In recent years, the term “side hustle” has gained traction as American millennials have entered the workforce. Never have the benefits of a side hustle been quite so clear as during the COVID-19 lockdown of 2020. Unemployment rates skyrocketed and even people who held onto their jobs were left in a state of limbo. Amidst precarious economic conditions, Americans realized just how important it would be to establish diverse streams of income to maintain financial stability.
Side hustles provide creative outlets so professionals can pursue personal passions outside of their regular nine to five. With dedication, people with side hustles can create lucrative small businesses and establish regular customers. According to a May 2020 DollarSprout survey, 48 percent of side hustlers use their side hustle money for extra spending, and 27 percent use it for monthly bills.
Maybe you’ve thought about investing in a side hustle of your own. When you’re first getting started, your options are endless. To help you narrow down your choices and zero in on your next opportunity, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best side hustles for additional income.
If you own a car and live in a metropolitan area, you’re already halfway there. Especially if you are interested in a side hustle with low startup costs, ridesharing might be the way to go.
Ridesharing services like Uber and Lyft give you the flexibility you need to work when you work best. Drive as little or as much as you want and set your own hours. Drivers earn an average of $19 per hour and can expect to earn more during peak times such as sports games, concerts, festivals, and other city-wide events.
In addition to giving rides, many people who pick up a ridesharing side gig also take on delivery service side hustles through companies like DoorDash, Postmates, Uber Eats, and Instacart. Maintain a schedule that suits your lifestyle and squeeze in extra hours between afterschool pickups or meetups with friends.
2. Content Creation
Put your creativity to use. Break out of the monotonous routine of your day job and satisfy your creative intuition. With more platforms and self-promotion tools available now than ever before, it’s a great time to advertise and monetize your creative talents. Better yet, the following content creation side hustles allow you to earn passive incomes, meaning that once you’ve uploaded content, you continue to earn beyond the scope of your working hours.
Starting Your Own Blog
If you’re a talented writer, perhaps now is the time you start a blog of your own. Integrate affiliate links and ads throughout your posts. Over time, you’ll build trust with your readers. Readers who trust your recommendations and admire your taste will be more likely to purchase through your affiliate links, thus earning you a small commission. Glassdoor lists an average annual earning for affiliate marketers at $65,800 with a range between $42,000 and $83,000.
Creating a Digital Media Presence
If your passion resides in digital media of any kind—from video production to podcasting to multimedia blogging and even web development—you can use your skills to build an online portfolio that ultimately generates income. Similar to a writer who writes blog content, you can use your digital media skills to share the content you love. You may earn small amounts from on-page ads, but the bulk of your revenue will come from brand deals and sponsorships.
Publishing a Course
For teachers looking to make the most of their summers, creating a course online is a great way to maximize side hustle earnings while putting your teaching skills to good use. Course creation platforms like Udemy and Coursera allow you to upload your own course at your own pace. Udemy course creators who are first starting out can expect to make an average of $15-30 per month per course, but top earners can make up to $2,000 per course. Especially for creators with multiple published courses, this passive income can really add up.
Teachers have other opportunities to build a side hustle, too. For teachers who prefer interaction over course creation, there are a plethora of teaching opportunities available.
Virtual teaching made its debut for most teachers, students, and families when the lockdown mandates went into full effect last year. But for some teachers and students, online teaching has really taken off during the last several years. One of the most popular teaching opportunities is TEFL (teaching English as a foreign language), where tutors can earn up to $25/hour. Teachers should be aware that there is often a time zone difference between teacher and student, which could mean early or late teaching hours.
Teach Over the Summer
Other teachers may prefer in-person interaction and have the most flexibility during summer months. Summer camps and summer school programs may fulfill teachers’ desires to interact with young people over the summer without the added pressure of grading and time-consuming admin tasks.
4. Renting Out Extra Space
Looking for some extra cash every month but limited on time? Renting out your space can make you a serious side income without logging more than a few hours a week. If you have more space than you need, why not monetize it?
House, Apartment, or Room
Renting out a room, apartment, or home can prove profitable in the long run. You’ll get a chance to meet people around the world while also showing off your favorite things about your hometown. Especially if you live in an urban area or popular tourist destination, you’re likely to find guests quickly. It’s a win-win situation: They receive a heavily discounted rate in an otherwise expensive area while you pocket the added income. Check out sites such as Airbnb and Vrbo to learn more about getting started.
Forget the added step of preparing a bedroom, changing out the sheets, and setting out breakfast and coffee in the morning. Even something as simple as renting out a parking spot can make you money fast. The average monthly parking fees in New York City, for example, run about $570, according to SpotHero. Think how you could save or redirect those savings of a couple of thousand dollars every year. Maybe your landlord now offers on-site parking, or perhaps you’ve scaled down to just one car with a partner. Whatever your situation, advertising a parking spot is a great way to make a passive side income that requires very little of your time to manage.
Similar to renting out a parking space, offering up a storage space for rent will make you money you don’t even realize you’re working for. You may have a storage unit of your own with extra space or simply an area in your own home that can be locked and secured. In Seattle, for example, a small 5-by-5-foot space runs you an average of $60-70 per month. Larger spaces of 10 feet by 10 feet go for between $150-200. Research prices in your area to market yourself competitively.
No matter your financial situation, building up a side hustle can help you achieve larger financial goals. FSCB is here to walk you through the process, from basic money management to paying off credit card debt. Learn more about how FSCB’s financial advisors can help you work toward financial success.