25 Easy Ways to Make Money

25 Easy Ways to Make Money

This is a long list, so don’t get overwhelmed. Go ahead and start now, but be sure to bookmark this post so you can easily return later. We’ll keep it updated as offers change or expire.

Without further delay, here are 25 ways to make money:

1. Watch Movie Previews
Carmen Mandato/ The Penny Hoarder
Most of you already know about InboxDollars, but did you know that it will pay you to watch movie previews, celebrity videos, the latest news and dozens of other videos? Plus, you’ll get a bonus $5 just for signing up.

You need to watch all of the shows in a specific playlist to earn your bucks, so be prepared. InboxDollars lets you know how long the playlist runs before you start watching, and playlists range from a few minutes to about a half hour.

The availability is subject to change, but it’s possible to earn up to $225 a month watching these videos!

2. Stop Deleting Your Emails
How to make money as a stay at home mom DGLimages/Getty Images
It turns out deleting your emails could be costing you money. Intrigued?

One of our secret weapons is called Paribus — a tool that gets you money back for your online purchases. It’s free to sign up, and once you do, it will scan your email for any receipts. If it discovers you’ve purchased something from one of its monitored retailers, it will track the item’s price and help you get a refund when there’s a price drop.

Plus, if your guaranteed shipment shows up late, Paribus will help you get compensated.

Disclosure: Paribus compensates us when you sign up using the links we provide.

3. Earn up to $60/Hour as a Part-Time Bookkeeper
Neustockimages/Getty Images
Can you open an excel spreadsheet? Does earning $60 an hour sound appealing? How about the freedom to work remotely while helping others succeed?

Those are the perks of working as a bookkeeper, says Ben Robinson, a certified public accountant and business owner who teaches others to become virtual bookkeepers.

You don’t have to be an accountant or even really good at math to be successful in this business. In fact, all you need are decent computer skills and a passion for helping business owners tackle real-world problems.

The ability to stay moderately organized is helpful too.

Median pay is around $19 per hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics — and you have no commute. It’s a great opportunity for parents who want a part time job, recent college grads and anyone who wants to bring in real money working from home.

Robinson shares what it takes to be a virtual bookkeeper, plus tips for making this career work for you in his free class at Bookkeeper Business Launch.

4. Fill This out While You Watch Scary Movies
Scared young women hiding in a blanket while watching scary movies at night. shironosov/Getty Images
Online surveys aren’t our favorite way to make money, but if you’re just vegging out on the couch — or shielding your eyes while being forced to watch “Final Fantasy 113” — why not click a couple buttons and earn a few bucks?

We’ve tried a lot of paid survey sites, but here are a few of the best we’ve found:

Swagbucks is definitely a reader favorite, probably because of the wide variety of ways to make money beyond taking surveys. Plus, you get a $5 bonus when you sign up and earn 2,500 SB within your first 60 days.
MyPoints: This platform lets you earn gift cards for taking polls, answering surveys and other things you do online — a great way to cash in on long lines or an endless commute. You’ll earn a $5 bonus when you complete your first five surveys.
Opinion Outpost: What sets this apart from other survey sites is it gives away $40,000 every year. It has a quarterly drawing for a $10,000 cash prize — and for every survey you complete, you’ll get one entry into the sweepstakes!
5. Take a Picture of Your Receipt and Earn a Free $10
Ibotta review Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder
We know it sounds strange, but Ibotta will pay you cash for taking pictures of your receipts.

Here’s how it works:

Before heading to the store, search for items on your shopping list within the Ibotta app. When you get home, snap a photo of your receipt and scan the items’ barcodes.

Bam. Cash back.

Ibotta is free to download. Plus, you’ll get a $10 sign-up bonus after uploading your first receipt.

Some cash-back opportunities we’ve seen include:

25 cents back for any item.
25 cents back on strawberries.
50 cents back on frozen fruit snacks.
$1 back on a box of tea.
$5 back on a case of Shiner Bock beer.
Notice a lot of those aren’t tied to a brand — just shop for the staples on your list and earn cash back!

6. Get a Free Assistant to Negotiate Your Bills
A couple sit together on the floor of their bedroom as they analyze paperwork. mediaphotos/Getty Images
On the phone with your cell phone or internet provider, trying to haggle a lower monthly bill?

Go ahead and hang up. (We know you’re probably listening to crappy music while sitting on hold, anyway.)

Download TrueBill, an app that’ll negotiate your bills, cancel unwanted subscriptions and refund your bank fees.

