A perk of having a teenager is that you can finally relinquish some of their lifestyle's financial responsibility to them. Or so you thought.
Finding a job as a teen can be difficult. Amongst the social, athletic, and academic schedules, your child’s full-time job may seem to be jam-packed with being a teenager. However, it’s essential to find alternatives for your teens to make a little side income to start learning about responsibility. It also doesn’t hurt when that side gig also gives them an appreciation for all of the associated costs of their lifestyle.
So, it comes down to convenience. Your teens need a job that enables them to work when available, outside of their other commitments. If you’ve followed any of our posts over the past few months, you’ll notice that we’ve heavily emphasized the convenience of online employment. While there are plenty of options for adults who want a side or full-time remote gig, it may surprise you that there are many options for your teenager, too.
We put together our top picks for flexible, online jobs for teenagers. Whether it capitalizes on a hobby or allows your teen to leap into the world of professional employment, online jobs are out there and available. So, next time the conversation of getting a job and taking on financial responsibility comes up, don’t let your teen convince you that there aren’t any options. Have this article ready to go, and show them the world is their employment oyster if they think outside the box.
Your child may be artistic or creative. They probably decorate their lockers, rooms, and even a car or two when they’re making their latest “prom-posal.” Channel this creative energy when they’re in the thick of their employment search. Encourage your teen to use their artistic abilities to create items that they can sell or re-purpose online.
With a little ingenuity, you both will find that it’s both fun and rewarding to create and sell with modern technology. It’s all work they can do from the comfort of their bedroom, so it’s a job they can accomplish when they have the extra time. It won’t impact their homework or their team practice. However, it will give them a glimpse into personal time-management and the bonuses of fiscal rewards, both values you may want them to have.
Etsy is an excellent place for your teen to start peddling their creations. Whether they excel at making hair bows, or they’re a wiz at generating downloadable .jpg files for others to purchase, Etsy is the place.
According to Etsy’s guidelines, you must be at least 18 years old to sell on the platform. This restriction is in place due to the legal implications that an individual engages in when they agree to become a supplier through the site. However, if your teen is under 18, you don’t need to rule out Etsy as an option.
As their parent, you will probably want to participate in their first job and assist with online financial transactions, anyway. You can create a system in which your teen is the “manufacturer,” and you’re the “distributor.” Not only will this provide them with valuable lessons on how the economy works, but it will also allow you to have a hand in the work they’re doing. It’s an excellent chance for your teen to make some extra cash and for you to bond over the process of creating a small business together.
If your teen is a mini fashionista or fashion icon, then you may be more than fed up with the constant additions to their wardrobe. Their room has become a disaster zone due to the lack of storage, and you’re continually providing money to help them create their next “look.” You are ready for them to put their “genius” to work in other areas.
You have creative income options that will make you both happy. There are plenty of resale sites that offer the opportunity to purge clothing while generating a profit. Some of these sites are simple, user-friendly platforms that enable your teen to use them quickly and easily. Poshmark is an excellent example of a site that creates an easy, user-friendly platform with little fuss or frills.
If your teen wants to create a styling shop full of collections of their clothes and accessories for sale, depop may be more up their alley. Depop’s encourages users to become “creative influencers” who distribute looks that inspire or reflect an era. It may be the perfect way for your angst-ridden teen to express themselves, share their eye for fashion, and generate a small income.
If your teen has a specific skill or interest that involves discussion, experimentation, or ongoing research, they may have a future as a content creator. YouTube and Instagram content creators make videos as they work. Then, they edit and share their videos with others who are also interested in similar topics. For example, one of the more popular methods of content creation is make-up application. Tons of teens have tapped into this creative way to express their interest. They create video tutorials of them practicing skincare and applying make-up.
Content creation isn’t limited to make-up application. If your teen loves science and completes at-home experiments, encourage them to start taking videos of their process for others to view.
While the content itself does not generate an income, many creators find that they gain a large enough following to become a social media influencer. Once this occurs, companies with products related to the influencer create content that will reach out. The company may offer free products or compensation for your teen to use or market their products.
While we realize this is a long shot for successful income generation, it’s a bandwagon many teens and young adults have hopped on. Some have found so much success that they’ve created careers out of content creation. If you’re willing to give your teen time to turn a profit while still encouraging their unique interests, becoming a content creator may be a perfect fit.
