5 More Ways to Earn Some Extra Cash

Posted by Amanda on March 1, 2010

Who couldn’t use some extra cash? Perhaps you are planning a trip this year or next, your bills seem to have ballooned out of control, or you are building up your emergency fund. For me and my fiance, we are getting married in April, taking a honeymoon afterwards, and building up our savings after depleting it for the home that we bought. In other words, we could use a lot of extra cash.

As a follow up to 10 Surprising Things You Can Turn Into Cash, I’d like to offer 5 more surprising suggestions for how to make extra money for the goals that you have in your own life. Here they are:

More Ways to Earn Extra Cash

  1. Rent Out Space in Your Home: If you have a spare room you rarely use, basement space, attic space, etc., you can rent your space just like a storage unit. Check out Sparefoot and list your space for rent. Another way to find a renter is through the newspaper, or by posting an ad in an apartment complex. Strike up a contract with your renter, and get paid by check or paypal each month (or charge for a set number of months). Be sure to have adequate homeowners insurance on the belongings in your home to cover your renter’s property, or put a term in your contract that absolves you of any obligations or penalties should something happen to the renter’s property.
  2. Rent Out Your Parking Space: Is your home located near a stadium, an annual festival, or public transportation? If so, you can rent out a parking space to one person by contract, or to people as needed. You can attract people by advertising a rate at half of what they may pay for a parking spot otherwise. Google a sample lease agreement for parking spaces and modify it as necessary.
  3. Raise Guinea Pigs and Sell Them to Pet Stores: Kittens or puppies take up a lot of space, so raising them to sell may not be ideal for many. However, raising guinea pigs takes much less space, and are also a great way to earn extra money. In particular, you can raise them and sell them to pet stores. You can also find brokers who will buy the guinea pigs from you and then sell them to places like PetSmart. Check with a pet store that you would like to sell to because there will be certain qualifications. Typically a guinea pig litter yields four, and it takes about six weeks before they can be sold. What a fun project if you have kids!
  4. Sell Ad Space on Your Car: There are companies that are willing to pay you up to several hundred dollars per month for your prime advertising space: your vehicle. Based upon your use of the vehicle, and the city/state/etc. that you live in, you could be chosen to wrap your vehicle in a banner and become an ad as you drive your kids to school and yourself to work. Check out Driven Media, or Miles of Marketing (for mothers).
  5. Medical Testing: This one typically conjures up images of rashes and strange pills, but I am here to tell you that there are many medical tests that are completely safe and easy to make money from. If you live near a university, you can typically find medical tests that can range from psychological questioning to a blood sample. Check out college newspapers or bulletins to find these. Also, check out Craigslist or the ad section of your newspaper.

More Ways to Make Money

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Comments to 5 More Ways to Earn Some Extra Cash

  1. All those tips(excluding medical testing) are absolutely useless if you live in a rental apartment


  2. Whenever I hear “medical testing,” I’m reminded of Tea Leoni in Fun With Dick and Jane. Along the same lines, Blood Banks usually pay for plasma donation as well.

    Laura Pagles

    Laura Pagles

  3. #3 is an absolutely horrible idea. Should I start a puppy mill to earn extra money? Give me a break.


  4. We used to rent out the spare bedroom in our home. It pays well but you do give up privacy…we only recently decided to leave it vacant after our last roommate moved out. If you do own a home, it helps a lot!

    #3 is controversial…animal lovers like me will think “puppy mill” and be grossed out (I was). There are already so many unloved animals, I wouldn’t want to contribute to the problem. The HSPCA has to euthanize more than 80,000 animals – the majority of those are because people are irresponsible with their pets.

    Budgeting in the Fun Stuff

    • That is 80,000 animals annually…

      Budgeting in the Fun Stuff

      • Hey Budgeting in the Fun Stuff! There is a new comment set up on the MyDollarPlan blog, and so when I replied only to your comment below, it was also meant for Stephen above (particularly the question in the second paragraph). Sorry about that!

        Thanks for your comments.

        Amanda L. Grossman

  5. Hello Everyone!

    I in no way intended #3 to conjure up images of puppy mills. We used to raise dalmatian puppies on our farm, and trust me, they were loved. We had perhaps one litter a year for a few years, and even adopted two of the puppies ourselves which became cherished pets–Beatle and Poo.

    Are you suggesting that all people who raise puppies have puppy mills? I think that is completely incorrect.

    Amanda L. Grossman

    • If a person socializes their animals and avoids over-breeding their animals, I would not consider them a puppy mill. I’m glad your puppies were loved.

      I just see how many animals come into the HSPCA and wish people would stop breeding them, but I’m biased towards rescue organizations. People will spend $500-$3000 for a “pure-bred” whatever, decide they have too many issues, and drop them off without ever taking responsibility (like all the Dalmations and Labs I saw at the HSPCA because people underestimated their energy levels). It’s just frustrating.

      Budgeting in the Fun Stuff

    • You’re not advocating people breed responsibly, however. You’d advocating that people raise animals simply for money. Do you realize there are guinea pig rescue organizations because of the overabundance of unwanted pets? And you want to suggest people breed a bunch more to sell to pet stores just to earn a few extra bucks? That’s incredibly irresponsible and callous.


