22 Ways to Make Money Without a Job

Wondering how people make money without ‘real jobs’? With the internet, apps, and a little talent, anyone can make money without having a typical 9-to-5 job. If you’re looking for something a little more flexible, take a look at this list of how to make money without a job.

Don’t forget you can double up on many of the jobs below to earn even more!

How to Make Money Without a Job

1. Be a Delivery Driver

Delivery drivers get paid to pick items up and deliver them to the customer. This may mean shopping a customer’s grocery order, running through the local drugstore to pick up a few items, picking up restaurant orders, or even delivering Amazon packages.

Delivery apps pay drivers a flat fee, plus you keep 100% of the customer tips.

The most popular delivery driver apps include:

  • Instacart – Drivers shop for and deliver groceries
  • Postmates – Drivers pick up items from many types of stores and deliver them
  • Amazon Flex – Drivers deliver pre-ordered Amazon packages using their own vehicle
  • DoorDash – Drivers pick up prepaid food orders from local restaurants and deliver them to customers

2. Be a Rideshare Driver

Rideshare drivers pick up passengers and take them to their destination. Uber and Lyft are the most popular rideshare platforms and are the most used across the country.

To drive for Uber or Lyft, you must have a reliable car with four doors, a valid driver’s license and insurance, and pass a background check. Both apps allow you to set your own schedules, and you can accept or deny requests when you’re active on the app.

Both apps pay a flat fee per ride to drivers that depends on the time and distance driven, and you keep any tips the customers pay you for your service. 

3. Put Your House to Work

Neighbor is trying to be the Airbnb of storage space. So, instead of someone renting an expensive storage site, they rent space in your basement, garage, spare room, or even in your closet.

Neighbor founder Joseph Woodbury says power Neighbor users earn $20,000 a year, but even the average Neighbor user can earn $2,000 a year. Not bad for space around your house that was unused anyway!

You arrange times when the person can come get their stuff. Usually, people who keep stuff in storage rarely need it.

For instance, they might store summer gear and only need access to it once a year or they have a ton of holiday decorations and need a place for it year around – until the holidays!

4. Take Surveys and Make Money

Online surveys are a great way to make some side cash. Swagbucks, Kashkick, and Toluna Influencers are three popular apps to help you.

Swagbucks is a handy little app that allows you to earn money while taking surveys. You can’t really make a living at it, but it will earn you a little side cash that can go toward fun spending.

Toluna Influencers is primarily a survey app. If you like giving your opinions on everything from food to products, services, and even pet care, Toluna Influencers is for you!

5. Make Money Writing

If you are good at writing, you can get paid for it, whether you write blogs regularly or write an e-book once and earn money from repeated sales.

If you have a niche that is helpful for others, you can start a blog that centers around that topic to teach the world about what you know and to share news on the subject.

After you have an area of expertise chosen, you can find a web host for your blog (we recommend Bluehost for new bloggers), design it for free using WordPress, and start promoting it.

You can monetize your blog with affiliate links and sponsored posts. Learn how Harry, the founder of this blog, earns money from this blog here!

Get started with blogging the right way by taking a course, like Holly Porter Johnson’s Earn More Blogging course.

If you’d prefer more of a one-off writing project, self-publishing is simple, making you a published author.

It takes 5 minutes to upload your work and 24-48 hours to show up on the Kindle app store. Learn more about how to self-publish directly to Kindle here.

People definitely judge books by their cover! Make sure to sign up with a company like Fiverr to have your book cover professionally created.

6. Sell Items

If you have items to sell, there are many ways to do it:

  • Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA): You ship your items to Amazon to store and fulfill orders. You pay Amazon ‘rent’ for the space your items take up. Here’s how they determine the cost.
  • Dropshipping: If you don’t want to keep inventory or sell your products, you can partner with manufacturers while you act as the retailer marking the products. The dropshipper fulfills orders when you make them and both parties make money.
  • Sell on eBay: Use this eBay tool to see what’s trending on eBay and become a seller in that category, either with new products or items you already own. You can also use their appraisal tool to choose the right asking price.

