Income Hacks

Make Money from Home in 2020 (& Beyond)

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One thing the COVID-19 crisis showed us is how fragile traditional employment can be.

So the prospect of making money from home has become more attractive than ever.

Even if you don’t want or need to make a full-time income online, having a second income source that doesn’t rely on a company or location can be a great backup plan.

Almost half of all Americans, 45%, had a side hustle in 2019. But many of them include physical gig economy jobs like Uber or Doordash, where you have to leave your house.

In most cases, these “gigs” are essentially like part-time jobs, but the income can be unpredictable and hard to scale.

In this article, we’ll instead focus on ways you can make money from home without specific job experience or degrees.

We cover over 40 ways to make money from home in this article, so to make it more digestible, we’ve divided them into sections. To head straight to the part that interests you most, click the links below:

How Can I Make Good Money From Home?

There are a variety of ways you can make good money from home, primarily using the internet as a marketplace for digital products or services.

For example, you could create a podcast or blog and sell advertising, create a knitting YouTube channel and make money selling knitting patterns and guides, or work as an online language or music teacher.

The easiest options rarely add up to anything close to “good money.”

Even if you combine multiple online surveys and task websites, you will struggle to make a few hundred dollars a month, much less a full-time income.

How Can I Make an Extra $1000 a Month?

Establishing a successful podcast or online business will require serious investment and can take a long time before you even make a few dollars each month.

The fastest way to make an extra $1000 a month or more is to focus on the marketable skills that you already have.

Do you have creative talents? Try selling original products on Etsy, or working as a freelance illustrator or designer. Do you work as a teacher? It’s time to move to online lessons.

Even if you don’t have any marketable skills at this moment, it can be easier to develop a valuable skill and start freelancing on small projects, than trying to create a business from scratch.

If you are devoted to the long term, then a strategy like building a network of niche sites to promote affiliate products can be a great strategy to make $1000 or even more per month in passive income.

Skills to Develop to Make Money From Home

If you want to make money from home, a great place to start is to develop a skill set that you can “rent” to companies by freelancing or working remotely part-time.

You can also use the skills to build your own online business at the same time.

Here are some of the top marketable skills for making money from home:

Graphic Design

Developing robust graphic design skills will give you a lot of different options to make extra income.

For example, you could design logos and graphics for local businesses in your spare time or start your own print-on-demand clothing line.

Start learning:

  • Canva Design School
  • Teach Yourself Graphic Design
  • Free Udemy Graphic Design Courses

Web Development


Web development is not just a valuable skill for finding full-time employment; it’s also a great foundation for making extra money through freelance work or other projects.

Start learning:

  • CodeAcademy
  • Tuts+
  • Smashing Magazine
  • Codepen
  • freeCodeCamp

Web Content Writing & Copywriting

Writing an essay in your high school English class is a very different skill than writing well for the web.

Copywriting is all about understanding and appealing to the desires and needs of your target customer. Web content writing also has to consider what people are searching for and other factors.

But once you get there, working from home is more than possible. There are a lot of freelance projects and remote jobs available for writers who have these skills.

Start learning:

  • Copyblogger
  • Udemy Content Writing Courses
  • HubSpot Content Marketing Course

Language Skills & Translation

If you are fluent in at least two languages, you can do everything from translating and writing subtitles for TV shows, to teaching languages in online lessons.

If you want to work from home in the future, a popular second language could be a good foundation.

Start learning:

  • Duolingo
  • YouTube

Guitar and Other Instruments

You might think of playing an instrument as “just” a hobby, but thanks to the internet, nothing is stopping you from monetizing your musical skills.

You could tutor children or adults in guitar or other instrument lessons, create YouTube channels, or create and sell sound samples.

Start learning:

  • Yousician
  • Udemy Instrument Courses

Drawing, Knitting, Painting, and Other Creative Endeavors

Thanks to Etsy and other online marketplaces, there’s a flourishing culture online of purchasing creative products and art from “amateurs.”

You could also sell illustrations for web design kits, digital knitting patterns, and more.

Start learning:

  • Online Drawing Classes
  • Free Online Knitting Class
  • Virtual Art Academy

Training, Fitness, And Nutrition

If you are obsessed with training, fitness, or nutrition, you are on the right path to start making some extra income online.

Start learning:

  • Online Certified Personal Trainer Course
  • Online Nutrition Courses


It might seem weird to highlight here, but creativity is a learnable skill as much as any of the ones we’ve covered so far.

By learning different ideation frameworks and best practices for creativity, you can lay the groundwork for future product or business ideas that will help you make a living from home.

Start learning:

  • Creativity Courses Online

How to Make Extra Money From Home as a Student Fast with Limited Experience & Skills

In this section, we’ll focus on the low friction, quick ways to make money from home that don’t require a finished degree, work experience, or a valuable skill set like programming.

Anyone over the age of 18 with a Paypal and bank account can start earning money online today with the methods below.

01Get Paid to Answer Online Surveys


Answering surveys online is a way you can earn some supplemental income from home without any upfront investment or specific marketable skills.

