The entire cost of tuition at these colleges.
A healthy starting point for investing in your future.
Depending on your location, it could even be a downpayment on a new home for your family to live in or rent out for profit (see #6).
No matter how you slice it, having $10,000 to spend would be nice. But it’s a lot of money to save!
So we’ve gathered 19 weird ways you could earn that extra cash… and how much effort you’d need to put into each to do so.
1. Start a Cricket Farm
Not afraid of things that hop, crawl and scuttle?
You could try cricket farming. No, follow me here for a second.
It’s pretty easy to get started, and there’s actually more demand for them than you might think.
You basically just need a fish tank, some egg cartons and dirt to get your habitat set up, and once you start breeding them, they can sell for up to $12 for 250. By the way, the females lay five to 10 eggs… per day.
Check out our full-blown guide to cricket farming to get started. Reptile owners have to feed their pets, and hey, if the business falls through, you’ve got a home-grown source of protein for yourself!
You said you were brave, right?
How many crickets you’d have to sell: 208,333 1/3 crickets. Wonder which third of the last one you’ll get…
2. Watch Youtube-Like Videos
The folks over at Swagbucks will actually pay you to watch videos!
Now, most of them aren’t as entertaining as the Grumpy Cat series, but you’re getting paid — so who cares?
This works because the videos are sponsored by brands that need to get them in front of as many eyeballs as possible.
Every time you watch one of their ads, they’ll credit your account with cash. Here’s a link to sign up. They give you $5 just for signing up.
How many Swagbucks videos you’d have to watch: Most videos are worth between 1 and 3 SBs to watch. After your $5 signup bonus, you’d need to watch 499,750 videos to reach $10,000!
3. Test Websites Drunk
Like surfing the Internet? Like drinking?
You could take a page out of Richard Littauer’s book and charge website owners to browse their sites… while tipsy.
Why, you may ask?
Well, by testing how navigable a website is while you’re drunk, you can give the creator valuable information about how to make the interface foolproof and the experience so user-friendly.
The idea is a site should be so easy to navigate, someone should be able to use it while drunk. And flask-proof.
Littauer’s a user experience professional and an engineer — what you might call a professional web-surfer. So your mileage in this business may vary… but man, what a sweet gig if you can land it.
How many beers you’d have to drink: To make $10,000, you’d have to test 200 websites at Littauer’s original price of $50. If it takes you three beers to work up a sufficient buzz, that’s 600 beers!
4. Tell Companies How You Really Feel About Their Products
If you don’t mind filling out surveys while you’re vegging out on the couch, you could reap rewards for your efforts.
Plus, you get a chance to make your voice heard. It’s like writing a Yelp review… that might win you a free vacation!
Surveys range in how — and how much — is rewarded, and you’ll have to be part of an eligible demographic.
But if you’re just hanging out in front of Netflix… why not?
How many opinions you’d have to share: If you only made $1 per survey — a lowball estimate — you’d have to tell 10,000 companies how you feel about their goods!
5. Earn Cash for Searching the Web
I love this one, because you just set it and forget it.
Did you know InboxDollars (powered by Yahoo!) will pay you for making searches on your computer or phone? You just have to sign up for InboxDollars, which is free and takes 30 seconds.
How many searches you’d have to do: If you get one credit per search, that’s 10,000,000 searches! Better get curious…
6. Drive for Uber
If you find solace on the road and enjoy finding the best route across town, this is a great way to make money doing it!
As an Uber contractor, you’re responsible for setting your schedule and motivating yourself to work — no one is keeping tabs on you. You keep 80% of everything you earn as a driver (Uber keeps 20%).
If you want to give it a try, there’s a few things to keep in mind.
You must be at least 21 years old and have three years of driving experience, an in-state driver’s license, clean driving record and be able to pass a criminal background check.
Finally, your car must have four doors, seat at least four passengers (excluding the driver), be registered in-state and covered by in-state insurance.
Here’s a link to apply with Uber.
How many Uber rides you’d have to give: This Uber driver says a 30-minute ride nets him about $11.14. Although this number will vary based on surge pricing and geography, at this rate you’d need to give 898 half-hour rides and spend a total of 1,796 hours driving!
To put that into perspective, there are about 2,000 working hours in a calendar year if you account for two weeks of time off.
7. Share Stories About Your Kids on Scary Mommy
If you’ve got kids, you’ve got automatic story generators.
From pregnancy fashion choices to dealing with finding your tween daughter’s dating profile, there’s lots to say about parenthood. And on Scary Mommy, it’s “real talk” only — no sanitized, TV-commercial family frolicking in a white-picket-fenced yard.
As long as you have a way with words, you can generate some cash off those face-palm parenting snafus. Here are eight parenting magazines and blogs that pay contributors, averaging about $100 per submission.
How many stories you’d have to share: 100. Good thing your kid’s full of antics — and young…
8. Open Credit Cards
If you’ve been following The Penny Hoarder for a while, you know we love making our credit cards work for us.
Not only do we take advantage of their awesome rewards, we also go in for sweet signup bonuses.
Heck, this guy’s accumulated 1,500 credit cards over the years. He started collecting them after making a bet with a friend… but if he picked the right cards, that could be a lot of extra cash in his pocket!
As long as you’re responsible, cash-back credit cards are an easy way to make some extra money without ever having to think about it.