7. Start a YouTube channel

Similar to blogging (you can do both), starting a YouTube channel can prove profitable if you’re sharing information about something you know that others want to learn.

For example, you can post how-to, entertaining, and informative videos. See how Harry does it here!

You can set your site up as an advertising platform, or, like with blogging, you can have affiliate links on your YouTube page where you’ll earn money if people click on the link and/or order something from that link. There are many other options available as well.

Learn more about how to make money on YouTube here.

8. Transcription

Transcription is an easy job to do if you’re a fast typist. It comes in handy to have a pedal that helps you start, stop, and rewind audio quickly without taking your fingers off the keyboard.

Transcriptionists are paid per audio minute and are given an adequate time frame to complete each job. I recommend using Rev.com, as it’s a user-friendly site with a helpful team to help you succeed.

9. Graphic Design

To start a graphic design freelance gig, create an online portfolio so it’s easy to share with prospective clients. This helps prospective clients see your skills and enables you to charge appropriate rates based on what you offer.

If you’re new to graphic design but have some skills, build a Fiverr profile first to build a portfolio and secure clients. You can charge as little as $15 for simple graphics to $75+, depending on your skills and the type of design you offer.

10. Become a Virtual Assistant

Virtual assistants handle many tasks including scheduling, appointment-making, answering phones, social media management, blog writing, and website maintenance.

You determine which services you’ll provide and what you’ll charge. Remember, the costs to run the business are your responsibility, so charge your clients accordingly.

Many US-based virtual assistants begin charging $20 an hour and increase it to $40+ with experience. The best way to kick off a virtual assistant career is by signing up for a course like $10KVA by Kayla Sloan. Kayla Sloan started as a virtual assistant working for Harry and quickly accelerated her virtual assistant career. No, she is a highly successful VA coach.

11. Social Media Management

Social media is hot. Thriving businesses need people like you in charge of their social media accounts. They need someone to develop posts and answer customer questions and concerns.
Many social media managers charge a flat monthly fee, and others charge per hour. Look for clients on social media – is there a brand you love that lacks a solid social media presence?

Reach out to them and pitch your skills! You could also set up a profile on Fiverr and pitch your skills there. Either way, set up a portfolio to show prospective clients what you can do.

12. Walk Dogs

Rover is a platform where you offer pet sitting and dog walking services to pet owners in the area. You set your rates and can accept or decline them, as well as set your availability.

You can offer daily visits while people are out of town or on vacation or even board the dogs in your home if the owners are away for a long period. Set your rate, so you always know what you’ll be getting paid for your service.

Former RSG editor, Melissa, petsits and does ‘check-ins’ on people’s pets on Rover, and last year made over $1,300. You can turn pet-sitting into a business.  When I spoke to Melissa, she said that more people will want to hire or re-hire you once you get some positive reviews.

You can, at that point, easily go off the app and create your own pet-sitting business!

13. Flip Things

If you love garage sales, this might be a good fit. Wander around and look for old furniture and rehab it. Sometimes, they only need a new paint job, and then you can resell it for more than the couple of bucks you paid.

All you need is a good eye for furniture that can be salvaged or repurposed into something else. Then, you’d just need sandpaper, paint, varnish, and other finishing touches to turn your find into a masterpiece.

If you have even more capital, consider flipping houses. Of course, this is a much larger investment with a larger time commitment, but the profits increase accordingly.

14. Manual Labor

Kick it old school doing manual labor but as a freelance gig. You can offer services like lawn mowing, tending to the garden, moving, cleaning, or general handyman skills. Be sure you have your own tools and charge a fair rate for the area.

List your services on Craigslist and Nextdoor or create a profile on TaskRabbit. Just know that they take a 15% service fee for every job you complete.

15. Get Paid to Shop

If you do most of your shopping online, you can often earn cash back on your purchases using an extension on your browser, like Rakuten.

It’s easy to sign up using our Rakuten referral link. All you need is your email address and to create a password. You don’t provide any payment information because you do not pay through Rakuten, but through the website you’re buying from.

You could even double dip and refer your rideshare passengers to Rakuten during conversations because Rakuten also pays for referrals.

