September 6, 2021

How to Make Money as a Kid

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Need cash fast? Check out this list of money-making options for kids.

Nowadays, there are more ways than ever to make money as a kid.

You can tap into your entrepreneurial spirit and start a bunch of flexible and lucrative side hustles.

To get started, take a look at these 21 creative and simple ideas. Whether you want to make money during summer, at home, or without a job - there's something for everyone to try.

Make Money Online

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With today's technology, you have more options than ever to earn money. These ideas let you get paid while working from your computer or smartphone.

1. Create Videos on Social Media

Know any fun dance movies? Cooking hacks? Maybe you're working on fun skits with your classmates. You can parlay your star power into short videos on Snapchat, Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube.

Once you have a following, you can leverage it to offer sponsored posts or shares. This means you get paid for promoting a company's products on your personal social media account with affiliate marketing links.

  • Earning potential: Your pay depends on your channel, popularity, and audience. Instagram influencers generally charge 1 cent = 1 follower. So if you have 20,000 followers, your rate starts at $300 per post or share.

  • How to get started: Find your niche and start TikTok, Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube accounts

Do kid YouTubers get paid?
If you're under 13, you will need to use your parent's YouTube account. Minors under the age of 18 can't sign up for an AdSense account. Google AdSense pays you for displaying ads on your site.

2. Tutor Other Kids

If you're particularly strong in a certain subject, you can tutor other students who might be struggling in these areas.

This side hustle looks great on college applications. And aside from being a great way to make cash, you can also practice your communication skills.

  • Earning potential: Rates start at $15/hour

  • How to get started: Since you're underage, many mainstream tutoring job boards might not accept your application. Your best bet might be to offer your services to your classmates or to teachers at your school.

    Teachers might be able to direct you to students who could use the extra help or at least advertise your services during classes.

    For kids 15+, consider signing up on Enroll to be connected with students around the world.

3. Sell Clothes on Poshmark

If you have a sizable following on Instagram, you'll sell clothing on Poshmark and other resell apps a whole lot faster. You need to be 16+ to sell on Poshmark. And for sellers under 13 years old, you need your parent's or guardian's permission.

  • Earning potential: Depends the quality and quantity of your items

  • How to get started: Review the best clothes selling apps before opening an account

4. Sell Jewelry

Savvy TikTok content creators show their intricate process for handmade jewelry. You can also use the platform to sell crafted necklaces, earrings, bracelets, and more.

  • Earning potential: Depends on how many items you sell and their individual prices

  • How to get started: Learn how to edit videos, design jewelry, and start a TikTok account

5. Start a Design Business

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Do you love to sketch? You can make a lot of money in the creative field. Offer your service to design logos, T-shirts, websites, and more for local businesses. Or, sign up to offer design services on Fiverr (must be 13 years old or older.)

  • Earning potential: You can sell your services by project or by the hour. Graphic designers begin at $18 per hour.

  • How to get started: Open a Fiverr account or market your services to friends and family members

Make money at home

Try these ideas to set up shop right in front of your home and make money in person.

6. Organize a Garage Sale

It's so easy to keep buying stuff over the years without taking stock of what you don't need anymore. Most of us have upgraded through several headphones, blenders, and pencil cases.

But if you take the time to get rid of stuff you don't use anymore, you can spearhead a garage sale on a Saturday morning. You'll want some adult supervision from your parents or older siblings, but you'll quickly find interested local buyers for things you would have donated to Goodwill.

  • Earning potential: Depends on what you sell. These items tend to have the best resale value:
    • Bicycles
    • Furniture
    • Legos
    • Video games
    • Designer clothing
    • Apple products

  • How to get started: Comb through your closets, bedrooms, storage areas, and garages. Ask your family members what you can get rid of and start deciding on prices for items (just be fair and reasonable).

7. Walk Pets

If you love animals, consider walking or taking care of dogs. Get to know your neighbors and offer to walk their golden retriever while they're on vacation or at work. You can set up doggie daycares, groom centers, or offer to housesit.

