15 Realistic Ways to Make an Extra $1,000 per Month

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How to Make an Extra $1,000 per Month

What would an extra $1,000 per month mean to you?

For many people, it could:

  • Cover your rent
  • Allow you to leave a job and stay home with your kids
  • Accelerate your debt payoff
  • Allow you save and invest more

Making an extra $1,000 per month can have a huge impact in several different ways, and it’s more attainable than you might think. Even if you already have a full-time job, there are a number of things you can do in your spare time that will give you a chance to make that much each and every month.

In this article, we’ll look at 15 different options that are flexible and offer high enough income potential to reach the goal of $1,000 per month.

1. Freelance

One of the best ways to make extra money is to offer services as a freelancer. A service-related side hustle gives you the potential to earn a very good hourly rate for your time, and you can start making money quickly.

There are many different services that you can offer as a freelancer, and a few of my favorites include:

  • Writing or blogging
  • Web design
  • Social media management
  • Bookkeeping

As a freelancer, you’ll be able to get your work done whenever it fits within your schedule, so it can be very flexible. It can also be as big or small as you want it to be. If you just want to take an extra job here and there, that’s possible. If you want to scale up and make it a full-time income, that’s possible too.

The amount that you’ll be able to make will vary based on several different factors, including the specific services that you offer. Focus on developing your skills to make yourself more valuable, and you’ll be able to demand a higher rate.

If you’re able to charge $50 per hour, which is very reasonable for freelancers in many fields, you would only need to work 20 hours per month in order to make that extra $1,000.

If you want to learn more about how to make money as a freelancer, here are a few excellent courses that are available at Skillshare (you can get free access for two months):

Highlights of freelancing:

  • Many different services that you can offer
  • Start making money quickly
  • Earn a good hourly rate
  • Excellent potential to scale to a full-time income

2. Start a Blog

About 13 years ago, when I was looking to make some extra money, I started my first blog. That blog wound up doing quite well and I was actually able to leave my full-time job about 1.5 years later. For the past 11+ years, I’ve been self-employed as a full-time blogger.

I recommend blogging as a great way to make money because I know it has changed my own life. Blogging can be a perfect way to make some extra money on the side, and the income potential is unlimited.

One of my other favorite reasons to recommend blogging is the fact that you can start a blog on just about any topic that interests you. The work is a lot more fun when you’re writing about something that you enjoy.

Despite all of the great things about blogging, there are a few drawbacks as well. The most significant thing you need to be aware of is that building a successful, profitable blog takes time. Most bloggers don’t make any money for several months, maybe longer. If you need money quickly, starting your own blog is probably not your best option. However, if you have a long-term focus and you’re able to put in some work for a few months without the need to make money quickly, starting a blog can be a great idea and the earning potential is unlimited.

If you like the idea of starting your own blog but you need to start making money quickly, one option is to combine your blogging efforts with some freelancing. For example, when I was working on growing my first blog, I was also actively writing for a few other blogs in the niche on a freelance basis. I was able to make some money through freelancing while I was waiting for income from my own blog to start flowing, Once it did start flowing, I was able to cut back on the freelance work and focus more on growing my own blog.

If you’re interested in the high potential that a blog offers, see my article How to Start a Blog.

Highlights of starting a blog:

  • Start a blog on a topic that interests you
  • Very high income potential
  • Usually takes several months (at least) before you start making any significant money
  • Better as a long-term approach than a way to make quick money

3. Work as a Virtual Assistant

Working as a VA is a great side hustle that could also turn into a full-time business. “Virtual assistant” is a general term and there are tons of different services that you could offer as a VA.

Many VAs offer services related to managing websites or blogs. Small business owners may recognize the importance of their business’s online presence, but they usually will not have the time or experience to handle it on their own. As a VA, you can manage it for them, make a good hourly rate, and give them great results that wouldn’t be possible without your help.

Like other freelance services, working as a VA gives you a very flexible schedule that can be done at your convenience, as long as you can meet deadlines. To make $1,000 per month as a VA, you might only need a few ongoing clients.

Free Workshop - 5 Steps to Become a Virtual Assistant
If you're interested in making money from home, be sure to check out this free workshop from Kayla Sloan. She shows how to use the skills you already have to start making money as a VA.

