Not so newsworthy, in case you failed to notice, is that it’s winter out there. I can tell because I find myself watching TV each night wrapped in a blanket and drinking hot tea while the wind blows incessantly outside and my car sits snow covered in the parking lot of my condo complex. Nothing gets by me.
So it’s winter and it will stay that way for a good while whether I like it or not, despite the fact that South Florida calls my name almost every day and says, “Garrrry, oh Garrrry, its 83 degrees today.”
I’m not heading to Florida, but instead I am using my time to do what you may think is “the impossible”! I’m figuring out new ways that I can earn some extra money so that maybe, just maybe, next winter I can actually go to Florida and sit in the sunshine (or is that “Sing in the Sunshine”…I tend to get that confused).
How to Earn Money in the Winter
Some ideas just jump into my head and others have to be extracted with special tools. I’m hoping that it will be easier for you, so that’s why I am sharing here my ideas for how to earn money in the winter. Here are my best shots at money makers and some are actually fun activities too to try in the month of February, the least likely time of the year to earn some extra cash!
1. “Wood”en it be lover-ly?
Winter time is cold in most places and a lot of people will use wood heat either as their primary heating source or at least to offset the cost of heating their home. So with that in mind, why not sell firewood? If you own a huge spread, you can either cut down your own trees on your property (but be sure to plant some back so you can do this for years to come), or you can find a place that sells firewood in bulk to get some. Just make sure you have an actual place you can stack it up and store it.
You purchase bulk from your supplier and then make some smaller bundles and sell at your price for a little higher than you pay for it. Offer free pick up from your backyard or deliver it yourself (if you have a truck) and charge extra for that service.
This works really well for those suburban customer folks who use the old fireplace a little, but love the idea of doing it. They don’t want to own a 12 foot high and 12 foot wide wood bundle like Farmer Joe, but they are fine with a small pile for those snowy days of wintertime!
2. Snow kidding – I am serious!
Snow is something we all deal with here in the Northeast, some years more than others. But for people that are located in these colder climates, it’s possible to turn snow into an actual business. And it can really be a biggie, too!
Where there is snow, there is always someone needing it removed. If you have the right vehicle, you can invest in some equipment and consider making this a winter business. When folks get a bit older and have a hard time getting out of their driveway when it snows, who they gonna’ call? If they live independently, they will need and appreciate a removal company, a.k.a. “the snow plow guy” that comes by to help them each winter. You can be that help to someone! You can make hundreds of bucks each time a storm hits and that will recoup your cost of the equipment and time in a big hurry and become your annual “side gig” for a long, long time! Get them to sign up for a yearly deal (and a small discount)!
3. Mr. or Ms. Fix It
You can actually start the whole fix-it routine even before winter hits full stride. I’m thinking here of fall leaves and clean–up or tree trimming or broken branch removal services for starters.
Then, when winter hits, if you truly have the skills to be able to fix things, then you have a great little side business. People spend more time indoors over the winter and therefore pay more attention to when things aren’t working. So if you have a well-marketed business that will help people fix what is broken in their home, then you have a great way to make extra money over the winter. The greater your skill set, the more lucrative it will be.
4. Can you make soap?
You can actually start your own business or even teach a group in a small course for a fee. You can really make extra money from making soap and it’s just all about making a quality product and then marketing it well. This winter would be a good time to make some soap and get that business rolling in the right direction. You can read and learn about it online and then put you own personal spin on it when you sell it! Sell it online or at a flea market or host a soap party a la Tupperware. Just keep in mind that you want it to be a quality item and enough to make your time worthwhile! It can be fun and profitable!
5. Let there be light
Taking the soap thing a step further how about candles? Lighting a candle won’t make you money by itself, but you can make scented candles and then spread them around among friends, right? When other people smell how great they are, then you could possibly begin to sell them and make some money too.
But don’t just make nice smelling candles. Make interesting, unique shapes and sizes with unusual fragrances. Again, the internet can educate you or see if you can locate a class in your area like the ones often offered at the local senior centers or night schools in your area.
6. Maybe you can cook? or bake?
Do you have a wonderful talent for baking delicious pies or cakes? Do you make some of the best brownies? Or are you great at making wonderful meals that people simply beg for?
Well, if so, then you could have a potential bakery business on your hands. You can sell them at the weekly flea market. I knew someone who sold out every time and she became a local legend with people begging for her pies all the time! Just be sure to check out your state’s laws as far as selling food and the permits that may be required to go along with that. But if you make delicious goodies and broadcast it, you can find an audience!
7. Be a reseller
This is something a lot of folks get into these days. Think of those guys who buy up storage lockers and then resell stuff or on a smaller scale, just become a person who spots something and then flips it into a profit, from jewelry to furniture and everything in between.
You can trade items and then you may find one that will turn into a big deal and profit from it if you don’t want to lay out big cash. If someone else wants it, then “trash” can really become a treasure! You can do this by shopping yard sales, getting rid of unwanted items around your home, or by trading between your friends.
8. Pet sit
If you have a pet, and you need to travel where you can’t take the pet with you, then things get really difficult really quickly. So if you have a love for animals, then you could offer to keep someone’s pet while they travel. This is a good way to make extra money, but you have to remember to always take great care of the animals you watch. They are literally someone’s fur baby. If you want to walk someone’s pet or pet sit for them, check out apps like Rover.
9. House sit
Basically, some people fear just going off and leaving the old homestead for more than a night or two. So why not offer your services to watch their home and also care for their pets and houseplants while they travel? It would be a great way to make some extra money, and you save on the costs of your own place on heat and light and even meals!
I am certain that you can come up with even more ideas if you try. The bottom line is if you have some free time on your hands, a good idea, you are looking for something fun and you also have a skill that you can market, then go for it! You could turn that idea into some real cash! It not only makes your wallet fat, it warms up the body too. And after all, a little sweat equity goes a long way in the heart of winter and the cold snowy days of February, doesn’t it?
What are some of the ways you have earned extra money in the past? Does wintertime inspire you or does it turn you into a cave dweller until spring blooms?