All you have to do is sign up for a reputable online paid survey site, finish your profile, and start answering surveys you qualify for.

Survey Sites:

  • Prize Rebel is a major player in the scene, and most of the time has a large number of survey opportunities viable for anyone regardless of demographics. You can redeem your earnings starting at $5.
  • Survey Junkie is a popular online survey aggregator with a lot of available surveys. For each survey you complete, you will earn between 100-1,000 points, with 100 points representing $1 in real money. Most surveys only take a few minutes and are worth between $1-3, and you can receive a payout once your balance reaches 1,000 points ($10).
  • Swagbucks Surveys is another of your options. The more detailed and targeted, time-intensive surveys can pay well, but shorter surveys, the majority, pay next to nothing.
  • American Consumer Opinion is a reputable survey company that focuses less on volume and more on larger studies. Users will get one screening survey a month, and around one full-length survey every quarter. The screening surveys pay up to $0.50 each, while full-length surveys can pay up to $50.
  • Check out our list of 31 paid survey sites for more options.


  • No requirements to get started.
  • You can usually get paid in Paypal or Bitcoin without sharing bank account information.


  • Very low earning potential, ranging from $0.41 to $2.03 per hour depending on the site.
  • Limited opportunities, as most surveys focus on specific target demographics.
  • Can sometimes finish surveys before the site informs you that you don’t qualify for the survey.

02Get Paid to Participate in User Tests


User testing is another easy way to make a quick dollar online, in the same vein as paid surveys.

You get paid for testing and giving your feedback on different companies’ apps and websites. Each job pays a lot more than a general survey, but there is a lower volume of jobs.

User testing sites:

  • is one of the leading UX testing platforms and pays all test users $10 for each 20-minute video review of apps or website variations. Testers are paid via PayPal.
  • Enroll is another platform for user testing apps and sites, but doesn’t require video reviews. These text-based surveys pay a lot less, at about $0.50 to $1.50 per test you participate in.
  • TryMyUI also focuses on detailed video reviews and pays $10 for each 15-minute video you complete.
  • IntelliZoom: As part of the IntelliZoom panel, you will be able to do user tests for UserZoom clients. In-depth tests that include audio and video impressions pay $10 each, on average, while standard text-based surveys pay $2 on average.


  • Potential for making a decent hourly wage, with several sites paying as much as $10 for a single 10-15 minute test.


  • Need a relatively new laptop or desktop computer with a decent microphone and webcam to get the highest paying testing jobs.
  • Limited earning potential because of demographics, and panel supply outweighing test demand on most sites.

03Get Paid to Complete Various Tasks Online


There are also websites that will pay you to complete a large number of very quick tasks, like categorizing pictures, transcribing short audio clips, and more.

The range of micro-tasks means you have a lot of different ways to earn money.

Micro task sites:

  • Amazon Mechanical Turk is the largest marketplace for micro-tasks online. Earn up to $6 per hour doing things like categorizing images, or researching data details.
  • Appen is another reputable company that offers a variety of micro-tasks, like categorizing social media posts based on emotion, or transcribing audio into text. Appen uses this real human input to improve artificial intelligence systems around the world.
  • MicroWorkers is another alternative, but with fewer opportunities than AMT.


  • No requirements to get started except a computer with internet access.
  • High volume of jobs, so there’s no artificial limit to how many you can complete each week or month.


  • Higher paying gigs typically require tangible skills like fluency in a second language or certain education.
  • Even when constantly completing tasks, your hourly wage will be quite low.

04Get Paid to Help Companies find a Brand Name, Domain Name, or Slogan


If you are creative and have a knack for coming up with smart nicknames for your friends, you could get paid for helping companies come up with brand or domain names.

Brand and domain name crowdsourcing sites:

  • Picky Domains is the leading crowdsourcing platform for picking domain names. Contributors get paid between $25 and $75 every time a client chooses the domain name they came up with.
  • Naming Force is another platform, helping founders come up with company, brand, and domain names. Namers can get paid $100 or more if their name gets picked.
  • SquadHelp will pay creatives to help customers come up with company names, domains, and taglines. You can earn between $100 and $300 for each won contest.


  • No technical requirements.
  • High potential hourly earnings — you could spend 5 minutes to come up with a name and win a $300 prize.
  • Creative and fun tasks.


  • No guaranteed income — only contest winners get paid.

05Work as a Virtual Assistant


According to official US Labor Statistics, there are over 4.4 million administrative assistants in the US. Many of these positions are starting to become available as remote opportunities.

Working as a virtual assistant typically requires few pre-existing skills, and no equipment beyond a computer and reliable internet connection, and maybe a headset.

Sites for virtual assistant jobs:

  • Indeed has over 7,000 virtual assistant job listings.
  • Upwork is a freelancing platform with a lot of opportunities for virtual assistants.
  • has many job listings for virtual assistant jobs, both part-time and full-time.
  • Zirtual has relaunched as part of the platform and is looking for new US-based virtual assistants.


  • You can get started with only a computer, a reliable internet connection, and a good work ethic.
  • Potential to earn a decent full-time living at an average hourly wage of $15.78.


