50 ‘Lit’ Ways to Make Money as a Teenager

make money teenager

Is making money as a teenager as easy as it used to be?

After all, that old standby – the newspaper route – has mostly gone into the dustbin of history. I mean…who reads newspapers anymore? smh…

Meanwhile, child labor laws have cut down on the number of jobs that young people can hold.

How to make money as a teenager has become something of a matrix. You have to look for moneymaking opportunities from non-traditional sources.

But that’s not a problem, because there are more of them than ever before. We’ve come up with 50! And the only reason we stopped is that the possibilities are almost unlimited!

So, here are the ways to make money as a teenager that we thought were the best.

We left off the usual teen job situations, like fast food restaurants, grocery stores, and big-box retailers. You don’t need us to tell you about ordinary jobs.

Oh, and even though the opportunities are numbered, they’re not in any special order.

It’s mostly a matter of picking which one (or ones) will work best for you. We only numbered them so you could pick them out more easily.

Let’s get started…

1. Taking Online Surveys

This isn’t an opportunity that I’m terribly enthusiastic about, because most sites pay rewards, rather than cash.

But if being paid in rewards, including gift cards, is okay for you, then you can try sites like:

Survey Junkie

  • Highly reputable for online surveys, redeem for cash.

Sign Up

Inbox dollars

  • Quick online surveys. $5 Sign-up Bonus

Sign Up

Isurvey world

  • Watch videos, answer surveys, play games, and more. $5 Sign-up Bonus

Sign Up

Lifepoints (MySurvey)

  • Take online surveys. Influence brands. Earn points.

Sign Up


  • Earn points for surveys, redeem for amazon or retail gift cards

Sign Up

2. Swagbucks

Swagbucks allows you to earn cash by watching TV, taking surveys, and even searching the web.

Got that – cash, not rewards.

You won’t make a fortune on this site, but it’s a way to earn some extra money by doing the things you normally do.

As you do, the dollars and cents will add up and you only have to be 13 to sign up.

Sign up with Swagbucks

3. Shop w/ Rakuten

If you or your parents do online shopping, Rakuten is a good way to earn some extra money. Rakuten provides you with rebates or cash back on your shopping.

The platform is free to use. When you make your purchases through the site, Rakuten splits its commission with you.

This is easy money and one that you can earn just from doing what you would be doing anyway – shopping!

Earn $10 free when you sign up today and earn your first rebate.

Get Your Free $10 w/Rakuten

4. Launch Your Own Blog

Blogging can be done either as a hobby or as a full-time business and you’re never too young to start. It often starts as a hobby, and as you grow it becomes a profitable side business leading into a brand-new, all-encompassing career.

Set up a blog that centers on just about any topic, but find something you’re passionate about: fashion, sports, personal health, your life or just about any topic you choose. You have to add content regularly, including articles, podcasts, and videos.

You can eventually make money by adding Google Adsense to your blog, and by participating in affiliate programs that offer services related to your blog. You can generally find whatever services and technical assistance you need online and free of charge.

I know a good bit about starting a blog, and making money from blogging with the success I enjoy here on Good Financial Cents. I can even help you to make it happen, if you read my post on blogging, How I’ve Made over $1,097,757 from Blogging.

PRO TIP: Get a FREE domain when you signup for Bluehost as cheap as $2.95/mo.

You’ll also want to access our Make 1K Challenge, a free email course that walks through the steps to start your first blog and make your first $1,000.

Bonus: A blog started when you are a teenager, can turn into a serious moneymaker by the time you’re an adult. You may be building your future career without even realizing it.

5. Babysitting

Babysitters are getting $10 an hour and up, often working in conditions that are much better than a typical part-time job.

You have to love kids, and it will really help if you complete a CPR course.

It’s often as easy as just letting people in your neighborhood know that you’re available to sit.

Once the word gets around, you may have more babysitting gigs than you can handle.

If you want to go bigger, you can get signed up with Care.com.

You will have to go through a background check, but people who qualify can demand much higher rates than someone working without that level of verification.

6. Tutoring

If you’re good in any subjects, you can offer your services out as a tutor. Almost any academic subject can qualify, but math, science, and English are usually the most in-demand.

You can charge $20 an hour and up. Market your services by providing flyers to local schools.

You can even do it online, through platforms such as Enroll.com.

You can earn between 60% and 80% of the tutoring fees charged by the website.


7. Become a Language Tutor

This is a very specific kind of tutoring.

With the huge influx of immigrants into the US, there’s a big market for people learning to speak English. This is especially true of the children of immigrants.

You can provide this service directly to clients, or you can join a website like SameSpeak. You can earn $10 for every 30-minute session on the site.