If you’re looking to learn more, please see my article How to Become a Virtual Assistant.

Highlights of working as a virtual assistant:

  • Many different types of services that you can provide
  • Start making money quickly
  • Some jobs (but not all) will pay well

4. Sell on Amazon

The world’s leading ecommerce platform offers incredible potential to make money. There are several different approaches you could take if you wanted to make money selling on Amazon, including:

Like the others mentioned already, selling on Amazon can be done as a side hustle, or it could become a full-time income.

My wife and I started a side hustle selling private label products on Amazon in 2015. That business made us a six-figure profit in 2016 (while working part-time) and we sold the business in 2017. Private labeling has always been my favorite of the opportunities on Amazon, but you can definitely make money with any of the approaches, and Merch by Amazon can be very enticing because of the passive nature of it. See our Merch by Amazon review for more details about how to make money selling t-shirts and other designs.

If you’re interested in learning more about selling on Amazon, Skillshare offers an excellent series of courses by Sumner Hobart. The first course in the series covers how to do research and find products that will sell. You can get free access for two months.

Highlights of selling on Amazon:

  • Several different business models you can follow
  • High income potential
  • Will require some time and effort before you start making money (especially if you’re starting a private label brand)
  • Very competitive industry
  • Most of the business models (aside from Merch by Amazon) require some form of monetary investment to get started

5. Sell on eBay

Last year I interviewed Nathan Clarke about how he is making $500 – $1,000 per month by selling on eBay, on top of a full-time job. At the time, Nathan had been selling on eBay for about a year and he was seeing steady growth in his income.

This approach involves going to yard sales, estate sales, thrift stores, flea markets, or auctions to find low-priced items that you can buy and resell. It may sound a little intimidating at first, but once you get a feel for the types of items that sell for a nice profit, it’s a relatively easy way to make money.

Flipping items is a perfect side hustle because you can hit yard sales and other places on the weekends, or whenever you’re off, and then list the items in your spare time. Some people are even able to turn this into a full-time income. Check out this free workshop to learn how to start your own profitable flipping business in 14 days or less.

You can also see my list of the easiest things to flip for profit if you want to know what types of items you should be looking for.

To learn more, see How to Sell on eBay for Beginners.

Highlights of selling on eBay:

  • Find cheap items at yard sales, thrift shops, and flea markets and re-sell them on eBay for a profit
  • Requires constantly finding items to flip
  • Income potential is not as high as some other things, like selling private label products on Amazon.

6. Flip Furniture

Similar to the previous point, you can find old furniture for cheap (or sometimes free), fix it up, and sell it for a nice profit. Finding furniture for free or very cheap is not that hard when you know what to look for. You can even use Craigslist to find some great deals. You’ll want to find solid wood furniture that you can paint or furniture that would benefit from re-upholstering.

A while ago, I interviewed Virginia, who partners with her sister to find and flip furniture. In the interview, she shares plenty of tips that will help you to get started quickly – Flipping Furniture for Profit.

Flipping furniture is another option that is perfect as a side hustle because all of the work can be done in your spare time around your existing job or commitments. You could reach $1,000 by simply flipping a few items per month, if you’re dealing with larger items that will sell for higher prices.

Highlights of flipping furniture:

  • Find free or very cheap furniture, improve it, and sell it for a nice profit
  • Solid wood furniture can often be significantly improved with a simple paint job
  • There are a lot of YouTube videos that will teach you everything you need to know about painting wood furniture

7. Dog Walking / Pet Sitting

Dog walking and pet sitting can be a very lucrative side hustle (just read How to Become a Pet Sitter where I interview Lily, who is making $40,000+ per year). You can start a small doggy daycare in your own house, board pets for overnight stays, walk dogs, or whatever works with your schedule.

Rover makes it easy to create a profile as a service provider and to get exposure to pet owners. All of Lily’s clients have found her through Rover.

According to Indeed, the average rate for a dog walker is $15.34 per hour. In order to earn $1,000 at that rate, you would need to work 65 hours per month. However, you could drastically improve the situation by also offering pet sitting or boarding services, which can be more lucrative.

