How to Make an Extra $500 a Month: 15 Practical Ways
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If you’re looking for ways to make extra money outside of your job, you’re in luck. There are a number of practical, easy ways to make an extra $500 per month.
In this blog post, we’ll share fifteen realistic possibilities. From renting out storage space to designing t-shirts, we’ve got you covered. So, whether you’re looking to pay down debt or save money for a rainy day, read on for some practical tips and side hustle ideas you can start implementing today.
How to Make an Extra $500 a Month
If you’re looking for some extra income, here are 15 of the best and most realistic ways to generate an additional $500 each month. You’ll find a wide variety here, including some options for working online and others that involve offline work.
1. Rent Out Storage Space
Do you have some extra space in your basement, attic, garage, or shed that you’re not using? How about an unused bedroom, shipping container, carport, driveway, parking space, or even an unpaved lot?
If you have some extra space you don’t need, why not turn it into ongoing passive income by renting it out? And if you don’t think you have any unused space, maybe you have a space you could clean out if it would lead to a few hundred dollars of easy money each month.
Neighbor makes it easy to turn your unused space into extra cash. It’s a peer-to-peer rental platform and there are no fees to list your space for rent. When someone rents your space, Neighbor handles the payments and they charge a 4.9% processing fee. They also charge $0.30 per reservation, but you’re able to keep most of the money from your rented-out space.
Neighbor makes it easy to earn extra cash by renting out storage space in your basement, attic, garage, or even a shed. Make extra money each month without needing to spend time on a side hustle.
- Earn thousands of dollars per year
- Very little time or effort required
- Neighbor markets your space to people in your local area
- Set your own rates
- Neighbor handles all the payments for you
While there are many ways to make money outside of a job, most of them require a lot of time and effort. There are very few ways to generate truly passive income, but a rental side hustle is among the best and most realistic options. If you’re renting out storage space, you’ll need to make sure the space is clean and ready for the renter, but there’s not much else needed from you. Neighbor will help you find a renter and they also handle all of the payments, so you’ll never have to chase down a renter to collect a payment.
Best of all, it’s possible to make real money with your storage rental side hustle. Many people need to rent storage space, so there’s plenty of demand.
Of course, the amount you make will depend on a number of factors like the size of the space and the location, but the income potential may be surprising. For example, according to Neighbor, an empty garage could be rented for $100 – $600 per month. That’s an extra $1,200 – $7,200 per year that requires very little work on your part.
To get started with your rental side hustle, visit Neighbor and create your free account to list your space (it only takes a few minutes).
Highlights of renting out storage space:
- Excellent source of ongoing passive income
- Takes very little work but has the potential to generate significant extra income
- Requires no particular skills or experience
- Many people have unused space in their garage, shed, basement, attic, etc. that could be rented out
- Neighbor makes it easy to get exposure for your space and find a renter
- Ideal opportunity for people with busy schedules
Hopefully, you’re already investing for the long term and preparing for retirement. But short-term trading and investing has become a popular side hustle over the past few years. It’s important to point out that day trading and other short-term investing strategies involve risk and should be done with caution, but it can be a good fit in the right situation.
If you’re interested in the stock market or cryptocurrency, you may enjoy investing as a way to make extra money.
Getting started as a trader or investor is easier than ever before thanks to platforms like Webull and Robinhood. Both of these brokers offer commission-free trades, no account minimums, and the ability to buy fractional shares. You can trade stocks, options, ETFs, or cryptocurrency.
Webull is a free investing app that provides advanced reporting tools and allows you to make free trades of stocks, ETFs, and options. Right now Webull is offering up to 12 free stocks when you signup through our link (use the button below) and deposit any amount.
- Commission-free trades of stocks, ETFs, options, and cryptocurrency
- Buy fractional shares for any amount
- Extended trading hours
- Advanced reporting tools
- IRAs now available
- 24/7 customer service
Webull is a popular choice for both short-term and long-term investors because of the excellent research and analysis tools it provides. They also offer significantly more crypto tokens than Robinhood, so you’ll have far more choices.
