The best ways to make legit money as a teenager
If you’re a teenager and you’re looking for ways to make some cash then don’t worry Maverick Mindsets have got you covered.
We’ve compiled a list of the best ways for you to make money as a teenager.
These range from your standard paper round ideas to some more creative ways of getting the dollars in.
Whichever route you decide to go down, getting started earning money as a young adult can be a great opportunity to kickstart your career.
Let’s get started with our 71 side hustles:
Guess what? You’re reading a blog right now and you’re helping us to earn money.
Blogging isn’t always easy and can be time consuming but the best bit is that once you’re up and running, your blog can earn you money while you sleep!
Starting your own blog is as simple as writing an article on something you are passionate about and posting it on a website.
Blogs earn money in a number of ways including through google adsense, affiliate links and newsletter sign ups.
If you want to get started in the blogging world then we’d recommend signing up to Rank IQ.
This is the platform that we use to write blogs and as well as an easy, step by step guide of what to write, it even tells you how many words to use.
This has got to be the dream for a lot of teenagers, growing a massive following online and living the lifestyle of the rich and famous.
Starting a youtube account is pretty simple but becoming a Youtube sensation isn’t as straightforward and you’ll have to get 1k subscribers plus 10k hours of watch time on your youtube channel before you start getting paid.
However once you’ve done so there really are no limits to what you can earn.
3. Social media gardener
This might seem a funny job title but all it means is that you look after the social media accounts of other people or businesses who can’t do this themselves.
These might be local businesses who can’t afford a professional social media manager or accounts owned by older people that don’t understand how to use them.
Gardening social media is a great way to make some extra cash as a side hustle by using knowledge that comes easy to your generation.
Even helping to sell old stuff for people on facebook marketplace could bring you good money for just taking some images, posting them and answering questions.
4. Ice cream seller
Ok so not every place in the world is going to need an ice cream seller but if you happen to live near a beach and are prepared to work hard then this could be very lucrative.
Buying cheap ice cream from local stores and selling it to holiday makers on the beach is exactly how the Wolf of Wall Street – Jordan Belfort started out.
Check out this youtube video (from 3 mins) where he explains how he was making $400 a day selling ice cream to tourists.
30 years ago video games were just there for entertainment, but these days you can actually get paid to play!
Aside from being an easy way of earning extra money, this is also a great reason to explain to your parents why you need to stay up late playing video games!
6. Etsy seller
Becoming an Etsy seller is a great way to earn your own money at a young age especially if you are creative.
Many young people find that they are able to make a living from personalising things on Etsy such as bracelets, t-shirts and signs.
Getting started is really quick and simple, follow the simple steps in this link to find out how to start your journey.
7. Music Magpie
If you are based in the UK then Music Magpie is a great place where you can sell old mobile phones or electronics.
Speaking to family members and people from your local community who might have old electronic items lying around is one of the best ways to get started making some quick cash.
Music Magpie even takes old CD’s and MP3 players that no one uses anymore so you’re really getting money for nothing!
8. Dog Walking
Now if online technology isn’t your thing then there are plenty of ways to make money the old fashioned way.
Dog walking is one of those jobs for young people that has been around for ages.
You’ll have to have a love of pets, enjoy your own company and be good with talking to people if you want to succeed.
Why not try posting an ad on Facebook or Craigslist to get started?
If you are good enough then you could even get your friends involved and turn it into your own business.
9. Garage Sale
Don’t worry if you don’t have a garage or lots of stuff to sell because helping out other people with their garage sales counts as well.
There are a lot of people who want to sell the items in their garage but either don’t know where to start, don’t have the spare time or are put off by the hard work that is required.
That’s where you come in.
Teenagers like you are perfect for helping grown ups prep for garage sales.
All you’ll need to do when prepping for the garage sale is carefully arrange the items so that they are easy to view, be around to answer any questions from buyers and put out some social media posts or flyers to drum up interest.
When all of the selling is done, you can negotiate payment from the homeowner.
10. Session Musician
Everyone loves music right?
So if you have a talent for playing a musical instrument, don’t waste it by playing in an empty room.
Lots of studios and bands require sessional musicians to accompany them at gigs or when recording tracks.
Try building up a network in your local area and make sure that you are first on the list when they’re looking for someone who can play the drums, guitar, triangle or whatever it might be.