  • It’s basically a “regular job” where you have to follow a schedule and complete certain tasks within a given time frame.
  • May need a relevant university degree or experience to land high-quality, high-paying jobs.

If you’re interested, we’ve got a dedicated guide on more ways you can make money without paying anything.

Real Ways to Make Money From Home Long-Term

In this section, we focus on proven ways you can make significant money from home over the long-term that require some upfront investment of time or money.

From getting paid to write articles, do design work, and freelancing, to launching your own online business, podcast, blog, or YouTube channel, there are a lot of options in 2020.

Let’s dive straight in.

06Affiliate Marketing

If you want to start making money online through a blog or website, affiliate marketing is one of the fastest and easiest ways to get started.

You don’t need to have any inventory or product, or your own eCommerce store. All you need to do is recommend products from select vendors that offer commission, like Amazon, and use a special link.

The best way to promote these products is to start a niche site and attract organic search traffic from Google. You could also find success by promoting a product offer on social media or using Facebook Ads.

Sites that offer affiliate programs:


  • Earn money when you sleep — it’s not a direct trade of time for money.
  • Very high earning potential, top affiliates earn $20k per month or more.
  • You don’t work directly for anyone, so you’re free to work according to your own schedule.
  • Since you’re not selling products, you don’t have to worry about customer support or product fulfillment


  • No guaranteed earnings.
  • Establishing a niche site and starting to earn a significant income will take time.

07Create a Dropshipping Store

If you’re looking to establish an eCommerce store, one of the biggest challenges is the actual design and production of the products you will sell.

With dropshipping, you list products from different suppliers that offer direct to consumer shipping in your online store, and market and sell them. You basically get paid for selling other people’s products online.

Once you sell a product, you forward the order (with a price markdown, of course) to the supplier who will fulfill the product order.

In a sense, it’s almost like affiliate marketing, but instead of sending interested buyers directly to the other company, and getting paid a percentage if they buy, you handle the selling yourself and pay the supplier for the product using a percentage of the transaction.


  • Create and run your own business without having to deal with inventory or shipping.
  • Earn money when you sleep — it’s not a direct trade of time for money.


  • There’s no guaranteed income — you could spend hours lining up suppliers and creating a store, and never make a sale.
  • Since you sell the products, you are responsible for customer service, fulfillment, and shipping.
  • Finding quality products that will sell can be a challenge. (Check out our list of 1000+ Amazon products currently selling like hotcakes for inspiration.)

08Get Paid to Write Articles


As a US citizen with a native level of English, you meet the basic requirements set by most content writing platforms or “content mills.”

If you have a computer, can type relatively fast, and can do basic research, you can start a career in freelance writing from the comfort of your home.

You can use these low-paying platforms to gain experience, skills, and build your portfolio.

Sites that pay for articles:

  • Textbroker pays between 0.7 cents and 5 cents per word to their writers based on the quality of the work and the type of content.
  • iWriter pays between $2.43 and $8.10 for a 500-word article, depending on your rating.
  • With Constant Content, you can make as much as $160 on a single article, setting your own prices for content.
  • Crowd Content pays between 1.2 and 7.6 cents per word, depending on your experience and rating.
  • Upwork has a lot of one-time and ongoing freelance writing gigs at various price points


  • High earning potential, freelance writers have an average hourly rate of $23.79.
  • Work when you want, however much you want.
  • Over time, you can establish a lucrative career as a freelance writer.


  • It can take a long time to get a good rating on content platforms, so at first, you might only earn a few dollars per article.
  • Getting enough work can be a challenge in the beginning.
  • Higher paying work often requires a technical background or specific industry experience.

09Get Paid to Design Logos, Websites, And More


You don’t need to be a world-class professional to get started making an extra income from graphic design.

If you have some basic skills, experience, and the right software tools, you can start establishing your career without leaving your couch.

Sites to get paid for design:

  • 99 Designs offers the opportunity to participate in open design contests or work directly with clients who like your portfolio on freelance projects. It charges 5-15% of the direct client work and a $100 introduction fee. If you win a contest, you get approximately 66% of the fee.
  • CrowdSpring is another graphic design crowdsourcing site. You can participate in design contests and will get paid if the customer chooses your design.
  • DesignCrowd offers the ability to sell finished designs, participate in contests, and work directly with clients. It charges a flat 15% fee from all your jobs.
  • Upwork is a freelancing platform with a lot of potential clients that need help with design projects. It charges between 5% and 20% depending on the size of the project.
  • Toptal is another great freelancing site for designers but focuses on more experienced, qualified talent.


  • Very high earning potential, with an average hourly rate of $29.43.
  • Delivering good work on a few projects can build your portfolio and quickly become a full-time career.


  • You need the right software, a basic skill set, and most likely some kind of a portfolio to get even the lowest-paid projects.
  • Most projects have a pressing deadline; the time crunch can be stressful.
  • Many low-paying clients have very high expectations, which can be stressful and unrewarding.
  • If you try to get your start with design contests, there are no guaranteed earnings.

