70+ Ideas for How to Make Money as a Kid [Ages 6-18]

How To Teach Your Kids About Money And Work

I just want you to know that it took everything in me not to start this section out with “back in my day.” The truth is, things are different now from how they were 30+ years ago. Change isn’t necessarily bad, but there is definitely generational differences.

It seems that each generation is better off than the last. As parents, we want our kids to have everything we didn’t when we were younger. Unfortunately, this can create many kids that are spoiled brats that don’t understand how work and money are tied together.

We all know those kids who get whatever they want without working for it. The entitlement factor is extremely high, and unfortunately, these kids struggle as they get older. As adults, we understand that to feed your family, we need to go to work. Nothing in this life is free, as you are aware.

The Benefits of Teens Getting a Job

Starting at age fourteen in the United States, teenagers can get a job with limited hours. While the initial draw of a job is to make money, there’s a long list of other life skills, education, and perspective teens gain.

In fact, college admissions officers told Quartz that applicants who hold jobs over the summer are far more enticing than those who volunteer at an orphanage in India or interned on Wall Street.

According to Susan Warner, an independent college counselor in New York City:

Colleges will forever find holding a job more attractive, and far sexier than going to Costa Rica to build houses and surf in the afternoons,”

Jobs, especially the mundane, unimpressive kind, can expose kids to different mindsets and social classes. And unlike volunteer travel, kids need to work to not only obtain but also retain a job – a good lesson for kids to learn before launching a career. Other benefits of having a job include:

  • learning how to fill out an application and be interviewed
  • possibly experience rejection (if application isn’t accepted)
  • the experience of being managed and directed by a boss
  • possibly gaining exposure to different mindsets and social classes (i.e. privileged kids working minimum wage)
  • being given the responsibility to follow a schedule that neither the teen nor their parents designed
  • experiencing boredom at work
  • learning the appropriate way to interact with co-workers and customers

Video

Make Money Fast As A Kid – At Any Age

Here I will give you a list and explanation of some of the best ideas for children to make money. It involves a little work, but you will make more money by doing some of these chores instead of online surveys.

4. Recycle Aluminum Cans Cans For Cash

This was probably my favorite way to make money when I was young. We would collect cans at home in a separate bin and take the cans to a recycler when the bin filled up. With an entire bin, I usually could make about 30 dollars from the collection.

When I needed extra money, I would go around the neighborhood and look for cans or check trash cans for soda cans that people threw away. Not only can you make extra money by looking for cans, but you can also clean up the neighborhood!

5. Recycle Plastic And Glass Bottles For Money

In a similar vein, some states will pay you for glass and plastic bottles in good condition. Unfortunately, in Arizona, we don’t have these types of recycling facilities. However, we frequently visit California, and we recycle our bottles when we are visiting there.

Side note – it is illegal to transfer recyclables from one state to another to cash them in. You can only recycle cans and bottles for cash if they were purchased in that state.

6. Help Your Parents With A Garage Sale

More than likely, your parents have a house filled with stuff they no longer use. Work with your parents and see if they would be willing to help you organize a yard sale.

Honestly, most of us adults would love to have a yard sale next weekend to get rid of a bunch of stuff we don’t need. Unfortunately, we usually lack the motivation actually to organize and put together a yard sale. This leads to more and more stuff piling up that needs to go.

If you offer to do most of the work, which includes labeling and organizing, you may be able to get your parents on board. As adults, the less work we need to do – the better. Offer to do some of the more tedious processes, and you may be surprised by our answer!

A weekend garage sale can easily bring in over $100 if you have enough stuff to sell. Make sure you put plenty of signs out in the neighborhood and post on Nextdoor.com to let people know about the sale!

7. Run A Lemonade Stand In Your Neighborhood

This tried and true business model has stood the test of time! I’m pretty sure that even my grandparents had a lemonade stand when they were younger. No, seriously – I bet they did.

Last month two kids set up a lemonade stand on a busy street corner in our neighborhood, and from the amount of traffic that stopped, I’m sure they made a ton of money!

Believe it or not, but it’s hard for us grownups to drive past some cute kids who are trying to make a couple of bucks selling lemonade. Also, most people will give you even more money than you were asking for.

For the absolute best tasting lemonade, use this recipe:

Basic Ingredients For The Best Lemonade:

  • 2 Cups Of Sugar
  • 3 Limes
  • 5 Lemons
  • 1/2 Of An Orange
  • 1 Lemon (thinly sliced)

Step By Step Instructions:

  • Cut in half and squeeze the 5 lemons, 1/2 an orange, and 3 limes into a large pitcher (at least one gallon).
  • Add two cups of sugar, one cup of hot water and stir until all the sugar dissolves.
  • After the sugar is dissolved, fill the rest of the pitcher up with cold water and add the thinly sliced lemons.
  • Pro Tip: Before serving, make sure you add ice. No one likes warm lemonade!

