7 side hustles you can do right now—some could earn you an extra $2,900 in monthly income

(Photo: Leontina | Twenty20)

The year 2020 has proved a tough one for the U.S. economy, with tens of millions of people having to file for unemployment during the coronavirus pandemic. Although the economy is seeing major job gains, it will take some time before many of those seeking full-time employment find work again.

Meanwhile, many people will be turning to part-time jobs and side hustles to make some cash. Some can be lucrative: Experts from lawyers to plumbers who shared knowledge on the website JustAnswer, for example, made an average of $2,900 in May 2020.

If you're looking for ways to earn money now, here are seven easy side hustles to try. 

1. Answer questions

Got specific know-how on topics as diverse as mending an animal wound to fixing a fridge? Sites like JustAnswer offer users with questions for anyone from lawyers to appraisers the chance to pose these questions on the site and get a response from an appropriate expert within minutes.

You must apply to become an expert on JustAnswer, which has an acceptance rate of 10% to 12% of all applicants. The site's wide range of experts get paid anywhere from $18 to $50 per answer, depending on their field. Experts made an average of $2,900 in the month of May, according to a representative from the site, while an antiques appraiser made $73,000 in one month alone during the pandemic.

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Among the most popular subject areas are IT questions, legal questions, and home improvement questions.

2. Walk dogs

Dog walking has always been a popular side hustle for people who both love animals and have pockets of free time throughout the day. And with the weather being warm and sunny, summer can be a great time to get started.

Consider signing up for a dog walking service like RoverBarkly Pets, or PetBackerPayScale estimates dog walkers make an average of $14 per hour. Note that the service platform takes a cut: For example, PetBacker charges dog walkers a 15%-25% fee from each reservation.

To reduce your risk of contracting the coronavirus, make sure to maintain the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's social distancing protocols, including standing six feet apart from your clients or anyone you encounter outside and wearing a mask.

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

Video by David Fang

3. Teach English

Kids around the world learn English in school beginning as early as third grade, and many parents invest in English lessons for their kids even after they've come home for the day. Sites like Magic EarsVIPKid, and GoGoKid pair English-speaking teachers with Chinese students for 25-minute classes online.

Teachers pick time slots at their convenience, and all three companies provide the lesson plans. The number of students per class varies: GoGoKid and VIPKid classes are taught one-on-one, while Magic Ears classes have four students per teacher.

GoGoKid teachers earn $14 to $25 per hour, VIPKid teachers earn an average of $22 per hour, and most Magic Ears teachers earn $17 to $26 per hour, according to their websites. 

4. Help people move

Summer is typically a popular time to relocate, and movers remain in high demand even during the pandemic. If you own a truck or a pickup van and are comfortable with heavy lifting, services like GoShare let you book various moving gigs for average earnings of $42 to $66 per hour, according to their website. Sites like TaskRabbit also enable you to list your moving services; some movers there charge more than $150 per hour.

Even if you don't have a truck, you can still sign up to help other movers on sites like Dolly, where movers make as much as $15 per hour, or Bellhop, where movers make up to $21 per hour, according to the sites. Note that some services require you to be able to lift at least 75 pounds.

When making transactions with clients, make sure to follow all social distancing protocols like staying six feet apart and wearing a mask, and clean surfaces like those in your vehicle regularly.


5. Tout a business

Love telling friends, family, and followers about your favorite businesses? A new app called Drum enables "Drummers," as they're called, to share promotions on social media or via email or text by businesses selling anything from mattresses to fruit. Drummers typically get a percentage of any sale that comes from their promoting efforts.

"The way that most businesses get their best customers is actually through word of mouth referrals," explains Eric Nalbone, head of marketing at Drum. The company realized there was an opportunity for businesses to track this activity and for referrers to profit from it and created the app an answer for both.

While it's hard to say exactly how much Drummers will make on an ongoing basis, as every offer and promotion they'll be touting is different, Nalbone estimates an average commission for a referral that results in a purchase will be between $10 and $12.

6. Rent out sports equipment

Got some equipment you don't plan to use every day of the week? Consider renting it out to people who would.

Bike: Apps like Spinlister let you list a bike for an hourly rate, say, $13 per hour, a daily rate, say, $50 per day, and a weekly rate, say, $150 per week. It's free to list, and Spinlister takes 17.5% of all transactions.

Surfboard: You can rent your surfboard or paddle board on sites like The Quiver and get paid up to $500 per month, according to the company. Users list their equipment for anywhere from $7 per hour to $125 per day. The company charges a 10% transaction fee, and PayPal charges its own fees as well.

Boat: Apps like GetMyBoat let you rent out various types of boats, ranging from a $25-per-hour kayak to a $400-per-hour private yacht. It's free to list on GetMyBoat, and the site takes an 8.5% fee for every rental.

Make sure to wear a mask when you meet up with renters, and to clean and disinfect your equipment regularly.

How to turn your side hustle into a successful business
How to turn your side hustle into a successful business

Video by David Fang

7. Deliver groceries

When stay-at-home orders took effect throughout much of the country in March, many people began to rely on grocery delivery services like Instacart and Shipt. As the virus still poses a real threat, these services remain popular.

Consider signing up to make grocery deliveries on Shipt, where shoppers make an average of $22 per hour, according to Indeed, or Instacart, where shoppers make an average of $13 per hour, according to Glassdoor.

Make sure to adhere to the principles of social distancing in supermarkets and grocery stores, and ask your employer what kind of contactless delivery system is in place to mitigate your risks of contracting the virus. Make sure your employer has a break system in place to allow you to wash your hands frequently and to rest.

"The article "7 Easy Side Hustles: Some Could Help You Make Up to $2,900 Per Month" originally published on Grow + Acorns.