Highlights of dog walking and pet sitting:

  • Excellent income potential
  • Offer both services to make the most money
  • Create a profile on Rover to make it easy for pet owners to find you.
  • Perfect opportunity for animal lovers

8. Combine a Few Side Hustles

While we have already looked at several realistic ways to earn an extra $1,000 per month, possibly one of the easiest and most realistic options is to combine several smaller side hustles. There are a number of great side hustle ideas that make it pretty easy to earn extra money, but individually they do not have the highest earning potential.

Take Our Free Quiz to Find Your Ideal Side Hustle
Just answer a few simple questions and you'll immediately be presented with some suggested side hustles that may be a perfect fit for you. It's free and there is no email optin required - just take the quiz and see the results.

If you need to make $1,000 per month, why not choose a few of these smaller side hustles? Here are a few of the best options:

Donate Plasma – Did you know you can easily make $300 – $400 per month simply by donating plasma? There are centers in just about every city that make it easy to donate for some extra cash. See my article Get Paid to Donate Plasma for all the details about how to get started.

Take Online Surveys – One of the most popular side hustles is to take paid surveys in your spare time. If you’re using a few different survey websites you can pretty easily make a few hundred dollars per month. Best of all, it’s totally flexible and requires no specific skills or experience, so just about anyone can do it.

The best surveys sites include:

Charge Electric Scooters – If you live in an urban area, one of the best side hustle opportunities is to charge scooters for Bird and/or Lime. All you need to do is signup to be a charger, then use the app to find scooters near you that need to be charged. You’ll take them home and plugin them in, and return them once they are fully charged. It’s a great way to make a few hundred dollars per month. See How to Make Money Charging Electric Scooters for more details.

Microtasks – Completing small online tasks offers some of the same perks as taking online surveys. The work is extremely flexible and just about anyone can do it. You can find opportunities through Mechanical Turk, Clickworker, Microworkers, and several others.

Highlights of combing multiple side hustles:

  • Instead of trying to earn a lot from one side hustle, use several easy approaches to make a few hundred dollars with each method
  • May be easier or more realistic than having one side hustle that brings in $1,000 per month
  • Many different options
  • The side hustles allow you to start making money very quickly

9. Pick Up Trash

While it’s not the first option that comes to mind when you think about ways to make money, picking up trash can be a very lucrative side hustle. Brian Winch has been earning six figures picking up trash every year since the 1980’s. His business originally started as a side hustle and he quickly surpassed the income from his full-time job. You can read more about Brian’s fascinating story here.

Although Brian still operates his own business, he’s also written Cleanlots, which is a manual that shows how anyone can start a profitable trash cleanup business in their spare time. Brian’s approach involves removing litter from parking lots at offices, strip malls, and other buildings that have a constant need for these services.

Highlights of picking up trash:

  • Start a litter removal business that services office complexes, strip malls, and other commercial buildings
  • Can be done part-time or full-time
  • Excellent income potential with no experience needed
  • Some business owners are making six-figure incomes

10. Rideshare Driver

Working as a rideshare driver for Uber or Lyft is another very flexible side hustle that you can do whenever you have spare time.

In general, rideshare drivers earn only $8.55 – $11.77 per hour (source), but what you can earn will vary depending on factors like when and where you are driving. If you drive during peak hours, you will be able to earn significantly more, thanks to surge pricing. You’ll also make more driving in urban areas as opposed to rural areas.

Although the overall income from rideshare driving isn’t high-paying in general, it’s possible to do much better than average if you’re driving weekend evenings in an urban area.

Highlights of rideshare driving:

  • Income varies drastically depending on when and where you’re driving
  • Driving in urban areas during peak hours will give you the best chance to make money
  • Don’t forget to calculate the costs of gas and added wear and tear on your car
  • Work as much or as little as you want

11. Delivery Driver

Another option for making money with your car is to work as a delivery driver. You can sign up to deliver packages for Amazon Flex and make $18 – $25 per hour.

There are also several restaurant delivery options through companies like DoorDash and GrubHub.

And delivering groceries through Instacart is another option.

If you like the idea of making money with your car while working a flexible schedule, but you don’t want to have strangers in your car, working as a delivery driver can be a great alternative to being a rideshare driver.