After downloading the app, create an account and link your bank account and/or credit cards. Turn on the bill negotiation and outage protection features. Boom. TrueBill is already searching for potential refunds — it might get you a refund even when you didn’t know an outage occurred.

On average, Truebill customers get $12 in credits off their cable bills each month.

The app will also remind you of all those sneaky subscriptions you’ve signed up for through the years, so you can cancel what you don’t use and reclaim your monthly budget.

Signing up and using the service is free, though there are some paid premium services that are totally optional — but could totally be worth it.

7. Get Your Paycheck 2 Days Earlier
Hands counting change into a piggy bank. kwanchaichaiudom/Getty Images
Want to get a jump on payday? Let Chime be your secret weapon.

Unlike most financial institutions, this online bank account doesn’t wait until your pay date to give you access to your money. As soon as it receives notification of a direct deposit from your employer, it immediately posts those funds to your account.

That means you’ll get your paycheck early — like Samuel Demeny, who recently switched to Chime. He uses direct deposit. His company technically pays everyone on Fridays, but Chime gets him access to that cash two days earlier than his co-workers.

“The fact that I’m paid on Wednesday versus Friday… helps me budget before the weekend even starts,” Demeny told The Penny Hoarder.

Not everyone is guaranteed the two-day head start Demeny has. That depends on your employer and its financial institution. We talked to another Chime account holder, Lee Best, who gets his paycheck one day ahead of his co-workers — on Wednesday instead of Thursday.

Plus, Chime offers some other unique features other banks haven’t caught on to yet, such as:

It doesn’t charge overdraft fees, monthly maintenance fees, foreign transaction fees or minimum balance fees.
You can open an easy-to-access, connected savings account. It allows you to automate your savings with features like the round-up tool, which will round up your transactions to the nearest dollar and dump the change into savings.
It has a “Pay Friends” feature, so you don’t have to mess with cash, math or other apps to split the bill.
Chime customers have access to thousands of fee-free MoneyPass ATMs around the country and mobile check deposit.
Who doesn’t want to get paid early?

Opening an account with Chime is free and only takes about five minutes.

8. Invest in Real Estate Around the Country for Just $500
a home in St. Petersburg, Fla. Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder
Want to get into real-estate investing without spending hundreds of thousands of dollars or playing landlord? We found a company that helps you do just that.

Oh, and you don’t have to have hundreds of thousands of dollars, either. You can get started with a minimum investment of just $500. A company called Fundrise does all the heavy lifting for you.

With a minimum investment of just $500, Fundrise will invest in its Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) that offer expected returns of 8% to 11% per year.

This isn’t an obscure investment. You can see exactly which properties are included in your portfolio — like a set of townhomes in Snoqualmie, Washington, or an apartment building in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Fundrise does the heavy lifting of buying million dollar properties and pays you dividends quarterly plus extra periodic distributions if properties are sold.

You’ll pay a 0.85% annual asset management fee and a 0.15% annual investment advisory fee.

Remember investments come with risk. While Fundrise has paid distributions every quarter since at least Q2 2016, your payment is never guaranteed.

9. Snag a Free $10 Walmart Gift Card
Walmart store sign Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder
One of our favorite ways to bank a little extra money is with Ebates, a cash-back site that rewards you nearly every time you buy something. For example, Ebates gives you 10% cash-back on purchases at Walmart.

Plus you’ll get a free $10 gift card to Walmart for giving the site a try.

To earn your gift card:

Sign up for Ebates with your email or Facebook account.
Use the Ebates portal the next time you need to buy something. It’s connected to thousands of stores, including Walmart, Amazon and Target. You’ll need to make your first purchase through the site within 90 days and spend at least $25.
Your account will be credited with rewards points you can cash in for your $10 Walmart gift card.
10. Scratch off Free Lottery Tickets
A young couple buying lottery tickets at a kiosk. urbancow/Getty Images
There’s something so satisfying about those gas station scratch-off tickets, but it’s better to avoid them because, well, that’s not Penny Hoarding.

Instead, try scratching for free using an app called Lucktastic. Each day, it releases a new assortment of digital scratch-off tickets. Lucktastic says instant wins range from $1 to $10,000. You can also earn tokens, enter contests and play games.

The app is supported by advertising, which allows it to keep the payouts high and the games free. For more info, check out our full review.