Maybe even drop a demo track into your local studio so they know what you’re about.
11. Music Tutor
Giving music lessons is another good job you can do while in high school.
Whether this is directly with young kids from your neighbourhood or online by zoom, people always need good tutors.
If you are good at speaking to people, capable with your chosen instrument and friendly then the chances are you will get work.
Pricing yourself competitively will also help but remember not to go too cheap, otherwise people might think that they aren’t going to get good service.
Take some tips from the person who taught you how to play and try to make them your own.
12. Taking Online surveys
This is a way of making money that you always see advertised online but to be honest it isn’t my favorite.
Online surveys can often be long and boring and sometimes pay by rewards rather than cash.
If I were you I’d keep looking through the list and find a different way that appeals to your personality.
You could try Survey Junkie to get started.
13. Children’s sports coach
Coaching youth sports teams is how I started out making money as a teenager and it’s a great way of not only earning some money but also building up your network.
Once you become well known as a good sports coach you can begin to diversify by charging more money for one to one coaching and holiday camps.
You will need to make sure that you have a background check done and a CPR or First Aid certificate but after that it is easy.
Word of mouth will soon spread if you do a good job and you may even grow to a point where you can employ your friends to give you a helping hand, keeping some extra money for yourself of course.
14. Kids Party Entertainer
Before you think I’m crazy and you click onto a new blog, hear me out.
The skills required to be a good children’s entertainer will enable you to go onto be fantastic in sales, entrepreneurship and recruitment.
The set up is simple, all you will need is a red nose, some baggy clothes, a wig, and be able to tie some balloon animals!
The best part is that you can get upwards of $100 a day just for birthday parties. Now that’s good money!
Also, your next potential customers are already sitting in front of you at the party.
If you can impress parents then you will be able to build up a client base quickly.
15. Teach Coding
The best part is that you can get upwards of $100 a day just for birthday parties. Now that’s good money!
Also, your next potential customers are already sitting in front of you at the party. If you can impress parents then you will be able to build up a client base quickly.
16. Website Designer
Websites are the future, they are the shop window for all businesses.
Even small businesses are switching on to the fact that by having a website they increase the chances of building revenue significantly.
Older generations can often be put off building websites as they don’t understand the technology but teenagers are already equipped with a lot of the tech savvy that is required.
Building a website is very lucrative and could earn you a couple of hundreds of dollars each time.
17. Shop w/ Rakuten
If you or your parents do online shopping, Rakuten is a good way to earn some extra money. Rakuten provides you with rebates or cash back on your shopping.
The platform is free to use. When you make your purchases through the site, Rakuten splits its commission with you.
This is easy money and one that you can earn just from doing what you would be doing anyway – shopping!
Babysitters are getting $10 an hour and up, often working in conditions that are much better than a typical part-time job, with all of the comforts of someone else’s home at your disposal.
You have to love kids, be really trustworthy and it will really help if you complete a first aid course.
It’s often as easy as just letting people in your neighborhood know that you’re available to sit.
Maybe start with friends and family first to prove how good you are.
Once the word gets around, you may have more babysitting gigs than you can handle.
If you happen to be a good academic college student then you could put your skills to the test by helping to tutor your classmates or younger children.
Tutors provide an important role in developing the next generation of students and if you are already in college or high school you have a ready made client base.
You could use your free time to help others whilst also earning a respectable hourly rate especially if parents request your services.
20. Become a Language Tutor
Similar to academic tutoring, if you happen to be studying abroad or have parents who speak a foreign language then you could use this to your advantage.
There is a high demand for language tutors and because of the lack of them people are willing to pay well.
You could get upwards of $15 per hour for helping teach your second (or native) language to someone else.
21. Buying & Selling
Probably the oldest hustle there is, buy low and sell high.
The key is to find a product that is in demand and a place where you can secure it. Taking your time to find a deal is really important so don’t rush into anything.
You could buy things in bulk and then separate them before you self, this is called wholesale buying.
You could also buy things from one place and sell them in another where the prices are higher. This is called geographical arbitrage.
22. Pet Sitting
If you like dogs and cats, you can work as a pet sitter.
Start with your neighbours and family friends and they will spread the word if you are a great pet sitter.
You can take care of people’s pets at their homes, or if your parents are okay with it, they can also bring the pets to your house.