10Get Paid to Create Websites


If you’re familiar with a popular CMS like WordPress and know how to set up a basic website without issue, by developing your skills a little further, you could get started with freelance web development.

By outsourcing elements like design and complicated functionality, you could even take on larger projects over the long term, even if you can’t imagine that right now.

Sites to find basic web development work:

  • Upwork is a freelancing platform and can be a good starting point for beginning developers.
  • Codepen has a great job directory for frontend development jobs, including a lot of remote opportunities.
  • Stack Overflow offers a variety of coding-related jobs, including web development.


  • The earning potential is very high, with an average hourly rate between $61-81 an hour.
  • You can learn web development through online resources like CodeAcademy, without an official education.


  • Need significant real development experience to work on larger scale, higher-paying projects.
  • It can be difficult to land your first few projects.

11Get Paid to Maintain & Manage Websites


As websites typically have moved away from static HTML & CSS, relying on ever-changing content management systems (CMS) like WordPress instead, people no longer think about websites as a “create it and forget it” deal.

If you have some coding experience or familiarity with WordPress or another CMS from your day job, site maintenance could become a nice source of ongoing revenue.


  • Any old laptop with an internet connection is enough.
  • Recurring revenue.


  • You need to find your own clients, typically easiest to upsell an existing web development client.

12Become a YouTuber

The top-earning YouTube star made over $26 million in 2019, through a mix of ads, affiliate marketing, and sponsorship money.

Ryan’s World, the top-earning channel for the past two years, features a young boy in a variety of videos, with a focus on unboxing and testing toys and other products for children.

But you don’t need to put your kids in front of the camera to make real money on YouTube.

Adult YouTubers like Dude Perfect, Rhett & Link, Jeffree Star, and Preston Arsement all made $14 million or more in 2019.


  • You can get started with your smartphone and nothing else.
  • Freely create content about anything you are passionate about.
  • 100% flexible schedule — work whenever you want.
  • The earning potential is virtually unlimited.
  • Skills learned, like filming and editing videos, can be leveraged to get freelance work.


  • More competition than ever before, with over 31 million channels in 2019.
  • It can take a lot of time to get started, often months or even years before you earn your first dollar.
  • A professional filming setup is expensive.
  • No guaranteed earnings.

13Start a Podcast


Podcasting has come a long way since it’s obscure beginnings as a small counter-culture movement on the internet.

The biggest podcasters in the world, like Joe Rogan, now have millions of weekly listeners, and make millions on sponsorships, product mentions, and audio ads. (Industry experts estimate Joe Rogan alone makes $30 million per year from podcasting.)

Of course, establishing a podcast and getting enough traction to start getting sponsored isn’t going to happen overnight.

There’s a long and steep learning curve required before you can even begin to establish an audience.

It’s almost like choosing a career path and going to university, and then interning before finally being able to work as a professional and get paid.

Podcasting platforms:

  • SimpleCast
  • Transistor
  • Podbean


  • The earning potential is virtually unlimited.
  • With audio-only, you don’t have to get used to being on camera or “expose” your identity.
  • 100% flexible schedule — work whenever you want.


  • More competition than ever before, with over 800,000 active podcasts in 2019.
  • A podcast studio setup for high-quality audio is expensive and can be difficult to set up.
  • It can take a lot of time to get started, often months or even years before you earn your first dollar.
  • No guaranteed earnings.

14Start a Blog

Despite the advent of YouTube and podcasting, blogging is still a very real way to make a living online. In 2019, the top-earning blog was estimated to have brought in a whopping $41 million in revenue.

And with blogging, chances are you won’t need to invest in any technical gear to get started.

The great thing is, once you’ve started the blog and start to get traffic, you can expand it to be so much more — that’s how NicheHacks got started.

Blogging platforms:

  • Self-hosted WordPress is our recommended blogging platform for most people at NicheHacks, as it gives you full ownership and control over your blog and content. You can also easily expand beyond just a blog, into selling products, or even online courses.
  • Medium is a unique platform where you can tap into an existing audience and submit your written work to new publications. It’s free and is a great way for new bloggers to get started. You can also make money by writing specifically for the platform’s premium members.


  • Any old laptop with an internet connection is more than enough.
  • Decent earnings ceiling and potential to expand into a full-fledged online business.
  • 0% flexible schedule — work whenever you want.


  • More competition than ever before, with over 600 million blogs on the internet.
  • It can take a lot of time to get started, often months or even years before you earn your first dollar.
  • No guaranteed earnings.

15Get Paid to Translate Online


Are you bilingual?

If you have good second language skills and some minuscule amount of experience, you can easily get started as a translator on several online translation platforms.

Some platforms use a crowdsourcing approach where you can apply for work without needing a profile, whereas on many sites, you need to build up your profile and portfolio before you can start making serious money.

Sites for aspiring translators:

  • Gengo: pay starts at $0.03 per word or $0.018 per character for Japanese/Chinese. 72 available language pairs.
  • Appen offers some translation jobs aimed at helping translation AIs improve.
  • Unbabel: Earn money editing machine-translated text, or evaluating other human translations.
  • UpWork: Find ongoing part-time work or one-off freelance projects on Upwork.


