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The coronavirus has been a disaster not just in terms of health, but for economies around the globe, and it's catastrophically worsened a U.S.  recession that began in February. You may be looking for a little extra income without the commitment of a part-time job, and the internet has made it easier than ever to find one of those flexible gigs to work out alongside your primary occupation — but there’s also more competition for them than ever. Let’s run down the premier methods and websites that may help you earn those extra bucks.

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Ways to Make Money Online

Fill Out Surveys
Many sites pay consumers to complete surveys, which might take anywhere from a few minutes to more than an hour and usually pay in cash or product credits based on the time invested.

  • Survey Junkie members earn "points” equivalent to 1 cent apiece for answering surveys, which may take between one and 20 minutes and pay between 10 and 90 points.
  • LifePoints pays users in “lifepoints” to take surveys, with the points redeemable for gift cards to big-name retailers, charity donations, or PayPal vouchers (which is basically like being paid). You get 10 points for joining and each task bring anywhere from 20 to 100 points, which must be spent within three years of accruing them.
  • Crowdology pays in cash through PayPal, anywhere from 40 cents to $10 or more per survey completed, but most commonly within the 50-cents-to-$2.50 range.
  • Opinion Outpost keeps members active by urging them to “level up” through sharing opinions and then to maintain their status to get rewards through PayPal, or Visa, and through retailers such as Apple, Amazon, Target, and Domino's Pizza.
  • JustAnswer pays users to answer questions posed by other individuals rather than by marketing companies. Topics range from engineering to jewelry appraisals, and you can input your area of expertise and the number of hours you have per week to see your potential earnings.

Use ‘Get Paid to ...’ Sites
These services are like survey sites, except that users earn money or redeemable points through a wider variety of consumer research-related tasks, including watching ads.

  • Swagbucks users get paid in points redeemable for PayPal payouts and other gift cards, and all they have to do is occasionally use Swagbucks’ search engine in place of Google and Yahoo. Additional points earning opportunities include taking surveys, testing games, and cutting coupons.
  • mainly pays users for taking surveys, but also offers chances to earn through more lucrative “paid offers” to sign up for certain websites, watch videos, or provide feedback on ads. A scrolling report of user earnings shows plenty making 50 cents or less on a survey — but others bringing in more than $15 at a time.
  • PrizeRebel ranks as one of the oldest and most well-liked paid survey sites, with additional earning opportunities including access to free contests, promo codes, and other paid tasks. It has a points system with each equivalent to 1 cent, and a low payout threshold of $5.
  • InboxDollars has a high payout threshold of $30, issuable through check, PayPal or epayment option such as prepaid Visa card. Users earn $5 just for signing up, and anywhere from 50 cents to $50 for taking surveys of varying lengths. Other earning opportunities for cash and sweepstakes entries include using their search engine, signing up for outside services, and watching videos.

Earn Money While Shopping
Consumers shopping offline can use apps to earn cash back on grocery and household items, potentially adding up to $10 to $20 a week.

  • iBotta is a free app that gives you small cash rebates, which can still add up to a lot, on name and store brand grocery staples, plus “team” rebate bonuses when you reach certain saving goals in set time periods.
  • Checkout 51 is another app for earning easy cashback on grocery purchases just by uploading your receipt, with a payout threshold of $20 sent by check.
  • Paribus, owned by Capital One, saves users money by watching for price drops on products they already bought from Costco, Walmart, Target, Best Buy, and others. Then the app seeks refunds from the sellers (and says it'll do the same for late deliveries and stuff you need to return).
  • Shopkick users earn rewards in-store and online that can be redeemed for free gift cards to stores such as Starbucks, Target, Sephora, and Amazon.

Earn Cash Back on Purchases
These free websites let online shoppers earn a percentage of the price back when making purchases. They earn a commission which they share with the users for directing them to the online shops in the first place.