Webull currently offers new users up to 12 free stocks for trying the platform. You’ll get two free stocks (each worth $3 – $3,000) for signing up. Deposit any amount to get up to 10 more free stocks. Sign up for Webull through this link to be eligible for the bonus.
If you’re interested in trading crypto but don’t have much experience, eToro is an interesting platform that you’ll definitely want to check out. Through their CopyTrader program, you can automatically copy the trades of high-profile crypto traders. When they make a trade, the same trade will be made automatically to your account.
Of course, using CopyTrader comes with risk as well, but it could be a good option if you’d like to learn more (and potentially make money at the same time) by following the moves of an experienced crypto trader.
If you’re looking to get involved with real estate, you could invest with Fundrise or Arrived. Both of these platforms are for long-term investors, but you can generate monthly or quarterly dividends by investing.
Fundrise is the easiest way to invest in a portfolio of income-generating properties. You'll get the benefits of owning real estate with a totally passive, hands-off investment.
- Excellent track record and historical returns
- Invest in a diverse portfolio of properties
- Earn quarterly dividends
- User-friendly platform
- Start with as little as $10
- $10 bonus with your first investment
With Fundrise, you’ll be investing in a professionally-managed portfolio of income-generating properties. Fundrise returns have historically been very solid, and it’s a completely hands-free investment. And you can get started with as little as $10.
Arrived provides a passive way to invest in rental properties. Instead of owning the property and having responsibilities related to managing the property and dealing with tenants, you’ll be a passive investor. You’ll own a share of the property, but you’ll have no responsibilities for managing it. By starting with as little as $100, you can choose the extra properties you want to invest in.
The easiest way to get started is to create a free account with Webull. You can trade stocks, options, ETFs, and crypto with no commissions.
Highlights of investing:
- Investing involves risk, so don’t invest money that you can’t afford to lose
- Investing in stocks and cryptocurrency has become a popular side hustle
- Apps like Webull are ideal for retail investors
- You can also invest in real estate to generate passive income
3. Build a Niche Website
A niche website is a content-based site that focuses on a specific topic or subject. They typically generate money through affiliate marketing and display ads, although other monetization methods are possible as well.
You can start a niche website on just about any topic, so the possibilities are endless. If you enjoy yoga, maybe you start a website with articles and tips related to yoga. If you have experience with woodworking, maybe you create a website with woodworking tutorials and articles.
The income potential from a niche website is significant, so $500 per month is probably not the ultimate goal (it might take you a year to reach that level). You could earn thousands or tens of thousands of dollars per month with a successful website, so it’s an ideal side hustle for someone with an interest in building an online business.
The downside of building a niche website is that it takes time and patience. Most people don’t make much money for the first six months or more, so it’s probably not the ideal choice if you need to start making money right away.
However, your efforts can pay off in a big way if you stick with it. Once your site is generating a significant amount of traffic on autopilot (niche sites usually prioritize search engine traffic), you can make a considerable income without putting as much time or effort into it. A niche website is not going to be completely passive unless you hire someone to do all of the work, but there’s definitely a passive aspect to it, the way the site’s income may continue to grow while your working hours stay the same or decrease.
If you want to learn more about niche websites, see my Complete Guide to Building a Profitable Niche Website.
Highlights of niche websites:
- Excellent long-term income potential
- You may not make much money the first six months or more, so it’s not ideal if you need money now
- You can start a niche site on the topic of your choice
- Excellent option for anyone looking to build an online business and make money online
If you have some typing skills, working as a transcriptionist is an excellent side hustle or even a full-time opportunity. There are many companies that hire transcriptionists (see our list of the best transcription jobs) and the work is extremely flexible.
Most online transcription jobs allow you to work as much or as little as you want, whenever it fits into your schedule. If you’re looking to make an extra $500 per month, that’s a very realistic goal that should be easy to achieve.