11. Share What’s in Your Fridge
A woman stands in front of an open refrigerator with a bowl of salad in one hand and a plate of fried chicken in the other. YinYang/Getty Images
Remember the Nielsen company? The one that’s always tracked TV ratings? Well, now it wants to know what’s in your fridge.

Once you sign up to participate in market research through Nielsen Consumer Panel, you can either use your smartphone, or the company will send you a free barcode scanner. Every time you go shopping, you simply scan the UPC codes on the back of each product and send your data to Nielsen.

Nielsen will reward you with gift points, which you can redeem for free electronics, jewelry, household items or even toys for the kids.

The longer you stay on the panel, the more opportunity you have to earn points toward prizes. You’ll also receive entries for the panel’s many sweepstakes. Prizes include vacations and brand new vehicles.

12. Start Investing Without Even Noticing — and Get $5
woman outdoors looking at phone Carmen Mandato/ The Penny Hoarder
If you’re like most of us and wish your money would just take care of itself, consider starting an investment account through Acorns.

You can start small and stack up change over time with its “round-up” feature. That means if you spend $10.23 at the grocery store, 77 cents gets dropped into your Acorns account.

Then, the app does the whole investing thing for you.

The idea is you won’t miss the digital pocket change, and the automatic savings stack up faster than you’d think. For example, we reviewed how Penny Hoarder Dana Sitar was able to save at a rate of $420 a year!

At that rate, you could set aside $1,000 in about two and a half years — without trying.

The app is $1 a month for balances under $5,000, and you’ll get a $5 bonus when you sign up.

13. Close the Gender Investing Gap
Carmen Mandato/ The Penny Hoarder
Traditional investing companies have never really considered the fact that women statistically get paid less, yet live longer. That’s why Sallie Krawcheck, a former Wall Street CEO and an adamant proponent of women’s financial power, founded Ellevest.

It’s an investing platform designed for women, by women and in support of other women. It uses a unique algorithm designed to help you better plan for the future.

Once you sign up for free, Ellevest will issue you a free personalized investment plan. Plus, if you sign up before Dec. 31 through The Penny Hoarder, you’ll get a $25 bonus in your Ellevest account.*

Ellevest’s “digital” plan is designed to be accessible. There’s no minimum balance, and you’ll pay an annual fee of 0.25% of your assets under management to Ellevest. For context, that’s $25 on a $10,000 account.

*The Ellevest The Penny Hoarder promotional offer is valid from July 25, 2018 to December 31, 2018 for the first 1,000 new clients of Ellevest who enter through this designated landing page. Clients who enroll and fund their non-retirement account will receive $25 added to their highest priority goal in their Ellevest account. Clients who enroll and fund their retirement account will receive a $25 Amazon gift card which can be redeemed by visiting www.amazon.com. Please review Amazon.com Gift Card Terms and Conditions prior to redemption. Ellevest is not responsible for lost Amazon Gift Cards. Ellevest’s processing time for depositing $25 into a client’s Ellevest account or delivery of a $25 Amazon gift card may be up to 60 days.

14. Play the Slots — and Bank $5 for Your Savings Account
need money apps Carmen Mandato/The Penny Hoarder
Are you more of the “sit at home and play video games” type of person but you’re making yourself read this because you’re determined to get this adulting thing down?

The folks who created Long Game have you covered with a game that’s fun and helps you achieve your financial goals.

As you save and accomplish missions you’ll earn coins to play mini games for cash prizes! We’re talking the classics, like slot machines, scratch-offs and spin-to-win wheels.

Once you link your bank account, you’ll earn 300 coins, so you can start playing while you wait for payday.

Penny Hoarder Carson Kohler uses Long Game to save money. Every two weeks, it sneaks $5 out of her bank account and rewards her with coins.

In two months, she’s saved $35.70, just by playing games on her phone. Plus, her winnings amount to a gain of about 2% — way higher than interest on any other savings account she has.

15. Get $50 to Invest in Causes You Care About
Vinoy Park in downtown St. Pete, FL. Aileen Perilla/The Penny Hoarder
Investing can be a great way to grow your money, but have you carefully considered which companies you’re willing to back? Their morals and values? You probably wouldn’t want to invest in a company that’s destroying our oceans or cheating the system.

Impact investing is a simple fix. It adds a new layer of transparency to investing. Take Swell Investing, an SEC-registered investment adviser committed to supporting sustainable companies.

Its Impact 400 portfolio features companies whose products and services align with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. They consider everything from gender equality to ending poverty to clean energy.