  • Dosh users link their credit and/or debit cards to the secure app, then get up to 10% cash back (in increments of $25) for every purchase they make with the card at thousands of affiliated stores and restaurants, plus $5 for every friend you refer.
  • Rakuten (formerly Ebates) is a popular cash-back site that offers frequent signup and referral bonuses, in addition to the money you’ll get back every time you start an online shopping spree through their affiliate links.
  • Mr. Rebates works much like Rakuten, albeit with a harder-to-navigate user interface, and a higher advertised number of participating retailers. The best way to decide between services is to see which accommodates more online stores and product categories specific to your buying habits.
  • MyPoints offers promo codes and deals to members, who also earn points for every dollar spent when shopping through the site. The points are added to users' accounts, which can be cashed out and redeemed for gift cards or a transfer via PayPal.
  • Most banks and credit card companies similarly offer their own rewards cards and programs, including Wells Fargo Wise, Capital One Quicksilver, and Chase Freedom.

Test Video GamesPhoto credit: JJFarquitectos/istockphoto

Test Apps & Games

  • UserTesting pays users $10 for spending 20 minutes test-driving a website, app, or game while their screen and voice reactions are recorded — and users can get up to $120 for a live conversation about their experience. Signup is free.
  • uTest payments depend on a number of factors, including the level of bug you're able to identify and your rating as a tester. This is one of the rare sites that industry watchers say can replace a monthly salary at a traditional job — up to $3,000, anyway. But getting to that level isn't easy.
  • PlayTestCloud is a platform more focused on video-game testing. Players typically earn payments of $9 for a 15-minute "playtest" and related survey.

Make Instagram Pay
Instagram offers another outlet for smartphone photographers to make money. Those with thousands of followers can sign lucrative branded-content deals, but there's no requirement on the number of followers to list Instagram pics for sale on the following sites:

  • Twenty20 has a complicated formula that pays out based not just on how many people use your photos, but what each of those people earn. In the site's payout examples, it shows photographers earning as little as 35 cents or up to $10 from each user in a month.
  • MobilePrints collects a standard charge for making and sending an order, but otherwise lets photographers choose the price-point for their own shots.

Refer Friends to Favorite Sites
Love shopping at a particular ecommerce site or know of a great service? Many companies (including ones on this list) pay out cash or store credit for referring new customers. Tell friends, family, and strangers through word of mouth and social media posts or get offline and hang up flyers or pass out business cards with a referral link.

Collect from the State
All too often, a tax refund, pension payment, savings bond, uncashed check, dividend, utility bill refund, or other payment goes unclaimed by its proper recipient. The state collects and holds onto the money, and will send it upon request. Check to see if there's money out there with your name attached.

Get in ShapePhoto credit: Macy's

Get in Shape
Some services offer cash or coupon rewards for meeting your commitments to keep in shape.

  • HealthyWage is a website that lets individuals and groups set weight loss goals, then rewards them with cash prizes up to $10,000.
  • Walgreens Balance Rewards users connect an activity tracker (such as a Fitbit) to their app an earn points through exercise and regular self-checkups to save money on pharmacy purchases.

Join Buy/Sell/Trade Groups
To sell stuff online but keep things local, join a buy/sell/trade Facebook group such as cash-free BuyNothing, advertising goods, and making arrangements to give or trade goods and cash with a neighbor.

Make Money by Joining the Gig Economy

Selling services through online platforms works best if you have either car to complete tasks and deliveries, or some form of marketable skill such as translating or accounting.

Become a Ride-Share Driver
Check local ordinances and see if you and your vehicle qualify, then sign up to drive with Uber, Lyft, or another ride-sharing service. In the past, there have been bonuses for first-time drivers of up to $1,000, but the rules are in flux with the coronavirus (which has depressed demand for cars), economic downturn, and legal questions about whether drivers are actually counted as full employees.

