutored in?” Sometimes, yes. But you can also make money teaching English online. A former classmate of mine teaches English through VipKid, and while that means she’s often working very early hours (her students are in China), she has made some amazing connections and earned quite a bit of extra money for her family. There are plenty of different services out there, or you can even start your own tutoring business.
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Megan is a 30-something government employee in the Washington, DC area. She got interested in Personal Finance when she got out of college and realized that her paycheck wasn’t going to go as far as she had hoped. Since starting this blog, she has managed to buy a house and make a solid start on her retirement goals, and hopes to help others do the same. Here is her story:
In 2007, I was a gainfully employed 20-something with no debt but not a lot of knowledge about personal finance. It was a co-worker’s comment about Roth IRAs that sent me to the internet, searching for information. It was then that I realized that I really didn’t know a whole lot about personal finance and that my current financial situation was due a lot to inherent frugal tendencies, generous family members, a fear of debt, and good luck. While that was working for me, clearly I needed a better plan.
While I had no debt, I was also pretty much living paycheck to paycheck and not worrying about going over budget (I say this as if I had a real budget) because I had an emergency fund set aside to cover any overages.
Except that’s not what an emergency fund is for.
So I did a lot of research, read a lot of blogs, and decided that I needed a plan. I needed to budget. I needed to know what I was spending my money on. I needed to prepare for the future.
I decided to create a blog not only to make myself accountable to others but also to share the knowledge that I gained along the way. I’ve learned so much from my fellow bloggers, and I hope that my readers can find something useful in what I have to share as well.