Trying to make money as a 13 year old can seem daunting, but it is doable. From learning different way to make money online to legal options to make money around your neighborhood, there are lots of options.
We'll explore what options there are to make money as a 13 year old, how much you can expect to earn, and which opportunities work best for different people. Let's get started!
Best Ways To Make Money As A 13 Year Old
Making money as a 13 year old can seem difficult since you're not yet old enough to be hired to most jobs, but there are more options than you think. Just remember that if you want to make a lot of money it's going to be hard work.
You'll need a great attitude, good work ethic, and some patience if you want to earn your own money.
Before we get into the nitty gritty, we want to give you some tips about earning money as a 13 year old.
Tips for Making Money As A 13 Year Old
It's also a good idea to ask for help when you need it. Chances are your parents or guardians will be happy to hear that you want to earn money for yourself and will be willing to help.
Unfortunately, in the U.S. 13 year olds can't have a part time job, which means that you probably won't be able to get consistent income. Still, you can do things like dog walking as a part time job without being officially hired or on the books as an employee.
Of course, you should talk to your parents or guardian before you get started. Your parents can help you decide how much time you should spend trying to earn money, or might offer you extra money themselves so you can focus on school and extra curricular activities.
And remember, making money as a 13 year old isn't for everyone. It's okay if you decide that you'd rather focus on other things right now.
It's also important to balance working with school. If your grades start to dip your parents will likely stop you from earning money on the side. Try to schedule plenty of time for homework and socializing with friends, and give yourself a little extra time to help study for tests or work on big projects.
We've compiled a list of 45+ different ways 13-year-olds can make money. It's a good idea to consider a handful of different options since you might not earn a lot of money from just one.
It's also fine if you try something and realize you don't like it. You're already plenty ambitious trying to make money at 13, don't try to make yourself do a job you hate.
Ways To Make Money Online as a Teen
The internet is making it a lot easier to make money online, but it's important to follow the rules. Many websites, like Twitch, have good earning potential but restrict user age. Since you can easily get banned for life from these websites if you lie about your age, it's better to stick to websites that allow users that are 13 and younger.
Take Surveys Online
Taking surveys is a great way to start making money online. Surveys are usually pretty quick, and you can do them on your own time without any commitments. Plus there are a lot of companies that want to get teenager's opinions on their products, so you'll probably qualify for a decent number of surveys.
The downside to taking surveys is that you'll often be paid in gift cards, discounts, and other non-cash rewards. You'll also have to take a lot of surveys before you'll start earning money, so it can be a fairly time-consuming option.
There's a wide range of survey sites that pay users to take relevant surveys. You'll likely do better if you sign up for several different survey sites instead of just one.
Some of my favorites include:
Even at 13 years old your feedback on whether a website works or not is valuable. TestBirds and other crowd-sourced testing sites are making it easier for companies to find out what works and doesn't work on their websites, which helps them make improvements.
Learning how to test websites doesn't take very long, and you can often include written feedback to help refine their testing results. Like taking surveys, you usually have a lot of control over your schedule as a tester, so it's relatively easy to plan around school and your other commitments.
Like testing websites, website reviewers look at company websites and report on their opinion of the site. Unlike testers, reviewers are focused on the user-experience, not trying to make sure there aren't any bugs or broken links on the website.
Website review portals make it easy to get into the website review business, but you can also start your own website or blog to advertise your services. Just make sure you have a way to collect payment online and you're good to go. Reviewing websites is a great fit if you've got a good eye for functional web design.
Dropshipping can be a difficult but rewarding way to make money online. For this one you'll probably need either your parent's help or at least their cooperation, since dropshipping takes a fair amount of time and management.
Basically, drop shipping involves creating your own website or sales portal, selecting products from dropshipping warehouses, and offering them for sale on your website. The warehouse handles the actual packaging and shipping, but you're responsible for making sure orders are fulfilled in a reasonable timeframe. You'll also manage and respond to customer reviews of your product, and help deal with any lost, damaged, or stolen packages.
If you have an eye for good products, or are very familiar with a certain niche, dropshipping can be a great way to make money. Plus, since you're running your own website and handling on the details yourself, no one needs to know your age.
Dropshipping also avoids having to store products yourself, which means you don't need to try and run your business out of your bedroom or your parent's garage.
Best of all, there really isn't a limit to how much money you can earn as a dropshipper. It's all about how good you are at marketing the products you choose and how well-designed your website is.
