17 Passive Side Hustle Ideas to Earn Extra Money

One in three Americans—a whopping 34%—have a side hustle.

And it’s easy to see why. Side hustles are a great way to earn extra money, learn new skills, beef up your resume, or test-drive a new career before making a full-time commitment.

A side hustle is any work you take on outside of your full-time job. For example, if you’re employed as an engineer, but you offer high school math tutoring in your spare time, your tutoring gig is your side hustle.

More and more people are on the hunt for passive side hustle ideas—whether they need the income for bills, savings, or entertainment money.

In order to be successful, you’ll need to invest either time or money upfront. (No get-rich-quick schemes here!) If done well, you can enjoy some solid financial rewards.

(For more on passive income, check out this post.)

Starting a side hustle is no longer a daunting endeavor, reserved for a select few. Thanks to the digital world, launching your passive income idea just got a whole lot more doable (with plenty of possibilities to choose from). With a little planning and investment, you can start making money.


17 of the best side hustles to jumpstart your passive income

Keep reading to get all the details on 17 different side hustle ideas and how they can help you earn a passive income.


1. Stock market investment

Not everyone is a big fan of the stock market, and there are a few risks involved—but it can be a lucrative side hustle.

The income is entirely passive and if you keep investing money in small increments over time, you can see a large amount of profit after a while.

Monitor the stock market before jumping in, and try to start small—with 30 or so stocks—to be on the safe side.

For more on investing, read Five Tips from a Financial Analyst.


2. Farming investments

In developing countries and particularly agriculture-based ones, investing in farmland is very lucrative.

Farmland offers a constant source of both food and income. The great thing about farmland is that you can pick and choose.

Consider investing in farming different products or make it big with only one staple produce.

Whichever the case, the likelihood of profit makes it worth your time.

Here’s a list of profitable small farming ideas for you to consider.


3. Real estate investment

Another great side hustle idea is investing in real estate. Real estate investments can now be made entirely online, which makes this sector even more attractive.

You no longer have to drive around from neighborhood to neighborhood to find a good property. What you need to know is available at the click of your fingers.

There are several options available. Some people tend to go for partnerships and rent out large spaces.

Others choose to become a property owner (purchasing the house or property) and then act as the landlord.

When purchasing, you can choose to invest in single-family houses or larger property.

Larger property is more suited for people who do not want to become landlords just yet but want to immerse themselves in the real estate business.


4. Car rentals

This is an activity that many car owners are taking part in nowadays. You can rent out your ride, just like you would rent out a house.

This could be ideal for you if there are times when your car stays idle in a garage or parking lot.

Why waste this time when you could put it to good use by sharing your vehicle with someone else—and bring in that valuable passive side hustle income.

There are trusted online platforms for this, so you don’t have to worry about getting scammed.


5. Leasing storage areas

Storage spaces are really hard to come by nowadays, especially in big cities, where free space is so scarce.

You can take advantage of this scarcity by renting out storage space. It doesn’t have to be super big, since people always have stuff to store.

Moreover, this space can be any room. It could be your garage, basement, attic, or even a closet. 


6. Online courses

Are you a pro at certain life skills, like cooking or fixing stuff around the house? Or do you have a knack for mastering software, such as design or editing programs?

Whatever your area of expertise, consider starting your very own online course. By creating and uploading videos to different platforms, you could earn money and help people out.

Currently, there are sites such as Udemy where people can buy your course material, and this will act as an incentive for you to keep this side hustle going. You can also take advantage of local sites that will help you do the same thing.


7. Making customized apps

Did you ever use an app and feel that it could be improved even further? Well, you’re not alone. Most apps come with certain drawbacks, so improvement is always possible.

You could take it a step further and make your own app. Certain programs can even help you do this without learning a great deal of coding.

If you do happen to code, then all the better! You could bring your innovative ideas to life by building your customized app.


8. Clothes design

Are you into clothes and design? Then this activity is the one for you! Designing clothes is a great way to earn money, and it also allows you to express yourself through fashion.