Learn how to get started as a transcriptionist with this free 7-lesson course from Janet Shaughnessy of Transcribe Anywhere.
- Learn the two keys to success as a transcriptionist
- Use your existing typing skills
- Work part-time or full-time
- Work from home or anywhere with an internet connection
It’s possible to start as a transcriptionist and begin making money very quickly, one of the reasons why this side hustle is so attractive.
If you’re looking to maximize your income and turn it into a full-time job, working as a freelancer is a better option than going through one of the platforms that offers work to just about anyone. As a freelancer, you’ll have a better opportunity to land higher-paying clients.
To get started with transcription work, be sure to take advantage of the free 7-day mini course that’s offered by Transcribe Anywhere. It provides an excellent introduction to general transcription.
Highlights of transcription work:
- Very flexible, set your own hours and make extra money
- There are many online platforms where you can find transcription work
- Working as a freelancer will give you the best income potential
- The courses from Transcribe Anywhere will help you to build a successful freelance transcription business
5. Rent Out Your Truck
If you own a pickup truck or cargo van, listing it for rent on Fetch is an easy way to start making extra money. It doesn’t require much of your time, and you’ll be able to get some extra cash each month. In fact, you can make up to $1,800 per month for listing a single vehicle for rent.
Of course, renting out a truck isn’t going to be a practical option for everyone (most people don’t have a truck to rent out). However, it’s an excellent opportunity for truck owners who need some extra income. The amount you can generate from this rental side hustle is pretty significant, so it could be well worth the small amount of effort it requires.
Once your truck is listed for rent, Fetch will handle the marketing to help people in your local area to find your rental. Thanks to Fetch’s smart device, renters will be able to get into the vehicle without the key, which means you won’t have to meet the renters face to face. You’ll be responsible for cleaning the truck between renters, but aside from that, it’s mostly passive.
Want to start making money with your truck? Learn more about Fetch and create your listing.
Rent out your truck and make money passively with Fetch. Fetch's platform automates most of the process for you. They'll promote your rental to people in your local area, handle all customer inquiries, renter verification, and payment. The Fetch smart device even allows renters to unlock your truck with their phone so you don't have to meet them in person.
- Great side hustle for busy people
- Turn your truck into an income-generating asset
- Excellent income potential
- Rent out a single truck or build your own fleet
- Fetch guarantees that you'll make at least $1,500 in the first 90 days
Highlights of renting out your truck:
- Mostly a passive way to make money
- Fetch handles the marketing, payments, and most customer service issues
- Significant income potential. Make up to $1,800 per month.
6. Freelance Writing
If you enjoy writing, working as a freelance writer may be your ideal side hustle for extra cash. This is an excellent opportunity because it could be a small side hustle or it could turn into a full-time business. Earning an extra $500 per month is very realistic and could be achieved quickly.
I’ve done a lot of freelance writing over the years, and one of my favorite things about this side hustle is the ongoing work. If you’re writing for blogs and websites, they probably need new content on a regular basis. If you get a few clients who need articles every week or every month, you won’t need to spend time or energy looking for new clients. That’s a huge plus because you can spend all your time doing the work that generates income.
With the massive amount of content that’s published online every day, there’s a strong demand for skilled writers. And contrary to what you might think, you don’t need a lot of experience to get started. Read our list of freelance writing jobs for beginners and you’ll see that this is a beginner-friendly side hustle.
When it comes to freelance writing, the rates and payment will vary significantly. You may see a low-paying job somewhere and assume that all freelance writing gigs pay poorly, but that’s not the case. In fact, there are plenty of writing gigs that pay very well. The first few gigs you land may not pay all that well, but you can certainly work your way up to high-paying freelance writing jobs.
Interested in getting started? Freelance Writing 101 by Brad Merrill provides an outstanding overview that will get you started on a solid foundation.