→ Related reading: 9 Companies Offering Flexible Food Delivery Jobs

Highlights of delivery driving:

  • Several different options
  • Earn up to $20+ per hour
  • Don’t forget to calculate the costs of gas and added wear and tear on your car
  • No need to transport other people in your car (as opposed to rideshare driving)

12. Transcription

If you have some typing skills, working as a transcriptionist is a great way to make some extra money. There are many companies and websites that are hiring for transcription jobs, and generally, you can work part-time or full-time hours (see the best transcription jobs here).

Transcription can be an excellent option because it’s highly flexible and you can work from home around your existing schedule. While some jobs are low-paying, there is plenty of work available that pays at a decent rate. According to ZipRecruiter, the average salary for a full-time U.S.-based transcriptionist is more than $59,000. While we’re really looking at part-time jobs for this article, you can see that the income potential is definitely there.

Free General Transcription Mini Course
Learn how to get started as a transcriptionist with this free 7-lesson course from Janet Shaughnessy of Transcribe Anywhere.

To learn how you can start making money, see How to Become a Transcriptionist.

Highlights of transcribing:

  • You must have excellent typing skills (although this can be learned)
  • Good hourly income is possible, although not all jobs will pay well
  • Many websites and companies are hiring transcriptionists

13. Write an Ebook

If you love to write, self-publishing an ebook can be an outstanding way to make money. If you have a website or blog, you could use SendOwl to accept payments and automatically fulfill orders to customers.

Many writers are doing extremely well by selling ebooks on Amazon. One of the best things about this opportunity is that once you have your book written, it can provide passive income each month going forward. To make $1,000 per month, you would need either one very successful ebook on Amazon, or what’s more likely would be to write a few different ebooks.

The only downside to this opportunity is that you won’t start making money immediately. You’ll need to put in some work upfront, but the income potential is very high.

Self-publishing on Amazon is very possible, but if you have no experience with it, you may want to get some direction from an expert. From First Draft to Best Seller: Self Publish and Market a Book That Readers Will Love is a thorough course (on Skillshare) from an accomplished writer that will teach you everything you need to know. Use the link to get free access for two months.

Highlights of self-publishing an ebook:

  • Amazon provides access to a huge audience
  • Potential for a full-time income from somewhat passive income
  • You may need to write multiple ebooks to reach $1,000 per month consistently

14. Start a YouTube Channel

Starting a YouTube channel has many of the same pros and cons as starting a blog, but instead of creating text-based content, you’ll be creating video content. Like blogging, starting a YouTube channel provides you with the potential to earn unlimited income, and to have multiple different streams of income.

Also like blogging, making money with a YouTube channel will require some time and patience. It may take several months, or even a year, before you start making money. It can be a great long-term option, but it’s not ideal if you need to start making money quickly.

If you’re interested in becoming a YouTuber, please checkout the course Stand Out and Make Money on YouTube (created by a pro YouTuber who has more than 5 million followers). The course is available on Skillshare and you can get free access for two months.

Highlights of starting a YouTube channel:

  • Start a channel on a topic that interests you
  • high income potential
  • Usually takes several months (at least) before you start making any significant money
  • Better as a long-term approach than a way to make quick money

15. Rentals

Making money by renting out your stuff is an opportunity that you might not have considered. There are a lot of different things you can rent (see 20 Things You Can Rent Out for Extra Money) an your best opportunities will really depend on what you have at your disposal.

Some of the options include:

  • Your car
  • Your house/apartment or a room
  • Your garage
  • Storage space
  • Office space
  • An RV

With most of the options, it’s possible to use these items yourself and then make extra money renting out the item when you don’t need it. For example, you can keep your car to yourself for those times when you need it, and use Turo or Getaround to rent it out when you don’t need it.

By renting things out, you’re leveraging your possessions to make money. You’re turning ordinary things into income-producing assets. And since the income that you’re making is more dependant on the item that you are renting than it is dependent on your own work, it can be a passive way to make money.

Highlights of rentals:

  • A lot of options, but your best opportunities will depend on what you have
  • Potential for passive income

Now that we’ve taken a look at several different side hustles that can help you to make an extra $1,000 per month, it’s time to take action. Find one that is the best fit for you, and take the first step towards making it happen. Before you know it, you’ll be making some extra money and changing your financial situation.

READ NEXT: How to Start a Side Hustle

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