How to Make an Extra $500 Per Month as a Stay at Home Mom
Working as a stay-at-home mom (and I say work, because it most certainly is!) is one of the most rewarding and fulfilling jobs out there. How wonderful is it to see this awesome little human you created develop and learn new things every day!
When we were blessed with our sweet girl, we made the decision that I would stay home with our girl. While neither of us regrets this decision – we truly feel it is the best thing for E – it has resulted in us cutting costs and looking for ways to make extra money.
Scam-Free Ways to Earn Extra Money each Month
Luckily, we live in the age of technology! Just a quick google search yields a plethora of at-home money-making opportunities. I’ve sifted through many of these opportunities to find those that work best for our family. In order to get the Stay at Home Crafter approval, the opportunities had to meet three basic criteria.
- They had to be free. Anything that requires you to pay to earn money seems too scammy for me. (With one exception, more on that later! 😊 )
- They couldn’t be too time-consuming (time is limited with a toddler running around)
- I had to see results. I wasn’t expecting to get rich on any of these, but I did set a requirement that after a month of so, I wanted to see some (however minimal) reward for my time invested.
With that list established, I set out searching for the best at-home money-making opportunities. Here is what I found that worked best for me and my family.
For your convenience, this post may contain affiliate links and pictures. You can read my full disclosure statement here.
Swagbucks is a free site that allows you to earn points, called swagbucks, for completing surveys, searching the web, watching videos and online shopping. These points can then be redeemed for gift cards to your favorite retailers. Swagbucks has paid out over $120 million in cash and gift cards to its’ members and has earned an A+ rating with the BBB.
We are Amazon shoppers, so I always redeem ours for Amazon gift cards. I’ve been using Swagbucks for over 2 years now and average $50-$75 per month, which is a nice little bit of extra every month.
For a more in-depth look at Swagbucks and tips for getting started earning swag, check out my follow-up blog post!
Ebates is an easy way to earn money with online purchases. And one of my favorite methods for earning extra money!! So easy and well worth it!
- Start by signing up and downloading the Ebates Smart Shopper extension for your web browser.
- Then, you simply shop online at your favorite stores.
- While shopping online, the Ebates extension will automatically notify you of cash back offer available. Click to activate the cash back offer.
- Complete your online purchase and earn cash back!
- Continue shopping at online retailers and watch your balance accumulate. Ebates will send you a check or a payout to PayPal.
I love Ebates because I earn cash back on purchases I already plan on making. It doesn’t cost me any extra time at all!
Plus, I’ve downloaded the Ebates Smart Shopper browser extension. When I navigate to a retailer’s website, this wonderful little extension automatically pops up and lets me know how much cash back the store offers and allows me to activate it immediately. This helps prevent me from making purchases and forgetting to activate my cash back (trust me, I’ve done this too many times to count.)
Plus, Ebates offers double cash back at a different store everyday. This is a really great way to maximize my earnings! Shop at a double cash back store and earn even more! So for example, instead of offering 5% cash back, the double cash back store might offer 10% cash back for one day only. I don’t know about you, but I think 10% back on purchases is pretty fantastic!
And the number of stores that participate in Ebates is HUGE! Chances are, if you shop there, they likely are included and offer cash back! That’s right, “free” money back on purchases you already plan on making!! No extra gimics or hoops to jump through!
I signed up for Ebates initially hesitant, not sure if it would be worth it. But, they give you $10 just for signing up and making one $25 purchase at any store, so I decided to give it a try and I’m so glad I did!
We consistently make at least $50 each month with Ebates! That’s $50 “free” money on purchases we already plan on making! If you’re going to shop, why not make money doing so!?
And, if you aren’t a huge online shopper, Ebates recently added LOTS of in-store cash back offers! Activate the rebate, shop in the store as normal and earn cash back!
Ebates is so quick and easy to use – if you haven’t already signed up you really are missing out on easy extra money!
Plus, if you sign up through Ebates here – Ebates will give you $10 for free! Doesn’t get much better than that!
Ibotta is one of my favorite ways to save money at the grocery store.
I’m all about saving money, so while I do use coupons at the grocery store, I far prefer the easy savings that Ibotta offers! (Or often, I’m able to combine the two for huge savings!)
Ibotta is really pretty simple. It’s an app that offers rebates on an ever-changing variety of products.