8. Walk The Neighbors Dogs

Adults are notoriously busy people and rarely have time to walk their dogs. As you may know, dogs need exercise and should be walked daily. If you know one of your neighbors who has a friendly dog, offer to walk their dog on specific days. You’ll have to invest in a leash and collar if the owner doesn’t have one already.

Tell them you are saving up money for something special and ask if they would be willing to pay you for your time. If you ask nicely, they may pay you more than you thought they would.

Petsitter.com and other similar websites help connect dog walkers and pet owners willing to pay for this service. In addition, Petsitter offers other ways to make money by working with animals to include watching puppies.

9. Water The Plants At Home

If all the plants or gardens at your house are not on an automatic timer, your parents know how exhausting it can be to water the plants every week. If you offer to take over the watering schedule and are reliable, you may be able to make a few extra bucks each week!

Have a conversation with your parents to see if this is possible or what other jobs they would be willing for you to do to be paid.

Other ideas for kids to make their own money

There are far more easy ways to make money and get out of the house too, without needing to pick up a paper route or the cliched lemonade stand.

Here are more ideas of how to make money as a kid:

Make money selling other people’s stuff

If you don’t have a lot of stuff to sell and don’t have extra money to buy up stock yourself, you could sell stuff for other people and keep a cut of the profit.

The UK’s average UK household has £400 worth of unused stuff lying around, and collectively there is £10 billion of clothes unworn in wardrobes.

People want to sell stuff but don’t always have the time or inclination to do it themselves, so your child could offer it as a service.

When you sell someone’s items, you give them the money and keep a cut for yourself.

You could either organise a garage sale type event or sell their stuff online.

How to Make Money as a Kid in the Fall

You’ll need to be prepared to sweep for a few leaves, but making money picking up leaves on your neighbor’s property is still a great way to make some cash. The key to fall jobs is that they don’t require you to be outside as long as the summer or winter jobs would. Instead, you’ll have some breaks throughout your day. As long as it doesn’t rain, you should be fine!

How Older Kids Can Begin to Earn Money Outside of the Home

Once kids reach the age of 10 or 12, getting paid for extra work around the home may not be enough.  In order to make more money, kids will need to begin a business with customers other than their parents.

Starting any enterprise, no matter how small, can be challenging without some basic business knowledge. Kids will need to know:

  • Whether their product or service is in demand (i.e. if people will want to purchase what they offer)
  • How to set a price for their product or service
  • How to get the word out about their product or service (i.e. advertise)
  • The basics of customer service and the importance of making customers happy
  • How to manage expenses and income and determine if the business is profitable

Parents can mentor kids on these business basics, and/or purchase a book written for kids that explains what is needed to successfully launch a business and make money as a kid:

Some helpful books for kids include:

There are also online guides to help educate kids about what it takes to run a business. Here are a few concise ones:

How can I earn money at 13?

At 13 you can’t get a job. So what do you do? Be creative and hustle. There are so many ways to make money as a 13 year old that I have only scratched the surface with over 200 ideas. The common ideas of mowing lawns, babysitting, and doing a lemonade stand work but here are 7 creative ideas that will blow those out of the water.

1. Do a Soda Stand

The only reason adults buy lemonade is that they think kids are cute. Why not sell something they can’t buy anywhere else but crave? Selling mixed soda drinks is the rage these days and you can make a lot of money selling them. Simply mix half and half into a coke and you have a dirty coke that will sell for $3 to $4. Way better than a $.50 cent lemonade right. For more ideas on drink mixes, you can sell, check out these Sodalicious recipes.

2. Host a Kids Club

Babysitting is great but you can only watch one family’s kids a night. What if you could watch five families’ kids in one night? You could make so much more money. The cool part is you can! Contact all the families you would normally babysit and say you are holding a Kids Club.

Basically, it’s a mini summer camp but just for Friday night. That way the parents can drop their kids off to go on a date and you can watch 10 to 15 kids all at once. Plan fun engaging activities to keep the kids busy and the time will fly. Instead of making $20 a night you can make up to $150!

3. Start an online business

Chances are pretty high that spend a good amount of time each day on social media. Instead of seeing what your friends are up to grow a following. Whether you are on Instagram, Youtube, Musically, or Snapchat you can make money if you have enough followers. You can sell products and get a commission through what is called affiliates and companies will pay you to promote their brand. So cool. Learn how to make money online here.

4. Sell free fruit

My brother just made over $1200 selling grapefruit and oranges that he got for free. No matter where you live, people have fruit trees that they don’t want to pick. The fruit will end up just falling on the ground and become a mess they need to clean up later. They would love if someone like you would come over and pick their fruit. Then you can turn around and sell it to family and friends and even at farmers markets.

