I don’t know about you, but I’m always looking for a quick way to earn a little extra money. So, I’ve scoured the blogosphere and read dozens, if not hundreds, of articles on the best or most profitable side hustles.
Do you know what I found?
Almost all the articles have the same side hustles, and they’re not always as quick, easy, or profitable as the title suggests.
Truth is, nowadays it’s tough to get by with just a full-time job and a side-hustle has become a requirement for many. I know this from personal experience.
So I decided to go one step further than all those other guys. I wanted to create a list of unique side hustles that nobody else is talking about. So I did. I put together some of my favorite strange but very profitable side hustle ideas together in this handy guide below:
1) Sharpening Knives
The first side hustle idea is sharpening knives. And I told you these were going to be weird. So sharpening knives—I don’t think everyone realizes this, but some people (including myself) are absolutely crazy about having their knives sharp. If you don’t have a sharp knife, you can easily cut yourself, and quite frankly, I just hate cooking with a dull knife. It drives me nuts.
So to do something like this, all you really need to do is you need to buy a kit to begin and educate yourself, obviously using YouTube. And then you can talk to friends and family, and say, “Hey, I’m starting this knife-sharpening thing, can I sharpen some of your knives?” Most people are going to say, “Sure.” They’re going to say, “Okay, yeah, I’d love to.”
And then all you need to do from there is get referrals from those people. Starting off is going to be difficult, but when you get those referrals maybe you can start out at $5 a knife to sharpen the knife, and eventually work your way up to $10, $15 per knife to sharpen the knives. You can also do scissors; there’s a lot of different instruments that you can sharpen.
Now, when you’re doing this, generally speaking, by the end of the first year, I think it’s realistic to say that you could make somewhere between $250 to $500 every single month consistently. Because you got to remember the nice thing about this is that with knives, people use them and they continually get more dull, so they have to continually resharpen them and you can be the individual that does that.
Now in terms of a resource to get started, there is a business that is called The American Edge. It’s a Facebook page, but it basically shows you that, hey—this is a very valid idea, and people actually do this. There’s an individual who has a whole company based around this, and he makes pretty decent money doing it.
2) Picking up Trash
Number two is picking up trash. And I know most of you right now are thinking, “I don’t want to just pick up trash for a living. Not that there’s anything wrong with it, but I’m not trying to be a garbage man or a garbage woman.”
That’s not actually what I’m talking about. What I’m talking about is going to different property management companies in different large buildings, and saying to them, “Hey, I noticed that there’s a little bit of trash in the parking lot. Who is it that picks up all that litter in the parking lot?”
A lot of the time, they don’t have an answer. It might be someone in the staff or someone that doesn’t really want to do this. And offering the service is something that most likely they haven’t been offered before.
Basically what you do after you get set up is you canvass the parking lots. About once a month, you pick up the trash.
You can talk to them about getting rid of other trash for them if you want to get into that. If not, you could just offer to pick up litter. And then you take it to a dump and you dump the trash. It’s really that simple.
Now, the thing about this that’s beautiful, is that you’re going to mostly commercial buildings, or maybe some bigger, residential buildings, and you’re talking to the property managers or owners. They make a pretty decent amount of money.
You turn to them and you say, “Yeah, I’d like to offer this service for you. I’m willing to do it for $250 bucks a month,” which isn’t crazy, in my opinion. If you offer that to them, a lot of times they’ll say, “Yeah,” because it’s not a ton of money and now their headache is gone, right? They don’t want to deal with it anymore.
So because of that, in terms of how much you can make every single month by the end of your first year, I think it’s realistic to say $1,000 to $3,000 bucks a month. I know that sounds crazy, but I’m saying it because let’s just assume you get four decent-sized buildings with clients; now just with four buildings, you are making $1,000 a month.
That’s all it takes. It’s not a ton of money. Like I said, all you’ve got to do is go there once a month, walk around, clean it up. That’s all it really is.
The beauty of this is that you’re making the money, you take a headache away from them, and you’re also getting exercise, which is nice. Now, in terms of a resource to actually start this business, there is one—it is called cleanlots.com.
3) Create a Website about…Anything
Number three is to create a website about anything. And I know in the beginning I said, “Yeah, just blog.” I’m not talking about blogging (though it can be a good career), you guys, I’m talking about something very different.
This is actually what I do for a living. I don’t blog for a living—I don’t sit on a blog and write my heart out every single day. It just takes too much time. It’s a very laborious task.