You can start with just $50 and invest in this or other portfolios committed to clean water, zero waste, renewable energy or disease eradication, to name a few. Plus, you’ll get a $50 bonus with the code PENNY after making your initial investment.

Swell doesn’t have any trading fees, price tiers or expense ratios. It charges a 0.75% annual fee — that’s about the cost of one coffee ($3.75) per year if you invest $500.

Disclosure: We have a financial relationship with Swell Investing LLC and will be compensated if consumers apply for an account and/or fund an account with Swell through links in our content. However, the analysis and opinions expressed here are our own.

16. Play Your Own Version of ‘Supermarket Sweep’
Woman holding piggy bank Carmen Mandato/ The Penny Hoarder
Back in the ’90s, David, the host of “Supermarket Sweep,” claimed to have the only grocery store that paid people to shop.

Well, welcome to the 21st century, baby. We’ve got Instacart.

Instacart, a grocery-delivery service, is looking for part-time in-store shoppers, who simply shop and bag orders.

To qualify, you must:

Be 18 or older.
Be eligible to work in the U.S.
Have access to an iPhone 5 or Android 4.4 (or newer).
Be able to lift 30 to 40 pounds.
You choose the hours you work (up to 29 hours a week) and get paid per order weekly. Rates will vary by location.

If you want to get real adventurous (or work more hours) you can also sign on as a full-service shopper, meaning you’ll deliver the groceries, too.

Once you sign up to become a shopper, Instacart will reach out about an orientation. Complete the orientation, and you’re on your way to producing your personal “Supermarket Sweep” reboot.

17. Hang out With Pups
A dog sits on his heels and stares into the camera, smiling Carmen Mandato/ The Penny Hoarder
If you’re looking for a flexible, independent way to earn money — and you love hanging out with dogs — pet sitting through Rover might be your perfect gig.

The online network connects dog walkers and sitters to local dog owners through its 4.9-star-rated app, so you don’t have to staple flyers on every utility pole across town.

Rover says sitters can earn as much as $1,000 a month.

Rover dog-sitter requirements vary by location. In general, you must:

Be 18 years or older.
Pass a background check.
Have access to the Rover app (iOS or Android).
Here’s how it works: You’ll create an online sitter profile where you’ll answer questions about your experience with puppers and your schedule availability.

You can choose to offer a variety of services, including dog walking, overnight boarding at your home or theirs, and daycare. Boarding is the app’s most popular service, so offering it can get you more gigs. You set your own rates. (Rover keeps a small percentage as a service fee.)

Dog owners will reach out to you. Accept which gigs you want, then start snugglin’ pups. As soon as you complete a service, you’ll be paid within two days.

18. Clear Your Closets
A woman on her couch surrounded by clothes. Tinatin1/Getty Images
Do you still have a prom outfit from, like, 10 years ago?

It’s never going to fit — or come into style — again, but something just keeps holding you back from sending it to Goodwill.

Maybe money could change your mind. Instead of storing clothes indefinitely, try selling them.

One app we especially like is Letgo. You can literally list your clothes in less than a minute.

19. Hang at Home With the Ones You Love
Michael Krinke/ Getty Images
Have you ever considered doing customer service from the comfort of your home? An increasing number of companies are hiring work-from-home customer service reps, instead of running call centers.

For some people, working from home offers the most perfect scenario. Maybe it cuts your one-hour commute down to, well, nothing. Maybe it allows you to see your kids more often.

Whatever it is (even if it’s that you get to spend more time with your cat — valid reasoning), the most difficult part can be landing that perfect work-from-home job.

We recommend starting your search with ZipRecruiter.

When you click here to search, ZipRecruiter sends you to a list of geo-tailored work-from-home job openings. (Because, yes, even some work-from-home job opportunities have location restrictions.)

As soon as you start your search, you’ll see the average salary for work-from-home jobs in your area. This will help you know what to expect. Peruse the listings to find information about the company, pay and type of employment. You’ll find details about requirements as well as information about how to apply.

20. List Your Bedroom (or Backyard) for Rent
guest room piovesempre/Getty Images
Have a spare room? Might as well try to earn some money by listing it on Airbnb.

If you’re a good host with a desirable space, you could add hundreds — even thousands — of dollars to your savings account with Airbnb.

And there’s no reason you can’t be creative. We found a guy who earns $1,380 a month renting out a backyard tent on Airbnb!

A few simple steps can make the difference between a great experience and a less-than-satisfactory one.