Highlights of freelance writing:
- Excellent income potential
- Could provide a part-time or full-time income
- Many clients (especially websites and blogs) hire writers for ongoing assignments
- There’s plenty of work available
- It’s possible to make good money writing about something you enjoy
7. Become a Delivery Driver
Working as a delivery driver is one of the most popular gig economy jobs, and for good reason. Thanks to companies like DoorDash, you can sign up today and start working very quickly (as soon as you pass a background check), so it’s a good option if you need quick cash.
Working as a delivery driver for DoorDash is a great way to make extra money. Set your own hours and work as much or as little as you choose, and start making money very quickly.
- Available in over 7,000 cities
- Be your own boss
- Start accepting deliveries right away
- Know how much you'll earn before accepting an order
- Use any car (no vehicle requirements)
The schedule is completely flexible. You can work whenever it fits into your schedule, as much or as little as you want (subject to availability). You could make deliveries on the weekends, over your lunch break, or turn it into a full-time job.
While ridesharing apps like Uber and Lyft provide opportunities for drivers, there are a few advantages to working as a delivery driver instead:
- With deliveries, you won’t have to give rides to strangers (a potential safety concern).
- Your car won’t get as messy since you won’t have people riding in it all the time.
- DoorDash allows you to use any vehicle, whereas Uber and Lyft have strict requirements for rideshare vehicles.
Of course, you’ll need to budget for added maintenance and wear and tear since you’ll put more miles on your car, but that’s the case with any driving-related side hustle.
If you’re ready to get started, we recommend DoorDash because they’re in more than 7,000 cities, there’s plenty of work available, and you can use any vehicle to make the deliveries.
Highlights of being a delivery driver:
- Start making money quickly
- Earn a decent amount per hour
- Very flexible hours
- DoorDash allows drivers to use any vechicle (unlike ride sharing gigs)
8. Start a Print-on-Demand Business
Have you ever considered starting your own business selling t-shirts, calendars, mugs, and other customized products? If you’re like most people, you probably haven’t, but maybe you should.
Thanks to print-on-demand, anyone can make money by selling products without the need to spend money on inventory or even touch the actual products.
There are many different ways you could go about it, and many different products you could sell. You could set up your own e-commerce website on Shopify and use one of their print-on-demand integrations to fulfill orders from your customers. Another option is to sell on a Marketplace like Amazon through Merch by Amazon or Kindle Direct Publishing (for books and e-books).
A print-on-demand business will provide you with unlimited income potential, but since you’re starting a business, it may take some time and effort before you begin making money. This is another possibility that’s ideal for someone who wants to build an online business with a long-term focus.
This is an ideal side hustle if you have some design skills and you’d like to design t-shirts or other products. But it’s still a legit possibility for extra money even if you’re not a designer. You can easily hire a freelance designer on sites like Upwork to create the designs for you.
If you’re interested in getting started, be sure to check out From Design to Product: Sell Your Art Online Through Print on Demand.
Highlights of print-on-demand:
- Good option if you want to build an online business and make money online
- Ideal for creative people with some design skills
- Excellent income potential, but it might take a while to build up your business
- Sell on your own website using Shopify or sell on marketplaces like Amazon
9. Create and Sell Printables
Another type of product you can create and sell is printables. This can include things like planners, calendars, organizers, checklists, charts, and more.
You can start an Etsy shop and sell your printables on this popular marketplace, or sell them on your own website. Selling on your own website will give you the best income potential, but you’ll need to build up your own audience rather than tapping into Etsy’s established audience.
The technical setup of selling printables on your own site is surprisingly easy thanks to solutions like SendOwl and Shopify.
Just like print-on-demand, this is another option that’s ideal for someone with design skills, but you definitely don’t have to be a designer to create printables. Printables By Number is a helpful course that shows how anyone can design printables that sell. And of course, you could always hire a freelancer on Fiverr if you don’t want to do the work yourself.
Access this free workshop and learn how to generate passive income by selling printables on Etsy. You'll learn about the types of products that sell, how to get your Etsy shop set up, and how to make sales and ensure that your shop is a success.
