In the 1960s, our grandparents couldn't work on a side hustle while sitting in bed late at night, let alone make money from home.
There was no internet, and the concept of sitting on the couch for longer than an hour deemed you ‘lazy' in those times.
However, fast forward to today, and there are countless legitimate ways to make money online, on your own schedule, from the comfort of your living room couch!
Figuring out a way to make money from home above and beyond your nine-to-five career can move the needle regarding saving money, paying off debt, or working toward financial freedom.
But the key to accomplishing your financial goals isn't solely based on your willingness to cut out your lattes and impulse spending.
Instead, it boils down to your ability to make extra income and expedite the process of reaching your financial goals.
17+ Real Ways To Make Money From Home
Here are more than 17 ideas to help you get started – pick a few side gigs you can do in your spare time and bookmark this article so you can return for more ways to make money from home.
1. Get Paid To Play Mobile Games
Admittedly, playing games isn't necessarily the most lucrative money-making idea, but it's undoubtedly one of the easiest ways and definitely the most entertaining! You can earn money playing video games on your mobile device.
Some games will pay you for each minute you play, while others require you to deposit money and join paid tournaments to win cash prizes.
This Android-only app pays you free gift cards to play games. In addition, Mistplay pays you for each minute you play on their platform. You can play with friends and chat with other players through Mistplay.
Level up to earn Mistplay units more quickly and unlock achievement to earn more points.
Make Money From Home With Mistplay
Sign up for Cash'em and earn virtual coins for playing games. Redeem your coins for PayPal cash or free gift cards. Unfortunately, this free app is only available to Android users. Be sure to allow Cash'em All to track app usage on your device, as this determines how much to pay you!
Make Money From Home With Cash'em All
Android users can get rewards for playing mobile games with AppStation. This free app requires no deposits, and there are no in-app purchases.
Choose your favorite game from the list and earn coins for every minute you play.
Exchange your coins for gift cards from popular retailers like Amazon, PlayStation, and Target.
Make Money From Home With Appstation
2. Paid Surveys & Market Research
This is pretty straightforward, but you can make money by participating in market research with survey companies' apps on your phone.
Completing surveys may be an easy way to earn extra money, but unfortunately, it doesn't pay much money. Still, if you're spending time watching your favorite show, why not complete a few surveys and earn while you watch?
Some of the best survey sites include:
One of the most reputable survey companies is Survey Junkie. Sign up with Survey Junkie and complete surveys to earn anywhere from a few dollars upwards of $50 per week, depending on the surveys you complete.
Make Money From Home With Survey Junkie
You can't go wrong with Swagbucks! As one of the premier survey sites out there, Swagbucks is known for its credibility and reputation.
Earn “Swagbucks” or “SB” each time you complete surveys. 1 SB point is about 1 penny. So when you earn 1,000 SB, you now have $10, and you can cash out with PayPal, plus get a $5 signup bonus.
Make Money From Home With Swagbucks
KashKick is a newish survey company that lets users “Cash In” and make money from home when they complete surveys, watch their favorite shows, and download new apps in their free time.
They partner with market research companies like Nielsen and other popular survey websites. Still, everything can be done through just one app.
Make Money From Home With KashKick
3. Start a Digital Marketing Company
Surveys are a great way to get paid today; however, digital marketing is a great opportunity to make a lot of money over time.
Digital marketing can come in many forms, and the scope of services you can offer is endless. Typically, it's best to be good at one niche – like SEO, social media, or designing graphics and expand from there.
Typical digital marketing services can include:
- Website design
- Website management
- SEO work & consulting
- Social media growth
- Simple graphic design
- Email newsletters
- Google management
- Facebook & Google advertising
If you have expertise in website design, management, and content marketing, you may be able to create some extra income in just a few spare hours a week.
Lastly, digital marketing is a good option when considering real ways to make money from home that are more stable than surveys. Start small and expand your offerings as you help more small businesses.
4. Work From Home Freelance Services
As a freelancer, you can offer services such as photography, graphic design, writing, and editing from the comfort of your home.
If you can write or design, you can make some great income outside of your 9-to-5 with little more than your laptop and time.
Whether you're just looking to make a little extra here and there or hoping to quit your day job, writing articles, editing copy, and creating graphics are all in high demand in the digital world.