8. Buying & Selling…Stuff

This is the age-old practice of buy low, sell high. If you’ve got an eye for a bargain, it can be a way to make money on a regular basis. There are different ways you can do this.

For example, buy gently used clothing at garage sales and thrift stores, and sell them at consignment stores. You can buy just about anything you can think of at the same sources, and then sell them on Craigslist and eBay.

9. Pet Sitting

People routinely pay adults to take care of their pets while they are away on vacation. But you may be able to create your own book of business by charging a little bit less than the going rate for adults.

You can find customers by advertising in your own neighborhood, and surrounding neighborhoods. You have to love pets, and the work is usually very casual.

10. Dog Walking

This is a variation on pet sitting, but it tends to be more consistent. That’s because a dog needs to be walked every day, often several times.

While people are at work all day, they may need someone who will walk their dogs. You can make a steady income walking the dogs of several customers. Since you can do this in your own neighborhood, you won’t even need a car.

11. Garage Sale Prepper

Practically every homeowner has a garage sale sooner or later. It’s not the garage sale itself that involves all the work. It’s the preparation.

Items have to be taken out of storage, cleaned, priced, and placed for sale. It’s a very time-consuming process, that any would-be garage saler would love to have help with.

Volunteer your services in your neighborhood, particularly in the spring and fall when garage sales are most frequent.

12. Session Musician

Are you particularly good with a musical instrument, especially one that would lend itself well to performing artists?

If you can, you might be able to work as a session musician. These are people who play in a music group but aren’t necessarily part of the group.

You get paid on a per gig basis.

13. Camp Counselor

These are usually temporary arrangements, most often in the summer months. You’re generally working with younger kids.

It floats somewhere between freelance work and a traditional job. You might have set hours, but there’s a lot of flexibility as to how you do the job.

14. Mother’s Helper

This can be a welcome service for either a new mother or for one who has several young children. It’s less about babysitting (though that can be one possible outcome), and more about providing assistance.

A mom might ask you to perform certain services, such as preparing meals, organizing laundry, or feeding very young children. The arrangement can be either temporary or permanent.

15. Make and Sell Crafts on Etsy

If you have a talent for making crafts, you can start making some extra money selling them on Etsy.

It’s a site dedicated to those who create and sell handmade crafts.

16. Pool Lifeguard

This is usually a seasonal opportunity. But if you like being at the pool, and you have lifeguard training, this is definitely a way to pick up money during the summer months.

17. Skate Guard

Even though most skating rinks are indoor, this tends to be more of a winter opportunity. If you’re an above-average skater, you may qualify.

This could be a good match if you can also lifeguard. You can be a skate guard during the winter months, and a lifeguard during the summer.

18. Work in an Amusement Park

Amusement parks often prefer hiring teenagers. That’s because you’re a natural fit with the common clientele, which is largely teenagers.

There can be some good fringe benefits as well, with some parks providing season passes.

19. Personal Assistant

Do you know an adult who is unusually busy?

That person may need help with a wide variety of small jobs. That can be anything from running errands to doing work in his or her business or profession.

If you have good organizational and administrative skills, this can be a serious moneymaking opportunity. It can also be excellent training for a future full-time job.

20. Making YouTube Videos

If you’ve ever made a video on YouTube, you may be able to turn this into a steady revenue stream.

There are even videos that teach you how to make videos.

You create videos, set them up with Google AdSense, then earn income as people view your video, and click on the ads displayed.

You can even create videos that can provide you with affiliate income from various service providers.

The videos can be on any subject you can think of. It can be some sort of how-to video, or it can be about specific topics, like movie and music reviews. You can even create a portfolio of videos, each earning you a little bit of revenue every month.

21. Teach Computer Basics to Older Folks

Despite the rapid spread of computer, there are a lot of people who still don’t know much about them. This is particularly true of people over 60, who came up in the world before computers were a thing.

Many are only discovering the joys of computers now. But they don’t know how to use them well.

You can offer your services to teach them. Speak with local senior citizens groups or even senior living centers, and see what you can work out.

Just like my son Bentley, sometimes all you need to do is ask!


22. Create and Sell Art

I once ran into a teenager who was creating and selling his own artwork at a fair. That is, he was creating the artwork at the fair, and selling it.

He was creating dazzling artwork with spray paint. It was exciting stuff, and he was actually selling it – at about $20 each.

If you have an artistic streak, selling directly at fairs and craft shows can be a serious moneymaking opportunity.

23. Become an Event Photographer

I’m not talking about becoming a wedding photographer. People like to have photos taken at lesser events, like family gatherings and birthday parties.

If you know of such events taking place, volunteer your services as a photographer. You might charge a flat fee to attend the event, like $30 or $40. But it’s light work, and you’ll probably get free food as a fringe benefit.

