Maybe you’re finding yourself with more spare time than usual these days, due to the pandemic. Why not try to use this time to make some extra money?
You could try to get a traditional part-time job to fill these extra hours, of course, but maybe you want something more flexible and less stressful, with a schedule that you can control. This can be ideal if you’re out of work, receiving unemployment benefits, and spending most of your time looking for a new full-time position, or if you’re still working full-time, but want some extra earning potential.
Fortunately, there are many low-effort ways you can make extra money in your spare time. Consider one of the following:
Online Surveys and Marketing Focus Groups
Companies value the input of consumers. That’s why there have long been opportunities for consumers to earn money or similar rewards taking relevant surveys.
Thanks to the Internet, taking advantage of these opportunities is also easier than ever. In the past, to take consumers surveys, you typically needed to visit an office. That’s no longer the case. There are now numerous websites and apps that allow you to take consumer surveys from the comfort of your own home.
Best of all, the questions these surveys ask usually aren’t very complicated. Although you want to make sure you’re answering them honestly, in many cases, you don’t need to focus on them too intensely. For example, you could theoretically finish some of these surveys while casually watching reruns on TV.
Marketing focus groups can also pay you relatively well, merely for giving your opinion about a company, product, or even a political issue. Participating in a focus group takes a bit more time and effort than filling out a survey, but you might earn as much as $150 per hour—perhaps even more. Consider registering with one of the marketing research companies mentioned here.
Sell Your Stuff
There’s a decent chance you have some items in your home for which you no longer have much use. These can range from books to gadgets (and everything in between).
In some instances, you can also trade in old products for cash if they’re in relatively good condition. For example, maybe you’re planning on upgrading to a new phone. You could either find a local merchant or use a site like Swappa to trade in your old one. This will reduce the cost of an upgrade.
Take Advantage of Credit Card Rewards
Different types of passive income streams deliver different rewards. Some can legitimately earn you quite a lot of money in the long run if you take the time to establish them properly. Others may not yield major earnings, but they can still bring in a few extra bucks without requiring much effort.
For example, if you’re responsible with the way you use credit cards (that means only using them when you know you’ll be able to pay back the balance), you could choose to make purchases with cards that reward customers for using them. This is only a strategy you should consider if you know you’re a responsible spender, but it’s worth researching nonetheless.
Get Involved in the Gig Economy
Thanks to Uber, Fiverr, and a wide range of other platforms, it’s now easier than ever to find short-term side gigs that will help you earn some extra cash in your spare time. Usually, these gigs won’t replace an actual income, but they do offer you the chance to continue making money when you’re not at work.
Housesitting and Pet-sitting Gigs
Housesitting is often one of the easiest ways to make money. Although different customers will have different expectations, in many instances, housesitting involves little work aside from making sure someone’s home remains safe and in good condition while they’re away.
You may find it easiest to start by housesitting for friends and family and asking them to recommend you to their friends. Many people prefer to leave their house with someone they have some personal connection with, even if it’s indirect, through another friend. Alternatively, you might peruse online ads on such platforms like NextDoor to find out if anyone in your neighborhood is looking for a house sitter; people may be more likely to trust you to watch their home if you are their neighbor.
Similarly, pet-sitting and dog walking can also be a great way to earn cash in your spare time. These jobs require more responsibility and effort than housesitting, of course, but if you love animals, you may really enjoy it. Wag! and Rover are two of the most popular online job marketplaces for dog walking and pet-sitting gigs.
The next time you’re short on cash and have a few hours to spare, consider one of these options.