Instead, what I do is I find topics that I’m interested in, and then I will hire a writer to write the content. I’ll have an editor and somebody posts it, and then we’re all set. And I keep creating content, and then that content gets seen by people, and then I make money with it.
That’s the idea.
There are many ways to make money from a website:
- There are many affiliate marketing programs including Amazon Associates and many others that help you make passive income by embedding referral links into your webpages.
- Use display ads, pop ups ads, banner ads, and many other ad types throughout your site.
- Embed YouTube videos from your personal or business YouTube channel
- Link to Facebook or Instagram business pages, as well as any other ecommerce platforms you might use
- Integrate social media posts from your fans on Twitter, TikTok, and your other favorite social networks
- Create online courses and offer subscriptions to create a recurring source of income while building a following
- Host podcasts through your website and crossshare across social media channels, email newsletters, and other digital marketing channels.
There are a lot of ways to earn a little extra cash fast with a site, and if you put in a the time and effort, you might even be able to make a lot of money — even enough to replace your daytime job. The key is find something that you’re passionate about and create your first website focusing on that thing.
I’m saying this for two reasons: first, there’s a little bit of time to actually start becoming profitable with a website; usually 8 to 12 months is how long it takes to really get going.
But in addition to that, I know that most of you don’t want to spend a ton of money to have someone create content. You don’t want to do that; you’re really leery of that. What you do instead is you write the content yourself, and that’s great. In the beginning, you can do that.
But to give you an example of this, there was a website today that I just saw that makes around $350 a month, and all they do is talk about humidifiers. That’s it, humidifiers. Super boring. Not exciting at all. Probably wasn’t a passionate project for them. My guess is they just said, “Hey, I can make some money with it. Let’s go for it.” So that kind of gives you an idea of some of the ideas out there and things that you can do.
In terms of how much you can make—I have a portfolio of 10 websites. I created a whole business out of this, I make good money with it. But I think by the end of the first year, it’s realistic to say that you can make somewhere between $250 to $1,000 a month if you work on it consistently throughout the whole year and put hard work into it and really focus on learning as well.
Now, in terms of a resource for this—actually my website. I’m not super self-promotional, but I think I have to say that here because I know exactly what I’ve created and how much it can help people.
So if you go to the navigation of my website, you can see an area that says, “Create a Free Website.” If you click there, then you can go and it’ll walk you through with different videos on how to set up a website. It’ll help you a lot in terms of getting started.
If you’re not ready for doing the website just yet, that’s fine too. You can go over to my website, and there is a thing on the homepage that says, “Learn the Truth about Online Business.” Click on that and read the whole thing.
Then at the end, you’ll get a free mini-course. Either way, getting started today is really important with that, because the sooner you start, the sooner you’ll be able to make this side income. And it’s nice because it’s one of those unique side hustles that you can do from home.
4) Personal Tailor Services
Number four is personal tailoring services. Now I’m not talking about creating a storefront and saying, “I’m a tailor,” and creating a Google profile and all that.
No. What I’m talking about is just, if you’re good with a sewing machine, offer to tailor people’s clothes. It’s really that simple.
I think a really good way to do this is to go to different gyms, find personal trainers, talk to them and say, “If you refer someone over to me for these types of services, I can give you a certain amount of money.” In gyms a lot of people are gaining/losing weight, right? And buying new clothes can be expensive.
So you basically give them a referral finder’s fee. That way, there’s something in it for them and something in it for you. And most likely a lot of those people that you get the first time, if you’re nice and personable, they’ll work with you again. So it’s a really great way to start altering clothes.
Like I said, it’s a lot cheaper than buying new clothes. And that can get pretty expensive, especially if you have nice clothes. So offering that service can actually be a really big win-win for both the client, whoever you’re working with, and yourself because you’re obviously making some decent money.
By the end of the first year, I think it’s realistic to make somewhere between $250 to $500 a month because you’ve got to remember you’re going to have repeat clients and things. I think it’s pretty reasonable, considering. And then if you really want to grow into a full business and expand from there, you can.
5) Carpet/Mattress Cleaning
Number five is to offer carpet or mattress cleaning. Now, this is nice because it’s a repeatable business model. You’d have to buy a carpet cleaner—you’d have to have something with which you can actually clean carpets and also something that can clean the mattresses as well is a nice little add-on, but it’s usually part of the same machine.
