The situation feels impossible: You need more money to take care of your family than your day job supplies, but can’t afford any more childcare costs (and your kids are too young or immature to be home alone). So many of us single moms find ourselves in exactly this position, desperately needing a way to bring in some cash and not seeing a realistic way to make it happen.
But thanks to the Internet, there are lots of ways to make extra cash – and not just pennies – without leaving your couch. The hours are flexible, so you can work when the kids are occupied or sleeping. And since you don’t have to leave the house, you won’t have to pay for someone to watch your kids.
Some of these options offer minimal pay that adds up over time. Others offer more substantial earnings, but require more work or focus from you. By mixing and matching a few different options, you can easily bring in a few hundred dollars extra every month. And that can go a long way toward helping you:
- dig out of debt
- fully fund your emergency savings
- start investing
- save for retirement (something single moms tend to put off, but shouldn’t!)
- Stop relying on child support (that may or may not come)
Every dollar you bring in improves your financial situation – especially when you’re not shelling out for childcare at the same time. Take advantage of these couch-based side gigs whenever you can to beef up your monthly income and build up your wealth.
3 quick online side gigs you can do with kids around
There are hundreds of websites out there offering cash for time – some of them are legit, some are scams, all of them track what you’re doing to some extent (so if you’re a very private person, these gigs are not for you).
Here are three legit money-making side gigs that single moms can take advantage of to earn some extra cash. Some take a few minutes of your time, others can take an hour. Among them, you can definitely find some that fit into your “free time” so you can bring in money every day.
- Website testing: Companies need people to test their websites for things like how easy they are to navigate, what the customer experience is like, and if they’re appealing to consumers. To figure out all of that, they’ll pay website testers to look around and try them out. Typical tests take about 20 minutes (about the length of a kid’s show on Netflix). All you have to do is visit the target website, judge it, and report back to the testing company. To work on these gigs, you need a computer with an Internet connection and a microphone. If you’re interested, check out these legit options:
- Online surveys: Earn rewards points (that you can redeem at places like Amazon, Target, or Wal-Mart) or cash by taking surveys online or through apps. Surveys can take anywhere from 2 to 30 minutes. There are a lot of survey companies out there, but the best of the bunch include:
- Online juror: Earn money for your opinion by sitting on mock juries. Lawyers use these panels to test their cases before they go to court. Now these are not everyday events, and whether you can serve as a juror for a particular case may depend on where you live. But if you have 30 to 60 minutes to spare, and are interested in earning $30 to $60 for that time, consider giving this a try. You can find work as a mock juror through companies like:
When you’re a single mom, every dollar helps – and these are stress-free ways to add more money to your budget. You can take on these gigs as often as you have time, making them a perfect extra-cash choice for single moms. There’s no commitment, so no consequence if you stop for days or even weeks. And you won’t have to shell out for additional childcare, since you can do any of these right from your couch.
Next time you find yourself in a kid-free moment, pick a gig and earn some cash.