This is the perfect side hustle if you:
- Want to work from home
- Don't have much time
- Like the idea of selling on Etsy
- Don't have prior experience
Highlights of selling printables:
- Could be a small side hustle or turn into a full-time business
- You don’t need to be a designer to create printables that sell
- Sell on Etsy or your own website
- Potential for passive income once your shop is established
10. Sell Your Art and Designs
If you’re an artist, designer, or photographer, you may be able to make some extra money by selling your work. Sites like Redbubble make it easy to upload your artwork, designs, and photos to be sold as prints or on a wide variety of products.
This is an ideal side hustle for creatives because you can turn your hobby into extra cash. You’ll enjoy the work more than you would enjoy most other side hustles, and it can also serve as a creative outlet.
With some of the other side hustles on this list, I’ve mentioned that they could be part-time or full-time. While it’s possible to turn this one into a full-time income, it would be very difficult. Selling your art or designs is more ideal as a side hustle for most people.
To get started, see the Sell Art Online Masterclass.
Highlights of selling your art and designs:
- Use Redbubble or other marketplaces to sell your work on prints and other products
- Excellent side hustle for creatives
- Difficult to turn into a full-time income
11. Rent Out an RV or Camper
Do you own an RV or camper? If so, what do you do with it when you’re not using it?
Chances are, it just sits around. By renting it out when you’re not using it, you can turn that RV or camper into an income-generating asset that creates passive income.
There’s strong demand for RV and camper rentals because most people don’t own them. As a result, you can make a significant amount of money by simply allowing other people to use your RV or camper when you don’t need it.
RVshare is the largest platform for peer-to-peer RV rentals, and you can make up to $22,000 per year with a travel trailer or up to $60,000 per year with a Class A motor home.
Do you own an RV? If so, you can make a great passive income by renting it out when you're not using it. RVshare is a platform that connects RV owners with renters.
- Use the RV when you want, rent it out when you don't need it
- Turn your RV into an income-generating asset
- Passive income opportunity
- You control all the details like pricing
- Largest RV marketplace
With RVshare’s large established audience, finding renters is usually pretty easy. Just create a detailed listing so people can find it, and you’ll be well on your way to making money.
Chances are, you’ll be able to make far more than $500 per month by renting out an RV or camper. And best of all, you can start making money very quickly. Unlike the side hustles that involve building a business, making money right away is a realistic goal.
To get started, visit RVshare and create a listing for your RV or camper.
Highlights of renting out an RV or camper:
- Turn your RV or camper into an income-generating asset
- Serious earning potential
- Generate passive income
- There’s strong demand for RV and camper rentals
Microtasks are very small tasks that take no more than a few minutes to complete. There are many microtasking websites that allow you to make money with this extremely flexible side hustle for extra income.
It’s important to point out that microtasking is not the most lucrative side hustle. But what it lacks in high-income potential, it makes up for in flexibility. With microtasks, you can work as much or as little as you want, and you can work in your spare time whenever it’s convenient for you.
Earn cash easily whenever you have a few minutes to spare. It's a simple side hustle that anyone can do. Plus, you'll get a $5 bonus when you sign up today.
- Get paid to take online surveys
- Watch videos and earn cash
- Make money by playing games
- Complete special offers for the highest payouts
- Get paid in cash
Since the tasks are so small, you can work any time you’ve got a few minutes to spare. Depending on the task, you may even be able to complete the work while you’re doing other things, like watching a movie.
Another significant advantage of this side hustle is that it requires no specific skills and anyone can do it. If you’ve ever had trouble finding ways to make extra money, microtasking could be a solution.
Some of the best websites for microtasks are:
- Swagbucks ($5 signup bonus)
- InboxDollars ($5 signup bonus)
- MyPoints ($10 signup bonus)
With these sites, you can make money by taking surveys, watching videos, downloading apps, taking advantage of special offers, and more.
