15 Weird (But Legal) Ways Guys Can Make Extra Money

Male portrait
Carmen Mandato/The Penny Hoarder
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Do you find yourself short on cash for the weekend?

Tapped out of things you can sell and odd jobs you can offer your neighbors?

Have you tried renting yourself out, testing beer or stepping into the ring as a masked wrestler?

If not, you haven’t tried everything.

Sometimes you have to get creative to put a little extra money in your pocket. If you’re coming up dry, we’ve found 15 new, weird ways to make money — especially for guys.

Next time you find yourself short on cash, give one of these a shot.

1. Sell Your Poop

You’re literally flushing money down the toilet — maybe even as you read this…

Some people have earned up to $13,000 a year selling their poop. Nonprofit organization OpenBiome will pay you $40 per stool sample.

OK, but why? It’s all part of treating patients who’ve been diagnosed with the life-threatening infection C. diff.

Here’s the catch: You must live in the Boston area to participate, and you’ll be asked to donate at least three times a week for 60 days — so hopefully you’re regular.

Learn more about Open Biome’s stool donations.

2. Invest in Real Estate Around the Country for Just $500

Outside of homes
Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

Want to try real-estate investing without playing landlord? We found a company that helps you do just that.

Oh, and you don’t have to have hundreds of thousands of dollars, either. You can get started with a minimum investment of just $500. A company called Fundrise does all the heavy lifting for you.

Through the Fundrise Starter Portfolio, your money will be split into two portfolios that support private real estate around the United States.

This isn’t an obscure investment, though. You can see exactly which properties are included in your portfolios — like a set of townhomes in Snoqualmie, Washington, or an apartment building in Charlotte, North Carolina.

You can earn money through quarterly dividend payments and potential appreciation in the value of your shares, just like a stock. Cash flow typically comes from interest payments and property income (e.g. rent).

(But remember: Investments come with risk. While Fundrise has paid distributions every quarter since at least Q2 2016, dividend and principal payments are never guaranteed.)

You’ll pay a 0.85% annual asset management fee and a 0.15% annual investment advisory fee — but the latter is being waived through Dec. 31.

Interested? Get started with Fundrise here.

3. Scratch Digital Lottery Tickets 

There’s something so satisfying about those gas station scratch-off tickets, but it’s better to avoid them because, well, that’s not Penny Hoarding.

Instead, try scratching for free using an app called Lucktastic. Each day, it releases a new assortment of digital scratch-off tickets. Lucktastic says instant wins range from $1 to $10,000. You can also earn tokens, enter contests and play games.

The app is supported by advertising, which allows it to keep the payouts high and the games free.

4. Earn up to $225 Watching Youtube-Like Videos

man laying on couch with laptop
Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

Online surveys aren’t our favorite way to make money, but if you’re just vegging out on the couch — or rewatching “Star Wars” for the 113th time — why not click a couple buttons and earn a few bucks?

Most of you already know about InboxDollars, but did you know it will pay you to watch movie previews, celebrity videos, the latest news and dozens of other videos? Plus, you’ll get a $5 bonus just for signing up.

You need to watch all the shows in a specific playlist to earn your bucks, so be prepared. InboxDollars lets you know how long the playlist runs before you start watching, and playlists range from a few minutes to about a half hour.

The availability is subject to change, but it’s possible to earn up to $225 a month watching these videos.

5. Let NASA Pay You to Stay in Bed All Day

Unfortunately, we haven’t found a way to get paid as a professional napper, but this opportunity is pretty darn close: NASA will pay volunteers to take part in bed rest studies.

Yup — you turn yourself into a test subject and spend 60 days in bed, all in the name of science.

It might be tougher than you think, though. You’ve got to shower, dress, exercise and eat… all from your bed.

The good news is the gig pays. One of the more recent calls for volunteers offered $19,000 for 60 days.

6. Earn up to $60/Hour as a Part-Time Bookkeeper

Does earning $60 an hour sound appealing? How about the freedom to work from home while helping others succeed?