  • Good earnings potential, with an average hourly salary of $28.60 per hour.
  • For text-based work, all you need is a laptop and an internet connection.
  • The experience will keep your language skills sharp and can help you in your career.


  • It takes time to build a portfolio and connections and start earning a meaningful income.

16Teach English Online


Speaking of language skills, even if you’re not bilingual, you can start making money online with only native-level English, a webcam, and an outgoing personality.

Many sites also require, at least on paper, a bachelor’s degree, but it doesn’t need to be in English or education.

Sites for teaching English:

  • VIP Kid: Get paid up to $11 for each 25-minute lesson, so up to $22 per hour. You must be a native (US/Canada/UK/etc.) speaker and have a bachelor’s degree, but not necessarily in English or education.
  • DaDa: Native speakers can make from $15 to $25 per hour, depending on experience and workload.
  • GoGoKid: Earn $14 to $25 per hour if you are a native speaker with a bachelor’s degree.

Most of the clientele of these websites are fairly young children, so if you enjoy working with kids, it can be a great option for you.


  • Earn up to $25 per hour, even if you don’t have previous teaching experience or a relevant degree.
  • Create your own schedule.


  • You typically have to build up a profile and relationships to land enough work to make a living.
  • You need a decent quality web camera and microphone to get started.

17Teach Music Classes Online


Do you have an education in music? Are you particularly good at the piano or guitar?

You could supplement your income by teaching online music lessons.

There’s an increasing demand for online music classes and teachers as the world gets more used to the idea of remote teaching.

Music lesson websites:

  • Earn 60-90% of your lesson price depending on how many lessons you’ve given. You can set your own price, with a minimum of $15 for a 30-minute session.
  • Live Music Tutor: Earn 80% of your lesson price. Lessons start at $25 for a 30-minute class.


  • Get paid to share your passion for music.
  • Your effective hourly rate could be as high as $40 or more.
  • Set your own schedule and choose how much you want to work.


  • The competition is getting steeper every day, with Berkeley educated musicians and teachers registering profiles.
  • You need to establish and market your own profile to start landing students.
  • You need a decent quality web camera and microphone to get started.

18Become an Online Tutor


Of course, it’s not just language and music that people care about. There’s a demand for learning a variety of subjects online, from math and science to business and acting.

By becoming an online tutor, you can help supply that demand and make money from the comfort of your own home in the process.

Online tutoring platforms:

  • Earn up to $15 an hour tutoring different subjects. You don’t have to develop a profile to get work. Subjects: Math, Science, English, Accounting, Finance, and more.
  • Skooli: Earn $25 an hour for tutoring a variety of subjects. Math, Science, Reading, Languages, Economics, Accounting, and more.
  • Lessonface: Set your own rates and keep 92.5% of what you earn from every lesson. You have to develop a profile and attract your own clients.


  • Set your own schedule and choose how much you want to work.


  • For most of the tutoring sites, you need a relevant degree to be allowed to teach a topic.
  • You need a decent quality web camera and microphone to get started.

19Work as a Remote Customer Service Rep


Many companies are starting to move away from the traditional call centers and move their customer service teams to fully remote positions.

If you have experience working in customer service, but would prefer to work from the comfort of your own home, you should be able to find a replacement job quite quickly.

Remote job boards:

  • Indeed currently has over 2,000 open positions available for remote customer service.
  • WeWorkRemotely has 30+ open positions for remote support available.
  • JobSpresso currently has 160+ open remote positions for customer service.


  • For remote career opportunities, this has one of the lowest barriers to entry; you can get started even with no experience or relevant education.


  • The earnings potential isn’t that high, with Glassdoor reporting an average annual salary of $27,834.
  • You usually have to work following a typical 9-5 schedule.

20Work as a Remote Sales Representative


If you have any sales experience or are currently working a sales job, you can start making money from home without having to switch careers.

With more and more sales teams focusing on inbound sales and digital channels like email and webinars, you can work from home and still cash in on familiar rewards like commissions and sales bonuses.

Remote job boards:

  • Indeed currently has over 2,700 open positions available for remote sales reps.
  • WeWorkRemotely has 30+ open positions for remote sales and marketing jobs.
  • JobSpresso currently has 70+ open remote sales representative jobs.


  • Like with customer service, the barrier to entry is fairly low, with the right attitude you can get hired with no experience.
  • While sales reps have a relatively low average salary of $12.98 per hour, they make an average of $17,500 in commissions and additional compensation every year.


  • Even if you work remotely, you will still have the stressful life of a sales rep, stretching for sales goals, calling prospects for hours a day, and more.
  • You usually have to work following a typical 9-5 schedule.

21Sell Products through Amazon FBA


The Amazon FBA program is a unique fulfillment program where Amazon will not only keep your products in a warehouse, handle, and ship them to your customers — your products will also be listed in the official store, and it will handle payments for you.

That means you can get access to the audience of the biggest retail site on the web, with over 197 million unique visitors per day.


  • Get access to millions of potential customers through Amazon’s search engine and recommendations.
  • You don’t need to fulfill product sales yourself; Amazon will take care of that starting at $1.97 per item.