5. Paint address numbers on curbs

I know a couple of kids who do this every summer. The go door to door and ask people if they want their address painted on the curb. They charge $20 a pop and do it until they make enough money to buy their new skateboard or shoes. You can do it too. Here is their video of them actually doing it.

6. Sell puppies

This is a crazy, fun way to make a lot of money. Olivia makes over $100K a year selling Doodles. Is that crazy! She is making more money than her parents with full-time jobs. The best part is this is the perfect way to convince your parents to let you get the puppy of your dreams. Like Olivia, if you do this business right you can stand to make a lot of money as a 13 year old.

7. Freelance on Fiverr

Fiverr is a place where you can pay someone $5 to do some work. I hired a young girl to do some voiceover work for me. Talking to her after she said she can make as much money as she wants. Check out Fiverr to see if you can offer any of the services listed.

3 life skills your kids can learn from making money online

Starting an online business isn’t only great for your kids being able to contribute to their education fund or save up for that new gaming console, but they’ll also learn some pretty cool life lessons along the way.

1. Business 101

On the most practical level, the best way to learn how a business operates is by running your own. No matter if your child decides to sell homemade jewellery online, or make slime on their own YouTube channel, they’ll have the opportunity to learn about what it costs to run a business and how profit margins work. It’ll also give them the opportunity to think about how they want to brand themselves, analyze the marketplace, and how to finance their startup costs.

2. Forge their own career path

The traditional career path has gone the way of MySpace, and today more and more small businesses are popping up in Canada. Kids who run their own business online learn that a job opportunity is what you make it. They’re more likely to be confident in taking risks, or try different careers without worrying about settling on one job for their adult life. After all, who says you can’t create makeup YouTube tutorials and help solve the global water crisis?

3. Develop communication skills

The average kid is already a pretty good sales person. Any parent who has argued back-and-forth about a later bedtime would agree. But when kids run their own business, it takes those negotiation skills to another level. Now they’re in the real world learning to deal with customers, how to communicate effectively, and even how to negotiate on price.

Also Providing an Allowance

Many parents also decide to provide their child with an allowance. Some parents choose to provide a weekly dollar amount equal to the age of the child—for example, $11 a week for an 11-year-old. But how much of an allowance is appropriate really depends on what you want your child to spend the money on. Think about whether you intend to provide money for only incidentals (like to buy a cookie at the school bake sale, in which case the amount will be smaller), or do you want the allowance to cover larger purchases like clothing, toys, and outings with friends? A good rule of thumb is to start out small and as the child gets older, expand what’s included in the allowance.

Technology

Movie Editing– Make wedding videos and edit movies for people. For more information go to How to Make Money as a Kid Editing Movies.

Graphic Design- Learn graphic design and do freelance work.

Sell VoIP Phone- VoIP phones can be set up for people’s home phone without a monthly payment.  It works through the Internet and works just as good as a landline.

Programming- Learn to program and create games, iPhone apps, and software to sell.

Helping Elderly Set Up Electronics- Elderly are usually don’t understand new technology.  Help them set up their TV, blue ray, computers, etc.

Digitalize Pictures- Many people have tons of photos in scrapbooks and boxes that are useless.  Scan them into the computer to make digital copies.

Make a Digital Scrapbook- Use Shutterfly to create quality digital scrapbooks for people.

Movie Conversion- Convert VHS and home videos to digital copies and DVDs.

DVD and Blue Ray Digitizing- Digitize DVDs and Blue Rays so they don’t get scratched, lost, or broken.  Get rid of the shelves of DVDs and put them in digital form so people can watch their movies on all their electronic devices.

Computer Maintenance and Repair– Computers always need to be updated, cleaned up so they run better.  Fix and offer maintenance for computers. Learn exactly how Mike, 13, fixes computers to make money.

Fix and Re-sell TVs and Computer Monitors- Collect old TVs and computer monitors, fix them and resell them.

Video Game Rental- Rent out all your video games to friends for a fee.

Video Rental- Rent out all your videos and DVDs for friends and neighbors for a fee.

Laws on Jobs and Work Hours for Children

If your child wants to enter the workforce in a formal way, you should be aware of legal limits on the type of jobs your child can hold and the amount of hours he or she can work. For a list of jobs and work hours allowed at different ages, visit the United States Department of Labor’s Youth Rules website.

When can you start teaching your kids about money?

Source: Africa Studio/Shuttestock.com

Source: Africa Studio/Shuttestock.com

When kids are toddlers, they are extremely inquisitive and have a strong desire to learn. It is also during this timeframe that they begin to strongly mirror your behavior.

