Ways to Make Money for Teenagers
There are plenty of opportunities to make money as a teenager, ranging from odd jobs and traditional part-time jobs to freelancing online. Let's start with the best one for most teens.
Help Your Neighbors with Odd Jobs
The easiest way to make money when you are very young is to help people around your neighborhood. You will be working in the area you are familiar with, and you won't need to travel far, which is important as you probably don't have a car yet.
Reach out to your neighbors and let them know you're interested in odd jobs. You can do this in a few ways. Use Nextdoor app, a social platform that connects neighbors, or join a local community group on Facebook to let the neighbors know about your services. Distribute a flyer with a list of all things you can help. Or do both to increase the likelihood of landing a gig. Your list of services can include anything you are comfortable doing. Here are some examples.
1. For this endeavor, you'll need to make a small initial investment: a portable upholstery shampoo machine. Once you've got your equipment, you can approach your neighbors and offer your upholstery cleaning services. To entice them, consider demonstrating your skills with a free sample clean on a small portion of their sofa or chair.
2. Another idea is to provide garbage bin cleaning services. For this job, you'll need a hose with a high-pressure nozzle or a small electric pressure washer, along with long-handled scrub brushes. Begin by visiting homes the day after trash is collected in your neighborhood and offering your services. After cleaning, apply a deodorizer to keep the bins fresh until their next clean. Many people prefer to avoid dealing with unpleasant odors, so this service has the potential to attract numerous customers quickly and generate a decent income.
3. Learn how to repair lawnmowers and snow blowers. Often, people discard these machines simply because they don't start and they don't know how to fix them. Usually, with $10-$20 worth of parts and a little effort, you can get these machines running again. Once repaired, sell the equipment and repeat the process for continuous income.
4. Learn to operate a sound board. Local places of worship often need sound technicians and aren't usually concerned about prior experience. You don't have to be religious to secure the job either. This opportunity is a good start toward understanding a potentially lucrative industry.
5. You can also look into more conventional jobs for teenagers within your neighborhood:
Many folks need help and will be glad to support a young entrepreneur.
Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the minimum age for working is 14 with some exceptions. Federal child labor law also restricts the hours and types of work that teens under 16 can do and prohibits any hazardous occupations for teenagers under 18. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, teens under 14 are allowed to help neighbors with yard work, babysitting, and some other tasks as those jobs are not covered by the FLSA. The child labor rules and exceptions may differ from state to state. Ask your parents to help find the rules specifically for your state.
Get a Part-Time Job
Tutor younger kids. If you are good at a subject matter, math or coding, for example, use your knowledge to make money by tutoring younger children after school.
Teach computer basics and software skills to the elderly. What's second nature to you may be a daunting task for some older adults. Help seniors with their technology struggles and make some cash.
Work at a restaurant. Restaurants are always in need of extra help. Go to your local fast food establishment or sit-down restaurant and ask if they have any job openings. Possible perks: You may be getting some tips on top of your paycheck. Some restaurants may offer free food as a perk.
Work at a local grocery store. Grocery stores are also constantly in need of workers and you may have a good chance of landing a job if you apply.
Movie theater attendant. Attendants help with operating a theater. This may include handling tickets, serving food and beverages, and cleaning after the shows. Possible perks: Free movie admissions.
Work in an amusement park. If you live near a theme park, waterpark, or an amusement park of any kind, that could be a fun job for you. Possible perks: Some parks offer free food and season passes to the employees.
How To Make Money as a Teenager Online
Sell Your Skills on Fiverr. If you have digital skills that others might find helpful, you can sell them as gigs on Fiverr. Whether your skill is web design, social media marketing, video editing, or anything else, you can try making money by offering your digital services on Fiverr's online marketplace.
Sell Your Crafts Online. If you like making crafts of any kind, you can make money by selling your handmade items online. You ask your parents to help set up an Etsy store for your creations and see if you can make a small business out of it.
Make money on social media. You won't be able to make money from the start. Making money on social media takes time and dedication. But you may want to consider social media as a long-term plan for building an income stream or even a career. There are plenty of teens who make money from reviewing products, making tutorials, streaming, and creating other content on YouTube, Twitch, TikTok, Instagram, and other popular social media platforms.
Always check terms and conditions before using any online platform to make sure you meet the minimum age and other requirements.
Why it's Important to Start Earning at an Early Age?
You may be thinking that odd jobs aren't going to get you where you want to be. But you need to start somewhere. The earlier you start the earlier you will learn from experiences and mistakes. And there are bound to be quite a few.
You will practice financial skills and decision-making, and hopefully, you will build good financial habits, such as saving and budgeting, which you will need as an adult.