4 Perfect Side Hustles When You Need a Small Income Boost

A person knitting a scarf while sitting on the couch.

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These side gigs may not make you rich, but they also don't require a huge time commitment.


Key points

  • You may only be looking for a modest boost to your income.
  • Here are some side hustles that won't require you to commit to a preset schedule or put in a lot of time.

If you're deep in credit card debt or don’t have any savings, then you may need a serious income boost to shore up your finances. A side hustle could be your ticket to getting out of that hole and bolstering your cash reserves.

But what if you only need to earn a little extra money? Maybe your goal is to scrounge up an extra $50 a week so you have more cash to spend on leisure, or to cover the recently increased cost of everyday expenses like gas and groceries. If that's the case, and you don't want to sink a ton of time into a side hustle, here are a few gigs worth considering.

1. Answer surveys online

Some marketing firms or companies will pay you to answer surveys online (a simple Google search will produce different opportunities). These surveys won't be huge money-makers, but they may only require 15 minutes here or 30 minutes there. If you're looking for just a minor cash boost, these could be a good solution for you.

2. Pick up the occasional babysitting gig

If you know parents in your neighborhood who are frequently looking for babysitting help for date nights, you can volunteer your services whenever you want a little extra money. Giving up the occasional Friday or Saturday night could provide you with the income boost you need without really upending your schedule.

3. Drive for a ride-hailing service

When you sign up to drive for a ride-hailing company, you get to choose which hours you work. If you don't need to earn a lot of extra money, you don't need to work as many hours. Instead, you can pick up more fares when you'd like the cash, and you can opt out for days at a time if you feel you're all set financially.

4. Sell crafts during the holidays

Maybe you're a pro at knitting hats and scarves, or you enjoy designing your own jewelry. If you could use a small income boost to account for an anticipated increase in holiday spending, it pays to consider turning that hobby into an income-producing gig. You can see if there are local craft fairs where you can sell your products, or maybe you can find takers by advertising through social media. Just keep in mind that if you're really good at what you do, the orders might really start rolling in for a period of time.

If you're having trouble keeping up with your living expenses based on your current salary, then you may need a consistent side hustle -- one that has you working several nights a week, every week. But if you're looking for a much smaller boost to your income, then these gigs could do the trick.

Of course, these are just a few examples of side jobs that don't require a huge commitment. You can always explore other opportunities that seem fun or interesting to you.

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