My teenagers are at that age where they are excited about trying to find ways to earn some cash but aren’t sixteen yet. They are are the ripe ages of fourteen and fifteen, which make it a bit harder to find an actual job (one that includes an employer and taxes to pay). Additionally, we are a pretty busy family so finding a ride to and from work (since they don’t have licenses yet) is even more difficult.
We are also giving them more financial responsibility as they get older, like paying for their own “wants” or expenses when they go out with friends or their youth group. I think it’s extremely important for teenagers to learn early on how to earn income, manage their money, and appreciate the value of each dollar. Far too many times teenagers are left wondering who is going to foot their bills rather than how THEY are going to take care it themselves. I am an even bigger believe that it is the parents responsiblity to teach their children this. Our goal is to have the kids enter adulthood with the knowledge to handle their own finances rather than go into college and the workforce blindly.
I will admit, it is difficult to earn income at these ages (especially ages 12-15). We don’t hand out allowances so they usually rely on money gifted from birthdays and Christmas, therefore we’ve found some ways from them to be able to earn income. I’m sharing all our favorite finds in this post!
While I’m not a huge advocate of things that involve even more time on devices than the kids already are, Swagbucks is a good tool for kids ages 13 and up to earn a few bucks. My daughter earns, on average, around $20 a month taking surveys on Swagbucks. The amount of time it takes her to earn a dollar is pretty time-consuming, but if you are a teen (or without the normal adult responsibilities of working and raising a family) this is a pretty easy way to earn income. They will need a Paypal account, but this can be easily set up with the hlep of a parent. You can earn a $3 bonus using this link to sign-up!
Survey Junkie is another survey options for those ages 13 and up. However, my teens recommended Swagbucks over Survey Junkie, they seem to make more money and have more opportunities with Swagbucks.
Podcast & Video Editing
My oldest daughter is into creating music, she creates her own beats for songs using a free program called Audacity. She taughter herself how to use this program at age 13 and started using it to edit podcasts, sermons, etc. for individuals and organizations. If your teen is pretty savvy with music, video editing, podcasts, and programs like Audacity, this could be a great entrepreneurship path for them (even if not, they could learn)! They can start by learning, practicing, and then promoting themselves to organizations, YouTubers, bloggers, etc. Being young means they could start with low fees and build up a clientele. This could possibly build into a career!
This will involve some initial start-up and parental help, but reselling popular goods and/or vintage wear is a notable way of earning some extra income. I’ve found items that are trending at the local Goodwill for $2, only to find out from the teenagers that their peers would willing to pay $30 for it! If you as a parent who is already into thrifting or you live near a thrift store, this is an easier option for teens to shop and resell those sought-after items. Shopping is like an inherent gift teenager already have, so no experience required! They can use options like Facebook Marketplace, Poshmark, eBay, etc. for reselling items WITH parental help to get an account set up. I am more in favor of Poshmark or eBay, which requires no meeting up with strangers however if using an avenue that requires a meet-up always make sure a parent goes with them!
Good old fashion hard work is always an option! These options can include:
- Babysitting or petsitting
- Mowing lawns and helping with landscaping
- Shoveling snow in the winter
- Helping with home repairs and painting
- Cleaning houses
- Running errands
- Walking dogs
Is your teenager a whiz in Algebra or Spanish? Encourage them to tutor others! Tutors can make a decent amount of money and they can request that their students come to them or meet-up at a local library (or somewhere nearby your home). They can advertise their tutoring services through their school, other local elementary or middle schools and online.
Garage Sale Prepper
I don’t know about you, but for me, the most grueling part of doing a garage sale is all the prepping! It seems to take forever to do the sorting, pricing and setting up. Which is why I always recruit the help of the teenagers, it’s amazing the work they can get done when money is involved. I’ll usually pay my own teens $20-$30 each to do all the work of setting up the garage sale, but for another kid, I’d pay them more. Prices vary based on how much you have, you could even negotiate that they get a percentage of the sales.
Most teenagers play a sport, or two, qualifying them to be a referee at sports games in their expertise. My 15 year old plays soccer and qualifies to referee elementary and middle school games. Her only investment is the initial “class” she has to take but refereeing a game or two pays that off! Referees get paid decently, an average of $25 to $60 (or higher) per game and they are always needed! Your local recreational leagues will usually promote positions they have available before the season.
Teens can get paid to do something they do anyways – listen to music! Or submit the music they’ve made! Musicxray pays you $0.10 per every song you listen to from new and upcoming artist. They also have opportunities available for those who have music or beats they are looking to sell. They’ll need a Facebook account or will need to update their settings to reflect music preferences. They will also need a Paypal account, which can be set up with the help of a parent.