Freelance jobs to make money from home:
- Freelance writing (here are the 5 best companies to write for)
- Freelance graphic design (popular)
- Freelance editing & copywriting
- Freelance web design & IT support
- Freelance as a virtual assistant
To find freelance gigs, you can:
- List your services on Fiverr
- List your services on Upwork
- Join local business networks in your community
- Jump into Facebook Groups and Twitter Niches
To land a client, be sure to:
- Show off your portfolio
- Share reviews from other clients
- If you have no past freelance experience, do some free work for a friend to build a portfolio
- Offer rates and packages for repeat clients
5. Offer Social Media Management Services
Got a friend who's sick of managing their business' social media accounts?
Offer to take over their social media management, charging a monthly rate of $250-500. You can respond to comments, automate posts, and grow their social media accounts. Right now, small business owners are looking to unload tasks, and this includes managing platforms like:
- Instagram account
- Facebook pages
- Pinterest account
- Twitter account
Managing social media accounts for business owners who don't have time to mess with their Instagram or Facebook is a great way to make money from home and your phone!
And if you're hesitant to work alone, this is a great way to “interact” with others since you're engaging users on social media.
Social media management pros include: automation, creativity, trying new techniques, ability to make money from home on your time.
Social media management cons include: dealing with negativity – having to tweak and adjust, pay-to-play model
6. Graphic Design
While graphic design requires some background knowledge and experience – if you can create custom designs and graphics for business owners, you can make some serious income!
Here are a few tips to help you get hired as a graphic designer from home:
- Start a small e-commerce site.
- Become a freelancer on Fiverr, where people can hire you for your services.
- Contact local schools and sports apparel companies to offer your services.
Always have an online portfolio ready to show potential clients and look into helping small businesses with outdated logos.
7. Start an Etsy Shop
Etsy allows people to take hobbies and turn them into some serious side income, all from home. From jewelry and home goods to clothes and shoes, you can sell almost anything you make on Etsy.
Whether you make soap or candles at home or create digital products, Etsy is a great platform to sell your homemade products and make money from home.
8. Start (And Monetize) A Website
For as little as $2.95 a month, you can start a website through Bluehost and WordPress.org that allows you to create secondary income from the comfort of your home.
Depending on your expertise, you can offer various services like digital marketing, e-commerce options, and drop shipping. Decide what the purpose of your site will be before setting it up.
- Do you have a spare 5-6 hours a week to experiment with your site and learn the ins and outs?
Growing a website and selling services is not an overnight success but can lead to many opportunities. You can monetize your website in several ways, including:
- Selling services or products
- Paid sponsorships
- Placing ads on your website
- Selling leads
Typically, the most common way to get started is to use the steps below and start a blog.
9. Start a Blog
Blogging can make you a few hundred dollars a month to a few thousand and beyond.
To start a blog, first, start with a topic you like talking about and start writing. While there are undoubtedly plenty of blogging pitfalls to avoid, at the end of the day, social media has made it simple to find the resources you need to start a profitable blog!
For an upfront cost of about $120, you can have your hosting, domain name, and WordPress platform for three years when you sign up with Bluehost.
Just start – don't assume you must be an expert or conduct massive amounts of research. You become an expert in anything by repeatedly trying, failing, and adjusting.
There are many different ways you can monetize your blog, including:
- Affiliate marketing
- Sponsored blog posts
- Marketing to your email list
10. Handy? Become a Tasker
Are you a handyman or woman? If so, you might be able to make some money on the side of your day job by fixing other people's stuff!
For starters, if you have never heard of Task Rabbit, it's a way to find jobs as a handyman. While many of these tasks will require you to leave your home, it is very flexible work.
If you're only looking to make money from home, another idea is to create YouTube videos of you fixing things and post them online. Then, when you hit 1,000 subscribers on your YouTube channel, you can monetize your channel with Google Adsense ads.
11. Tutoring & Online Teaching From Home
Did you know you can teach students in other countries and earn $14-22 per hour?
With tutoring companies like VIPKid and Wyzant, you can teach around your schedule using predetermined courses and curricula.
There are some minimal tech and background requirements, and you must be a native English speaker, but the kids are enjoyable and hard-working. This is a great option if you're a former teacher turned stay-at-home mom looking for a good idea to make extra money from home!