For example, the Barclaycard® Rewards MasterCard® – Average Credit gives you two points for every dollar’s worth of groceries, gas and utilities you put on the card each month!
Our advice is to set your rewards card to automatically pay your monthly bills: You’ll earn rewards and keep everything paid on time, without giving either a second thought.
How many points you’d have to earn: 1,000,000. That’s $500,000 in groceries, gas and utilities.
9. Cook Dinner in Your Own Kitchen
Can’t get enough of shows like Chopped or Cutthroat Kitchen? Itching to recreate some of the inventive meals you see chefs whip up?
Well, don’t just sit there.
How many meals you’d have to prepare: If you charged $10 per meal, you’d have to make 1,000 meals to earn $10,000.
10. Sell Pine Cones
Or K-Cups. Or instruction manuals. Or the cartons your eggs come in. People buy so much random stuff on eBay.
How many pine cones you’d have to sell: 16,667.
11. Scare Your Friends and Family
Obsessed with Halloween?
If you regularly pull out all the stops on your costume and decorations, you might be a good candidate to start your very own haunted house.
This team of brothers made not just $10,000, but $200,000 — in one month.
Granted, if you had the $200,000 startup cost handy, you might not be reading this post. But if you do, it’s a scary smart way to double your money.
How many people you’d have to scare: 400. Totally doable. You might even have more Facebook friends than that!
12. Shovel Your Driveway
Hurry, before winter’s out!
Although you may not have quite as much supply as Kyle Waring did in the famous Boston snowstorm of 2015, it turns out people in sunny locales will actually buy boxes of snow.
Because it’s exotic or they’re masochists or something.
How many boxes of snow you’d have to sell: 112 ⅓ six-pound boxes — or 500 ½ 16.9-ouncers!
13. Pour Drinks
If you can open a bottle and your spill rate is less than, say, 15%, you can land a sweet gig as a brand ambassador (read: the smiling girl pouring the samples of Malibu coconut rum at the liquor store).
One of our writers earned between $20-$30 per hour for this kind of work (and wrote us a sweet article about it, along with 20 other ways to make money at the bar). Not bad!
How many shots you’d have to pour: Say you do one a minute. To get to $10,000, you’d have to pour 24,000 shots and make $25 an hour!
14. Sell Your Poop
No, that’s not a typo.
In fact, some people earn up to $13,000 a year for their… deposits.
There is one catch: You have to live in the vicinity of Medford, Massachusetts, where OpenBiome uses the poop to help physicians around the country treat infections of a nasty bacterial infection.
And you also have to be OK with the fact you’re selling your poop.
How many “samples” you’d have to provide: 250. Hope you’re regular!
15. Keep Your Receipts
I used to give my mother a baffled look when she consistently responded in the affirmative to the cashier’s paper-trail question.
Why do you need a receipt for a carton of eggs?
I’ve long since changed my tune, thanks to a rebate app called Ibotta.
It’s super-easy and super-cool: I scroll through available rebates for whatever store I’m in, and if I see something I bought, I just check it off, snap a quick picture of my receipt, and boom — I’ve earned a rebate.
They range anywhere from a quarter to up to $5!
If you really want to up your game, check Ibotta ahead of time and plan meals around which items have the steepest rebates.
How many receipts you’d have to snap: If you can manage to get a $0.75 rebate each time you shop (not hard), you’d need to submit 13,334 receipts!
16. Find a Red Paperclip
I mean, it worked for Montreal’s Kyle MacDonald.
Although he was never handed $10,000 in cash, he was able to barter his way up from a humble red paper clip until he owned a house.
Significant stops along the way included a snowmobile, a recording-studio contract and an afternoon hanging out with Alice Cooper.
But he traded all of these items until he was offered a home in Kipling, Saskatchewan. His home is almost definitely worth more than $10,000.
How’s that for a weird way to make money?
How many red paperclips you’d need: if you’re as lucky as MacDonald, just one!
17. Give Fluffy a Massage
Your faithful companion needs spa days, too.
If you adore animals and have strong hands, consider becoming a pet massage therapist. You could earn up to $120 an hour
How many pets you’d need to massage: 286 half-hour pet massages at $35 each.
18. Play Video Games
Yep, it’s actually possible.
But you have to really like video games. I’m not talking about your Candy Crush “obsession.”
How many hours you’d need to play: A lot.
To keep on top of their game — literally — the men play up to 14 hours per day… and they had to invest the time to get that good in the first place.
19. Get in Shape
Picture this: You step on the scale and finally see your goal weight.
Congratulations! But it gets even better.
You’re about to receive a generous check to spend on a celebratory dress in your new size, stock up on household necessities, or to wisely stick into savings — all just for losing weight!
It’s not a fantasy. If you wager on your own commitment with HealthyWage, this could very well happen for you… if you stick to your guns and lose the weight.
It’s simple. Sign up for HealthyWage, and then define a goal weight and the amount of time you’ll give yourself to achieve it. Place a monetary bet on yourself ranging from $20 to $500 a month.
Depending on how much you have to lose, how long you give yourself to do it and how much money you put on the table, you could win up to $10,000!
How many pounds you’d need to lose: This will vary based on your wager. Check out their calculator to find out!
Your Turn: Which of these weird ways would YOU try to make $10,000?
Disclosure: This post includes affiliate links. We’re letting you know because it’s what Honest Abe would do. After all, he is on our favorite coin.