You may still want to encourage your teen to get out of the house with their employment. If this is the case, we have a few suggestions for how you can use online tools to gain in-person employment. If your child needs flexibility in schedule, consider using one of the following online platforms to acquire odd jobs to complete when they’re available. While these suggestions aren’t 100% online jobs, the process of procuring the work is. So, we consider this a semi-online method of job acquisition.
Fiverr is the world’s largest online marketplace for freelance job postings. The platform's basis is that anyone can post a task or job they need to be completed. Then, people who have the skill set are requested to complete the work. The enticing part of the work is that the payment is clearly defined from the beginning. So, you know the job you’re getting into shouldn’t be too time-consuming or complicated but will still give you a quick way to make a few extra dollars.
With a variety of categories to choose from, Fiverr is in tune with many interests and needs of the general public. If your teen is an actor with a flair for celebrity impersonations or a gaming guru, their services could very well be a moneymaker on Fiverr.
If your teen is an aspiring teacher or enjoys working with children, Care.com is a perfect platform to help them find babysitting opportunities.
Care.com sets your teen up with a profile that gives prospective clients a view into their background and experience. It also allows your teen to review potential clients and decide if the work and family are a good fit.
Finally, Care.com offers options to provide full-time, part-time, or as needed care. Therefore, your teen may use it to find a full-time nanny position during the summer months, a part-time position during after-school hours, or a position as a date-night babysitter. Care.com helps babysitters find flexible positions working with children, as well as generate a semi-dependable job income.
Resource: Ways 13-year-old can make money online
Another avenue of possible employment is in the field of tutoring. If your teen has a knack for a specific subject area, they can offer their knowledge to a younger generation. If they’re open to networking within the community, they may be able to find potential clients within homeschool groups or at your local elementary school. Often parents are seeking help with basic subject matters, and your teen may be the perfect fit to assist.
If your teen would instead work within a network with who they are not as intimately involved, online tutoring may be the perfect avenue. SameSpeak hires tutors as young as 16 years old to teach students in foreign countries the English language. Tutors receive $10 for every 30-minute session they complete, and pre-made lesson plans and outlines are available for each session.
There’s a chance your teen doesn’t know what direction they want to take their part-time employment. If this is the case, they may wish to minimum obligation and a passive way to make a few dollars fast: enough cash to supplement their movie night expenses or bowling with friends. In previous posts, we’ve offered some great passive income opportunities, but we’ll reiterate a few here that are our top picks for teens.
Swagbucks enables users to earn gift cards to participate in surveys, watch videos, or shop online. The way this particular platform works is through point generation. Every activity you complete enables the user to earn a specific number of points.
Once those points rack up, users can cash in their points for gift cards to their preferred vendors. It’s not cashing in the hand, but it will provide your teen with an earning method that can help with their extracurricular spending. This will allow them to have the cash they need without resorting to mom and dad's bank.
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There’s a high likelihood that your teen has opinions. We’ve rarely met one who doesn’t. Whether it’s about what you’ve made for dinner or the way you’re completing a task, most teens are quick to tell others their perception. Sometimes it’s insightful. Other times, it’s plain old annoying. If you want to channel this free insight toward income generation, you can direct your teen toward Toluna.
Toluna solicits honest opinions from consumers about products that businesses have on the market. Users can choose compensation in the form of points that can earn gift cards or cash distributed through PayPal. In addition to product testing, users can also answer surveys to earn points or money. It’s a great way to focus your teen’s eye for detail on something outside of your personal daily routine.
Slice of the Pie
If your teen is a music junkie, then Slice of the Pie is the perfect income-earning opportunity. Artists submit their tracks to the site and then ask for real, honest reviews from listeners. If your teen provides insightful, quality feedback, they may earn the opportunity to become a high ranking star scout.
As a star scout, they will receive payment for their opinion. Slice of the Pie is introducing fashion feedback, too. So if your teen also considers themselves an expert in this area, their opinion may prove to be an excellent method to earn added income.
The Bottom Line
After reading through our article, it’s hard to find a convincing argument that there isn’t a way for your teen to earn a little income. With flexible options available, there’s no reason you shouldn’t expect your high school child to start covering the costs of their date nights or shopping fetish.
Any employment opportunity will teach your teen responsibility, accountability, time management, and financial reward. It’s a huge win when you can combine financial independence with lifelong lessons. They may balk at the idea of a side gig now, but in the future, they’ll thank you for giving them the foundational lessons of building a career.
Michael launched Wealth of Geeks to make personal finance fun. He has worked in personal finance for over 20 years, helping families reduce taxes, increase their income, and save for retirement. Michael is passionate about personal finance, side hustles, and all things geeky.