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Intermediate

How to make money from home as a kid or teen in 2024

Highlights

- Young kids and teens alike can make extra money from home.

- Side hustle opportunities range from selling things online to physical labor, like mowing lawns.

- Consider your expenses when setting prices for your business ideas.

Side hustles are nothing new for adults, as many parents work full-time jobs and have a few side gigs to help generate extra income. Kids can get in on the side-hustle economy too, earning extra cash outside of school hours and around extracurricular activities and part-time work schedules.

If you’re interested in this economy, you’re likely wondering how to make money from home as a kid. Below, we outline a handful of money-making business ideas for younger kids and teens, including ways to make money online.

How to make money from home as a kid

Kids of nearly any age can start making money doing odd jobs around the house or neighborhood. Here are some of the ways young kids and teens can earn extra cash in their free time. 

Young kids (ages 8-12 years old)

At 8 years old, you may become more interested in money and having some of your own. This may lead you to wonder how to make money from home as a kid your age. Here’s a handful of ventures younger kids can consider to make some extra money.

Raking leaves

In the fall, the leaves start to… well… fall. And many people simply don’t have the time in their busy lives to spend an hour raking them up before they damage their lawns. That is the perfect job for someone 8 years old or older.

Grab your family rake, take your parents out through the neighborhood with you while asking neighbors with leaf-covered yards if they’d be interested in your services. You’ll not only earn extra cash for your hard work, but you’ll also get some fresh air and exercise along the way. It’s a win-win. 

Make sure to plan out what to do with the leaves after raking them. You can put them in bags for your neighbor to leave out for waste collection or maybe your neighbor has a compost pile to put them on. Speak with your neighbor about this before you begin. 

You can charge $5 to $10 per yard and pull in some good money.

Lemonade stand

A lemonade stand is a time-tested tradition for young entrepreneurs looking to make their own money. If you live on or near a road that gets a decent amount of slower-moving traffic, you and your parents can set up a stand to sell this sweet treat.

While you may think it’ll be better if you just sell the instant lemonade — you know, the powdery stuff — it is likely better if you stand out by selling freshly squeezed lemonade. It’s not overly difficult either. Simply have your parents help you squeeze a bunch of lemons into a pitcher and use a recipe online to add the right amount of water and sugar to make the perfect lemonade.

You can even go a step further by pureeing strawberries and offering the option of strawberry lemonade for a small fee.

Garage sale

Talk to your parents about scheduling a garage sale or yard sale one weekend. They can offload some of their old stuff and make some cash, and you can do the same with old toys that you’ve outgrown or just don’t like anymore.

This will require a fair amount of help from your parents, but you can get right in there with them and help out the customers.

Pulling weeds

Girl raking leaves at home while making money with her brother

Raking leaves isn’t the only yard work your neighbors might need help with. Grab a pair of kid-sized work gloves and walk your neighborhood streets with your parents looking for weed-filled landscaping, walkways, and driveways.

When you spot a money-making opportunity, offer your services on the spot for a cash payment. You’ll need to put a value on your time and estimate how long a job will take before giving a price. You want to ensure you’re earning a fair amount of money while also offering a good value to your customers.

Recycle bottles and cans

If you live in a state with a deposit program — where you have to pay a small deposit any time you purchase something in a bottle or can — this is an opportunity to earn extra money without a ton of work. 

Just set up a collection box at your home or other community areas for people to put these bottles or cans in. Then, regularly check and collect the bottles and cans from the box.

Put the cans and bottles in a bag. After you’ve collected a few bags’ worth, head to the local recycling center for your pay.

Make sure to bring your parents along for safety and wear rubber gloves or use a grabber arm — a plastic contraption that grabs the trash for you — to avoid any bacteria or germs.

Bracelets

Look online and get some ideas and instructions on making decorative bracelets you can sell online on sites like eBay or Etsy or to friends, family, and neighbors, too. You can even sell them in school (with permission from the school, of course) or at a small roadside stand with your parents.

They won’t take much money to make, as you’ll only need simple things like decorative beads and high-quality thread and other materials to make them. You can also research jewelry kits and use the included materials to make your bracelets. 

If you’re super-creative, you can make up your own designs or make custom designs for an extra fee.

Teenagers (ages 13 years old and older)

Once you hit your teenage years, you’re ready to take on more responsibility and more complex ways to earn money. Below are some more age-appropriate and potentially more lucrative side hustles to consider.

Babysitting

Now that you have more life experience, you may be ready to try babysitting to make some extra cash. To get some experience in watching kids younger than you, try babysitting younger family members first, then offering your services to family friends and neighbors.

