If you’re awash in a sea of debt you must be pretty uncomfortable. The worst thing about debts is they just never go away. You could ignore a debt for six months and you might stop hearing from that particular lender but trust us. It will sell your debt to a third-party so it won’t have gone away. It will only have moved. And it will probably have moved to a debt collector. If you don’t already have debt collectors harassing you then get busy before the harassment starts. Debt collectors are like the cockroaches of life. They won’t stop making your life miserable until you settle the debt. If that particular debt collector gives up on you, which is seriously unlikely, that debt still won’t disappear. The collector will simply sell it to yet another collection agency and so on and so on.
The good news is that if you seriously want to get out of debt it’s not all that difficult. There is a bunch of “side hustles” or simple ways to make money on the side. Pick one or several of the 50 we’re about to share with you and you could be debt-free in practically no time at all.
You really don’t even have to work for someone, as there are there are easy businesses to start that you could run in your spare time. Some of these could even be fun as well as moneymakers.
#1: Get crafty
Craftsmen were dealt an awful blow by today’s mass production technology. But they’ve been coming back these days in a big way. Many people have become sick and tired of assembly-line stuff made in China. Thanks to the website Etsy.com you could set up shop and sell whatever it is that appeals to you and that your tools and skills can handle. We’ve seen people making simple things such as shaving brushes, lamps, personalized notebook covers and hundreds of other items – and making good money.
#2. Got a degree in English?
There’s a big market out there for people who can be proofreaders and editors. This is a great how to make money on the side because the only tool that’s required is your brain. You might be able to start working for friends or former classmates. But as you build your “creeds” you should be able to branch out and find work in Craigslist postings and independent/indie author’s forums.
#3. Personal chef or meal delivery
Got a knack for cooking? There was a time when only the rich could afford a personal chef but now more and more middle class people are jumping on the bandwagon. You could go into the home and make meals for them several times a week or prepare the meals in your house and then deliver them. One note of caution. If you want to fix meals in your own home and then deliver them, be aware that there may be laws that requirimg you to make the food in a kitchen that’s commercially-certified. And it can be costly to get that certification. You might be able to work around this if your city has a commercial kitchen where you could rent time.
#4. Pick up dog poop
This might sound like a nasty side hustle but it’s one of the easiest business to start. For that matter, some people actually do this full time. All dogs have to poop and there are people who don’t want to have to go over their yards every week looking for their dog’s droppings. Get as few as 10 customers a week at $30 a week and there’s a cool $300.
If you’re one of those kind of, well, geeks that are not afraid to tear apart a computer to replace a motherboard or install a hard drive, this could be a way to pick up some real cash. Most people don’t know much about their computers except how to turn them on. Become a repair service for those people and you could earn $50 or more an hour by teaching them how to use their computers and then fixing them when they freeze up.
#6. Create blogs and websites
There’s hardly a business today that doesn’t need a website and maybe even a blog. Pick a couple dozen local businesses, go check out their websites and you’ll probably find most are dull, boring and static. You could not only help businesses by upgrading their sites but then charge extra to make those sites rank higher in the search engines to get the businesses new customers.
#7. Be a pet taxi service
There are many families these days where both the husband and wife work and maybe very long hours. They simply don’t have enough time to taxi their dogs or cats to the veterinarian or to get it groomed or get a medical check-up. You could be a pet taxi, pick up the animals and transport them to their appointments.
#8. Clean windows
Another way to be your own boss is to get a squeegee, some cleaning product and wash windows. This is another area where many people simply don’t want to have to face the task and are more than eager to let someone take it over for them.
Some people and I’m certainly not one of them prefer to detail their own cars. But there are plenty of people who will gladly pay you to take this task off their hands and make their vehicles shine like new.
#10. Create a blog
I’ll be honest and tell you it’s not easy to earn money with a blog but it is possible – if you don’t mind investing a lot of your time and sweat. But pick the right niche, generate a lot of good content, get a bunch of readers and you could make excellent money selling them products.
#11. Make music
Are you good on the keyboards or string instruments? A good side hustle would be performing at small business events and weddings. See, all that practice really didn’t go to waste.
#12. Teach music
You don’t have to be a performer to make money with music. You could become a music teacher. You could either give lessons in your home or go to people’s’ homes.
#13. Create family histories
There are numerous people who would love to know their family’s history but have neither the time nor the skills to do the work required. People sometimes even have software to do this but are still confused and don’t know how to use it. Your how to make money on the side could be to help them create their family trees.
#14. Sell you own t-shirts/posters/mugs
It seems like it was just a few minutes ago that to make your own T-shirts meant screen-printing them yourself. However, the cost to get started in this business is now practically zero what with all those sites that will print on demand and then ship your t-shirts or whatever for you. You could create designs and put them on everything from shirts to coffee mugs. These companies do everything for you including even the shipping. Of course, it’s up to you to do the graphic design. Be prepared for the fact that the printer will take a big cut leaving you with a much smaller net profit. But it’s a great way to get started in a new area to determine if there are people who would pay for your creations.