You offer your services on Craigslist and Facebook and just basically talk to the people that you know and say, “Hey, I’m doing this.” The beauty here is that this is a repeatable thing, especially for carpets. People are walking on carpet all the time, carpets are getting dirty, and a lot of people don’t clean their carpets enough.
So if you talk to them and you say, “I will do a carpet cleaning for this amount of money. And then we can go ahead and sign you up. And every single six months or three months,”—whatever you can convince them into—“I will come and I will clean it again.”
If they sign up for a membership with your service, basically every six months, you can go clean it and you can do that again, and again, and again. Once you have 10, 20, 30 clients you start making some decent money there for sure.
Now, in terms of how much you could make every single month by the end of your first year (you’d be getting some referrals and getting some people), I think it’s realistic to say somewhere between 250 to 500 hours a month is a reasonable range when you’re starting in this type of business.
6) Repair and Resell Appliances from Craigslist/Offerup
Number six is to repair and resell appliances on Craigslist and Offerup—in these types of platforms.
New appliances, as we all know, are pretty pricey. Getting a new appliance is expensive. It doesn’t matter if it’s a washer, dryer, dishwasher, refrigerator, any of those things.
It’s pretty expensive. And old appliances sometimes aren’t even broken, and it may be that it’s just plain old and dirty. Or maybe they’re saying, “You know what? I just like some new appliances. I want to update it. I want to update things.” And people do that. I’ve done that myself.
So all you need to do with this, is you get the appliances from those platforms, you can usually find them for free—even ones that are fully working, because it’s one of those awkward things that’s hard to throw away as it’s so big and bulky. So you just offer to go in there, you say, “Hey, I’ll pick it up, I’ll take it off your hands.”
You clean it up, get it nice. And then what you can do is you can offer to sell that on those same platforms. The beauty of this is that when you go to drop it off (and you can offer delivery services as well, to make a little bit extra money) you can then turn to them and say, “Hey, what are you going to do with the old one?”
If they have an old washer or something, you could say, “What do you do with the old one?” They may say, “I’m just going to toss it.” Okay, well, “I’ll take it.” And then you just do the exact same thing.
Now, in terms of this, I think that by the end of the first year, once you’ve gotten good, the key to this is going to be to make sure that you know how to actually fix all of these appliances, right?
You can go to recraigslist.com and get into the description to learn more about it.
But by the end of that first year, I think it’s realistic (if you get good at this) that you could make somewhere between an extra $2,000 to $3,000 every single month, just based on fixing those appliances and maybe then eventually hiring someone else to help you. And you’re just doing delivery and exchanging them and making money hand over fist.
7) Use Craigslist Gigs Section
Number seven, and this isn’t really so much a side hustle as it is kind of an idea to find the little side hustles that you can try out to see what you like.
If you go to Craigslist, not many people realize this, but there is a “Gigs” section. And there are so many different things listed there that it’s kind of crazy.
I looked and saw there were programmers, there was someone looking for a cat litter box cleaner. I’m not kidding, that was a thing. There was also a personal assistant, an in-home stylist, a cleaning lady, food delivery, and someone looking—actually a lot of people looking for writers.
So the amount of money that you’re going to make really is difficult to determine here because it depends on what the job is and what the skill level is and that sort of thing. But you can obviously make some decent money every single month doing these gigs.
I think it’s important to see you could maybe get some ideas, little businesses you could start. Like I said, the cat litter cleaner, right? Who would have thought about that? But you can offer a service to where you clean litter boxes. Once a week you go, you clean them, you pick them up, and then you just take it away.
I have a cat, I hate doing it myself. I’d probably buy it if it was reasonably priced. In order to start with this, just go over to craigslist.org and go into the section that says gigs and you can see it all there.
8) Dog Walking/Pet Sitting
Number eight is dog walking or really pet sitting in general. So if you love animals, you guys, this is a perfect opportunity. You get to spend a ton of time with little furry animals and who wouldn’t want that if they loved animals, right? You could really become a cat or dog sitter, or even just a dog walker if you’re not all that interested in taking them overnight.
But we actually use this, myself and my wife, every single time we leave for a vacation, which we used to do a lot more. I haven’t done a lot lately for obvious reasons. But when we do that, we actually have someone watching our dog and somebody that stops by and checks on our cat.
Now, when people are on vacation or things come up, they need individuals to come and check on their loved ones. Sometimes their loved ones are just a furry little dog or cat. And that’s fine. So they need people to do that.
In addition to that, if you are comfortable with it, what you can do is you can actually take them into your house overnight, and (usually this is a dog situation) you let the dog stay there overnight.