Start a Blog
At 13 it might not seem like you have much to blog about, but that isn't always true. Blogging about your day to day experience might be really relatable for other people your age, and could even be helpful for parents and teachers!
Or you could blog about your interests, or about building a particular skill. Frankly, a blog about a teenager learning how to blog could potentially be a money-maker after you've gotten good enough.
Starting to blog can be free, only takes as much time as you give it, and can be personally rewarding as well. Once you're ready, you can start adding things like affiliate marketing (where you review or promote another business's products and get a small commission on sales from your blog) or online advertisements to make money.
If your blog gets really popular you may even have companies reach out to sponsor your blog or a specific article on your blog.
It's important to use your social media accounts to promote your blog, at least when you're getting started. Otherwise, people might struggle to find you.
Related: Types of Blogs That Make Money
Have a good eye for art and graphic design? Interested in learning more? Creating printables, like calendars, booklits, flyers, and other ready-to-print materials can be a great way to make money on the side. Plus, your printables can serve as a portfolio of your work if you decide to go to school for art or graphic design.
It can take a while for printables to make a lot of money, but keep at it and it's a good way to earn money online. Plus, making printables can be a lot of fun.
Consider creating flyers or other printables for your teachers or local businesses and non-profits you know. It's free advertising of what you can do, and a good way to practice when you're getting started. Take some business cards with you and ask if they'd be willing to hand them out if anyone says anything about the flyer. That way you'll start attracting more business early.
Make YouTube Videos
At 13 years old it might seem like a pipe dream to make money from YouTube videos… but it's not impossible. In fact, the highest-earning Youtuber is just 9 years old, and he started being the highest-earning Youtuber when he was 7.
Making YouTube videos will cost a little money upfront though. You'll need a decent webcam and likely some lighting to start. It also helps if you have a stable internet connection at home, though you might be able to use the internet at the library or at school to upload videos if you have to.
It's also a good idea to have an external hard drive to store your videos, that way you won't take up all the space on your computer with videos.
The trick to earning money on YouTube is finding an interesting niche and attracting viewers to your type of video. Once you have an audience it's a lot easier to branch out and try other things. So spend some time thinking about what you're passionate about, or what you could make a lot of YouTube videos about.
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Start Creating on TikTok
In some ways, TikTok may be an even better video creation platform for you to make money as a teenager. You won't need as much equipment, videos are shorter, and it can be easier to attract views on TikTok.
However, unlike YouTube, TikTokers don't usually earn a share of advertisement profits. Instead, you'll earn money on TikTok through brand sponsorships and other 3rd party means of making money. That means that you'll need a pretty large following on TikTok before it's likely to be profitable.
Still, even a little extra money can make a big difference, right?
Start Video Editing
Don't think you want to be in front of the camera, but still interested in making videos? Consider starting to edit videos. Not only can editing videos be a good way to help friends with their YouTube videos, you can even use your video editing skills to tell stories or create short films of your own.
Plus, video editing experience is a great way to get into a good college for video making and film degrees. So even if you don't make much money, it's still a good investment in your future.
Sell Your Photography
If you're already into photography, setting up a website to sell prints of your work is a great way to make some extra cash. Again, since you're creating the content yourself there aren't really any limitations on age, so you can start when you're 13 or even younger.
Good photography is also a lot more accessible thanks to better cameras in smartphones and other innovations. You can make more money since you won't have to invest as much up-front to take great photos. Free photoshop alternatives also make it easier to start your own business and learn some basic photo editing skills.
You can also use print-on-demand platforms like DeviantArt, Threadless, and Redbubble to get your photos printed on a wider variety of products.
Audio transcription might sound easy, but it's actually a relatively challenging job that takes a fair bit of skill. That also means that accurately transcribing audio offers you a lot more financial freedom than some of the other options in this article. It's generally better paid than other options so it's better for money making even when you don't have a lot of time.
However, to transcribe audio you'll likely need to go through a transcription company or work as a freelancer. That means that you might have fewer options because of your age, at least until you're old enough to get a worker's permit.
Publish Short Stories/Poems/Fanfiction
If you love writing, why not make some extra cash doing it? There are plenty of sites available, like Medium.com, that protect your right to your content while also letting you potentially profit from your work. Or, if you think your story is good enough (and it's an original, not fanfiction) you can approach publishers.
Publishing stories might not be an easy way to make money, but there are plenty of talented writers who might be able to make publishing work for them.