Do Chores
There are many online marketplaces through which users can make a few extra bucks taking on the daily chores others seek to outsource for convenience, such as mowing the lawn, walking dogs, or even waiting in line. Some of the biggest:

  • TaskRabbit is a platform available in most U.S. metro areas for users to bid on local tasks they’re willing to take on, ranging from cleaning and handyman work to moving and personal assistant tasks. Needless to say, the format favors those willing to bid and work for less.
  • EasyShift has more of a hyperlocal focus, with simple marketing-related tasks specific to your area, such as checking prices at a local retailer or taking pictures of product inventories.
  • Field Agent is similar to EasyShift, but includes scavenger hunts that entail hunting down specific products to answer questions about for typical payments between $3 and $12.
  • Gigwalk is one other service for making quick bucks on a flexible schedule by completing simple retail-related "gigs."

If you have a knack or passion for more creative or cognitive-based tasks, which could range from essay writing and translating to web design and drawing portraits, it’s easier than ever to monetize those skills in your free time.

  • Upwork users post freelance gigs requiring varying time commitments and skill levels for which other users can apply to be considered. Compensation, which may be issued per hour or per word, is usually quite low but may provide useful resume experience for newcomers to their chosen field.
  • is another international marketplace for freelancers to find paying projects in fields such as writing, data entry, and software development. There are free and paid membership options, with the latter enabling users to place more bids on more projects.
  • Fiverr is a website where people can buy or sell all sorts of services for $5 and up — a standard amount that can be a blessing or a curse depending on the assignment. Short translations, writing assignments, cartoon portraits, unique songs, and just about anything that can be delivered online is on the table.
  • 99Designs and Dribbble are platforms for finding freelance design work.
  • CloudPeeps focuses on gigs for marketing and SEO (search engine optimization) professionals.

Write eBooks
Have a creative story to tell or a passion you love to talk about? It may take some time writing and formatting, but these ebook marketplaces now have built-in audiences through which authors can earn a passive income for years to come:

Become a Secret Shopper
Mystery shoppers get paid to buy items at local stores and are reimbursed for their purchases. Sometimes they're even allowed to keep the products. Shoppers are sent to clothing stores, gas stations, drugstores, and even restaurants. A few well-known mystery shopper employers include:

Make Deliveries
Apps, like Instacart, Postmates, UberEats, and Door Dash, that let users order groceries and other goods online pay part-time contractors to deliver those products as suits their own schedule.

  • Instacart shoppers reportedly make up to $20 per hour during busy hours, or as low as $7 when things slow down.
  • Postmates drivers can earn up to $25 an hour, according to the company, and then keep their tips. There's also a $4 base on orders, so no matter what, drivers can expect that pay.
  • DoorDash base payouts range from $2 to $10 or more per delivery, depending on factors such as mileage traveled and route popularity, with minimum earnings complemented by tips and bonuses.
  • UberEats drivers can expect to make on average $8 to $12 an hour

Write Reviews
Companies are willing to pay for honest reviews of products and services, and there are many intermediaries connecting them to average consumers (though online influencers are especially prized).

  • Slicethepie pays users to review music, ads, and fashion items and give feedback to their makers. Each review may be worth only a few cents, but users can increase earnings by leaving consistently thoughtful, high-quality reviews — and discover new artists along the way.
  • Sponsored Reviews lets those who already have their own blog or online outlet get paid for posting sponsored content from advertisers.
  • BzzAgent users get free products and services tailored to their preferences in exchange for posting and speaking about them through online platforms such as Instagram and to friends in person.

Become a Turk
Amazon's Mechanical Turk is a marketplace for small tasks that need a human touch, which could be anything from transcribing text from images to visiting and classifying websites. Sign up to be a Turk and earn extra money online whenever the mood strikes. Reddit users have compiled a useful start-up guide and clue people into the highest-paying gigs.

Tutor From Afar
Online tutors get to teach from the comfort of their homes and keep flexible schedules. In-demand subjects include English, physics, statistics, nursing, sociology, and literature.

  • is one of the premier online marketplaces to find remote tutoring work.
  • iTalki is one of many sites through which native English speakers can connect with students and set their own rates for imparting the language.
  • Alternately, you could seek referrals and build an online presence to strike out on your own.