Most lucrative designs include t-shirts and dresses, but you could go big and design suits and other attire.

Designs can be done by hand, or you can utilize one of the many graphic design software programs available.


9. Creating music

Music is part of daily life for many of us, so if you have talent and can put in the work to both create and build an audience, it’s now easier than ever to reach listeners.

There’s a genre for almost anyone, so whatever type of music you make, you’re bound to find some followers.

You could consider making your original music and songs or make covers and remix tracks.

Uploading these on your channel on YouTube has the potential to bring in cash once you obtain copyright, making it a great side hustle for the right (musically-inclined) person.


10. Professional coaching

Another smart, passive income idea? If you have expertise in a particular field—i.e., life coaching, academics, or something similar—consider coaching a viable option.

Offering personal or professional coaching sessions online can save you the hassle and expense of going in to a physical office.

Moreover, there’s a good amount of money involved in the world of coaching, making it a worthwhile hustle.


11. Blogging

Blogging for personal branding is now a standard and beneficial side hustle. Blogging allows you to explore a wide range of topics.

People blog about various niche areas, such as science, politics, the economy, and much more.

You can promote your items, thoughts, or even ideas. Blogging allows you to connect with the world at large and be heard by a broader audience.

You can start monetizing your blogs to generate income.

In fact, many people build a consistent cash flow, and it’s a meaningful activity because you get to share your ideas and earn money at the same time.


12. Haircuts and styling

Offer grooming services online and charge prices well below professional hairstylists and parlors. You don’t need to run a barbershop to cut hair.

While you likely won’t earn much from one haircut (unless you’re really good, in which case, consider a career as a full-time stylist), the money adds up, as you can do multiple haircuts a day.

Your skills will grow with each haircut, even if your first attempt is a bit off!


13. Baking

Who doesn’t like baked goods? Baked items sell like crazy in most places and more so if you’ve mastered the art of it.

You can embrace your creativity while you experiment with new recipes. Find inspiration online, perfect your specialty, and find your baking niche.

And the great thing is that you can save time by baking several food items at once.


14. Online Tutoring

Tutor a select few students in one or more subjects for a few hours each week. This is easier than being a full-time teacher with a lower time investment—plus, you’re only dealing with 4-5 single students at most. 

It pays well, too, as tutors can give their students special attention and help with specific subjects. If you have expertise in a certain subject or education experience, this can bump up your rates.

Online tutoring has taken the world by storm, so you can now tutor students who live thousands of miles away and in different time zones!


15. Ghostwriting

Earn money by ghostwriting in your spare time. 

Ghostwriting is writing for an individual or a company—but not getting credit for it. This writing could be on any topic or for any industry. A lot of people even ghostwrite novel stories.

This can have high earning potential because you’re giving up credit for your writing. 


16. Live concert/performance

If you’re a skilled performer, this may be an obvious side hustle. You can do live concerts or performances to make a bit of extra cash.

Try standup comedy at your local restaurant or bar, start a band and tour with your college buddy, or dance in local talent shows. For those with natural ability, this can be a fun way to combine your passion and make extra money.

People will pay for good entertainment. As with most jobs on this list, the better you are at the job, the more money you’ll make.

An added bonus? Practice helps you build even stronger performing skills.


17. YouTube

Here’s one of the most popular passive hustles: making videos on YouTube. This can also be full-time job, but it’s highly underrated as a side gig.

Your channel could be based on vlogging, motivational content, gaming, makeup, or any category you choose to make videos on (depending on your interests).

How much money you earn depends on how many viewers and subscribers you have. If your videos are interesting or funny, you’ll get more attention and vice versa.



Remember that the main objective of a side hustle is that you should genuinely enjoy it (with the added benefit of making some extra cash).

While side hustles can give you the chance to explore your interests and build skills, remember to take a breather once in a while. The goal is to create passive income streams but also gain practical experience.

Learn, earn, and build your resume along the way. Good luck!