Ways to make $500 or more over 3 months?
March 19, 2010 2:47 PM   Subscribe

I want to make an extra $500 over 3 months. Looking for ways to achieve this modest goal.

What can I do temporarily to make a little extra money? Nothing illegal or morally depraved, please. I'm willing to work hard for it - even take a part-time job, but not one that has shifts longer than 3-4 hours. Not interested in starting a business, though.

I work 5 hours a day, 4 days a week. For now, this can't increase, but it leave me with extra time to earn. I take classes in the evenings, but they will end soon. I don't have stuff to sell at a garage sale. I don't have special skills, but I'm well-educated. I don't drive. I don't mind doing physical stuff, but it can't be too intense as I'm three months pregnant.

What would you do if just wanted to earn a little extra money in the short term?
posted by kitcat to Work & Money (26 answers total) 44 users marked this as a favorite
Just about any part-time job can net you 500 bucks in 3 months.
posted by xingcat at 2:53 PM on March 19, 2010

Tutoring is a great way of making extra money. Tutors can earn up to $40/$50 (American) per hour (at least around here, not sure about where you live), and you'd only have to work a few hours here and there each week to get to $500. Post ads online, around town, near schools, etc. Even without special skills, if you're good with kids and patient, you can tutor anything from math to English to anything in between.
posted by ORthey at 2:57 PM on March 19, 2010 [2 favorites]

I bought crap bikes and fixed them up to resell.
Also resold stuff from garage sales. A friend has a modest etsy shop and housecleaning/computer fixing services on craigslist.
posted by beardlace at 3:02 PM on March 19, 2010

Census work? (perhaps a bit too much walking for your taste though)
posted by teg4rvn at 3:03 PM on March 19, 2010

Response by poster: Census work would be perfect, but sadly there isn't one where I am this year :(
posted by kitcat at 3:06 PM on March 19, 2010

Best answer: Write an article or two per day at textbroker.com.
posted by meggie78 at 3:07 PM on March 19, 2010 [9 favorites]

Response by poster: Can anyone suggest types of places that might hire folks for short shifts?
posted by kitcat at 3:09 PM on March 19, 2010

Work for the SMS answer services, like kgb and chacha.com. You won't make a lot of cash, but it's something to do on top of other stuff. Find some of the legitimate secret shopper companies, and do some work for them.
posted by lemonwheel at 3:14 PM on March 19, 2010 [3 favorites]

Be an artists' model. Universities often hire for their classes. If you're comfortable with being nude in front of people it's easy money. And if you're pregnant all the better as artists are often looking for different types of models to draw (I'm assuming that most models aren't pregnant).
posted by crazylegs at 3:18 PM on March 19, 2010

Sign up to help out an established dog walker for a couple of months. They are always looking for a reliable person in a pinch, and no driving required if you are urban.
posted by mozhet at 3:25 PM on March 19, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: See if there are any kumon math and reading centers in your area. I work at one, and mine is only open Mondays and Tuesdays from 3:30-6:30ish. Most of the workers are high school (like me) but the hours seems like they would work for you.
posted by kylej at 3:25 PM on March 19, 2010 [1 favorite]

posted by tristeza at 3:35 PM on March 19, 2010

Seconding tutoring. Here in the Midwest, I'm making about $25 an hour with a 2 hour shift every week. That's $200 a month right there and it's simple work that isn't particularly time-consuming.
posted by JannaK at 3:41 PM on March 19, 2010

My daughter's job sounds just right for you. She is an usher at our local movie theater. They mostly hire high school students, but I think that's because of the short shifts, which would be great for you.
posted by raisingsand at 3:47 PM on March 19, 2010

posted by A Terrible Llama at 4:37 PM on March 19, 2010

Best answer: 1) focus groups! If you are near a big city, this can net you $50+/hr, cash, sometimes dinner as well, and a stock of new products if that's what you are testing. Plus, you're in a great small demographic that gets marketed at heavily.

2) add craigslist jobs to your reading material; the gigs section in particular can be useful for finding one-time things ranging from editing (take it to your other work) to working ticket booths (one full day/weekend) and whatever.

3) money is money: instead of making extra, save what you get - find a habit and kick it. going for starbucks often? taking the subway one or two stops instead of walking? a couple bucks here/there adds up FAST.
posted by whatzit at 5:51 PM on March 19, 2010 [4 favorites]

sell stuff on ebay. sell your friends' stuff on ebay and split the proceeds with them. everyone has crap they want to get rid of but don't have the time to deal with it.
posted by micawber at 8:40 PM on March 19, 2010

Response by poster: These are all great answers. I'm just highlighting the ones that contain something specific I'd never heard of or something I've never thought of.
posted by kitcat at 9:49 PM on March 19, 2010

By my calculations, you're looking to earn a little over $40 extra per week, assuming you start soon. As other posters have mentioned, most any part-time job could net you this much money , even if you're not paid a lot.

So why not pick something that interests you? Book store, movie rental place, concert hall (usher), cafe, retail shop, garden centre, whatever. And there are always call centres, which won't inspire you to greatness but are accustomed to high turnover and flexible hours, for students.

Since this is a short-term goal I might go for one of these options as a path of least resistance, rather than using your own (unpaid) time to organize what you say is only going to be a short term venture.

It's also possible, depending on your spending habits, that you could cut $40 a week from your current spending, or do a combination of spending less and just taking on even less hours elsewhere.
posted by nicoleincanada at 1:28 AM on March 20, 2010

My sister is on Utherverse all the time and makes money by designing environments/ clothes/ whatever people want. I guess she's made over $700 in the past couple of months. It requires some programming skill, but you do set your own hours.
posted by _cave at 8:54 AM on March 20, 2010 [1 favorite]

Signing up for a medical test could get you more than $1000 for not too much of a time commitment. Search craigslist for offers.
posted by vegetableagony at 10:47 AM on March 20, 2010

I'll second the idea about selling your friends' stuff on eBay. You may not have extra stuff you need to get rid of, but I bet you know someone like me. My small NYC apartment is packed with things of some value but which I never use, so I've been giving a close friend a cut of the proceeds to sell it off for me. (I just don't have the time and don't need the money badly enough to do all the research and listing and packing and shipping myself.) We've made some pretty good money this way in the past few months.
posted by miskatonic at 6:27 AM on March 21, 2010

Donate plasma 2x per week for three months. That will get you 600 dollars for about 30 hours of 'work' (in this case, 'work' is defined as watching TV, listening to your iPod, reading books, enjoying free WiFi, etc.) and feel good about the positive difference you made for people who desperately need plasma-derived liquids.
posted by Twicketface at 9:43 AM on March 22, 2010

Response by poster: Twicketface: This is a good suggestion. But I'm in Canada, where you can't get paid to donate blood.
posted by kitcat at 1:34 PM on March 22, 2010

Plasma, not blood - still may not be legal in Canada to get paid for it, but a different thing. (I don't think people get paid to donate blood in the US, either, but a lot of folks donate plasma for regular income here)
posted by tristeza at 7:14 PM on March 22, 2010

Response by poster: Yeah, still not legal in Canada, but -
Huh. Learn something new everyday....
posted by kitcat at 9:26 PM on March 22, 2010

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