Even fanfiction can be profitable if you market it right and post to the right websites. Do your research, much you're publishing places you can make money, and you'll be good.
Open an Art Marketplace Online
If you do a lot of digital art already there's no reason not to earn money from your designs.
As long as your art meets certain size and resolution standards you can upload it onto sites like Threadless and Redbubble for printing. You'll also be able to see sample versions of possible products to make sure your art looks the way you want it to and can trust that the products are relatively high quality.
Having your own art marketplace is a great way to make money on the side, and is really easy to maintain. Just upload your art, select the products you want to sell, and you're good! If you're looking to earn money as an artist, this is a great way to get started.
Sell Stuff You Don't Want Anymore
If you're looking for a quick way to earn money short-term, but don't need long-term money making solutions, selling stuff you don't want or need any longer can be a great option.
Old clothes, toys, accessories, tools, and other items can all be sold for a little extra cash on Craigslist, eBay, and other online listings sites. Just make sure your parents are okay with you earning money this way, and have a plan for how to ship your old items to their new owners.
Rent or Sell Your Old Video Games
Video games are a hot commodity right now, especially the latest releases and cult-classic video games that might be hard to find. If you're not playing a video game right now, but own a physical copy, why not use it to earn money?
You can put video games up for rental if you want the game back, or you can sell them directly to people who want them.
Renting might have more earning potential in the long term, but it's also typically harder to set up and you run the risk of the game getting lost or broken before it's returned.
Selling your video games can be as simple as asking friends if they want them, or making a quick listing on Craigslist and landing the sale. Just make sure you're asking fair-value for the game or you might not get many buyers.
Related: 53 Best Things to Rent
Play Competitive Video Games
Another way to make money online is to enter competitive gaming tournaments. Gaming competitions often have cash rewards for top-players, and are frequently open to a wide variety of ages.
Playing video games might seem like a strange way to make money, but it's a great option.
You can also monetize playing video games by posting videos of your games and making let's plays of popular games and new releases.
If you do start competing and do well in competition, you can also post videos talking about how you get ready for a tournament or what game strategies seem to work best for you.
Combine playing competitive video games with a YouTube channel and you've got several different ways to make money from the same hobby. Plus you get to have fun doing it at the same time.
You can get paid to play games with Swagbucks!
Start a Podcast
If you want to make big money in a few hours each week, starting a podcast could be a good option. It's almost completely free to get started other than any startup equipment you need.
This equipment can usually be obtained for a few hundred dollars.
This can be a great addition to your own blog or YouTube channel for young kids looking for ways to make money.
It can take a decent amount of time to grow your podcast but it can be a very profitable skill to have with the potential to make tens of thousands of dollars each month.
Not everybody will excel at this money making method, but the income potential is vast and it can make enough money to become a full time job in the future.
Related: How to Make $400 Fast
Work as a Freelance Writer
If you like to write articles, why not get paid to do it?
No – this isn't as fun as playing games, but it's one of the most profitable skills to have.
Making Money Through School
The internet might make it easier to make money than it was before, but it's not the only place a 13 year old can earn their own money. Even schools are potentially a good place to make some extra money, especially if you're looking to save money or want to make money fast.
After all, it takes some time to make money on the internet. But making money through real-life tasks is usually faster and a little more effective.
Tutor Other Kids
If you're getting good grades you might want to consider working as a tutor for other kids. If your school has a tutoring program you might be able to make money through that directly, otherwise you can offer your services online and through flyers. Talk with friends and friends of friends to get the word out. Your parents can also help attract tutoring work if you ask. Plus, tutoring other kids will help you practice your own skills and may even improve your grades too!
Make Lunchbags to Sell
With just a little starting money you can also make extra cash by making lunches to sell at school. Make sure to check school rules to see if selling lunches is allowed, but if it is, go ahead. Even if selling lunches isn't allowed on school grounds, you might be able to sell them before or after school off school grounds.
Just make sure your lunches are better than what you can get at school, or that you offer options your school doesn't (like vegetarian or vegan meals) and you'll probably have a thriving business.
Price everything so that you can buy more when you run out, and still make a little extra. That extra money is your profit, so you need to charge enough to make money and make it worth the effort.
If you want a slightly easier way to make money at school, selling candy and treats might be the way to go. Candy bars and other treats are popular, and a lot of people are willing to pay a little extra for the convenience of having candy available right away.
You might not earn much money from each individual sale, but your profits can add up fast.