And the beauty of it is when you don’t just have one dog, but you check the temperaments of each animal, and you actually have more than one dog. Maybe you have two, three, four dogs in a night, come by and spend the night. And you’re making money and all they’re doing is just hanging out with each other.
9) General Manual Labor
Number nine is general manual labor. This is something that may not be for everyone, but if you like to have some physical activity and you like working with your hands, this could be a great side hustle. This is something where you could have a full-time job in an office and then on the weekends go and help people with certain things.
Now, there’s a lot of different ideas here, but some of the ones that came to mind for me was doing other people’s yard work or doing furniture assembly (like IKEA). Not everyone enjoys that, that’s for sure. Also moving and packing; helping people pack and actually move when they’re trying to move their stuff.
Minor home repairs, I don’t know that you want to do minor or really big-time repairs, but just the minor stuff kind of needs a general handyman. And then mounting and installing TVs, maybe going to people’s houses. There are just so many things.
There’s also cleaning garages—there’s a lot of different things you can do here. The money is going to depend very much on the job and the skill level that’s associated with it.
Again, this was hard for me to say every month but I think you could definitely make $200 to $500 a month just by doing this, depending on what it is that you’re skilled in and what you’re willing to offer.
Now to get started on this, there’s actually two different websites that you can get started on. If you go to taskrabbit.com, you can use that, or you can use a service called thumbtack.com And you can try either of those, and that’s where you can find jobs.
10) Host Trivia Nights
Number 10 is to host trivia nights. And I got to be honest, this isn’t the greatest idea right now for obvious reasons. Restaurants (the different website builders for restaurants may be able to help them by the way) are in shambles, everyone’s having a hard time. But generally speaking, this is a pretty simple business. What you do is you find restaurants that are having issues getting people into the door at certain times of the week.
You then contact them and you say, “Hey, I’m willing to run a trivia night for you, and it’ll cost this much money—give it a shot!” And usually, when they start advertising that, they’ll see a return on it, because more people are coming in not for anything else other than the trivia that they’re doing. And then they order their food and drinks and enjoy it.
Now, in terms of how much you could make a month with this, I think that it’s realistic once you get three or four different places signed up (especially if you do it once a week) it would totally be reasonable to make somewhere between $500 to $1,000 a month.
I think that’s totally reasonable by the end of your first year to get in that range. And in order to actually start with this, you can go to lastcalltrivia.com. They actually created a whole business model around this. They’ve done a really good job with it, and it’s a good model to follow.
11) Become a Personal Chef
And last but not least is number 11, which is to become a personal chef.
Now, what you would basically do in this situation, is you would either go to someone’s house and cook for them, or you can do meal-prep delivery. The thing with this is that you want to usually try to keep it local, unless you really want to scale bigger.
But especially in the first year, you really want to kind of keep it local. And you want to cook for those, I think it’s a great idea to cook for those that have dietary restrictions or have food allergies or specialized types of foods.
Number one, because you can usually charge more for that. And number two, it’s a little bit more of a challenge to cook it, but not everyone else is offering it because there’s plenty of meal plans already out there.
Really, I think it would be a good idea to partner with local gyms and yoga studios. That would be a good angle because there’s a lot of people out there that need specialized diets and things—competitors and bodybuilding type people, they need a lot of different things. So if you offer that service to them specifically, it could go really well.
I think in the first year—and it depends on how hard you work—but I think you could probably clear somewhere between $250 to $1,000 a month, depending on how many clients you get. As long as your food is good and you pick up a few clients, usually one or two will then lead you to one or two more, and you can just get referral after referral and grow from there.
To get started with this one, you can actually go to a website called hireachef.com. Obviously, it’s good to have a culinary background. If you have no culinary background, you’re not a good cook at all, it’s kind of tough.
You’re going to have to get those referrals, it’s going to be a little bit tougher for you. But I really think anybody that’s a good cook and really understands food could do this, but culinary training would definitely help.
So that’s it, you guys. Those are my 11 strange, but highly profitable side hustle ideas that I really think anybody can start.
It’s just a matter of actually taking action and doing it.
Bonus: A Few Other Unique Side Hustles
Of course, there are many other unique side hustles than those listed above. Those are just my personal favorites. But I know that these ideas might not be right for you. Don’t worry, I’ve created a bonus list of other sides hustles that might be a better fit for your skill set:
- Become a Taxi Driver: While becoming a licensed taxi driver used to be a difficult task, now you can easily transform your personal vehicle into a money making machine with apps like Uber, Lyft, and other similar rideshare services.