Consult for Local Businesses
Those with reputable certifications and workable experience in business can offer their services as consultants to small businesses for an especially lucrative side gig. You might advertise through Craigslist or other local platforms. Catalant is a marketplace specifically for MBA alumni to connect with businesses in need of consultants on topics such as fundraising presentations and competitive analysis.

Prepare Tax Returns
If you have a knack for numbers and enough free time, try getting certified as a tax preparer in just a few weeks through online training programs such as the Income Tax School. When tax season rolls around, you can charge competitive rates (up to $200 per return) to prepare taxes for friends and colleagues, or find similar gigs online through the standard freelancing sites.

Pet SitPhoto credit: knape/istockphoto

Taking care of others’ pets can be a rewarding and easy way for animal lovers to earn extra money without taking on too many extra hours’ work. If you’re unable to find this sort of work through referrals, try building a pet-sitting resume.

  • Rover is a dog-focused sharing economy site through which owners pay users to walk, house-sit, or provide boarding for their canine friends during vacations. Sitters can earn up to $1,000 per month with the equivalent time commitment of a part-time job.
  • is another pet-care providing site that also offers a variety of other care services from housekeeping to senior care. Typical gigs pay between $13 and $25.
  • The National Association of Professional Pet Sitters believes you need to spend money to make money — meaning that there's a $149 annual membership and it encourages a $245 certification course. But anyone can use the site to find your services locally, and the certification badge next to your listing can encourage business.

Provide Notary Services
Notaries are people licensed by the government to provide witness to signatures on contracts and act in various other legal capacities. Depending on the state, it can take considerable time, paperwork, and training to become one, but once you do, the certification will make it easy to market your services online and set you apart from the pack for other related freelance gigs.

Make Money Creating Content

Creating your own website, product, or service will involve investing considerable time and effort in creating the product and then getting the word out before seeing even a cent of payment. Nonetheless, it can be a great way to monetize one’s interests and may yield dividends down the line.

Create a Course
If you're an expert on a topic, teach others through an online course. You'll need to know how to create and edit video, or at least a slide show, and use recording equipment to host classes on one of these sites.

  • Udemy takes a cut of each course sale and provides instant access to thousands of students.
  • Teachable leaves marketing the course up to you.

Film Yourself
Making money on YouTube isn't easy, but it's doable. Enlisting the help of cute children or kittens can help, as it's all about the views — and the ads before the video starts. Expect to earn a couple of bucks for every 1,000 views.

Design an App
If you have tech expertise and the right idea, you could try your hand at creating a functioning (and free) app that fills a consumer need and start earning ad revenues through the Android or iOS app stores.

Record a PodcastPhoto credit: nortonrsx/istockphoto

Record a Podcast
Starting a podcast on a subject in which you and your guests have some familiarity can be fun and easy if you have access to the appropriate equipment. You’ll need to build an audience and attract advertisers likely for quite some time, however, before your show starts paying out.

Build a Niche Site
The internet is in perpetual need of content, and you could get paid to make your own just be researching and compiling facts on any subject that interests you — from DIY projects and healthy eating to backpacking and educational apps. After creating your niche site or blog, you can monetize the views you get through affiliate programs.

  • Amazon’s affiliate program lets site owners link to Amazon products in their site copy, then pays them a small amount whenever readers click through or make a purchase through said links.
  • ShareASale works much the same, but services a variety of smaller ecommerce sites.

Answer Questions
There are several sites that let users earn just for answering questions, drawing upon either past expertise or extensive research.

  • JustAnswer pays “experts” to log on and answer questions posed by other users for a posted amount they’re willing to pay. This rarely falls under $20 or exceeds $50, but you’ll only get payment if your answer is accepted.
  • users create a profile advertising their expertise in a specific area of business, then get paid to jump on phone calls with business owners in need of advisement.

Sell Stuff for Extra Cash

Maybe the most obvious way to make money is by selling what you already have, which can have the benefit of alleviating clutter. Online services now make it easier than ever to connect with prospective buyers in your community and around the world, but it’s best to base what service you use on the items you’re selling.

Sell Old Electronics
Some websites specialize in buying used electronics, which net a higher price when only lightly used.