Other apps that  pay you to shop include:

  • Shopkick – This app pays you to walk into stores and take pictures or scan barcodes. You can also earn money shopping through their online portal, earning a percentage of your purchase back.
  • Ibotta – Everyone buys groceries, so why not earn cashback on them using Ibotta? You must activate the offers before shopping and then upload your receipt to prove your purchase. They pay a nice sign-up bonus and have options to earn cashback on items purchased online, too.
  • Upside – Everyone needs gas, too, unless you drive an electric car. Upside pays cashback on gas purchases plus offers cashback at many restaurants and retail stores. If you are a rideshare driver, Upside is a must!

16. Get Paid to Be Active

Some apps will pay you to get up and move. Many of these apps have you place a wager on yourself for how much weight you can lose during a period of your choice. You make a monthly wager, earning a part of the pot if you meet it.

HealthyWage is one of the apps that pays you to move. If you want to lose weight and are competitive, compete with yourself to earn some extra dough.

If you meet your goal or exceed it, you’ll earn money off of your own bet. You can wager as low as $5 a month or up to $995 a month.

The more you wager and the fewer months you will take to lose weight, the more money you can earn.

17. Sell Your Cell Phone Photos

There’s a website called Foap that lets you submit your photos and videos; if anyone purchases your creations, you and Foap will split the earnings 50/50. You can do the same with DepositPhoto.

You create an online portfolio that agencies, businesses, and individuals can browse, and if anyone purchases one, you make money.

18. Become a Rent A Friend

Not as creepy as it sounds, RentAFriend.com is truly for connecting people who need a friend. Maybe they need someone to go to the movies with, hang out with, or even help plan events!

From our research, most ReRent-A-Friend friends start by charging hourly, usually $25 an hour and up, for their friend services. There is a cap, of course – unless you’re Beyonce, no one will probably pay more than $100 an hour to hang out with you.

19. Get Paid to Use Devices

Nielsen is a set-it-and-forget-it app. You download the app and register your devices to start earning rewards while the app tracks your digital trends in the background. Their website says they give away $10,000 each month. Get a chunk of that by signing up for it today.

20. Get Paid to Play Games

Billed as “The Loyalty Program for Gamers”, Mistplay is a way for you to play games to earn gift cards and rewards. The app is free, and signing up is easy. Once you do that, start playing from their game selection to earn points toward gift cards.

Mistplay is currently only available for Android users. Also, note that it takes time to earn points, so this is not a way to help pay the bills, but will give you a little extra “fun” money.

21. Put Your Car to Work

Check out sites like Wrapify and Carvertise. In short, you let brands and companies wrap your car in a giant ad, and you get paid.

In general, you can expect to earn a few hundred dollars a month, depending on the advertiser and how much you drive.

Check out our full review of the best advertising companies for your car here.

You can also rent out your car on Turo if you have one you don’t use often. With Turo, you rent out your car when you’re not using it. You can rent it out for a few days, a month, or much more.

Turo provides up to $1 million in liability insurance from Liberty Mutual, contractually protecting your car against theft and physical damage.

Even better might be an option like Hyrecar – you can read all about our writer’s experience renting out her car through Hyrecar here.

22. Put Your Money to Work

Put your spare change to work with the app Acorns.

Sign up for Acorns account, and you can choose to ‘round up’ your purchases into a savings, retirement, or investment account.

Former RSG editor Melissa did something similar with a different app – she used a round-up app to send extra payments to her student loan debt. She paid off an extra $300 in 2 months without even noticing it!

Make your money work even harder by allowing Acorns to round up your money into investment accounts – a win-win!

Sites like WeBull and Robinhood, even pay you free or almost-free stocks just for signing up!

With WeBull, you can get 2 free stocks when you sign up – one for opening an account and another for funding it with at least $100. Get started with WeBull here!

Robinhood users receive a free stock when they open an account. A surprise stock appears in your account. All you will have to do is claim it. You won’t need to deposit any money into an account to get the free stock!

Driver’s Take

As you can see from the exhaustive list above, there are a lot of great ways to make money without a job! Which way to make money without a job on this list was your favorite? Let us know in the comments!