You don’t have to worry about bringing a pile of coupons to the store with you! Simply shop as you normally would. When you get home, submit your rebates through the app and earn money!
You simply activate the rebate online or through the app and go shopping at any participating store.
Once you’ve purchased the item(s), you redeem your rebates by taking a picture of your receipt.
Ibotta matches the items you purchased with the rebates you selected.
Once they process your receipt, they give you cash directly to your Ibotta account.
This can be redeemed for gift cards or transferred to PayPal.
It sounds so simple and it truly is! I’ve been using Ibotta for about a year and have averaged about $75 per month, just by purchasing products I already planned to and taking a picture of my receipt!
To learn more and to get started earning money on your grocery shopping, click here to sign up now!
Plus, if you sign up through this referral link you’ll get $10 free just for joining Ibotta! Doesn’t get much better than that!
This is my favorite online survey site. This site provides cash rewards to members for completing various simple online tasks, including: reading emails, taking surveys, playing games and signing up for offers.
Inbox Dollars operates by sharing the revenue received from advertisers with their members. Since 2006, Inbox Dollars has paid out nearly $50 million to members. In my experience, the surveys are typically fairly short – so the payout is worth the time investment!
I have found this survey site to truly be one that you get rewarded for being an active member. Inbox Dollars rewards active members by consistently receiving PaidEmails daily and receiving a plethora of surveys to complete. I average roughly $50 per month completing surveys, PaidEmails, and occasionally completing an offer (if it’s a fit for our family).
Inbox Dollars is currently offering $5 free to all new members just for signing up! To learn more and to sign up for Inbox Dollars, click here.
Many people are already familiar with eBay.
EBay is an online auction site to sell new or used items. My exploration of eBay started before Elli arrived as a means to clear out some ‘junk’ in our basement. While I still don’t sell a ton each month (I probably could be much more active and get a better return), I average about $50-$75 per month in eBay sales.
Don’t be afraid to post stuff on eBay, even if you don’t think anyone could possibly ever want it! I have found some of my most successful items have been ones we almost didn’t post for fear they wouldn’t sell! Also, don’t be afraid to break items and sell parts. We had old board games that didn’t have all the pieces, so I didn’t want to sell them as is. Instead, I broke them up and sold the different pieces of the games with great success.
EBay selling could be a whole post in itself. If you’re interested in selling on eBay and would like more detail or a step-by-step to better explain the process, feel free to send me an email or leave a comment. I would be glad to help guide you or get you to some great eBay resources!
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Receipt Hog is an app (available for both ios and android) that you simply take a picture of your receipt & upload it for points. The points accumulate and can be redeemed for gift cards.
Now, admittedly this is not a way to make a ton of extra income – it does take a while for points to accumulate. But, it is so easy and takes all of 30 seconds to upload receipts that it still seems worth it.
Receipt Hog is an app that you must download on your mobile device to use. To learn more information about Receipt Hog – click here.
Pinecone Research is another good survey site.
Unlike other sites with tons of surveys available at once, which for me can be overwhelming – once you sign up with Pinecone Research, you simply wait to receive an email notification that you have a survey available. You complete the survey and Pinecone Research rewards you with points that can be redeemed for cash or prizes.
Each survey is worth 300 points ($3). They allow payouts in increments as small as 300 points($3) via paypal, a mailed check, lots of great gift cards or various merchandise items.
Perhaps the only downside of this site is they only allow a limited number of active members at any given time. I joined this site about a year ago, but it’s worth a shot to see if they are still accepting new members. Just please make sure only one household member signs up, since multiple registrations in the same household will void all memberships.
I know I said I was only going to provide 7 ways to make side income, but I didn’t think this list would be complete without mentioning FlexJobs.
While Flexjobs is not a free job, you have to purchase a membership to access the site, it is a fantastic resource for those looking for a bit more of a side (or even primary) income. Flexjobs is a database that provides access to thousands of telecommuting, part-time and flexible job opportunities.
We have had great success using Flexjobs to earn extra money for our family! We’ve found the site to have a huge variety of quality job opportunities!
There you have it – 7 Easy Ways to earn extra money each month.
What did I miss? Do you have a great way to make a little side income for your family each month? I’d love to hear what works for you- share in the comments below!