So, it makes sense to begin introducing them to the idea of money when they are in this frame of mind. Around this age, I began teaching my children about money a few different ways:

  • Taking them to the grocery store to look at the price tags.
  • Having them tell me how many fingers something costs.
  • Showing them the different ways you can pay for groceries (credit/debit card, cash, check, EBT card).
  • Buying a play cash register and plastic food to have a pretend grocery shopping trip at home.

If you start with basic lessons and pretend play like this, then building on this financial foundation is much easier as your child ages.

Best Ways To Make Money Online for Older Teens

These money-making opportunities are best for teens that are a bit older because they require some know-h0w, maturity and the ability to make good decisions to be successful. 

16. Running Errands

Running errands for people typically requires a driver’s license, so that’s why this is suggested for older teens. However, if you’re willing to play chauffeur, a younger child could also make money doing this. Your child could pick up items from various stores, drop off mail or packages at the post office, pick up or drop off dry cleaning or any number of other things people need to be done. 

17. Tutoring

If your older teen is particularly good at a subject, such as math or English, he or she may find there’s money to be made as a tutor. Tutoring opportunities can be found among their peers or even for younger children who live in your neighborhood. 

18. Teaching Music Lessons

If your child is musically talented and can teach others the skills of playing an instrument, teaching music lessons could be very lucrative. As long as your child has a lesson plan for each session, follows through with it and gives his or her students instructions for practicing, charging $20 per hour wouldn’t be a stretch. 

19. Teaching Cheerleading Lessons

If your teen is skilled at cheerleading, he or she may find an opportunity to teach other aspiring cheerleaders what she knows. Your teen could give individual lessons for an hourly fee or charge a one-time fee for a cheerleading workshop that lasts a few days. 

20. Teaching Sports Lessons

While being good at sports does come easier to those with natural talent, there are also plenty of skills that come into play. And if your child is excellent at a certain sport, there’s money to be made. Again, he or she can choose to give individual lessons at an hourly rate or charge a one-time fee for a workshop that covers skills needed for a specific sport. 

21. Selling Used Clothes

If your child is a fashionista of sorts or insists on wearing only the best brands, selling used clothing items could help turn a profit. Online community marketplaces could be good places to sell, or you could help them sell their items via your account on eBay. 

Note that if your child wants to sell clothes on an online clothing resale platform, like Poshmark, age requirements apply. Your child needs to be over the age of majority in your state of residence to open an account on Poshmark, but you might be able to facilitate the sales for them if they aren’t.

22. Mowing Lawns

Mowing lawns is one of the best ways for kids to make extra money during the summer. Everyone wants a nice-looking yard, but not everyone has the time or the desire to mow their lawn once or twice a week.

But it’s not just a great side hustle — it can also turn into a pretty good business model. If they do a good job, then they could start building up a base of repeat customers. And you can help them advertise their services on social media or in a neighborhood Facebook group.

And kids don’t just have to limit their servicing to mowing. They can also rake leaves, trim bushes and offer other types of yard work.

23. Babysitting

Babysitting is a staple for teens who are looking for ways to make money. Teens can start by spending an hour or two babysitting for a family friend. For instance, your teenager could babysit your neighbor’s kids after school a few days a week.

And as they gain more experience, babysitting can turn into a pretty lucrative gig. According to Sittercity, the national hourly rate for babysitters is $16.50 per hour. However, babysitting does come with a lot of responsibility, and it’s not going to be the right choice for everyone.

24. Taking Online Surveys

Taking online surveys is one of the easiest ways to earn a little extra money online. Users share their opinions and provide feedback that helps companies build better products and services. But there are age requirements. For example, although Swagbucks will allow users as young as 13,  Survey Junkie only allows kids who are at least 16 years old to share their opinions. Your kids can earn points that they can redeem through gift cards or cash for every survey they complete.

25. Blogging

If your kids are naturally very creative and enjoy writing, then they could make money blogging. How much money you make as a blogger will largely depend on the amount of traffic you have come to your website.

It will take time to build a following and make a name for yourself as a blogger. But if you go into it with a plan, then blogging can be very lucrative.

3 Ways Kids Can Earn Money Through Blogging:

  1. Ads: You can sign up for Google Adsense or other ad networks. After placing the ads on your site, you’ll make a little bit of money each time someone clicks on the link.
  2. Affiliate marketing: In affiliate marketing, you’re essentially paid to promote another company’s products or services. You’ll earn a small commission for every sale that company makes.
  3. Sponsored posts: And finally, a company may pay you to write a post promoting their product or service on your website.

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Meet High Five Dad My name is Eric (AKA High Five Dad). That’s my beautiful better half Michelle and my little guy Sawyer. I started to blog to share adventures in being a dad. Read more…

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