Consider offering a range of different kinds of candy, including some that are safe for different allergies, or that's sugar-free. That way more people will be able to buy from you, and you're more likely to make money.
Sell (non-alcoholic) Drinks
School cafeterias often offer a pretty limited drink selection, which leaves a lot of students wishing for something else to drink with their lunch.
This is an opportunity in disguise.
Selling drinks at school works a lot like selling candy and treats, and is another good way to make money at school.
Selling drinks does take a little more planning though, you'll need to figure out which drinks are most popular since drinks are larger and heavier than candy.
You'll only be able to bring so many drinks with you to school every day, so you'll want to stick to the most popular options.
Related: How to Make Stickers to Sell
Sell Small Crafts
Another great way to make money at school is to sell small crafts. You could go with a classic like friendship bracelets, but you'll probably do better with more specialized crafts. Things like earrings and bracelets are a good option, or beaded keychains, small dream catchers, and other handicrafts.
This kind of sale might not make as much money as other options, but it's still a good way to make money. It's an especially good way to make money if you're mostly looking to fund your hobby.
Related: 61 Crafts to Make and Sell
Earn Money In The Neighborhood
Making money in your neighborhood is probably the easiest way to make money and start saving money. Neighbors are likely willing to help teenagers out with odd jobs, and it's easy to fit neighborhood chores and tasks in around a busy school schedule.
House sitting, or checking on a house while its owners are away on vacation, is one of the easiest ways to make more money. It's best to work with people you already know, but house sitting is a simple way to earn cash.
Pet sitting might be a little more involved than house sitting, but it's still an easy way to earn cash. You can even do homework or watch videos while you're pet sitting, as long as the animals are taken care of. Pet sitting is one of the easiest ways to make money as a teenager or kid.
If you aren't sure how to get started, register with Rover below.
You'll get instantly connect with pet owners looking to pay you for your services.
Walking dogs is a great way to make money, especially if you're already relatively athletic and enjoy walking.
Dog walking is also a good way to start saving since it's a lot more regular source of income than most of these options. Once you start walking dogs you'll usually have appointments every day or every week to walk those same dogs again.
Dog walking services can be one of the most fun money making methods on this list.
Plus, walking dogs is a great way to bond with a lot more animals.
Painting fences might not be a lot of fun, but it's a good way to make more money through the summer. You can offer your services as a fence painter in a neighborhood flyer or the local newspaper, whichever is easier. You can probably paint 1-2 fences a weekend, maybe even more if the fences are small.
Related: How to Start a Painting Business
Weeding is often people's least favorite part of having a garden, so you can usually make some money from offering to weed. Try asking around your neighborhood, your parents, and your parents friends to see if anyone is willing to hire you.
Weeding gardens can be a one-time gig or a regular commitment where you come back every week or two to get rid of new weeds.
If you're looking to earn more money in the autumn or spring, raking leaves can be a good way to do it. Raking or blowing leaves into piles doesn't take too much skill, and landscaping trash bags are very affordable, so it's an easy job to get into.
Raking leaves is also easy to do when you have time, and easy to stop when you don't.
Shoveling snow is a traditional way to make money as a teen, but it's also a good way. Busy neighborhood adults often don't want to shovel, but towns, cities, and HOAs can all require snow removal within a certain amount of time after a storm.
Offering to shovel snow for a reasonable fee within a couple of days of a storm is a good way to make your own money and help people out at the same time. How much money you can make depends on your skill, how quickly you can work, and how many driveways and sidewalks you can shovel in a day or two.
Related: How to Make 5 Dollars Fast
Washing cars is another simple and fun way to make money, especially in the summer. Washing cars for busy adults helps them out too, since they don't have to take the time themselves and you can do a better job than most automated car washes.
You can earn a little more money if you also offer to clean out the inside of the car.
Detailing cars is a little different from washing them, and takes more skill. Detailing usually involves getting the outside of the car impeccable, and then cleaning the inside until it's similarly perfect. You'll probably need specialty tools, cleaners, and a shop vacuum to do this job well, so it's best for people who enjoy it.
Try detailing your parent's car, family friends' cars, and relatives cars for free to get some before and after pictures to show what you can do.
Collect Aluminum Cans
Setting up a neighborhood can collection and then taking the cans to a recycling center to collect the aluminum deposit is a simple way to make a lot of money. Aluminum deposits add up quickly, and recycling the cans is fairly simple. Watch out though, you will probably need at least 3-4 families willing to let you collect their cans to make it worth while.