#15. Refurbish stuff
Do you like to refurbish your furniture? Then why not charge people to do theirs? You could even specialize in refurbishing certain items like furniture, clocks, phonographs or old-time radios.
#16. Make “artisan” jerky
Yes, you read that right. You could become a jerky maker. When women think of easiest business to start they almost inevitably think cupcakes. But we guys have jerky. There are a lot of independent makers of jerky and jerky artisans that have emerged in the past few years as an alternative to that low-quality, mass-produced jerky you find in grocery stores.
What could you teach? The list is almost endless. You could teach a foreign language, origami, drawing, or basic computer skills. All you would need is a place to hold your classes and some willing learners. If you have the right skills or expertise you could give a class through CE (continuing education) sites, libraries and rec centers. There is also the new site dabble.com where it’s possible to host classes for students interested in your subject.
#18. Be a tutor
If you’re really proficient in math, language arts or the SAT test you could become a tutor as there is never a shortage of people willing to pay for this service. Finding these clients is fairly easy. Just call a few of your local public schools as many of them keep lists of available tutors to give the parents that need one for their children.
#19. Be a jack of-all-trades handyman
Do you live in an apartment complex Then you know there‘s that one guy that repairs all those small things that can go wrong. But people in homes have to call someone different to fix every different thing from the furnace to the dishwasher. One of the great side business ideas is to become a Jack-of-all trades handyman. You could actually try asking for a retainer where people pay you a fee monthly so they could call you whenever they needed you and for whatever reason just like in an apartment complex.
#20. Personal shopper
There are so many choices available today for just about every single item that finding the right one can be time-consuming and frustrating. Where could I find a sweater like this one? What’s the best computer for my needs? What’s the best-priced ticket for my flight later this month? Let your clients tell you what they need. You would then go to work sorting through all the available options and then present them the three best choices or, depending on their level of trust, make the purchase for them.
#21. Be a travel agent
Professional travel agents have sort of gone the way of the dodo bird leaving a wide-open niche for helping people find the best travel deals. You could even specialize by setting yourself up as that person who finds and books the best vacation packages.
If you have a good DSLR, the requisite skills and experience you could set yourself up documenting people’s weddings, family moments and birthdays. You could also license the rights to your photos for commercial use as well as many other things. It’s easy to do this through Flickr.
#23. Become that dirty jobs guy
There’s just a ton of unpleasant stuff that people either don’t want to do or can’t do. If you’re not afraid to clean the cobwebs and old junk out of a basement or clean a shower that’s gotten so aeful looking that the owner is embarrassed to contact a maid service you could charge good money for this. Spend a few minutes thinking about all the gross things you could do. You’ll probably come up with a fairly lengthy list. Put up a listing on Craigslist and you might actually find yourself overwhelmed with work.
#24. Write content
Content has become the battle cry of almost all bloggers and website hosts as content is what attracts and keeps readers. You may not make a lot per 500-word article but if you can crank out a dozen or so a day it could be good money. Plus, traditional magazines also still pay top dollar for great stuff.
Many people no longer want just photographs of their weddings. They want them professionally videotaped and edited. With more and more video being watched online the market for good videographers and editors is only going to keep going up. If you can make and edit short films, you could sell your service to people to “shoot” their wedding. Local businesses can also be clients. You might sell them on the idea of a brief video for YouTube.com or that the business could put on its webpage.
#26. Computer programmer
Practically everybody has that great, brilliant idea for a smart phone app that will make them a gazillion dollars. Fortunately for you very few of them have the skills necessary to create the app and reliable computer programmers are hard to find..
#27. Personal trainer/fitness expert
You would need to be certified to do this but once you get your creds you could help people with their workouts at their favorite health club. Or you could start what’s called a boot camp. There are people who need specialized workout programs to help them train for an event such as a triathlon. There are also people looking for good exercise without going to a gym. It seems to us that there is a really good market for people offering what you would call “off the wall” kinds of fitness programs.
One of the small business ideas for men is where you could make good money with just a mower, a pickup truck and an edging tool. Plus you could do it evenings and weekends. Our lawn care guy charges $30 a week. Get 10 customers and that’s $1200 a month.
#29. Do other people’s taxes
This is an easiest business to start because again all you need is your brain and the computer you already own. We know of people who do this for their friends and relatives and charge a just small percentage of their returns. If you were to charge $60 and do this for four people a week during tax season that would be $960 in a month. You could actually use TurboTax to do the work for you. This is just a perfect side hustle.
#30. Drop shipping on the Internet
Drop shipping is where you create a storefront on the Internet and sell products but then let the manufacturer or wholesaler fulfill the sale for you. This means you actually never touch the inventory. You won’t make as much money as if you were selling your own product because the wholesaler or manufacturer will take its cut. But the work is almost effortless and once you get rolling, it requires practically no more work on your part.