24. Work in a Movie Theater

Yes, this is a job, but one with a lot of perks. Not only does the pay tend to be above minimum wage, but you get to watch plenty of free movies.

You’ll also get to enjoy the benefits of air-conditioning on those hot summer days. And since movie theaters tend to draw teenagers, you’ll be in familiar company.

25. Housecleaning Assistant

Adults don’t typically hire teenagers to clean their homes. But they might hire them as housecleaning help.

If someone has a specific housecleaning day, they may appreciate your services in getting the job done. This is another service that you can offer to people in your neighborhood.

26. Give Music Lessons

If you play a musical instrument, and you’re pretty good at it, offer your services as a private music teacher. Kids often respond better to other kids, especially teenagers, when it comes to learning anything.

If you have the patience to teach, and musical skills too, this can be a real opportunity. You might approach this by speaking with school music teachers in your area and offering your services to work with students.

27. Washing Cars

While it’s true that you can usually go to a car wash and get the job done for a few dollars, a lot of people still like the personal touch.

This is particularly true if you make house calls, and will wash cars in the customer’s own driveway.

28. Fiverr and Upwork

If you have certain skills, usually computer-related, you can make money doing micro tasks. These are small jobs, like graphic design, voiceovers, and social media work, that pay a few dollars per gig.

The idea is to do multiple jobs, from the comfort of your home, and earn some extra money.

You can do this through platforms like Fiverr and Upwork.

30. Putting Up/Taking Down Christmas Decorations

Almost everyone loves Christmas decorations. But putting them up can be a challenge, and taking them down can be a hassle.

Offer your services around your neighborhood, especially if you have a flair for putting up decorations. The work will only be seasonal of course, but it will give you a chance to make some extra money around the holidays.

31. Light Hauling

Naturally, this opportunity only applies if you have a driver’s license and a vehicle that can be used for hauling.

But if you do, you might be able to help people with moving a few pieces of furniture, or in cleaning out junk from a basement or garage.

You can charge a flat fee for the haul, and an hourly fee for loading and unloading.

32. Sell Your Computer and Internet Skills

Teenagers are often more fluent with computers and the Internet than adults.

If you have specific skills, you may be able to sell them to paying clients.

It could be as simple as helping people to manage their computers or download apps. Many adults are willing to pay other people to do these services for them.

33. Amateur Referee

If you’ve ever played recreational sports then you know that every event has one or more referees. As a teenager, you may qualify as one of those referees.

I know of at least one teen was earning between $25 and $60 to referee one-hour games for kids between the ages of four and 12.

Check with the recreational leagues in your community. If you can referee multiple sports, you can work year-round.

34. MusicXRay

If you like listening to music – all kinds of music – this can be a way to make some extra money in your spare time.

MusicXRay will pay you 10 cents per song, to listen to and rate whether or not you like the music of aspiring new artists.

You only have to listen to a song for a minimum of 30 seconds to get paid.

35. Running Errands

If you have a car or a bicycle, this is a possibility. It can be a valuable service to someone who either doesn’t have a car, doesn’t like to drive, or simply can’t get out and about.

You can earn money for each errand you run. Once again, advertise your services in your local neighborhood, and see who needs help.

36. Write Web Content

WriterAccess.com provides an opportunity to write content for websites. You’re eligible if you’re a teenager.

The pay ranges between 1.4 cents and 7 cents per word, which means you can earn anywhere from $14 – $70 for 1,000 words. Pay is twice a month.

Get good at this and you can try your hand at freelance writing.

37. Assisting the Elderly

Many elderly people prefer to live in their own homes, rather than going to a senior facility. But there are many aspects of home maintenance and basic living that they have difficulty managing.

You may be able to help elderly people in your community with basic jobs like housecleaning, shopping, or organizing personal effects. In many cases, the person may just want camaraderie.

This is another of the more entrepreneurial money-making methods. CaféPress is a way that you can sell your designs and earn some money.

You can create designs for T-shirts, sweatshirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, and even pillows. Just create an account on the site, and then upload your designs.

The site will display your designs, which will be purchased by customers on the site.

CafePress advertises, but you can also promote your work on the site through social media.

39. ThredUP

ThredUp is a web platform where you can sell gently used upscale clothing.

You can be paid anywhere from two dollars up to $25 per item. The items have to be name brands, like J.Crew, L.L. Bean, and Banana Republic.

But if you have a closet full of name brand garments, or you know where to get them, this can be a steady stream of extra income.


40. Yard Maintenance

This can be anything from cutting lawns on a regular basis to shoveling snow to one-off property management projects, like raking leaves or trimming hedges.

If you don’t mind getting your hands dirty, you can provide these services for people in your neighborhood. Your competitive advantage is that you can work for less money than a professional landscaper charges.

41. Golf Caddy

A lot of…


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