23. Camp Counselor
In the summer months when holiday camps are taking place there can often be arguments between the young children.
Camp leaders are always looking for sensible teenagers who can be a peacemaker in these situations.
If you have a cool head then this could be the perfect type of work for you that wont take up too much time.
24. Personal Assistant
You might be thinking that this job role isn’t suitable for a teenager but that isn’t the case.
There are many people who are in need of a younger personal assistant.
These range from the elderly to new mothers who are unable to do certain chores because of their baby.
Again, networking is your friend.
Advertise your services with friends and family first and foremost to build up interest.
25. Work In A Movie Theatre
Now this is a job with a lot of upside. Not only do you get good money but you also get to watch plenty of free movies.
As a part-time job goes this is warm, dry and provides lots of entertainment.
26. Clean Houses
Speaking as an adult, we will pay good money to have someone clean our houses.
The great thing about cleaning houses for cash is that it is regular work, houses will always get dirty and will always need cleaning.
27. Washing Cars
You could make yourself an easy $10 by washing a car in around 30 minutes.
To increase your chances of making good money then you could set up a mobile valeting service in your community or contact local businesses and small business owners and offer to wash their fleet vehicles.
28. Fiverr and Upwork
If you have writing and technical skills, you can make money doing micro tasks.
These are small jobs, like graphic design, voiceovers, and social media work, that pay $5+ per job.
The idea is to do multiple jobs, from the comfort of your home, and earn some extra money.
29. Pool Lifeguard
This was another job that I did at a young age and another great opportunity to earn money alongside your hobby (providing you like swimming).
Lifeguards have a lot of responsibility but the team aspect is usually quite good and most places will allow you to use the pool for free when you aren’t working.
30. Skate Guard
Even though most skating rinks are indoor, this tends to be more of a winter opportunity. If you’re an above-average skater, you may qualify.
You could be a skate guard during the winter months, and a lifeguard during the summer.
31. Work in an Amusement Park or Fairground
Amusement parks often prefer hiring teenagers because they cost less than adults and are more flexible.
You’re also a natural fit with the people who use the park, which are largely teenagers.
There can be some good benefits as well, with some parks providing season passes.
32. Personal Shopper
Not too dissimilar to the personal assistant, a personal shopper goes out and does the shopping for someone who is either too busy or isn’t able to do it themselves.
This doesn’t have to be going out into town but could simply be doing a weekly grocery shop online or grabbing some essentials from Amazon.
Can you think of some elderly people who may see the benefit in having a personal shopper?
33. Teach Computer Basics to Older Folks
If you aren’t keen on being a personal shopper or assistant then how about teaching people how to do their online jobs themselves?
These could be simple jobs like using social media or helping them access their personal finances online.
34. Create and Sell Art
Real physical art and Crypto art are big business.
Creators can exhibit and sell art the old fashioned way at craft fairs or they can create digital products and sell them via crypto exchanges such as rarible.
You never know, if you are good, your product could be the next Banksy!
35. Event Photography
I’m not talking about becoming a professional wedding photographer but more like family gatherings and birthday parties.
If you know of such events taking place, volunteer your services as a photographer.
You might charge a flat fee to attend the event, like $30 or $40.
You won’t need a professional camera either, these days a good quality i-phone will do the trick.
36. Putting Up & Taking Down Christmas Decorations
Ever seen the film Elf? This could be you!
Pretty much everyone loves Christmas decorations. But putting them up can be a challenge, and taking them down can be a hassle.
Offer your services around your neighborhood, especially if you have a flair for putting up decorations.
The work will only be seasonal of course, but it will give you a chance to make some extra money around the holidays.
Remember to take some pictures of your work and share them on social media to promote yourself.
37. Delivery driving
This one only works if you have a car, which is slightly easier if you are based in the United States as the driving age is lower than in Europe.
You can work with local businesses to deliver their goods across town.
38. Sell Your Computer and Internet Skills
Working along the same lines as the website design, if you have skills as an amateur graphic designer, content creator or video editor you can sell these skills to people who need them.
Youtubers are always looking to save themselves time, so if you can edit their videos quickly and efficiently it could be a good way of maximising your skills and earning some money.
39. Amateur Referee
If you’ve ever played sports as a kid then you know that every event has one or more referees.
As a teenager, you may qualify to be one of those referees.