#31. Teach on Udemy
You could make an online course in just a few hours and then sell it on Udemy. We know of one guy who earned more than $10,000 in just a few months from an online course that took him less than seven hours to create
Could you rent out your home while you’re away? This can be a great moneymaker. Alternately, if you have two bedrooms and your rent is $1000 a month you could rent out one of them at $70 a night. This could generate a profit of $1100 a month.
#33. Sell your services on Fiverr
If you can do something fast, whether it’s create a logo, make a jingle or do fan pages you could make good money selling your services on Fiverr. Of course, as you probably know you only make five dollars per “gig” but we’ve seen people making more than that by offering logical add-on services for another $20 or $30.
#34. Be a baker
Do you have a knack for baking cakes, cupcakes and the like? You could dominate your workplace. We know of one woman who loves to cook and started offering to make salads for her coworkers. She ended up turning this into almost a full-time business.
#35. Start a painting service
You might look down at painting services but the good ones charge $50-$70 a room. If you live in a college town you could paint student-housing complexes. Three rooms at $75 each means $225. Multiply that by 500 apartments and that’s a cool $112,500.
#36. Write and fine-tune cover letters and create resumes
Given the way hiring works these days people absolutely need great cover letters and resumes. But this is beyond the abilities of many people. Smart people will pay good money for great resumes and cover letters. You could charge more if you have to start from scratch but you could also make money just doing critical revisions.
#37. Be a mover
No, this isn’t like being a mover and shaker. If you live in a town where people seem to move around a lot, you could create a moving service with the help of one or two of your buddies. College towns are great for this because they generally have people moving around every several months.
#38. Pick up other people’s trash
People end up with a ton of junk in their homes because they don’t want to have to move it. Charge people to take the junk out of their homes and off their hands. If you don’t think this would be a good side hustle look at the money being earned by 1-800-got-junk.
#39. Be a tour guide
Do you come from another country or are you intimately familiar with a foreign country? You could start a small tour guide company for people who want to visit that country. We have one friend from Sweden who earns tons of money every summer tour guiding Americans through his nation.
This is one where you probably would have to be certified and certification programs can cost $500 and up. However, some bars will actually teach you on the spot if they’re really desperate for help. The hourly pay here tends to be on the low side but where you really make the money is in tips. In addition, you get to meet a lot of people along the way, including people of the opposite sex (grin).
#41. Bike messenger
Do you own a bike and a backpack? That’s all you need to be a bike messenger. You would help companies (especially advertising and legal) that do business with each other and need to send original documents back and forth. Believe it or not even in this day and age of FedEx and UPS there is still the need for someone that can get an original document from a company to a customer in less than an hour.
#42. Plan events
Just because a person or a company wants to put on an event doesn’t mean they will know how to do it. There are banquets, anniversaries, baby showers, birthdays, weddings and anniversaries where people need help planning, coordinating and executing. If you enjoy doing this, there’ll always be events and you will always have business.
Do you know of a nonprofit that wouldn’t like some extra money? We’ve personally never run into one. There are numerous websites that help nonprofits raise money online and then take a percentage of it. You could do the same if you can get to the right people in a room or put together a campaign or event that would help a nonprofit you believe in raise more money to do more good work.
#44. Do gardening
This is different than doing lawn work because you would actually be planting and caring for flowers and bushes. This is also a great repeat side hustle because once you create that garden and those flowerbeds you’ll have an ongoing job maintaining them.
#45. Assemble IKEA furniture
Can you read diagrams and are good with your hands? People buy furniture from IKEA, bring it home, open the carton and 100 pieces fall out. If you like building stuff you could put an ad on Craigslist offering to help people assemble IKEA stuff and other “shipped flat” items. All you really need is a wrench and a screwdriver.
#46. Life coaching
Are you that guy or gal your friends are constantly coming to for advice. Why not charge – other people – for the service. The reason why your friends and relatives come to you is because you’re a great listener and you appear to have everything together. People value this and will value you and your advice as a result of it.
#47. House sitting
People who are away from their homes for long periods of time often don’t like the idea of them sitting unoccupied. They might even have pets that need to be cared for while they are gone. Or they might live in a neighborhood that isn’t quite the safest. Whatever the reason might be, housesitting can be a great side hustle – especially if you’re a real homebody.
#48. Start a housekeeping service
While there are professional housekeeping services they can be pricey and pretty stringent about what they’re willing to do. You might be able to build a good side hustle business offering to do customized housecleaning where you do everything your customer requests and not just whatever can be done in four hours.
#49. Massage therapy
While you would need to be certified to do this it could be a great side job especially if you’re good with your hands. There are a lot of stressed-out people today and this stress tends to manifest itself in their backs, shoulders and other parts of their bodies. You could make a good deal of extra money by helping them work out those knots.
Did you grow up doing your sister’ hair? Did you develop a sort of a passion for it? Some people do and some people don’t. However, there is a ton of money in women’s hair care and design. Do a few friends a week and you could see your bank account fatten up considerably.