Here are some tips:

Make your space available during high-demand times in your area. Think: concerts, conventions and sporting events.
Be a good host, and stock your place with the toiletries you’d expect at a hotel — toilet paper, soap and towels.
Be personable. A lot of travelers turn to Airbnb for the personal touch they won’t find at commercial properties.
Here’s the link to sign up as an Airbnb host.

(Hosting laws vary from city to city. Please understand the rules and regulations applicable to your city and listing.)

21. Rent out the RV You Thought You’d Use More
darrensp/Getty Images
RV owners: When’s the last time you hit the open road?

If you’re attached to your motorhome but don’t use it as much as you’d like, why not turn it into a money-making machine?

Rent it out through an online peer-to-peer rental marketplace, like Outdoorsy. Think of it like Airbnb… but for RVs.

In addition to the nice stream of passive income, other perks to renting your RV out through the marketplace include:

Free 24/7 rental roadside assistance, so you don’t have to worry about a renter calling you up for a tow.
$1 million in insurance, covering both you the owner and the renter.
DMV checks on all potential renters.
To see how much you could earn each month by renting your camper out, snag a free estimate in just a few minutes. Then snap photos of your RV, upload your insurance and boom — you could be making money.

22. Rent out Your Car
vintage rental car location Jupiterimages / Getty Images
If you own a reliable vehicle, but leave it sitting in your driveway all the time, you could turn it into an income stream by renting it!

With the Getaround app, you can safely rent out your car to people in your community and neighborhood. The company insures your car for each trip, offers 24/7 roadside assistance and screens drivers for a safe driving record.

That’s more assurance than you get when your teenager gets behind the wheel…

Here’s how it works:

Sign up with your Facebook account to rent out your car here.
Set your own rates and availability.
You’ll get a notification when someone books your car.
Your car will be equipped with a Getaround Connect™, so renters will be able to locate, unlock and lock your car from their mobile phone during the trip period. No need to meet in person to exchange keys.
Like many side gigs that involve your car, some car owners worry about the costs for things like gas and wear and tear on the vehicle. With Getaround, renters are responsible for refilling the fuel used on the trip.

We also checked in with the company to see what it’s doing to address car owners’ concerns, and the CEO Sam Zaid told us, “Fortunately, customer feedback is one of the best ways we can learn and grow. We take feedback seriously and prioritize product updates based on our conversations with owners and renters.”

23. Start Investing — and Get $5 in Free Stocks
martin-dm/Getty Images
It’s no brilliant secret that investing can be a smart way to make money.

Sometimes, though, it feels restricted to a few wealthy elite.

But Stash is different. This app lets you start investing with as little as $5 and for just a $1 monthly fee for balances under $5,000.

Stash curates investments from professional fund managers and investors and lets you choose where to put your money.

But it leaves the complicated investment terms out of it. You just choose from a set of simple portfolios reflecting your beliefs, interests and goals.

Bonus: Right now, The Penny Hoarder is teaming up with Stash to fund your first investment — so you’ll get a $5 bonus when you enter the code PENNYH

24. Optimize Your Credit Card Use
funstock/Getty Images
If you’re not using a rewards credit card for everyday purchases, you’re missing out on free money.

You just have to be sure you don’t get too carried away with those purchases — and that the card is paid off at the end of each billing period.

Here’s an option we like: It’s the Chase Freedom Unlimited card. Its claim to fame? You’ll earn an unlimited 1.5% cash back on all your purchases. Plus, if you spend $500 in your first three months of opening the card (hi, groceries), you’ll pocket a $150 bonus.

There’s no annual fee, and the cash-back rewards don’t expire.

Get signed up — and 0% intro APR for 15 months — here.

*The information for the Chase Freedom Unlimited card has been collected independently by The Penny Hoarder. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. The Penny Hoarder is a partner of Credible.

25. Get Paid to Drop a Few Pounds
Ways to exercise Heather Comparetto/The Penny Hoarder
Bottom line: HealthyWage will literally pay you for losing weight.

Not only are you getting more healthy, you’re also making some money. How’s that for motivation?

Here’s how it works:

Read more about HealthyWage, and sign up.
Define a goal weight and the amount of time you’ll give yourself to achieve it.
Place a bet on yourself ranging from $20 to $500 a month.
Depending on how much you have to lose, how long you give yourself to do it and how much money you put on the table, you could win up to $10,000!

Wondering if it can really work? We talked to one woman, Christina Castro, who lost 84 pounds — and made $1,191.

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