The new year is fast approaching, and many have their wallets in mind as they make their resolutions for 2017, whether that means shrinking their student debt, building up a solid financial cushion in case of hard times or simply having more to splurge on plane tickets, concerts and other fun, big-ticket items. Whatever the reason, Americans looking to make more money in 2017 have a wide variety of options at their fingertips, thanks to the fast-growing ecommerce sector and sharing economy. Read on for 11 ways to profit from the economic opportunities to be found in the burgeoning tech and digital industries.
Become a driver. The options don’t end with Lyft and Uber—the latter of which offers earnings, according to a study conducted by the company and the research consultancy firm Benenson Strategy Group, of more than $19 per hour on average in the service’s top 20 markets, and $30 per hour in New York City.
If you’re based in the Big Apple, international corporate driving service Gett and the somewhat less-developed Juno are alternatives to the two apps dominating the U.S. rideshare industry. Via, another new player, offers services in New York City, Washington, D.C. and Chicago.
Deliver food. PostMates, a food service delivery app, boasts that its couriers make upwards of $25 per hour bringing food to customers in dozens of cities. Those interested in this side hustle should be sure to do their research before setting aside a whole weekend for deliveries, however, as couriers’ accounts of how much the startup’s salary promise squares with reality are mixed.
Clean homes. The house cleaning service app Handy is available in 30 U.S. localities, and promises pay of up to $22 hourly for cleaning, $45 per hour for “handyman” services—such as painting, moving, electrical help, plumbing and furniture assembly—and $1,000 per week for its “top professionals.” Salaries on Indeed.com from current and former Handy workers range from around $9 per hour to nearly $30, which, according to the job search site, is more than Handy pays its interns.
Get crafty. Selling home-made jewelry, bags, paintings and what not may not be too lucrative, as an Etsy forum titled “How much do you make per month?” reveals. But while Etsy may be the most visible platform for selling handmade items, there are dozens of alternatives out there, such as Handmade at Amazon, Aftcra and Bonanza—and the more visibility online, the better.
Switch to an online bank. As Tony Armstrong of NerdWallet wrote in a post on the consumer finance information site this month, “Online banks like Ally and Synchrony don’t have to shell out millions of dollars to keep the lights on at branches,” allowing them to offer customers higher interest rates on their savings accounts. Synchrony, for example, has an annual percentage yield of 1.05 percent—among the highest on the market—while Ally boasts a 1 percent APY.
So while Synchrony may not have a checking account option or mobile app, consumers with a solid chunk of change in savings accounts linked to their checking accounts may want to consider siphoning over a good bit of their rainy day funds to accounts banks without brick-and-mortar branches, or transferring to a bank like Ally, which offers both savings and checking, altogether.
Sell your writing. Writing a novel may take a bit more brain power than, say, Uber driving, but self-published authors can earn as much as 70 percent of sales royalties by using Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing, while a royalty calculator on the self-publishing platform CreateSpace allows authors to figure out how much they’ll make per published book. Nook Press, another platform, touts authors like Barbara Freethy, who’s sold more than 1.5 million Nook books through self-publishing, and New York Times bestselling writer Sarah Burleton as its success stories.
Sell your editing. For those who don’t have the time to churn out a book, but still want to put their mastery of the English language and grammar to use, the editing and proofreading service Scribendi offers remote freelance jobs for experienced and educated writers and editors. Between three contract editors who listed their salaries on company employment information site Glassdoor, the hourly pay averaged nearly $24.
Sell your old stuff. Spring cleaning remains months away, but that doesn’t mean those looking to earn a little extra money can’t clear out their basements and attics and post unwanted items online. In addition to popular platforms like Craigslist, EBay and Amazon for everyday things, sites like thredUP, Poshmark and Twice (now owned by EBay) provide avid shoppers an avenue for reselling clothes that do nothing but take up space.
Rent out a room. Airbnb, HomeAway and its subsidiary VRBO offer platforms for renting out a spare room or an entire home. This option, however, comes with drawbacks: Airbnb takes a 3 percent cut and VRBO requires people who use its site to pay up to $349 annually to advertise on its site, as the Washington Post noted in an analysis of the costs of renting out property on one of the home share apps.
Rent out your stuff. Style Lend lets shoppers earn money back on their clothing items by loaning them to others for up to two weeks, though the service is only available in New York City. Loanables and Zilok, on the other hand, acts as rental versions of Craigslist, so to speak, and their users are based across the U.S.
For those who don’t have time or energy to be an Uber or Lyft chauffeur all night, Getaround ansd Turo allow vehicle owners to rent out their cars, with insurance and (for Getaround) roadside assistance to boot.
Work as a temp. People who can’t decide on a particular side-hustle, or who perhaps boast a wide range of useful skills, may want to try TaskRabbit, which offers paid tasks ranging from organizing a cluttered room to running errands. As Money Magazine reported, the pay isn’t too shabby, with so-called “Taskers” earning up to $7,000 a month while working full-time.