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Common Ways a Teenager Can Make Money

December 12, 2018 | By Louis Tully

Got kids? Need them to stop coming to you for cash all the time? Then show them there’s more than one way to get cash and more of it! Since they’re coming close to adulthood, why not teach them to earn their own money? As it turns out, making money as a teenager hasn’t really changed all that much. If anything, it’s gotten way easier! Today’s youth have several money-making advantages to cash in on that a lot of us older folk just didn’t have back in the day. Despite child-labor laws, there’s a multitude of ways (some old, some new) your teens can earn cash today. Show them these ideas for earning their own money.

Go Door to Door

Remember going door to door around your neighborhood selling those chocolate bars for school? Well, if your teenager wants to build up a clientele for their services, they should do just that. It doesn’t hurt to ask the people you know in your neighborhood if they need any assistance with yard work or house cleaning. Who knows? Someone might throw your teen a quick $20 to clean the gutters!


Does your kid love kids? Babysitters make about $10 an hour just to sit around a cozy house while keeping the little ones fed and entertained. If you know people that have little kids, chances are they could use the occasional kid-free night. Let them know you know someone who’s available to sit for them the next time they want to take a date night. It’s a win, win!

Dog Sitting

Pet owners need sitters too. You can’t exactly leave town on vacation when you have a dog at home. That’s why so many people would gladly pay someone to watch their furry friends while they’re away. Especially when your rates are much lower than pricey pet sitting professionals. If your teenager loves animals, then this is the side hustle is for them!


Is your teen really good at math? They may have a lot to offer someone who’s struggling with their grades. They could offer their services for $20 a session – parents will gladly pay a tutor to help their child succeed. Who knew you could get paid for doing a little pre-algebra?

Sell Stuff on eBay

Don’t throw away those old Legos just yet. There’s money to be made on eBay for stuff like that. Why not have your kids post them on OfferUp or LetGo? Sure, it’s easier to just throw your old stuff in the dump, but why do that when you could post it online and watch people bid on your throwaways? As they say, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure!”

Get a Part-Time Job

Just because you’re a teenager, doesn’t mean you can’t get a regular job. Teens as young as 14 are allowed to work a part-time job up to 3 hours a day, 18 hours a week. Fast food chains, movie theaters, and grocery stores are great places to put your application in. And the longer you stay with a given company, the more opportunities you’ll have to move up and earn more.

Throw a Car Wash

Sure, drive-thru car washes are fast, effective, and pretty affordable to boot. But when it comes right down to it, all the drive-thru car washes in the world don’t offer what you can: a personal touch. The car wash is a time-honored tradition for teenagers all over the country. Does your teen need to make some extra cash? Ask a family member or neighbor if they’d like to pay them to clean their car. Adding that little bit of extra elbow grease combined with attention to detail is what people will gladly pay for.

The Bottom Line

Encourage your kids to use any of the above ideas to earn their own cash. Doing so may save you a ton down the road, allowing you to avoid any possible need for an installment loan when a financial emergency strikes.