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Let’s be honest…we all need some extra money. Earning a little side cash to pay down some debt or invest in retirement is a brilliant finance hack. Or maybe you just need to make ends meet so you can afford groceries this month! Whatever your personal situation, you could use some extra cash, right? So check out our list of weird ways to make money, and go get some.
Using Your Skills
Let’s start with the least weird ways to make money. Your skills are valuable, friend! Use them to bring in some cash.
Translate: If you’re fluent in multiple languages, you’re in demand! Gengo.com is a great place to start offering your translation services. You get to pick and choose your projects from the thousands that come available every day. And your Gengo work schedule is completely flexible: you can work whenever from where-ever.
Tutor: If you’re the studious type, you can earn money while helping others with their school work. Tutor.com is an awesome resource for matching qualified tutors with tutees in need. You can tutor any age, kindergartners to adult learners, in almost any subject. Bonus: you’re really making a difference in someone’s life 🙂
Completing Odd Jobs
When I was about 8 years old, my cousin and I cleaned my parents’ house, and sent them an invoice for $5. When I say “sent an invoice”, I mean we left a piece of lined notebook paper that said, “Cleaning: $5” in pencil on the kitchen table). Then we cleaned my cousin’s parents’ house and sent them our $5 invoice. Neither set of parents paid us because they’d never agreed to have us do the work.
It was a good business lesson.
But assuming you have an agreement with your client to actually get paid, odd-jobs (weird and not-so-weird) can be a great way to make extra money.
Fiverr: Fiverr is a freelancing site where you can offer your services for $5-$995. Any service is acceptable as long as it’s legal, so you can be as creative as you want. The most popular categories are tech, design, and the arts. For example, you could offer to create company logos, compose music for podcasts, or setup WordPress pages.
Upwork: Upwork is similar to Fiverr, but leans a little more toward bigger businesses. If you have skills for the business world, like programming, customer service, or virtual assisting, Upwork is your better bet. They also have spots for designers and artists, and it can’t hurt to offer your services through both sites.
Taskrabbit: Taskrabbit is like the blue-collar version of Fiverr and Upwork. It’s more manual labor, and more local projects. Think house repair work, building IKEA furniture, cleaning, and moving. If you prefer physical work to staring at a computer all day, try Taskrabbit.
Thumbtack: Thumbtack is the newest big-time player in the odd jobs game. Very much like Taskrabbit, but Thumbtack promotes more specialized skills like painting, photography, and vocal coaching.
Rover: Rover is specifically for dog-related odd jobs, like pet sitting and dog walking. But Rover only hires the most well-qualified applicants. They accept fewer than 20% of the pet sitters who apply to their network.
Renting Spare Spaces
Renting out space is a great way to make money because it’s passive. You don’t have to trade your time for money, so you can make money even while you’re on vacation. And people pay for space! Parking, camping, living space…put your spare space to work.
Parking Space on Your Property: If you’re lucky enough to have available parking space on your property in a busy area, you can use Parklee to rent out that space for cash.
Your Backyard: Have a big back yard? Rent it to campers through AirBnB!
Your Spare Room: You can always rent out your spare room on AirBnB, but if you’re looking for more consistent cash flow, consider renting your spare room to a college student during the school year. Craig’s List is still a common connection point for long-term room rentals.
Getting Out Around Town
If you love to be out and about, we have some great money-making opportunities for you.
Mystery Shopper: It’s not just retailers that need mystery shoppers. Apartment rental secret shopping is my favorite mystery shopping gig. You get paid to pretend you’re looking for a new apartment and write up a report on your experience with the leasing agents! You don’t have to buy anything, and you get to tour some amazing luxury apartment communities. Real estate nerds out there? Anyone?
And there’s usually work when you need it if you’re in a big city. When I was a leasing agent in LA, every one of our agents were shopped every quarter, so we kept those mystery shoppers busy! Ellis has been a reputable apartment secret shopper company since the 80’s. Check ’em out.
Tour Guide: Want to share your town with visitors? Sign up with Vayable.com to meet people from all over the world and give them an amazing local experience. Vayable is looking for “Insiders” to provide tourists with unique experiences in “art, fashion, design, eating, drinking, architecture, history, outdoors or any other cultural experience that tells a unique story about the destination.”
Gig-Walker: Gigwalk is kinda like Pokémon GO for retail merchandise. Companies want to check on their products in their retail spaces from time-to-time. Like, is their product in stock at Target? Is it labeled and priced correctly? So these companies post a “gig” to Gigwalk (usually something like, go find my product at target and take a picture of the item on the shelf with the shelf label), and local gig-walkers can complete the gig and get paid.
Helping the Lonely
Getting a little weird now. Some people are willing to pay for companionship (not that kind of companionship!). If you’re a people person, maybe this is for you.
Help Those Who Need a Friend: Some people just need a friend to hang with. Maybe they’re new to town or maybe they need a Plus-1 to prove to their old gf that they’re doing just fine. Enter Rent-a-Friend. It’s exactly what it sounds like. Cool bonus: your friend time might include meals, sporting events, or other cool activities at no cost to you!
Mourn a Stranger: Hiring extra mourners to fill out a funeral has been common practice in many parts of the Eastern World forever, and the practice is making its way West. The UK has an online mourning service, Rent-A-Mourner. But the US hasn’t quite made an industry of this just yet. In all seriousness, this could be a lucrative business opportunity for the right entrepreneur. Check out this Cracked article for an insider look at the growing industry.
Selling Some Weird S
It’s amazing what people will buy. Sell at your own risk!
Body Parts and Fluids: Hair, plasma, and even eggs. There are buyers. In fact, there are people in deep need of some body parts and fluids. So if you’re willing to part with yours, you can make some good money.
Used Panties: Thanks Japanese vending machines and Orange is the New Black Season 3! The used-panty industry has exploded over the last few years. There are now tons of ways to sell used panties online. Just Google “where to sell used panties”. Or don’t.
And the Rest of the Weird Ways to Make Money
If auctioning your virginity or selling your panties isn’t your cup of sangria, maybe one of these random weird money-makers will be more your style.
Be a Mock Juror: Before big lawsuits go to trial, the attorneys prepare by running in-house mock trials. And they need mock juries to deliberate at those mock trials. Snag a seat on a mock jury through Online Verdict to make some extra cash.
Lose Some Weight: Assuming you have any weight to lose, of course! DietBet is a fun way to bet on yourself, and get paid when you meet your weight-loss goals. You won’t make much, but you can earn enough for a special treat like a massage or mani/pedi.
Participate in a Focus Group: Big companies and marketing firms are always looking for consumer opinions. Findfocusgroups.com is a great place to start looking for gigs. Earn money drinking coffee in LA? Yes, please!
Tweet: If you have a sizeable Twitter Following, companies will pay you to spread their advertising message to your followers. Sign up with PaidPerTweet to start making money.
So How Much Money Can You Make?
We put together a handy Report Card for the money-making opportunities in this post. It shows how much money you can make, and grades each money-maker on the following categories:
- Pay Rate: is the task worth the pay?
- Accessibility: can anyone do the task and are tasks available?
- Difficulty: is it hard to do if you have the skills and resources?
- Time Requirement: do you need to invest a lot of time to make money?
Just enter your name and email below to get our Report Card delivered to your inbox.
Feel Like Sharing?
Have you had any success with any of these weird ways to make money? How about any suggestions for other weird ways to make money?