Highlights of microtasking:
- Limited income potential
- Flexible work that can be done whenever you have a few minutes to spare
- No experience or skills required
- Redeem your earnings as a gift card or cash
13. Clean Houses
A service-related side hustle could be the perfect way to earn extra cash, and cleaning houses is a practical option. Many people don’t have the time to stay on top of their own cleaning, and others have physical limitations that make it difficult. You can offer your services to people in your local area and earn extra money with your part-time business.
Earning an extra $500 per month is extremely realistic with a cleaning business, and it could also grow into something bigger if you’re interested.
To find your first few clients, talk to people in your network (friends, family, neighbors, coworkers, etc.) and let them know about the services you’re offering. Some of them may be interested in hiring you, and others may know someone who is looking for a cleaner.
Word-of-mouth is the best way to grow your business, but you can also advertise on local bulletin boards or on Craigslist.
To learn more, please read How to Start a Cleaning Business in 10 Simple Steps.
Highlights of cleaning houses:
- Cleaning services are needed by people in your local area
- Earning $500 per month is extremely realistic
- You can probably find your first few clients through your personal network
14. Work as a Handyman
Working as a handyman or handywoman is another service you can provide in your local area for extra money. This is a great option if you’re good at working with your hands or fixing things. You might be paid to paint, install light fixtures, repair damaged things, or any number of other odd jobs.
One of the best things about working as a handyman is that you may be able to earn a very good rate. According to ZipRecruiter, the average handyman makes $26 per hour, but some charge $40 per hour or more. If you made $25 per hour, you’d only need to work 20 hours per month to make an extra $500.
Getting started as a handyman is like most other local services. It’s best to start with your personal network to see if you have friends or family that need your services, or maybe they know someone who does.
For more details, please read How to Start Handyman Business.
Highlights of working as a handyman:
- Good income potential
- Plenty of work available
- You can probably find your first few clients through your personal network
15. Become a Dog Walker
Working as a dog walker is an ideal side hustle, especially if you want to get some exercise and make money at the same time. According to ZipRecruiter, the average dog walker makes $14 per hour.
Many pet owners have a busy schedule and aren’t able to walk their own dogs, or maybe they’re elderly or not physically able to do it. If you’re in good health, this can be an easy way to help pet owners and make money.
Some people combine pet sitting and dog walking to increase their earning potential.
If you want to make money as a dog walker, Rover is an app that helps pet owners find service providers like you. You can create a profile for free so people in your local area can find you.
Highlights of being a dog walker:
- Get exercise and make money
- Decent income potential
- Plenty of work available
- Can be combined with pet sitting to maximize your income
16. Restore and Flip Furniture
If you enjoy working with your hands, flipping furniture could be an excellent side hustle. This involves finding old furniture, giving it new life, and selling it for a profit.
The key is to find the right pieces that give you an opportunity to earn a profit. Typically, solid wood furniture is best, but you may also have success with items that can be reupholstered.
With solid wood furniture, your work may involve sanding, painting, and adding new hardware. Of course, some projects may get more involved, but most successful furniture flips are fairly simple. And you don’t need a lot of skills or experience to get started. There are YouTube videos that will teach you everything you need to know.
You can find free or inexpensive furniture at yard sales, flea markets, and even along the side of the road. Once you’ve improved the piece, you can sell it on Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist. Be sure to take quality photos that will help the furniture look appealing.
The income potential here is quite good, as long as you’re able to find the right pieces. You may be able to make $500 per month just by working on a few items each month.
See our article Flipping Furniture for Profit to learn more.
Highlights of flipping furniture:
- Very flexible work
- The work is easier than you might expect
- Opportunities may be limited in the winter if you rely on yard sales to find pieces to flip
Final Thoughts on Way to Make an Extra $500 Per Month
If you’re looking to boost your income, there are plenty of options. In this article, we’ve covered some side hustles to make money online, as well as others that involve offering a service in your local area.
Some of them allow you to start making money right away and others require some time and patience as you build a business. If you’re wondering how to make an extra $500 per month, you should be able to find something here that’s well suited for your situation.
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