Come up with a fair hourly rate in your area. You can state by looking at the average hourly rate for babysitting in your state. Average rates range from $12.49 per hour in Louisiana to $18.97 per hour in Washington. Keep in mind that these averages include adults with many years of experience.

Before diving into this field, you’ll want to learn everything you need to know if an emergency pops up. The American Red Cross offers an online babysitting basics certification that teaches you how to care for infants and children, how to stay stafe, what to do in an emergency, and how to select age-appropriate activities. 

YouTube videos

Do you have an interesting personality, a lot to talk about, and a knack for being on camera? If so a YouTube channel could be the perfect outlet for you to make money online. As a YouTuber, you’ll record videos on a regular cadence — one a week, two a week, or more — edit them, and publish them.

Once you develop a following, YouTube will allow you to monetize your videos and earn money.

Remember, though, YouTube requires parental permission for kids between 13 and 17 to make their own YouTube channel.

Pet sitting

If you love animals, pet sitting may be a great way to make money. Like babysitting, start with sitting for friends and family members to develop your skills and a good reputation, then offer your services to others in your neighborhood.

You can earn extra cash taking care of someone’s pet and performing basic tasks like dog walking, feeding, and cleaning a litter box. And in the summertime, when you’re on break, families are heading on vacations and will need your services even more.

Online surveys

Did you know some companies, such as Swagbucks and Survey Junkie, will pay you to know your opinion? This is where the world of online surveys comes into play.

These companies pay upward of $2.03 an hour, based on a NerdWallet study. While that’s not a ton of money, this is one side gig you can do while watching television.

Mowing lawns

Being a little older also opens you up to odd jobs that require more maturity, like mowing lawns. Start by mowing lawns for friends and family members, and take some photos of the finished product once you’ve honed your skills. 

Then, you can offer your services to people in your area and show them the pictures of the carefully manicured lawns as proof of your abilities.

Remember, this will require basic machinery, like a lawn mower and trimmer, so check with your parents to ensure it’s OK to use the family’s equipment for your new business venture.

T-shirts

Do you have a knack for graphic design and loads of great ideas for T-shirts people would love? You can design your own T-shirts, print them in bulk or on demand, and sell them online on sites like Etsy, eBay, or Amazon. You can find a wide range of online T-shirt printing companies to get this gig off the ground with a minimal initial investment.

Speaking of that initial investment, you’ll need to either save cash from a part-time job or get a small loan from your parents to kick off your initial order.

If you’re wondering how to price these T-shirts so you can profit on them, a good rule of thumb is a 30% to 40% markup. So, if the shirts cost $10 each to make, reselling them for $13 to $14 each, plus shipping, is a good starting point.

Car wash

A neighborhood car wash is another way kids can make extra money fast. Set up a car washing stand in your driveway and advertise your services to neighbors.

Make sure to consider the initial cost of the car wash, like the soap, sponges, rags, cleaners, wax, and more when setting your price. You want to profit from your labor, but you also need fair pricing to keep customers rolling in.

Photography

If you’re a great photographer and have a knack for well-timed and framed pictures, you could turn this into your side hustle and sell those pictures to bloggers and websites. You can do so through sites like Shutterstock. All you do is take excellent pictures, upload them to the website, and people download them for a fee for their projects. After the selling site takes its cut of the sale, you get cash for your digital images.

Investing: An option for all ages

Many of our ways to make money from home as kids are limited by age group, but investing and earning money from those investments is fun for all ages. An investment app for kids can help you invest on a smaller scale and start building wealth under a parent’s supervision. The Greenlight app, for example, has an investing feature where you can learn how to invest in fractional shares of stocks, bonds, and more with your parents having the ability to approve all transactions.

This is a great way to make money from home as a kid and learn the value of passive income.

You can earn money at home

If you were wondering how to make money from home as a kid, you now understand you have many opportunities. Whether it's doing chores, making bracelets to sell online, or mowing lawns for your neighbors, these business ideas can get extra money flowing in.

You’ll need somewhere to stash all this extra cash. The Greenlight app can help. It gives you a debit card for spending and helps you save with Savings Goals, up to 1%* Cash Back to Savings, and up to a 5%* Savings Rewards. Try the Greenlight app today! 

*Greenlight Core and Greenlight + Invest families can earn monthly rewards of 1% per annum, Greenlight Max families can earn 2% per annum, and Greenlight Infinity families can earn 5% per annum on an average daily savings balance of up to $5,000 per family. Only Greenlight Max and Infinity families can earn 1% cash back on spending monthly. To qualify, the Primary Account must be in Good Standing and have a verified ACH funding account. See Greenlight Terms of Service for details. Subject to change at any time.

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