  • You need to invest thousands of dollars in developing a private-label product or importing products from international suppliers.

22Get Paid to Play Computer Games


Gone are the days when playing a computer game could only be seen as a “waste of time.” The largest streamer and perhaps most popular pro gamer of all time, Ninja, made $17 million in 2019.

By live-streaming gameplay and interacting with their audience, many streamers can build a loyal following and eventually earn a living full-time.

Streaming sites:

  • Twitch: One of the original streaming sites and the current industry leader.
  • Mixer: The upstart that paid Ninja a multi-million dollar deal to make the switch.
  • Facebook Gaming: In addition to the streaming section in its main app, Facebook launched a live gaming app in 2020 and got five million downloads in a week.
  • YouTube: Not only is YouTube by far the largest video sharing platform in the world, but it’s also become one of the most influential streaming platforms.


  • Virtually unlimited earnings potential.
  • Somewhat flexible schedule. You can choose when you want to work, but since the content is live, you need to stream when the largest part of your target audience is awake and online.
  • You can easily combine live streaming with other platforms like YouTube or podcasting.


  • More competition than ever before, with 4.26 million streamers on Twitch alone.
  • Typically takes months or years to build enough traction to earn a consistent income.
  • No guaranteed earnings.

23Online Personal Training


While it might seem far-fetched to some that personal training can happen online, some online personal trainers are raking in six-figure incomes and above.

By building a social media presence through Instagram or YouTube, these trainers reach a much larger audience than if they were just hanging around a couple of local gyms looking for clients.


  • No interviews or other barriers to get started.


  • You need to build a social media presence and a happy base of initial clients before you will start seeing any real income.
  • No guaranteed income.

24Become an Online Travel Planner


Are you hustling and trying to make it as a travel blogger or vlogger as you make your way around the world? Are you specifically knowledgeable about a certain country or region?

You could make extra money by helping readers and strangers plan exciting journeys through lands unknown.


  • It’s a great way to monetize a travel blog or YouTube channel.


  • It can be challenging to get customers without having an existing platform.

25Create a Mobile App or Game


Angry Birds, one of the most successful mobile games of all time, generating 100s of millions of dollars throughout its history, started as a student side project for a competition.

The number of smartphone users is predicted to reach 3.5 billion by the end of 2020. Mobile app stores represent perhaps the biggest and most profitable creative marketplace in the world.

So creating a mobile app or game can be a great investment in your future and become a significant income stream.


  • A great way to earn money while developing valuable skills you can use to switch careers at a later point in time.


  • Could spend hundreds of hours on developing a game or app that leads to very few sales or downloads.

26Start a Meal Prepping Business


Daily Harvest has outlived most of its competitors and proven that meal prepping can be a sustainable business model.

But you don’t need a giant infusion of venture capital to start a meal prepping business in your local area and make decent money.

If you are smart and use social media to line up business in advance, you can even make your first batch of meal kits with zero risk.


  • Earn some extra spending money from empty space and minimal effort.


  • It’s the opposite of passive income — you are essentially starting a business and need to deal directly with customers, deliver your products, and more.

27Write and Publish Kindle Ebooks & Books


If you have the creative drive and the writing chops to churn out short novels, guides, or other books within a few months, you can use Kindle Direct Publishing to earn a full-time living.

While the writing itself does take a lot of work, you can rely on Amazon to take care of most of the business side of things.


  • Tap into Amazon’s existing audience of potential customers for free.
  • Significant earning potential, a first-time writer was able to pass $5,100 a month with just two books.
  • Completely passive — Amazon takes care of the selling, payment processing, printing, and delivery.


  • If your book misses the mark, you could have wasted hundreds of hours for nothing.

28Social Lending


With the rise of the peer to peer economy, there’s one interesting development that has flown under the radar. With peer-to-peer lending, you can essentially become a micro-bank, earning money simply by lending it out to someone else.

Of course, this might sound like a very risky proposition, but it’s not.

The lending platforms split your investment across a multitude of different loans, making sure that you only lose a small amount of money if a single loan should default.


  • Earn a potential return of between 4–9% on your savings, much higher than a savings account.


  • Your invested money will be illiquid until the loans are paid back.

Note: During these tumultuous economic times, investing in peer to peer loans or other high-risk assets may not be the best idea.

Bonus Tip: Work Remotely for Your Existing Company

If you don’t fancy yourself the next big thing in online entertainment, and you can’t seem to find a lot of opportunities for remote work in your profession, that doesn’t mean you’re out of luck.

If you can convince your management team that you can complete most of your key responsibilities from the comfort of your own home, you have a good chance of being allowed to work remotely at least several days a week.

There are a lot of great articles online about how to ask to work remotely full-time that you can follow along step-by-step.

Note: The COVID-19 crisis has forced a lot of companies to become more open-minded about remote work, and if you’re currently working remotely as part of social distancing measures, make sure you do your best to be one of the top performers.

If your managers see an increase in productivity from you during the remote period, they’ll most likely let you keep working remotely after things settle down.

