Before I landed my job with Student Loan Hero, I worked for a huge Fortune 500 company. I earned a high salary, but there was a trade-off: persistent rumors about layoffs. I was constantly worried about losing my job and being unable to make ends meet. I often couldn’t sleep because I was so anxious about money.
I researched ways to boost my income through side gigs. However, my job was demanding, so I didn’t have much time to dedicate to side hustles. I needed to find ways to earn money with just a few hours’ effort.
I’ve tried many side gigs, but these are the best I’ve found that require only a small time commitment to reap serious profits.
7 low-effort side hustles
If you’re short on time, it’s smart to focus your efforts on side gigs that can be completed in small chunks and pay high rates. The seven gigs below pay at least $250 per month and don’t require tons of work.
1. Sell your photos
One of my favorite side gigs is selling photos online. I’m not a particularly good photographer, and I use only my smartphone, but I can make $250 per month by selling my pictures.
Selling photos can be an excellent source of passive income. You can upload your photos in just a few minutes, and those photos can earn you money for months.
You can make $5 for each photo you sell on Foap, and you can sell each photo multiple times.
2. Use affiliate links
If you use social media, you can make extra money with affiliate links by signing up for a program such as Amazon Associates. If there’s a product you like and recommend, you can post a link to it on your website, blog, or social media accounts. If a friend or follower makes a qualifying purchase through the link, you earn a commission.
On average, I earn about $250 per month with affiliate links. I spend only about five hours a month posting links, so it breaks down to an hourly wage of $50. Beyond Amazon Associates, you also can use ShareASale and ClickBank to earn money.
3. Sell unwanted items
I’m in the process of moving, so I’m frantically trying to earn money and declutter at the same time. I spent two hours listing unwanted furniture and kitchen supplies on Facebook Marketplace in my town. Within 48 hours, I’d made over $300.
I’m not alone. Most people have lots of unused clothes, accessories, furniture, or collectibles. Even your old textbooks could be worth money. Thanks to smartphones, you can sell your items online without ever leaving your couch on sites such as Facebook, eBay, Poshmark, and Letgo.
4. Rent out your spare space
If you have a spare bedroom, closet, or parking space, you can earn money by renting it out. It can be a great source of passive income; you can earn hundreds of dollars a month without doing anything at all.
If you’re open to having guests in your home, list a bedroom on a site such as Airbnb or VRBO. You can rent out a parking space on JustPark. And if you have spare storage space, such as a closet or garage, you can list it on StoreAtMyHouse.
5. Let strangers borrow your car
If you don’t need your car every day, you can make a lot of money by renting it out. According to Turo, which connects car owners with renters, the average car owner earns over $700 per month through the site.
Through Turo, you can list your car and set a daily rental price. You can rent out your car by the day, week, or even month.
6. Sign up for Fulfillment by Amazon
This side hustle requires some work upfront but can turn into a powerful source of passive income. Through Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA), you become an Amazon seller — and tap into Amazon’s powerful customer base and marketing strategy — but Amazon handles the shipping for you.
With FBA, you (the seller) buy a product from a wholesaler or retailer to sell. Instead of having to manage and ship orders yourself, you ship the inventory to Amazon. Amazon stores it for you, and when orders come in, it packages the items and ships them to your customers.
It can be a lucrative side hustle. Some sellers make up to $1,000 per month through FBA. You can sign up for FBA online.
7. Become a Postmates courier
If you have just small blocks of time to make money, one side hustle to consider is Postmates. With Postmates, you can make up to $25 per hour runnings errands. Since many orders are for food or small items, such as phone chargers, you can complete an order and earn cash in less than an hour.
Earning money in your free time
If you have some free time in your schedule, you can earn several hundred dollars each month by picking up a side hustle. You can use your earnings to pay down debt, build up your savings, or splurge on a trip abroad.
For more ideas on how to make extra money, here are our top picks for side hustle opportunities.
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