  • Earning potential:
    • Up to $20 per walk
    • Up to $35 per night for dog boarding/pet sitting
    • Plus tips

  • How to get started: Set up flyers about your rates and services. Ask your neighbors if they need any help with walking their dogs.

8. Start a Babysitting Business

Do you have experience taking care of kids because you have younger siblings? You could housesit and babysit kids all over your neighborhood. To snag the job, your parents would recommend you to other parents.

Other parents need to feel comfortable with you. You should exhibit a "wiser beyond your years" demeanor and show basic protocol know-how for emergencies such as fires.

  • Earning potential: $10 per hour

  • How to get started: Ask around to see if other families could use a babysitter while they're on vacation or date nights. For kids over 14, you could also find babysitting gigs on Care.com with parental permission.

9. Host a Bake Sale

Baking really is a science. One that requires attention to detail, patience, and artistic skills. If people ooh and ahh (and *drool*) over your confections, then you already have a fan base.

You can sell cupcakes, cheesecakes, cookies, and more in front of your home, at the park, or even at farmers markets and fairs. Just to be sure to bring a guardian along to help with transportation and ringing up customers.

  • Earning potential: $2-$4 per cupcake, up to $30 for cakes and $1-$2 for cookies

  • How to get started: Open a cookbook and get to baking! Then you should figure out your menu, prices, and where you'll sell your items.

10. Offer Manicures

Are your nails always on point? You can beautify the world (or at least the people around you) by cleaning up their nails.

Look up nail trends on IG and TikTok and try to recreate these looks. You can charge a premium by going above and beyond the standard one-color aesthetic.

  • Earning potential: $25 for standard styles, up to $70 for elaborate styles

  • How to get started: Advertise your talents in IG and then invite classmates over (or go to their place) to do their nails. You'll want an arsenal of nail care tools like a selection of polishes, cuticle clippers, and such.

Make Money in the Summer

Without school and homework keeping you down, you can devote all your time to money-making ventures. Here are some popular seasonal gigs to choose from.

11. Host a Lemonade Stand

This one is a timeless classic. You could stake out areas with a lot of foot traffic and joggers. Then offer lemonade, chilled fruit, and other beverages.

It's hard to say no to when the sun is blaring down on you in triple-digit weather. Soon, you'll become the hotspot of the block.

  • Earning potential: $1-$3 per beverage, $5-$10 per chilled fruit plate

  • How to get started: Buy up juice, lemonade, and other items at your local supermarket. Then set up a little lemonade stand with a big sign and menu. You want to consider accepting Venmo for people on the go.

12. Wash Cars

Dirt, bird poop, and tree sap can ruin the exterior paint job for vehicles. That's why drivers usually wash their cars at least once a month.

If you set up a mobile car wash service, you could rake in a ton of cash. The convenience of having your car washed in your own driveway is hard for people to pass up.

  • Earning potential: Car handwashes start at $30. You can make more money by offering waxes and other detailing services.

  • How to get started: Buy car wash soap, sponges, towels, and other tools at your local big-box store.

13. Become a Boat Cleaner

If you're near a lake, river, or ocean, there are probably a ton of boats near you. For water sports lovers, this is a good opportunity to make some money and be near the water.

You could earn several hundred dollars per week during the peak season.

  • Earning potential: You can charge between $8 and $40 to detail a boat, depending on the size and condition.

  • How to get started: You'll need to buy some boat cleaning supplies from your local marine supply store.

14. Do Yard Work

Homeowners take pride in their front yard. Offer up your services for mowing lawns, pruning trees, pulling weeds, and so on.

You're sure to have a loyal customer base over time.

  • Earning potential: Quick lawn mowings and cleaning services are usually $20 per session.

  • How to get started: Borrow your parent's lawn care equipment. Then put up flyers or ask around the neighborhood if they need any help with their lawn.

15. Water Plants

If manual labor out in the sun isn't your style, consider watering plants while your neighbors are out of town or at work.

Some neighbors might be comfortable leaving a key in a lockbox. That way you can enter their homes to water indoor plants. (This is probably best for neighbors you already know well.)

  • Earning potential: $5/week per customer

  • How to get started: Just ask around to see if any neighbors are going on vacations or work trips.