I know of at least one teen was earning between $25 and $60 to referee one-hour games for kids between the ages of 4 and 12.
Check with the children’s sports leagues in your community.
If you can referee multiple sports, you can work year-round.
If you like listening to music – all kinds of music – this can be a way to make some extra money in your spare time.
MusicXRay will pay you 10 cents per song, to listen to and rate whether or not you like the music of aspiring new artists.
You only have to listen to a song for a minimum of 30 seconds to get paid.
41. Running Errands
Running errands is the younger equivalent of light haulage or delivery driving.
If you have a bike or even just lots of free time then you could use this to get paid by busy people.
Think of the amount of tips you could get by being the coffee guy for an office block.
42. Write Web Content
You might think that we’ve already covered this in the blogging section but you don’t have to have your own blog to write content.
Bloggers and website owners often pay freelance writers to write content for their site.
If you have a passion for a subject then why not contact a website and ask them if they will pay you to write for them.
This could earn you upwards of $25 per article.
43. Assisting the Elderly
Elderly people tend to have lots of free time, sometimes spare money but are unable to do the things that they used to.
That’s where you come in.
Offering your services to elderly people can be a great way of earning money and giving back to your community.
These tasks could range from buying their groceries, taking them for walks or even just sitting and watching TV with them.
You can even advertise what your tasks are.
44. Video Editing
This falls into the ‘selling your services online’ category, content creators will love it if you can provide an inexpensive but good video editing service.
You can approach them directly or by using sites like upwork.
Maybe start by editing some videos of your own and uploading them so that everyone can see what you can do.
45. Digitalizing Photos
This is another example of the younger generation being able to help the older generation.
It’s basically a process of scanning and saving photos to your computer.
If you have a good quality scanner, you can offer your services to people who are looking to convert their photos from paper to digital.
46. Window Cleaning
Every house has windows right?
And windows always get dirty, so what you have there is repeat business!
The best part is that all you need is some hot soapy water, a sponge and a cloth.
Homeowners will pay around $20 per home to have their windows cleaned, and you can do this every month.
47. Cleaning Out Basements or Garages
Most people hate these jobs because they can be huge projects.
That’s especially true if it’s been years since either space has been cleaned out.
A person in your circle of friends or neighborhood may welcome your assistance and pay you generously.
In fact, a knock at the door or a flyer from you could create the incentive for the jobs to happen at all.
48. Become a Party DJ
This is an opportunity to release your inner entertainer.
If you’re into popular music, and you know how to arrange it and present it, you can be a natural for this one.
You can start by acting as a DJ within your own social circle.
But if you’re any good at it, word will get around, and you’ll have a fully-fledged business.
A set of decks can be quite pricey though so maybe hire some first.
49. Knock on doors
Now unfortunately no-one is actually paying you to knock on doors but the point is that sometimes you don’t know until you ask.
Knock on some doors around your neighbourhood and ask if there are any odd jobs that they need doing.
You never know, you may get lucky and even find some repeat business.
This is another of the more entrepreneurial money-making methods.
CaféPress is a way that you can sell your designs and earn some money.
You can create designs for T-shirts, sweatshirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, and even pillows.
Just create an account on the site, and then upload your designs.
The site will display your designs, which will be purchased by customers on the site.
CafePress advertises, but you can also promote your work on the site through social media.
ThredUp is a web platform where you can sell gently used upscale clothing.
You can be paid anywhere from two dollars up to $25 per item.
The items have to be recognised brands, like J.Crew, L.L. Bean, and Banana Republic.
But if you have a closet full of name brand garments, or you know where to get them, this can be a steady stream of extra income.
52. Yard Maintenance
This can be anything from lawn mowing on a regular basis to shoveling snow to one-off property management projects, like raking leaves or trimming hedges.
If you don’t mind a bit of yard work (see what I did there…)this can be a great service for your local community.
Your competitive advantage is that you can work for less money than a professional landscaper.
53. Golf Caddy
A lot of young people get their first job on a golf course. If you’re already a golfer, this can be a natural outlet but you don’t have to be.
Learning how to caddy is pretty easy to learn and not too much hard work.
The advantages are that many golfers are wealthy so you’ll probably get good tips and be able to pick up some knowledge along the way.
Tiger Woods’ caddy was earning over $1million per year at his peak!
