I've been a freelance writer for over 20 years and enjoy writing about anything.
Don't Pay to Work
With nearly half of Americans living paycheck to paycheck, it isn’t surprising that one of the most popular search engine phrases is “how to make extra income.” Millions of folks are looking for ways to earn extra income. Sometimes, they'll do whatever it takes.
Unfortunately, for as many eager workers there are, there are just as many scams. Never, and I repeat, never, should one pay to work for someone. The request for money to hire you or the service of finding a job should be a big red flag. Nobody should be required to pay to work for someone else. After all, a company isn’t a company without employees. The company will earn money from your work. If you’re being asked to pay a fee to work for someone, please, walk away. You shouldn’t pay anyone to work for them. It’s that simple.
As someone who has searched for ways to make extra income online (or anywhere, for that matter) for almost 2 decades, I know how frustrating it can be to find a legitimate online company to work for. Through my years of research, I have come across both legitimate companies to work for and some that required a fee. I always, always steer clear of job opportunities that require a fee.
Ideas for Making Some Extra Cash
I have compiled a list of 14 ways to earn extra income that won’t cost a dime unless you go into a business for yourself. If you are a stay-at-home mom, retiree, or someone who is just looking to grab some extra cash in your spare time, you may find something on this list that is perfect for your needs.
The following list contains online jobs that you can work in your spare time. These are all jobs that you can get started for free. You will not be asked for any credit card information. Most of the websites listed below are for writers. However, you don’t need to have a writing degree. All you need is a basic command of spelling and grammar and a will to succeed. Scroll further for non-writing jobs.
- Slice the Pie: If you love music and you do a little writing, earning a small extra income at Slice the Pie might be of your interest. You can get paid by listening to 90 seconds of a new song and then write a short review. You won’t get rich, but it is a fun, entertaining way to earn a few extra bucks in your spare time. Chances are, you are online in your spare time anyway, right? You’ll only receive pennies per review, however, pennies add up and before you know it you will have whole dollars.
- Appen: You can join Appen’s Talent Network for free. From there you can search and apply for online jobs Once you’re accepted you can search for both contractual and permanent jobs. Areas of interest are vast and range anywhere from simple data collection to executive positions. You can also opt to receive emails containing new job opportunities. Definitely worth checking out.
- Mechanical Turk: Owned by Amazon, Mechanical Turk is a crowdsourcing Internet marketplace that enables members to perform tedious tasks that computers aren’t able to do. Tasks might include reading a business ad and answering questions about the ad. You might be asked to write a product review or watch a video and comment on it.The amount of cash earned by the jobs varies. Again, it won’t make you a lot of money, but it can be fun and a quick way to add up some cash.
- Upwork: You can sign up to be an Upwork freelancer. Whether you’re a web developer, writer, translator, marketing pro, or any other type of freelancer, it’s worth checking out. Upwork has clients always looking for a variety of freelancers for different projects. Pay depends on the client you work for and you are able to negotiate a fee as well as set rates. There are no set-up fees, and it's free to join. After registering and receiving acceptance, you can begin to look for freelance jobs that interest you.
- Verblio: Geared toward freelance writers and bloggers, Verblio is an online blog writing service. Writers are paid $8 per blog. Each blog needs to be a minimum of 350 words. If you can bang out a good blog in 30 minutes this may be worth it. Even if it takes longer, having an extra $8 deposited into your bank account on a regular basis really adds up. I wrote for Verblio for 2 years and I loved being surprised at how much money I had banked simply by doing something I loved to do.
- LikedReviews: This company is fairly new in the online world. They are always looking for good writers to write a review on any product or topic you want. Likedreviews pays per ad revenues through Google Adsense. You will need to write 10 reviews before Google will start generating ads on your article, but it is a great, ground-floor opportunity. Too good to pass up. If you think you can write good content then you can generate a good income from Likedreviews. Now is the perfect time to get in before they are swamped with writers.
- HubPages: Last, but not least, if you like to write, you can earn extra money through HubPages. Earning through ad revenues can create a great additional income while doing something you love.
Got Something to Sell?
If you’re a craftsman of some sort, the following websites will allow you to post your items for free.
8. Amazon: On Amazon, you can sell old books, games or gadgets that are in good condition. You just need an Amazon Seller Account. It only takes a few minutes to register. You might not make a ton of money, however, if you have any items that an Amazon member is looking for it’s easy to earn a few extra bucks.
9. eBay: Like Amazon, you will need to register for an Ebay Seller Account. Here you can sell anything and everything. Look around your home. You’re bound to have clothes, jewelry, electronics, etc. that you just don’t use any more. If you’re business-minded, you can even gather up lightly used clothing from garage sales, discount stores, etc. and become a regular seller on eBay. There are many successful eBay sellers who make a pretty good living selling products of all kinds.
10. Etsy: Is there something you’re good at making? Maybe you crochet or knit; make objects out of wood; sew doll clothes. Whatever it may be, Etsy is where you can sell it. You may need to spend a little money on Etsy if you want to advertise with them, however, if you can gain a lot of followers your items will sell themselves.
11. Online Yard Sales: Another great way to earn fast cash is posting to online yard sales in your area. Please use precaution as you will need to come face-to-face with strangers during the transaction. I always suggest, whenever possible, to bring the item to your local police station and have the buyer meet you there.
Other Money-Making Ideas
There are also ways to earn extra income offline. Here are just a couple:
12. Deliver the Local Newspaper: Okay, so you’re not twelve. But, did you know that most newspaper carriers are adults now? And did you know that you can actually make a good income for a few hours per day of work? Yep, newspaper carriers can earn upwards of $450 per week. It depends on the newspaper, but it’s definitely worth checking out if you’re serious about making extra income.
13. Offer a Service: There’s plenty of ways to earn extra income by offering a service. Do you babysit? Do you like to iron or do laundry? Cut grass? Shovel snow? Can you offer to drive senior citizens to the store or doctor appointment for a fee? Do you like to clean house? If you love animals, there are always people looking for dog walkers and sitters. There are websites such as Care.com where you can register and apply for jobs of this nature.
One Last Thought
14. Avon: If you’re a business person and you think you can sell, Avon is a great way to earn extra income. There is a small $15 start-up fee, but you receive some great samples and full-size products along with everything you need to get started.
I hope this list was helpful. I am always searching for ways to earn extra income and will be updating this article often.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
swalia on February 27, 2018:
Interesting hubs with some great ideas...thanks for sharing!
Rock Artist on April 08, 2017:
Thanks for the info, nice hub. Last time I checked, Bubblews is out of service though so you might want to update this page.
Marco Pompili from Italy on January 02, 2017:
Interesting article with some great ideas about where to start when looking for extra income. Unfortunately Bubblews is out of business now.
Samuel Nombo on September 10, 2016:
Your article truly address my situation. Thank you so much for the information.
Heather Darnell from Quad Cities on January 12, 2016:
I really enjoyed your article! You have included websites I've never heard of and will check them out! Thanks for the info!