16. Clean Pools

Some suburban neighborhoods have a pool in almost every backyard.

Pool owners would love a consistently clean pool to ward off the summer heat after a long day. You could advertise pool cleaning in the summer to make a quick buck.

  • Earning potential: $15 per hour or per session

  • How to get started: Buy pool cleaning supplies (or borrow from a friend/parent) and ask if anyone needs help cleaning their pools.

How to Make Money as a Kid Without a Job

If you want some spending money without investing time into a full-fledged job or business, the following ideas are for you.

17. Take Surveys

With online surveys, you can get paid for answering questions, watching videos, playing games, and more. You can usually get cash deposits, a check by mail, or gift cards to popular retailers such as Amazon, Best Buy, and more.

  • Earning potential:
    SiteAverage EarningsAge RequirementPayment Method
    Swagbucks$0.40-$2/survey13 years oldPayPal, gift cards
    SurveyJunkie$0.50-$3/survey13 years oldPayPal, gift cards, bank deposit
    InboxDollars$0.50-$5/survey18 years oldCheck, Visa cash card
    Opinion Outpost$0.03-$3/survey18 years oldPayPal gift cards
    MyPoints$0.36-$2.85/survey13 years oldPayPal, gift cards

  • How to get started: Take a look at how to get paid for taking online surveys and sign up for an app.

18. Earn Cash Back

You can earn cash back every time you shop. Cash-back apps (or receipt apps) work a lot like coupons but they're way easier. You can get points or cash back on groceries, gas, and other stuff you're already buying.

  • Earning potential:
    SiteAverage EarningsAge RequirementPayment Method
    SwagbucksUp to 75% back13 years oldPayPal, gift cards
    IbottaUp to 10% back18 years oldPayPal, gift cards
    ShopkickUp to $0.50 per purchase14 years oldGift cards
    UpromiseUp to 5% back13 years oldDirect to card
    MyPointsUp to 40% back13 years oldPayPal, gift cards

  • How to get started: Choose a cash-back app and start buying things in-person or online. Keep in mind that each app will have their own specific rules for earning money.

19. Sell Textbooks

If you're 13+, consider selling used, dusty textbooks to other students. Certain textbook resale platforms consolidate book buyback vendors to get you the best price.

Then, when a buyer purchases your book, all you need to do is print out the prepaid postage label and mail the item.

  • Earning potential: Depends on the book you're selling and quantity

  • How to get started: Visit book buyback sites like BookScouter and list your textbook

20. Rate music on Slice the Pie

Record labels need feedback from younger folks when considering whether or not to sign an artist.

You can get paid to listen to, rate, and review music. Just check out a clip of a song on Slice the Pie and rate the song on the platform (from 1 to 10) and include a brief explanation.

  • Earning potential: 7 cents to 15 cents per clip. You get paid every Tuesday and Friday via PayPal but you need at least $10 in your account to cash out.

  • How to get started: Join Slice the Pie (you must be 13+ for this side hustle)

21. Find Deals on Your Next Shopping Trip

Tons of apps pay people to find good deals on everyday items. Once you buy a product from a participating retailer, just snap a photo of your receipt and redeem your reward through the app. These apps are free to use and give you rebates through your phone right away.

  • Earning potential: $.50 - $5 off select items

  • How to get started: Download the Ibotta app and start shopping

Bottom Line

In this day and age, kids have many opportunities for making money. And many of these ideas don't require working part-time at your local McDonald's or Target.

You can showcase your creativity and talents by starting your own business. These side hustles are on your own terms and have uncapped income potential.

But if you prefer something flexible that you can do while you're waiting for your next class, survey apps and cash-back apps are the way to go.

For even more ideas, check out this guide to jobs for teenagers.

Amber Kong is a content and creative at CreditDonkey, a personal finance comparison and reviews website. Write to Amber Kong at amber.kong@creditdonkey.com. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for our latest posts.

Note: This website is made possible through financial relationships with some of the products and services mentioned on this site. We may receive compensation if you shop through links in our content. You do not have to use our links, but you help support CreditDonkey if you do.

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