  6. the only way that i would let myself be a medical guinea pig is that if they were giving me like $10k and a supercar. my body is a temple and i cannot even imagine it being used like a lab rat. what if they are testing the effects of some biological weapon that turns your head inside out?


    • Hello Kenyantykoon! Thanks for your comment.

      Medical testing involves many things, and I certainly hope you would not subject your body to a biological weapon! You will know ahead of time what you are signing up for (gosh $10K and a supercar would be nice…but they usually don’t pay that well:)), so you can choose whether or not to go through with it. I know my friend did a sleep research study (that is completely harmless!), and then also a lotion test to see how many people could potentially be allergic to a new lotion. In your case, I think you could choose the sleep study and not be worried–it’s all in your comfort level.

      Amanda L. Grossman

  7. I think this is a very bad list.

    In all cases, you’re going out of your way to earn a few meager dollars.

    Medical testing? Come on!

    Kevin Khachatryan

  8. Kevin: Thanks for your comments. I have to disagree though; my friend made several hundred dollars for the sleep test she did (medical testing), and you can certainly make a nice chunk per month in storage space rental. Think about how much the actual storage companies make–over $100 per month! With a six-month contract, perhaps you can bring in $500, which is not a few meager dollars to me.

    Amanda L. Grossman

  9. many of the medical breakthroughs were made by endangering the medical guinea pigs without their knowledge. You dont have to defend everything you write. Sometimes you have no idea how wrong you are


  10. Nice post. Lots of good ideas. Is it already April Fool’s Day???


  11. I believe the author presents some good ideas here. As with anything, not everything is for everyone. Of course, if you live in an apartment, you might not be able to rent out a room, but perhaps you can. You need to think outside of the box, and figure out how you can make money off of things in your life that you don’t use, but perhaps someone else could, and would pay $$. Perhaps you have two parking spots at your complex and only use one. Wouldn’t it be nice to rent that space out and make 50 passive bucks a month? And Sue and Kenyatykoon, really ??!! Obviously you don’t sign up for medical tests that are invasive upon your temple — there are plenty of sleep studies, lotion application studies, etc that are available. Hello Americans ???? Perhaps this is why most of America is hugely in debt …. get outside of your thick heads.


  12. Amanda,

    Medical testing is just that.. testing. Why would you give away your greatest gift, health, for a few hundred or thousand dollars.

    If you’re not well off, at least you can look forward to a long fulfilling life. I bet all those cancer patients would trade their wealth for one year of health in a heartbeat.

    Kevin Khachatryan

  13. @ Helen:

    “Obviously you don’t sign up for medical tests that are invasive upon your temple — there are plenty of sleep studies, lotion application studies, etc that are available. ”

    Lotion application studies and sleep studies don’t pay you enough money to come out of debt, if it was that easy, everyone would do it. I’ve personally done research in a sleeping psychological lab and they pay 200 dollars for 20 hours. You can make that much money with good sleep working at Ralph’s (and yes, they are hiring).

    Why don’t YOU come out of your thick head.

    Kevin Khachatryan

    • I have never done a medical study … ALL i am trying to get across to the readers with the NASTY comments, is that the author is just trying to convey some possibilities to supplement your income in a passive or perhaps, fun way.


  14. Selling an ad on your car sounds pretty cool! I haven’t met anyone who’s done that yet, but it’s an easy way to get some extra cash.

    The Rat

  15. The Rat: Thanks! I think it does as well–easy way to make some passive income. I have signed up for it, but have not been chosen yet.

    Have a great weekend!

    Amanda L. Grossman

    • Do you have a toyota? :0)

      The Rat

  16. LOL… I could only imagine raising pets to sell them. Then, the store says, we don’t want them… and I’m stuck with all these pets… LOL… I suppose there’s a better way to prepare so this doesn’t happen.

    Doctor Stock

  17. PLEASE, PLEASE do NOT recommend having litters of any type of pets! I volunteer at animal shelters and we are constantly getting litters of puppies and kittens dumped there, along with adult dogs and cats. Until all of the existing pets in the world have permanent homes, please do not promote this idea. I know you were talking about guinea pigs but we even get those and ferrets, rabbits, iguanas, etc. You name it, we get it. And then we have to find homes for them which are scarce due to our economy and when no one comes forward to adopt any of them, we have to make the horrible decision to keep them alive or put them to sleep. SAVE LIVES…ADOPT FROM LOCAL SHELTERS + SPAY-NEUTER YOUR PETS!

    IL Pet Saver

    • Not just guinea pigs or easily bred inexpensive animals, either.. I adopted two birds who would have cost over $1k at a pet store, because their former owners didn’t want them anymore. Even ‘valuable’ animals end up homeless and euthanized. Just about /any/ animal species or breed you can imagine getting for a pet, can be adopted from a rescue. The internet is a great resource for that. Want a sphinx cat? there are rescues. Want a macaw? there are rescues. Every time a breeder breeds new animals– every time a person buys from a breeder– that’s one more homeless pet that doesn’t get a home and is euthanized. What kind of sick society breeds new animals to replace ones that are being put to sleep because there’s no place for them?


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