Hold a Yard Sale
Holding a yard sale (or garage sale) is relatively simple, and can earn a lot of money from things you and your family don't want or need anymore. Your parents might even be grateful to you for getting rid of some of the clutter around the house, though you do need to make sure it's okay to sell things before holding the sale.
Helping seniors around your neighborhood might be a harder job to get, but it's a rewarding way to make money. Seniors might need help with a wide variety of jobs, from weeding and lawn care to cleaning or cooking at home, and many are willing to pay for the help. You might even be paid just to spend time at their home, chatting or keeping an eye on them while other family members are away.
As long as you're respectful and willing to listen, seniors are likely to love you for the help, and it's a great resume-building activity as well.
Pick up Dog Poo
Pet owners love their animals, but might not always want to pick up their leavings. Offering a neighborhood poo-cleaning service is a good way to make a little extra money, and typically won't take too much time. This is one job that you can easily do on the weekends.
Lawn and Garden Watering
Another lawn care option is offering watering services. Sometimes that means coming and staying for as long as it takes to water each lawn (20-40 minutes) and sometimes it's as simple as coming to turn sprinklers on and off at the appropriate times. This is a good way to earn money in the evenings, and is low effort and easy to schedule around school.
Get a Paper Route
Working a paper route might seem a little cliche, but it's still a good way to earn money on your off time. The best part of paper routes is that they offer consistent income, are relatively well paid, and are very predictable. It's a good idea to invest in a good bike or some skates before you get started though.
Help Pick Crops
Picking crops is a simple way to earn some extra money since working age limits don't work quite the same way for agricultural jobs. This option is typically only available if you live in rural areas, but if you're willing to help pick crops and do other parts of farm maintenance, like de-tasseling corn, you can earn good money doing it.
Crop picking is typically an all-day job, so you'll likely spend your weekends on it during harvest seasons.
Run a Farmer's Market Stand
Running a farmer's market stand, either with homemade goods and crafts or with your family's crops, is also a good way to make some money. However, you'll need parental help with this one since you'll need to store and transport your goods between markets.
Ask Your Parents for Chores for Cash
If you're looking to save some money for a specific thing, or just want a little more pocket money, try asking your parents for extra chores in exchange for cash or for raising your allowance. A lot of parents are willing to trade chores around the house for payment, and it's a good way to help out at home and earn money.
Talk to Neighbors About Odd Jobs
Even if you don't want to start a business around yardwork or chores, you can still ask neighbors about odd jobs to earn a little money every now and then. Neighbors might ask you to rake, weed, help with painting, help clear gutters, help with a remodel, or a range of other tasks. Negotiate for a price you think is fair and be sure to show up and they might have more jobs for you in the future.
Just make sure you're only working with people you know. Asking strangers for odd jobs can be risky.
Start a Small Business
Being 13 doesn't mean you can't be an entrepreneur. A lot of the ideas we've talked about could be considered a small business, but don't be afraid to do something else if that makes more sense to you. If you have an idea, try working with friends and family members to see if you can make it happen.
Related: How to Start a Business as a Teen
Cleaning houses on the weekends is a decent option to make some money on the side. Work with family, friends, and friends of the family, and be prepared for big jobs. Always make sure to ask if cleaning supplies will be provided, or if you need your own. We recommend having an extra charge for bringing your own supplies to help buy them.
Clean Boats / RVs
Cleaning friends and family's vacation vehicles after a trip is another quick way to earn a little money every once in a while. This kind of cleaning is most common through the summer, but it's also inconsistent.
Help with a Family Business
If your family already has a family business, or maybe someone in your extended family does, consider asking them for work. Rules about working in a family business are a little different, and you might be able to get regular work this way. Just be prepared for lower pay, after all, you are family!
Organizing homes and garages is hard work, but it's a good option if you enjoy organization or have an eye for tetris. Organizing also often pays better than cleaning, and you may be able to get help from family members as they learn your organization system. Organizing at home, or your parent's garage is a good way to show you have what it takes. Just be sure to get permission to take before and after photos so you have an organization portfolio.
Open a Lemonade Stand
Having a lemonade stand can be a great way to make money extra cash on busy weekends. While you're not going to make a fortune, it can be a good idea to earn some quick money.
Final Thoughts on How to Make Money as a 13 Year Old
Whether you want to play games, watch videos, or work as a pet sitter, there's serious cash to be made with some of the methods we explored.
If you have a few hours each week try some of these money making ideas to boost your income in your spare time.
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