One review on VIPKid's website:
“This year I taught with VIPKid, and it has been amazing! I get to teach, but I don't spend hours planning. The curriculum has an engaging scope!”
If you're serious about getting paid for online tutoring, you can read a full review of the 7 Best Online Tutoring Websites here.
12. Fantasy Sports & Online Gambling
Believe it or not, Fanduel and poker players earn money from home while on their couches. For many, this probably isn't a great approach to win real money, but it is legitimate for those who know what they're doing.
Online betting has recently blown up and doesn't appear to be slowing down. Of course, you should not do this unless you have some talent and don't mind the risk, but some people have hit it big.
13. Become a Virtual Assistant (VA)
VAs (virtual assistants) can manage social media, write and edit articles, send and reply to emails, and handle many other tasks.
For stay-at-home moms or college students with excellent organizational skills, becoming an online virtual assistant is one of the best ways to make money from home!
Typically, a VA must possess specific skills, including:
- Good communication
- Interpersonal skills
- A solid understanding of all-things-internet
- Good organizational skills
Virtual assistants can make anywhere from $15-$30 an hour, depending on the tasks they are performing.
Whether you excel at social media management, helping business owners stay organized, performing everyday customer service operations, or you're good at email – consider becoming a virtual assistant!
Pick the area where you shine brightest and contact small business owners offering your services. Another option is to visit websites like FlexJobs to find work-from-home jobs
14. Sell Things Online & Flip Items
When it comes to spring cleaning, you can make some money with all that old stuff in your basement or garage!
Simply take all your unwanted things and visit websites like Facebook Marketplace, eBay and Offer Up to sell your unwanted items.
15. Offer Virtual Accounting
Today's accounting doesn't have the same brick-and-mortar confinements as it once did! You can now offer your accounting services – for taxes or everyday bookkeeping – to business owners from the comfort of your own home.
While accounting does require a specific skillset, if you have a background in accounting and want to work from home and make money, consider starting your own bookkeeping business.
16. Rent Out Your Space
Ok, this takes “make money from home” to a whole new level, but when you think about it, if you rent out extra space you're not using, you are making money from and with your home!
Neighbor lets you rent out any spaces you're not using, like parking spots, garage bays, attics, etc.
If you have an extra space, you could possibly make $500, $or more, depending on the space. The best part is that it would be passive income as once it's rented, it doesn't require you to spend additional time to earn the money.
Make Money From Home With Neighbor
17. Data Entry Jobs Work From Home
Heading to Google and typing in “work from home data entry jobs” will net you millions of results.
From there, you will have to decide which job sounds best: part-time or full-time data entry jobs. Most pay anywhere from $10 to $25 an hour, depending on the scope of work and job requirements.
On average, a reasonable rate for a data entry work-from-home job is $15-$20 per hour, and typical job requirements include the following:
- Some experience with software programs
- Basic computing knowledge
- Organizational skills
- Fast typing
- Ability to at a desk and type/enter data
Data entry is an excellent go-to if you're looking for real ways to make money from home.
What You Need To Know About Making Money From Home
Forty years ago, work was harder; most jobs were blue-collar, and at the end of the day, your education level significantly impacted your ability to earn.
Fast forward to today, and there are 14-year-old kids on YouTube who make more money in a day than our grandparents did all year.
Making money online is 100% a game-changer, and doing it outside your full-time job or from the comfort of your bed has never been simpler.
Pros to making money from home & online:
- Flexible schedule
- You can learn how to do it with no experience
- Can create passive income using online platforms
- It is a quick way to earn extra cash, but it also can become longterm
- Not tied down to one specific geographic location
- You can wear whatever you want and sit on your couch
There are countless side hustle ideas you can use to earn money, and many have even turned their side hustles into a career.
Now, you can start a company or website sitting in your bed, in your underwear, next to your dog, with your spouse, watching TV!
But just because it's easy to start doesn't mean making money at home is easy – don't confuse simple with easy. You still need to work hard to earn money at home, but the flexibility is priceless.
However, unlike a part-time job that requires our time to be in a specific geographic location, some of the ways mentioned above to make online money can be done during your lunch break or while you're stuck on the metro.
Regardless, if you have a rainy Sunday to kill, you now have a list of real ways to make money online instead of wasting the day. No matter how you leverage the internet to make money, it's awesome to know you can make it online relatively quickly.
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.