- Pick Up Stuff for People: In addition to rideshare apps, there are grocery delivery apps like Instacart and food delivery apps like DoorDash and GrubHub which you can utilize as a driver to make money delivering stuff to people.
- Dropshipping: When selling on eBay or Etsy, you are responsible for storage and shipping of all items you selling. With dropshipping, you can sell items but someone else handles the logistical operations for you.
- Rent Out Your Real Estate: If you have an extra garage, you can renovate it and rent it out as a vacation rental on Airbnb or another lodging rental app. You can also make extra income renting out an extra room or investing in run-down properties and converting them into rentals. It’s important to note this one might involve a good amount of startup investment before you reall start seeing any ROI.
- Become a proofreader: If you always find yourself correcting other people’s grammar, then proofreading might be a viable business idea. Proofreading can often become more than just a side hustle but a viable part-time job for many.
- Find a Way to Write: Freelance writing is something a lot of people can do without realizing it. You don’t have to know how to write a novel. You can write marketing copy, create content for landing pages, write blog articles, create affiliate marketing material, ghostwrite for someone else, create resumes and business documents, and much more. Additionally, with platforms like Fiverr and UpWork, making money online as a writer is easier than ever before.
- Become a Virtual Artist: People don’t just want to read text. They want to look at beautiful, unique, engaging art that is a unique to a brand’s aesthetic and culture. Become a virtual artist by working with some of the best graphic design tools and selling your creations to business owners and solopreneurs.
- Become a virtual assistant: Many small businesses need virtual assistants to help with clerical tasks, social media management, and other tasks that can often be completed in your spare time.
- Teach English or Another Language: Many people are seeking to learn how to learn English as a second language or want to be bilingual. If you know more than one language and have a drive to help others learn, this might be a great side gig for you. If you want to teach English to Chinese students, you can check out VIPKid.
- Become an Influencer: If you have a large following or know how to build a fanbase on social networks, then you might be a perfect candidate for becoming an influencer. Some brands will pay the most popular Influencers on Instagram and TikTok thousands of dollars for a single post.
- Babysitting: Yeah, I’ll admit that this might not be the most unique side hustle, but it’s an easy way to make a little extra money if you have a friend with kids and nothing to do in the evening.
- Become a Mystery Shopper: With apps like Field Agent and Easy Shift, you can buy items, take a picture of them, and then send requested information to a brand or company for money. Usually, you’ll also get a reimbursement for whatever you purchased so you can also save money while making money as a mystery shopper.
- Take Online Surveys: I know that you’ve probably seen this one before, but taking online surveys with apps like Swagbucks is a great way to make money when you’re sitting in the waiting room at the doctor or, worse, the DMV…
- Find a Side Job: If you’re working a full-time job, you might be able to find a slow paced, part-time side job doing something you’re more passionate about while also supporting local businesses. If you love flowers, perhaps you could apply at the local florist.
- House-Sitting: Another not-so-unique side hustle, but a good way to make a little extra money while raiding your friend’s fridge when they’re on a business trip or on vacation.
- Go To the Thrift Store: Thrift stores often have lots of stuff that you can buy real cheap and then resell on Facebook Marketplace or elsewhere online.
- Create online tutorials: You can use YouTube or other platforms to host tutorials about how to use products or services that others might have trouble using. If you remember number 3 above, you can embed these into your website or just focus on making money on whatever third-party channel you’re using. Additionally, you can offer gaming tutorials using Twitch.
- Sell Pet Care Services: On apps like Rover, you can sell pet care services like pet sitting, dog boarding, and dog walking. If you love animals, this is a great way to make a little extra money while playing around with a big ball of fluff.
While it’s hard to say which is the best side hustle, it is fair to say that these are at least some of the best side hustle ideas you’ll find. I know that some of these may seem strange, and others might involve startup capital or a car.
But just try testing out a few of these ideas. Many help do several of these tasks and have been able to quite their day job. Becoming a freelancer in the new gig economy is a lot like working a lot of side hustles without working a “real” job.
There’s something on this list for everyone, from the high school student who wants to make a little extra cash after school to the homeschooling mother trying to pay off student loans faster to bloggers that are looking to diversify their revenue streams.
Whoever you are, if you’ve made it this far, then the time to start your new unique side hustle is now. Good look and enjoy the journey!