  • Gazelle lets users list their old electronics on pages for the specific device, answering a few questions to determine the item’s condition and general market price. Shipping is free and payment comes in the form of PayPal deposit, check, or Amazon gift card.
  • Nextworth works similarly, with free shipping and recommended quotes to fit the product you’re selling. Compare prices to see which service is likely to earn you more for the device. Again, there are no shipping costs to contend with, and users are paid through PayPal or by check.
  • Decluttr is a smartphone app whose barcode scanner makes listing your products easy.
  • Glyde lets visitors buy premium used cellphones and make some money by selling or trading in their own phones.
  • For more options, most major ecommerce sites let users sell their used electronics and parts, including eBay, Amazon, Facebook Marketplace, and Craigslist.

Sell Gift Cards
Old gift cards can pile up, particularly when they're for a rarely visited store. Turn the store credit into cash by selling gifts cards online.

  • Raise is a mobile and desktop service lets users list their old gift cards for free but collects a 15% commission off the selling price. (For a physical card, that's either $1 or 1% of the remaining value of the card, whichever is more.) Orders are insured and pay out via check, PayPal, or ACH Direct Deposit.
  • Cardpool advertises a cash return of up to 92% for your gift card sales, depending on which retailer it’s for — plus additional cash back for going through affiliate links. This, plus a well-reviewed customer service. make Cardpool seem like the best option for reselling gift cards.

Sell Shirt Designs
Have you ever looked at the T-shirt designs on sale at major clothing retailers and thought, “I can do that”? If so, you can try your hand as an amateur fashion designer and marketer by creating and selling custom T-shirts — and, in some cases, cloth coronavirus mask — through sites such as these.

  • TeeChip handles printing, shipping, and customer service, so all users have to do is upload their designs in more than two dozen categories, attract customers, and pay a 7% fee on their gross payout amount.
  • Teespring works much the same, letting users submit designs in many product verticals. Though it's less upfront about how much in service fees are collected from each purchase, it does provide a profit calculator.
  • Threadless offers sales of even more apparel, home decor, and accessories and subtracts a base cost, which allows the artist to set their own rates on top of that — so, basically the same setup except for the contests it runs among the artists. The prize: space on Threadless' own curated shop.
  • Other prominent sites for independent T-shirt sellers worth comparing include SellMyTees, SpreadShop, and TeePublic.

Flip Garage Sale Items
If you don’t have your own stuff to sell, head to a few local garage sales and look for discount items to sell at a markup online. Head out first thing in the day to get the best merchandise and consider a second run toward the end, when sellers might be more open to negotiations. Preliminary research on what items resell well always helps as well. Common resale sites include:

  • eBay is a long-running ecommerce site that lets you sell products for a set asking price, or through timed auctions. A fee structure allows for 50 listings free per month (and 35 cents after that) for all but some specialty sellers and "final value fees" on sold items of 30 cents per item and a percentage of the final sale price — in most categories save media, 12.35% for anything up to $7,500. (For media such as DVDs and CDS, it's 14.35%.)
  • eBid is a lesser-known eBay competitor that collects just a 5% commission from an item’s final selling price.
  • Bonanza is another competing service. Sellers pay 3.5% commissions, or more depending on how aggressively they want Bonanza to advertise their product for sale.
  • Craigslist, for those that don’t know, is a classifieds website where users can buy, sell, and exchange most any product or service. It’s a simple platform to use, but given the site’s relatively little oversight or restrictions, all transactions are basically conducted at your own risk.
  • Facebook Marketplace is the social media giant’s platform for resales — different from Craigslist in that sellers have Facebook profiles that you can check out to get a sense for who's selling to you. And if you like to haggle over price, you can do it immediately via Facebook Messenger.

