4 easy side hustles you can start right now—using just your smartphone


Starting a side hustle can be costly. There are a number of flexible side jobs, however, that you can start immediately with a laptop or your smartphone.

"If you're looking for a side hustle, you need money. You don't need to spend money to make money," says Kathy Kristof, cofounder and editor at "When you go to work, somebody should be paying you."

Here are four side hustles that let you get started with little more than your smartphone.

1. Walk dogs

Earlier this year, Grow spoke to Kevin Ha of the Financial Panther about his dozen — yes, dozen — side hustles, and which are most successful. One of his favorites: dog walking.

"The way I look at it: I want to walk around the city, and I can do that while I'm walking a dog," Ha told Grow. "I was exploring the city while getting paid."

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There are a number of smartphone applications like Rover or Wag! that you can use to connect with dog owners looking for someone to take their pooch out for a walk. If you really like walking dogs, this could turn into a full-time business: Ryan Stewart started his dog walking business, Ryan for Dogs, as a side hustle — and now earns six figures per year walking and training dogs in New York City.

This guy makes six figures a year with his dog walking business
This guy makes six figures a year with his dog walking business

2. Shop for groceries

With apps like Instacart and Shipt, you can earn money by shopping for other people's food and household essentials as a personal grocery shopper. Plus, you have the flexibility to shop only when it's convenient for you.

Here's how it works: You receive shopping opportunities via your smartphone app. If you accept an assignment, you then pick up all of the items ordered by the customer at your local grocery story and deliver them to the client's home.

A personal shopper for Instacart can earn an average hourly rate of $14, according to Glassdoor. Earlier this year, the company increased its minimum per-job payment from $3 to $5 to $10, depending on the assignment. Shoppers can earn tips in addition to those payments.

3. Sell stock photography

For your next money-making opportunity, look no further than your phone's photo gallery. Sites like Shutterstock and Etsy offer users the option to sell their images online, often to businesses that use stock photography to make their websites look more inviting.

If you're attempting to earn some extra income through your images, make sure you're aware of what types perform well online. Most sites will use generic, high-quality images that are aesthetically pleasing and clearly communicate some kind of message or symbolism that aligns with their brand.

After you upload an image, you could earn anywhere from $0.25 to $2.85 per image download. Shutterstock reports that their users can earn up to $120 per download on popular images that gain a lot of traction on their site.

If you're looking for a side hustle, you need money. You don't need to spend money to make money. When you go to work, somebody should be paying you.
Kathy Kristof
cof-ounder and editor at

4. Rent out useful items you already own

Kristof says an easy way to make some extra money is to take inventory of the items you already own that can be rented out for profit. Sites and apps like Turo, Airbnb, and CurbFlip help users rent out their vehicle, spare room, or parking spot for some easy income.

"Applications like give parents the option to rent out their baby gear that may otherwise be collecting dust in a garage," she says. "If you already have items in your house like camping equipment, baby gear, an RV, even a parking space ... make money off of them by letting other people rent them out."

The article 4 Side Hustles That Are Easy to Start With Just Your Smartphone originally appeared on Grow by Acorns + CNBC.