15+ More Ideas to Make Money From Home In The Short Term

In the sections above, we first focused on easy ways to make some extra cash with little preparation or investment, and then real ways you can start an online business or a career online part-time or full-time.

In this section, we’ll cover additional ideas to help you make some additional income from home in the short term, from selling unnecessary things, to doing online arbitrage or renting out your driveway.

29Find Programming Bugs


Do you have a day job as a programmer or web developer? Do you want to feel like a movie hacker and make some extra money at the same time?

Many major software companies have “bounty hunter” programs where third-party hackers who find exploits or bugs in their software get paid.

Bug bounty sites:

  • HackerOne: Bug and exploit bounty platform, with payouts of up to several thousand dollars depending on the severity of the bug.
  • Vulnerability Lab: Expansive list of public bug bounty hunter programs that will pay you to find bugs or exploits.


  • Earn up to $1,500,000 for finding a single bug or exploit, depending on its severity.
  • There’s no interview process or other gatekeepers if you can find bugs you get paid.
  • Work on your own schedule.
  • Can leverage experience to start a career within IT security.


  • No guaranteed income — you need to find a unique previously unreported bug meaningful enough to constitute a reward.
  • It’s a highly technical job with a challenging level of required expertise.

30Sell Unused Items on eBay or Craigslist


If you just want to make some extra cash for the short term, you can start out by selling some of the things in your home or apartment that you don’t use or need.

If you take proper pictures and take the time to write a catchy description, you can often get more than simply used household items are worth.

Online marketplaces:

  • Craigslist
  • eBay
  • Facebook Marketplace
  • Paypal Mall
  • Etsy


  • An easy way to make a few dollars with minimal risk.


  • What you can make is directly related to how many sellable items you already have on hand.
  • You have to package and ship orders yourself.

31Online Arbitrage


Retail arbitrage is a concept where you get a feel for a marketplace by doing pricing research, identify underpriced products, and then buy and sell the products at their expected price points.

Flea market and Craigslist flipping is an example of retail arbitrage. By focusing only on online marketplaces, you can do the vast majority of the work from the comfort of your home.

Online marketplaces:

  • Craigslist
  • eBay
  • Amazon
  • Facebook Marketplace
  • Paypal Mall
  • Etsy
  • Alibaba


  • No interviews or other barriers to getting started.
  • You don’t need a website or online presence to start making money.


  • You need to buy products to resell them, which means it’s possible to lose money or run into cash flow problems if you struggle to sell off inventory.

32Buy and Sell Domain Names


In the early 2000s, million-dollar price tags weren’t uncommon, with selling for $345 million in 2007.

But most major keyword domains are already taken, so that part of the gold rush is over. Instead, you could get creative and pick up likely candidates for company names in the feature.

If a startup gets founded with the name you own the domain for, you could get a nice payout of at least a couple of thousand dollars for your trouble.

In many ways, it’s more like buying a lottery ticket than making a surefire investment — low risk, with the potential for high reward (but very unlikely).

Domain name registration sites:

  • Namecheap
  • GoDaddy
  • Google Domains

Domain selling marketplaces:

  • Flippa Domains
  • NameCheap Auctions
  • GoDaddy Auctions


  • No interviews or other barriers to getting started.
  • You don’t need a website or online presence.


  • No guaranteed income — you could end up losing money.

33Rent Out Your Car


Instead of having to actively drive and work as a taxi driver, like with Uber or Lyft, car renting apps let you make additional income without putting in extra working hours.

Turo members can earn an extra $706 per month just by putting their car up for rent when they’re not using it.

Car rental/sharing apps:

  • Turo
  • Getaround
  • HyreCar


  • Make money from a car that would otherwise just be sitting in the garage.
  • Most rental apps cover you with liability insurance of up to $1 million, more than enough to account for car damages.


  • You can’t use your car when you’re renting it out.

34Rent Out Unused Tents, Garden Furniture, and More


Do you have backyard tents, furniture, barbecue grills, or other equipment lying around unused for major parts of the year?

Even if you don’t want to sell them, you can make extra money by renting them out to people holding events in your area.

You might need to set up a basic website and rental policies, but after that, you can get listed on sites like Reventals when local customers are searching for equipment for their event. You can also list your equipment on Craigslist.


  • Make some extra money from outdoor equipment you just have lying around.
  • Could turn into a real business over the long term.


  • The business is likely to be seasonal and sporadic.

35Rent Out Your Driveway as Parking Space


Does your house have a driveway or parking area that you don’t use? That could be a potential source of side hustle income.

With an app like JustPark or Pavemint, you can make up to a few hundred dollars per month by just letting someone else park in your driveway.


  • Earn some extra spending money from empty space and minimal effort.


  • You need a house or apartment with a parking space.
  • Demand dictates how much you earn, so if you live outside the city you might not get any parkers.

36Create and Sell Creative Products on Etsy


Do you like arts and crafts? Have you made art or woodworking projects and gifted them to friends and family?

If you have a certain level of skill in painting, knitting, woodworking, pottery, calligraphy, or other creative art forms, you can create original products and sell them on Etsy.