Sell Furniture and Decor OnlinePhoto credit: Elena Dijour/shutterstock

Sell Furniture and Decor Online
If a garage sale isn’t an option or the weather isn't cooperating, there are online opportunities for selling wares. In addition to Craigslist and eBay, there's:

  • Etsy provides mostly antique or artisan-made items, so works best if you don’t mind repurposing or renovating your goods for resale.
  • Chairish is an online secondhand furniture marketplace that vets items to ensure their vintage and/or modern pedigree.
  • AptDeco is a sophisticated Craigslist alternative that handles a fair number of higher-end brands (including Restoration Hardware, CB2, and West Elm) and charges fees that takes such factors into account, ranging from 25% to 38%. But it's centered around New York City — not even all of Connecticut is served.

Flip Designer Clothes and Accessories
If you’re a fashion obsessive looking to offload some of your wardrobe for cash, there are numerous resale sites specializing in luxury consignment items.

  • TheRealReal is an online consignment shop for designer items that emphasizes their authenticity and value — but as one consignor put it, “it’s a buyer’s not seller’s market,” and low prices plus a complicated commission chart can result in bringing home less than half the listed value, which can be disconcertingly low even for top names in fashion such as Comme des Garçons and Alexander McQueen. At least the process is pain free, with a video consult and free shipping via UPS, with the rest being handled by the site's team.
  • Material Wrld is largely about styling customers with the secondhand clothing it takes in, but you can take advantage of those trade-ins so long as the clothing is on the right list of designers and in good shape. The value is credited to a Material Wrld debit cards or partner shop gift cards and gift certificates.
  • ThredUp is a better option if your clothes and accessories aren’t all high-end designer brands, with an online payout calculator to help users know what to expect back before listing their items.
  • Poshmark lets users upload their items for resale in under a minute, and the sales themselves are posted on Facebook and Instagram, meaning social media engagement may drive how successful you are through this service.
  • Rebag specializes specifically in luxury handbags with a strict list of accepted designers.
  • I Do Now I Don't is an online marketplace specifically for reselling diamond rings and other jewelry risk-free.

Sell Photographs
A few stunning photographs shot with a smartphone or DSLR camera could lead to extra dough. Shutterbugs can enter photography contests — Photo Contest Insider lists many — or try to sell prints at local coffee shops or galleries (or at least you can try when they reopen fully). Certain sites also let people who upload and tag photos earn licensing fees when someone buys the images, with payouts often well over $100, although some charge subscription fees that lower the profits a bit. They include:

Sell Your Data
If you don’t have anything tangible to sell, you always have data, an increasing (if still low-cost) commodity in the digital age. Several companies pay smartphone users to install apps that record how they use their phones and occasionally conduct surveys or product trials.

  • Smart Panel — currently invite only — has been known to pay users $5 for qualifying for their Smart App and $5 for every month of use after that, as well as a "loyalty bonus" of $10 after the first six months, then $15 for every three months after that.
  • Nielsen Mobile App, run by the same company that defines TV ratings, enters users in sweepstakes it says pays out $10,000 monthly for letting them record their mobile habits. But it comes at a steep cost in performance speed, according to some consumer reviews.
  • Mobile Xpression lets you earn gift cards, cash, and product credits in exchange for providing access to their messaging, camera, and browsing data. Historically, members have received a $5 Amazon gift card for their first week, then about $20 a year after that.

Ways to Make Money Without a Computer

Of course, not all part-time earning opportunities revolve around the internet. There are plenty more old-fashioned ways to make money offline, though they’ll work best if you have a strong community to connect with potential customers or clients.

Street performing (busking) is a tried-and-true way to collect a few bits. Some people make a living from busking and even gain international recognition. The Naked Cowboy, based in New York City's Time Square, has appeared (in animated form) on "The Simpsons" and inspired many copycats. Playing music, telling jokes, making street art, posing as a living statue, doing acrobatics, and a host of other activities are well-known forms of busking.

Help the Neighbors
Short, one-off jobs are a good way to earn extra income. Let the neighbors know you're willing to dog walk, housesit, water plants, rake leaves, etc., and look for public forums online and off like Facebook groups or bulletin boards on which to advertise. This could be particularly effective during the winter holidays or when families take vacations in the summer.