54. Find Odd-jobs on Craigslist
If all else fails you can get yourself on Craigslist and search for any jobs that take your fancy in your area.
There are bound to be a wide range of jobs and money to match, just make sure you pick something that suits you.
55. Collect and Recycle Metals
Scrap metal is a well known way of earning money.
There are scrap yards all across the world that will willingly pay you to bring in unwanted metals.
This can be pretty tough work and you’ll most likely need a van or something to transport the metal on.
Some metals are worth more than others so keep an eye out for things like copper, aluminium and brass which are worth significantly more than steel.
Snagajob is actually a job board, but one where you can find the kinds of jobs that are not available in the local newspaper or the mall.
All kinds of employers in every industry advertise for jobs on the site.
It may be a chance for you to find that unusual job you’ve been hoping to find.
57. Water Plants
People are very proud of their flowers but maintenance can be a pain.
Watering and feeding plants is an easy and effective way to earn extra cash.
You could charge someone $10 per week to water their plants, if you built this up you could easily bring in $100 every week.
58. Farmers Market
If you have the space to grow your own fruit and vegetables then you can sell your produce at the local farmers market.
This isn’t going to make you a fortune but it will bring you a small income for items that may otherwise be given away or go to waste.
59. Paper route
The good old fashioned paper round, a staple for every teenager looking for a job since 1900.
The upside is that you will have a regular wage from a pretty simple job.
The downsides are that the money is usually pretty and low and you’ll have to be out in all weathers.
This was another one of my teenage jobs.
I used to get paid $6 per hour to push supermarket leaflets through people’s doors.
It could be boring at times but when you have your headphones in, the time can actually go pretty quickly.
61. Lemonade Stand
You might remember this one from the old Snoopy cartoons.
Similar to selling ice cream, setting up a lemonade stand is a very low cost way of earning a few bucks.
If there isn’t much traffic in your neighbourhood then on a hot day you could always take some soda cans in a cool box and sell them downtown.
62. Open a savings account
Probably one of the lowest earning suggestions on the list but it’s an earner nonetheless.
If you have some money saved up and you are not up for taking any risks then starting a savings account is an easy way to get paid for doing nothing.
Interest rates won’t earn you a fortune but every little helps right?
63. Sign up to an extras agency
Signing up to an extras or supporting artiste agency is a really cool way to earn some extra money.
My cousin and I did this in the UK and ended up meeting some pretty cool people, featuring in 2 Hollywood movies and earning $100 a day each!
Hit up Google for some casting agencies in your area.
64. Do Voiceover Work
Voice over work is another awesome way to earn $$$ just by talking.
Payment for this work can be anything from a few dollars to a few hundred dollars each time.
You could be voicing a radio ad, infomercial or even a cartoon.
The best bit about voiceover work is that sometimes you don’t even have to travel.
65. Create your own gift cards
Banter Cards was a business that was set up in someone’s attic space and now makes big bucks for selling offensive greeting cards.
The world is a big place and if you have an idea that you think will appeal to even a small minority then why not take the chance and try it out.
66. Affiliate Marketing
If youtube ads are to be believed then we should all stop working and just do affiliate marketing to make our millions.
There is certainly good money to be made in affiliate marketing and Amazon FDA but it will require lots of research and probably parental consent.
67. Bake Sale
Everyone loves cakes, even more so cookies so if you are a dab hand with pastry then get baking.
$2 per home made cookie and I can guarantee that you won’t be disappointed when you’re counting up your profit at the end of the day.
68. Resell Old Clothes
Some people say old, other people say vintage!
Try scouring your local thrift stores for some underpriced clothing and then put them online to resell at a higher price.
You will be really surprised to see what quality clothes end up in charity shops that you can pick up for just a few cents.
69. Upcycling Furniture
There is a huge market out there for upcycled furniture.
If you have spare time and some skills with a sander and paint brush then this could be a great avenue to earn some money.
Most people will be happy to give away their unwanted furniture instead of having to pay to dispose of it.
70. Start An Online Community
Now stay with me on this one, starting an online facebook group is a great way of building up a quick and easy following with a common interest.
Once you have built one up then you have a ready made client base to sell products or courses based around the shared interest.
71. Taxi Service
Ok, so not an official taxi service but taxing your friends and family in and out of town can be a great way to earn a few dollars.
This only works if you have a car though so may exclude younger teens.
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