Ah, the side hustle. Doesn't it feel like every other person you know is talking about needing to make some extra cash? In this really tough economy, it's important to have a list of some gigs every twentysomething should know. Whether you're unemployed, under-employed, or just need to rake in the dough, stat, it's always a good idea to have a side hustle or two you can make some money off of, pronto. After all, when it comes to adulthood, one thing that never seems to slow down is the money you owe, whether it's to your landlord, cell phone company, or your local grocery store cashier.
As Quartz points out, Millennials are obsessed with side hustles. And no, it's not because we're lazy. It's basically because we have to be, or else it's a real struggle to be entirely financially independent. Between the student debt crisis and the rising cost of living, many of us are doing what we can to get by, even if it's straying pretty far from our career goals. Even if you're lucky enough to make a salary you can live off of, it still gets pretty overwhelming when you think about long-term costs, building a savings, and making your money last a lifetime.
Still, with all of this said, don't panic! There are a number of ways you can bring in some extra money, some of which you can do from your very own home. And of course, always look up the local laws and regulations in your area to make sure you're doing things legally!
1. Babysit Other People's Pets
Absolutely wish you had a pet of your own, but your landlord doesn't allow it? Or maybe you're a proud pet owner who can't get enough of the furry creatures? Make yourself available as a pet-sitter! The nice thing about pet-sitting is that you can really choose your own availability, so if you simply want to come check on a pet twice a day, you can be upfront about that. Cool with sleeping over someone's place to watch their elderly cat while they're away? That works, too. So long as you're a responsible animal lover, this one should be easy as pie.
2. Tutor Students At Your Local University
Whether or not your college major has anything to do with your current career, I'm betting someone at your local university is studying the same thing you did. So go tutor them! Certain skills of course may be more needed than others, such as foreign languages, advanced math, or computer science, but hey, people always take things like art history and latin, right? So go put up some flyers and see what happens. Be prepared: You may get an influx of business around mid-terms and finals!
3. Rent Your Home On Air BnB
If you're someone who travels a lot, renting your room (or entire apartment) can be a nice way to make up some extra money. Of course, you should always check your lease and local laws about the legalities of renting out your space, if you need approval before hand, and so forth. But if you're someone who lives in a hip area or just keeps your home pretty darn swanky, I'm willing to bet you can rent it out when you'll be away without too much hassle.
4. Type Away Doing Transcriptions
If you're a fast typist, definitely look into doing transcriptions. People hire transcribers to type up all sorts of things from long interviews to movie dialogue to notes from lectures, so if you develop a good skill-set you should be able to transfer it to a variety of places. You can advertise your services on the Internet, local office buildings, and around your neighborhood. A nice perk with transcribing is you should be able to do it from the comfort of your own home!
5. Register As A Dog Walker
Love dogs and need money? Easy. Register as a dog walker and watch the money and dog kisses flow. There are a number of apps that let you register as a dog walker and it's pretty simple from there, especially if you have people who can vouch for you being good with pets. This should go without saying, but it's important to remember: When you're caring someone else's animal, they're relying on you to be responsible. Don't even think about signing up to walk a dog and then blow off the obligation.
6. Clean Other People's Homes
Isn't it true that it's easier to help other people do things they don't want to do? Whether or not you're a self-proclaimed neat freak, you might be enticed to help other people clean their homes if it puts some extra cash in your pocket. You can advertise your services by putting flyers around your neighborhood, campus, or posting on Craigslist. I think house-cleaning is a great task to share with a friend because the work goes by faster, and it's also a good safety measure to go in numbers.
7. Participate In Research Studies
I've done more research studies than I can count over the years and they've never let me down. You can find a good number of them online that typically pay in the form of a gift card or a raffle, but if you can register to participate in research studies through your local university, that tends to be better.
In my experience, you fill out a lengthy survey about yourself so you can be matched with the appropriate studies, and from there it's pretty fool-proof. You go, participate in something that usually involves gambling with fake money or remembering random information from a video, and then leave with a small amount of cash or a check. Of course, it's always important to do your research and make sure the place you're going is legitimate and safe!