Participate in Focus Groups
In-person focus groups can pay hundreds of dollars to people who fit the desired profile. Most often participants need to live in or near a major city, because that's where many reputable companies are based.

  • Plaza Research owns one of the nation’s largest networks of focus group facilities through which it connects market researchers and respondents, who sign up online and may wait weeks before being contacted and months between surveys. Payment depends on the length and scope of the focus group.
  • Fieldwork participants get payment starting at $75 for every focus group they participate in.
  • L&E Opinion’s studies typically last one to two hours and pays from $50 to $100 each hour through a prepaid Visa card or merchant ecard.

Host a Garage Sale
Everyone has a little clutter they'd like to clear out of their home. Though it may not be an option immediately, hosting a garage sale is a good way to sell unwanted items, although you may not get top dollar for your goods. Join with a few neighbors to organize a block sale and attract more shoppers.

Sign Up for Medical Research Studies
Medical research studies often pay hundreds or thousands of dollars. Studies may involve taking drugs that are still in development, but not every study requires medication. For example, some people get paid thousands to participate in sleep studies. Find studies looking for participants through ResearchMatch, the Institute of Translational Health Sciences, and others.

Donate Plasma
People older than 18 and weighing at least 110 pounds may be eligible to donate plasma. Donors may need to undergo medical screenings and examinations. Once cleared, they can earn about $20 to $50 per donation, depending on how much plasma is collected.

Donate Sperm or Eggs
Women can earn upward of $1,500 for donating their eggs, a lengthy process that entails several clinical visits for prescreening, testing, and operating. For men donating sperm the time investment and payout are smaller, netting between $50 and $200 per donation following a similar screening process.

Make Money Renting What You Own

If you have a spare bedroom or vehicle doing little more than gathering dust, you can monetize it with a minimal amount of work by renting it out through the online sharing economy.

Your Bedroom Becomes an OasisPhoto credit: zuzulicea/istockphoto

Rent Your Place
If you have an extra room or often leave your place unoccupied while traveling, you can establish a steady income stream by listing it on various websites for vacation rental. Just make sure to check if your state or locality has any requirements for renting before you create the listing.

  • Airbnb is the largest online platform for listing homes, rooms, and individual beds for short-term rental. More recently it's started selling tourism “experiences” such as city tours that users can also organize and host for extra money. Hosts are charged at least a 3% service fee on reservations.
  • Vrbo is a vacation rental platform with fewer listings and generally higher commission fees for hosts averaging 8% (or a $499 annual fee).

Rent Your Car
The sharing economy gives car rental companies a run for their money too, with consumer-to-consumer sites through which users can rent out their idle vehicles for visitors to use.

  • Turo is the largest service for peer-to-peer car rentals, available nationwide and across Canada. As with Airbnb, users can be assured of others’ trustworthiness by checking reviews received from past renters.
  • Getaround makes the rental process more streamlined (if impersonal) by allowing users to pick up and gain access to cars through the app alone.
  • Sidecar is for renting out space within a car rather than the whole car itself, meaning vehicle owners can get paid to carpool when commuting or undertaking long road trips.

Rent Your Parking Space
Parking is a valuable commodity in many cities, so those living in desirable high-traffic areas can easily earn hundreds each month just by renting out space in their driveway or carport. Of course, there are apps that can help you do so.

  • Parqex users get 85% of the profits for renting spaces by the hour, day, week, or month. You can also rent an entire garage and let renters open it through the app so you needn’t be home at all times.
  • Parking Cupid once charged an annual membership fee, but now it's free to post a listing, and it says there are no commissions and parking space owners get paid cash directly from drivers.
  • Curbflip has a broader focus, so users can also rent out spots for bicycles, campers, and boats.

Rent Your Extra Space
Lucky enough to have more space in your home or garage than you can use? Consider renting out a corner to someone in need of some extra room for their belongings. Neighbor, which bills itself as the "Airbnb of storage," matches people looking for anything from an extra closet or shed to a spot to store an RV with nearby neighbors willing to share — for a fee, of course.

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