If you’re a teen looking for a way to make money that can work around your school schedule or keep you busy next summer, here are some ideas to get you started on your search. Some might even give you an idea of what sort of professional career might be a good fit for you as an adult. If you’re the parent of a teen that thinks money must grow on trees or who is in desperate need of something productive to do, maybe you can share this list with your child the next time he or she comes to you looking for an allowance raise.
Classic sitting jobs
Babysitting has always been, and probably always will be, a great job for teens. Many communities now require all sitters to undergo basic first-aid and CPR training, but this training is usually readily available from the Red Cross and teaches things we all should know anyway. In addition to traditional sitting jobs, some parents like hiring a “Mother’s Helper,” who can keep an eye on young children while mom gets housework, yard work, or other projects done. A Mother’s Helper might also be paid to help mom with some basic housecleaning, too.
Many people who are leaving town for vacation will gladly pay someone look after their pets and plants while they’re gone. They might even be willing to pay a little more for someone to do some light housework while they’re away.
Another great job for teenagers is lawn maintenance. Mowing and edging the lawn during the summer or raking and bagging leaves during the fall are well suited to teens looking to make a few bucks and such jobs can often be easily worked around a school schedule. If you own a pressure washer, you could offer your services as a house or driveway washer, too.
If you love woodworking, consider turning that passion into a small business. Smaller items like walking sticks, birdhouses, and yard ornaments can be sold via Craigslist or other social media with minimal marketing expense.
If you have a talent for sewing, you might be able to start a small alteration business, hemming pants, shortening skirts, or even replacing lost buttons. You might also be able to create and sell some original items (like simple pillowcase dresses for little girls).
If you love taking photos and have been told you’ve got a knack for it, consider taking and selling stock photos to various companies. Stock photos are usually pictures of common places, events, nature, etc. Companies use these photos in various publications. A stock photo is royalty free, which means that once you sell it, you no longer own any rights to it and are not entitled to future earnings on that photo. You might also try your hand as an event photographer for family and friends.
If you’re a strong student, you might be able to get a job tutoring other students who need extra help. If you pride yourself on excellent skills when it comes to grammar, you can earn a few bucks as a proofreader.
When it comes to any school-related jobs, be sure that you don’t cross the line between helping and anything that the school could construe as cheating.
While this list certainly doesn’t include everything available to teens, it’s a good start. People who start working as teens tend to learn what it means to be responsible, what it means to do a good job, and what the real value of a dollar is quicker than those who don’t. A job will also help keep teenagers from getting bored in addition to putting them in more places where they’ll earn money and fewer places to spend it.