On Etsy, it can often be a good idea to carve out a niche for yourself — like only carving Star Trek-inspired wood figures, rather than trying to sell “custom woodwork.”


  • You can monetize a hobby or passion of yours.
  • Potential to make a full-time living.


  • It can be hard to find your first customers.
  • Income is limited by how fast you can create and deliver new products.

37Create and Sell Digital Artwork


If you are a designer or digital artist, you can sell graphics and illustrations on online marketplaces like Creative Market.

Etsy is also a good place to sell digital patterns, recipes, and guides with no need to ship physical products.

Digital creative marketplaces:

  • Creative Market
  • Etsy
  • Design Cuts


  • Passive income — you don’t need to create new art or ship a product with every sale; you can sell the same design over and over.
  • High earnings potential.


  • It can be hard to establish an online presence and make your first sale.
  • No guaranteed income.

38Design and Sell T-Shirts, Mugs, or Anything


When sites like Teespring first hit the internet, your options were usually just to design a custom print for a T-shirt.

That has changed completely over the last couple of years.

Now you can design mugs, pillows, backpacks, pretty much anything, and sell it online on a “print on demand” basis. That means the product is only customized after a customer buys your design.

Print-on-demand platforms:

  • Teespring
  • DesignByHumans
  • Zazzle
  • Printful
  • CustomInk


  • Create and sell custom products with no risk because of the print-on-demand model.
  • Passive income — the platforms handle the payments, printing, packaging, and shipping.


  • Establishing a store requires just as much digital marketing work as opening a real eCommerce store.
  • No guaranteed income.

39Create and Sell Website Templates


If you work as a web designer or front-end developer as your day job, you might want to look into creating and selling website templates to make some passive income.

The top-selling WordPress theme on the template marketplace ThemeForest has grossed over $25 million in sales. Even with the sales fee, that’s still eight figures for the team of developers and designers behind the theme.

Template marketplaces:

  • ThemeForest
  • Creative Market
  • AppThemes


  • Earn money passively as a designer or developer using downtime between freelance projects.
  • Full-time earning potential.


  • It can be hard to target the right niche and get established as a new seller.
  • No guaranteed income

40Sell Stock Photography or Videos


Are you an Instagram fanatic or a hobby photographer? You can make some extra money by selling your photographs and videos as stock photos.

By submitting your images to major stock photography libraries, you can earn royalties every time someone purchases the license to a picture or video.

Stock photography marketplaces:

  • Shutterstock
  • Getty Images
  • Alamy


  • Get paid for pictures and videos you have already taken.
  • Earn passive royalties without doing any promotion.


  • No guaranteed income.
  • It can be tricky to try to predict which stock photographs or videos will sell.

41Get Paid for Voice Overs


Are you currently trying to start a podcast? Do you have a semi-pro microphone setup and a soothing voice?

You might be able to make some extra money doing voice overs for commercials, games, and videos.

Freelance voice over opportunities:

  • Fiverr
  • Upwork


  • A good way to make some spending money while you are trying to get a podcast off the ground.


  • Lots of competition and hard to get started as a new artist.
  • Gigs can pay as little as $5 to $10 in the beginning.

42List a Spare Room on Airbnb or Other Rental Sites


Do you have a spare bedroom that sits empty in your house or apartment? That could be a potential extra source of income.

Since Airbnb started the apartment sharing revolution, other big players in the hotel booking and hospitality industry have joined the short-term apartment rental space.

Apartment vacation rental websites:

  • Airbnb
  • Homes
  • Agoda Homes


  • Make some extra cash every month to help you cover rent and other expenses.


  • If you don’t live in a common tourist destination, you might not get any guests.
  • Actually sharing a house or apartment with a stranger can be stressful for some people.

43Hold Cooking Classes in Your Home


If you like to cook, and you’re good at it, you can make some extra money by specializing in a specific dish and teaching others how to cook it.

For example, if you’re a pasta fanatic, and you’ve made homemade pasta for years, you could easily set up cooking classes.

Cooking class websites:

  • Cozymeal
  • Thumbtack
  • Airbnb Experiences


  • You can make money by sharing your passion for food and having a good time cooking with a group of people.


  • Limited earnings potential unless you live in a big city.
  • You have to spend time and money buying ingredients and preparing beforehand, in addition to teaching the classes.

How to Make Money From Home Part-Time

If you want to make extra money part-time as a college student or to supplement your existing income, you have almost unlimited options on the table.

With the rise of the internet, not only can you create and sell your own products or promote other companies’ products, but you can also start a freelance career or work remotely for companies.

The best approach for you will depend on your schedule and your existing skillset.

For example, if you are a busy web design student with an unpredictable schedule, participating in design competitions from time to time, or creating design packages and selling them in online marketplaces could be your best bet.

If you have a predictable schedule, finding freelance projects, or even working remotely for a design agency would offer a more stable income.

You can also use a mixed strategy of long-term and short-term income. For example, you could create a variety of niche sites, learning SEO, and website content writing in the process.

Then you could use your new skills and portfolio to land freelance work for short-term income as you wait for the fruits of your labor.