21 Legit Ways To Make Money Without A Job

By Zach Buchenau

Last Updated: April 13, 2021

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how to make money without a normal job | Be The Budget

Contrary to popular belief, there are lots of ways to make money without a job. Beyond that, having alternate sources of income is extremely beneficial in today’s economy.

More and more, people are starting to realize that dependence on a regular job is risky. If you get laid off, the company goes under, or the business moves to another state, you could be left trying to figure out how to pay your bills.

And let’s be honest, even if your job is stable, bringing in a little extra money is a fantastic way to give your savings or investments a boost. The earlier you do this in your career, the better success you will see over the long haul.

That’s why, for the rest of this article, I’m going to dive into 21 of the best ways to make money without a job. And the best part is that many of these options cost little to nothing to start.

So, if you’re looking for ways to make money without a job, keep reading!

1. Flip Products For A Profit

Flipping products is when you purchase an item and sell it for a profit. This can be done with many different items from furniture to toys and even electronics.

The first step is finding items that you can sell.

Free items are the best because they generate 100% profit. You might have to get a little creative, but there are several places to look.

Check out the Free Stuff category on Craigslist or drive around the neighborhood on trash day looking for items on the curb. You can also check near the dumpster of a local apartment complex where people discard items they don’t want to take with them when they move.

You might be surprised at what you find.

Remember the old saying, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.

If you have to buy items, check out any place where you can get deeply discounted goods such as thrift stores, garage sales, or the clearance rack at a local department store.

One word of caution: be sure to do your research. Take a look online to see if other people are selling similar items and their list price. The last thing you want is to purchase an item that no one wants or that won’t turn you a tasty profit.

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2. Rent Your Stuff To Other People

Another great way to make money is by renting out things you own to other people.

Think about some big-ticket items that you have that other people might want to rent from you instead of buying themselves.

Items that are unique can fetch a nice rental fee.

  • For example, maybe you own a popcorn machine that you can rent out for kids’ birthday parties.
  • Or perhaps, you live in a beach community and would like to rent your kayaks out to tourists.
  • Baby items are expensive and can be cheaper to rent for 6 months versus buying new ones.
  • You can also consider some of your larger kitchen appliances that people might want to rent ahead of their big family reunion or Thanksgiving dinner.
  • Power tools are also easy to rent for one-time home improvement projects.

Nothing is off the table.

If you’d like to start making money by renting out your stuff, we recommend checking out FriendWithA or Loanables.

3. Start A Blog

Do you have knowledge or expertise in a particular niche? If so, you should seriously consider starting a blog, because it’s a great way to make money without a job.

Though, just to be clear, while this can be a lucrative side-hustle, this may take a little while to get a fair amount of traffic. So, you will need to be patient with this one.

However, if you stay consistent and build a big following, the income potential from blogging can be substantial.

Beyond that, there are all sorts of ways to earn an income from blogging. For instance, you can monetize your blog with ads, sponsorships, affiliate marketing, or even sell your own products.

Oh, and to top it all off, as a blogger, you can work from anywhere in the world—as long as you have an internet connection.

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4. Teach Music Lessons

Parents are always looking for extracurricular activities for their kids.

Therefore, if you play a musical instrument, you might consider charging students for music lessons.

If this is a route you choose to take, you can advertise your services with friends and family, on social media, or through a site like Wyzant.

21 Ways To Make Money Without A Job | Be The Budget

5. Sell Homemade Products On Etsy

If you have a special crafting ability, you might consider setting up a shop on Etsy–the largest platform for homemade and antique products.

There are lots of options to sell on Esty including t-shirt designs, clothing, artwork, and handmade jewelry. Think about the things that you have made in the past that have gotten lots of compliments.

From there, all you have to do is set up your Etsy shop, start creating, and get selling!

6. Freelance A Special Skill

Do you have a special skill that you can provide to others? If so, freelancing is a great way to make money without a job. In fact, many freelancers end up quitting their traditional 9 to 5 job because they actually make more money as a freelancer.

If you are a good writer, you can offer copywriting or blog content for small businesses or bloggers.

Or, if you’re a graphic designer, you could start developing logos, business cards, or websites for local businesses.

Any skill that you use in your full-time job that can be translated into freelance work is perfect because you can easily demonstrate to buyers that you are the right person for the job.

There are lots of great freelance sites to advertise your services, but our favorite is Fiverr.

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7. Sell Templates Or Customizable Designs

The best side hustle is one that can be replicated over and over with minimal effort.

Luckily, templates and customizable designs are hot sellers on sites like Etsy. And all you have to do to get started is create a base template that your customers can purchase and download. The customer then has the ability to edit the template or file themselves to suit their needs.

Popular templates include website designs, birthday or wedding invitations, and knitting/embroidery patterns.

8. Sell Stock Photography

Professional and amateur photographers alike make money online selling their photos on stock photography websites.

Aside from the time to take the photos, the money is mostly passive allowing you to get paid with each use or download of your photos.

For best results, try to sell photos that are less common or focus on a particular niche.

Photos of the Empire State Building are a dime-a-dozen, but photos from an obscure sporting event like cockroach racing (yes, it’s a real thing) will have less competition.

9. Try House And/Or Pet Sitting

House sitting is a great way to earn some additional income with minimal effort.

In many cases, the owners of the house also have a pet that needs care for as well. So, if you’re a pet-lover, this might be a perfect fit for you.

The great thing about housesitting is that you can get paid to do what you would normally do after a long day at work — go home, feed the pets, and chill on the couch.

10. Create An E-Course Or Publish An E-Book

If you have expertise in a certain topic, you might want to teach others about the subject via an e-course or e-book. The great part is that once the product is created, it requires very little time or effort to maintain outside of fielding customer questions or complaints.

You can offer the course or book through your own website/blog or publish it to a popular site like Amazon or Udemy.

11. Become A Notary Public

At some point in your life, you’ll likely need to have a notary public review and validate legal documents. And you aren’t alone. That’s why, becoming a notary public is a great way to make money without a job.

Beyond that, it’s fairly straight-forward process that requires a short training course and processing fee.

Once you are approved, you can charge clients a fee to review and stamp their documents. And once you build a solid list of clients, you can generate a nice secondary income stream.

12. Renovate Or Restore Furniture

Good quality furniture is hard to find. Today, most furniture is made from cheap materials such as particleboard. Meanwhile, older furniture is sturdier, and typically constructed in a much better manner. The only problem is that older furniture typically needs to be updated.

But that’s where you come in.

If you have solid crafting or carpentry skills, you can restore, renovate, re-upholster, or paint furniture for a fee. You can also find old furniture items at garage sales or thrift stores that need a little TLC.

Once restored, you can sell them for a profit.

13. Drive For Uber Or Deliver Groceries/Food

More people than ever are taking advantage of the Sharing Economy.

And if you want to make money without a normal job, you can earn additional income in the evenings or weekends by driving for Uber or Lyft.

This is especially easy if you live in a major city or near an airport.

You can also participate in food or grocery delivery services such as DoorDash or GrubHub.

In addition to delivery fees, you also have the opportunity to earn tips from happy customers.

With both of these options, you can set your own hours and work only when you want.

14. Haul Things (If You Own A Van Or Truck)

If you have ever tried to tie a new couch down to the roof of a Toyota Corolla, you know how nice it would have been if you had a large van or truck available.

That’s why, if you have a large vehicle, you can offer to haul or pick up large items for customers for a delivery fee.

Just make sure to account for all your costs including your time, fuel, wear and tear, and insurance. The best way to do this is to charge a combination of a per-hour rate plus an additional mileage fee.

This ensures that you don’t accidentally underquote a job and helps manage expectations with potential customers.

15. Become A Translator

In an increasingly connected world, people and companies need translation services.

So if you speak a second language, you can make money providing a wide range of translation services including interpreting live conversations or even translating documents.

And the more uncommon the language, the more you can charge.

21 Legit Ways To Make Money Without A Job | Be The Budget

16. Start A YouTube Channel

Starting a YouTube channel is a great way to share your experiences, information, or simply entertain people. Though, like creating a blog, it will take some time to build your subscriber list.

However, with consistency, patience, and great content, starting a YouTube channel is a great way to make money without a job.

17. Be A Mock Juror

Law schools need a safe place for their law students to practice their skills before they enter a real-life courtroom. Because of that, if you’re looking for a good way to make money on the side, you should consider becoming a mock juror.

There are several companies available online that hire jurors to serve in mock trials. And based on our research, these trials pay $20-$60 per case.

18. Become A Virtual Assistant

If you are organized and have great administrative skills, you could offer your services as a virtual assistant. And since many business owners can’t afford to hire a permanent assistant or only need help part-time, you can make quite a bit of money if you land a few clients.

The best thing about becoming a virtual assistant is that you can work from anywhere in the world.

In this role, you may have to help schedule meetings, make travel arrangements, or even  handle a company’s social media. And the better you are, the more you can charge.

19. Offer Home Care Services in Your Community

Think about the chores that you already do around your home including mowing the lawn, shoveling snow, raking leaves, washing windows, and caring for the pool. Now, think about the people in your community who can’t do these things or would prefer to pay someone else to do them.

Can you say money-making opportunity?

If you’re good with your hands and you don’t mind doing some manual labor, then you might want to start offering home care and yard maintenance services in your community.

And of all the items on this list, this is one of the easiest to start. All you have to do is talk to your neighbors or hang flyers around the neighborhood to advertise your services.

20. Wash Or Detail Cars

Everyone likes a clean car, but not everyone has the time to do a full detailing job.

And that’s exactly why detailing cars is a great way to make money without a traditional job.

Plus, washing and detailing cars is a fairly simple task. You can have your customers come to your home or you can travel to them.

You could even offer your services to small car dealerships that need their trade-ins spruced up before putting them back on the lot for sale.

21. Become An Online Tutor

If you have special knowledge of a certain subject, tutoring is a great way to earn some extra cash. Since education is a long-term endeavor, you can find students of all ages. You can also offer individual or group tutoring sessions.

Once again, if you’d like to start earning money as a tutor, we recommend setting up a profile on a site like Wyzant or applying for tutoring jobs through Varsity Tutors.

Bottom Line

Hopefully, it’s now clear how many opportunities there are to make additional money, or even a full-time income without a traditional job. All you have to do is think about what skills you have, and then figure out how to monetize them.

Just remember, while there are many options, don’t get stuck in the planning phase. The worst thing you can do is to spend days and weeks trying to come up with the perfect plan when you could be executing.

No matter what you come up with, you will need to make tweaks and adjustments along the way.

So, get out there and start earning some income on your own terms!

Zach Buchenau

About The Author:

Zach Buchenau is a self-proclaimed personal finance nerd. When he isn't writing about budgeting, getting out of debt, making extra money, and living a frugal life, you can find him building furniture, fly fishing, or developing websites. He is the co-founder of BeTheBudget, and Chipotle's most loyal customer.

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