Those are the perks of working as a bookkeeper, says Ben Robinson, a certified public accountant and business owner who teaches others to become virtual bookkeepers.

Pro Tip

You don’t have to have a CPA to be a successful bookkeeper. All you really need are decent computer skills and a passion for helping business owners.

It’s a great opportunity for dads who want to work part time, millennials who are just out of college and anyone who wants to bring in real money while working from home.

Robinson shares what it takes to be a virtual bookkeeper, plus tips for making this career work for you in his free class at Bookkeeper Business Launch.

7. Find Hidden Money in Your Inbox

Woman holding money
Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

It turns out deleting your emails could be costing you money. Intrigued?

One of our secret weapons is called Paribus — a tool that gets you money back for your online purchases. It’s free to sign up, and once you do, it will scan your email for any receipts. If it discovers you’ve purchased something from one of its monitored retailers, it will track the item’s price and help you get a refund when there’s a price drop.

Plus, if your guaranteed shipment shows up late, Paribus will help you get compensated.

Disclosure: Paribus compensates us when you sign up using the links we provide.

8. Share Your Opinions

Swagbucks is definitely a reader favorite, probably because of the wide variety of ways to make money beyond taking surveys.

It’s also famous for handing out free rewards points (they’re called SBs) at random just for being a member.

Bonus: Earn a 500 SB (or $5) bonus when you sign up and earn 2,500 SB within your first 60 days.

You’ll get SBs for each survey you qualify for and complete that you can redeem for cash via Paypal or gift cards to a number of popular retailers, including Amazon.

FROM THE MAKE MONEY FORUM

9. Become a Baseball Umpire

Like baseball? You could make some extra cash as a youth baseball umpire.

Steve Banks, who’s officiated baseball games since 1993, says umpires in his area make $40 to $70 per youth-level or high school game.

Not bad for a couple of hours!

You can learn more about the gig in our guide to becoming an umpire.

10. Hang Out With Pups

A happy dog stares up into the camera.
Carmen Mandato/ The Penny Hoarder

If you’re looking for a flexible, independent way to earn money — and you love hanging out with dogs — Rover might be your perfect gig.

The online network connects dog walkers and sitters to local dog owners through its 4.9-star-rated app, so you don’t have to staple flyers on every utility pole across town.

Rover says sitters can earn as much as $1,000 a month.

Rover dog-sitter requirements vary by location. In general, you must:

  • Be 18 years or older.
  • Pass a background check.
  • Have access to the Rover app (iOS or Android).

Here’s how it works: You’ll create an online sitter profile where you’ll answer questions about your experience with puppers and your schedule availability.

You can choose to offer a variety of services, including dog walking, overnight boarding at your home or theirs, and daycare.

Pro Tip

Boarding is the app’s most popular service, so offering it can help you secure more gigs.

You set your own rates. (Rover keeps a small percentage as a service fee.)

Dog owners will reach out to you. Accept which gigs you want, then start snugglin’ pups. As soon as you complete a service, you’ll be paid within two days.

11. Mask Up This Weekend

Have you heard of a luchador?

It’s a masked Mexican wrestler, and San Diego resident Motros Jungle (whose real name remains a secret per the tradition of luchadores) makes extra money hopping into the ring each weekend.

“You go from being just a regular, average Joe to becoming a superhero as soon as you put the mask on,” he says.

Motros Jungle says he makes anywhere fro $200 to $500 for three matches during the weekend. That doesn’t include merch — T-shirts, stickers, buttons and masks.

Learn more about what it takes to become a luchador.

12. Let Someone Borrow Your Place for the Night

Have a spare room? Might as well use Airbnb to make some money by renting it out.

If you’re a good host with a desirable space, you could add hundreds — even thousands — of dollars to your savings account with Airbnb.

Taking a few simple steps can make the difference between a great experience and a less-than-satisfactory one.

Here are a few tips:

  • Make your space available during high-demand times in your area. Think: concerts, conventions and sporting events in your area.
  • Be a good host, and make sure your place is stocked with the toiletries you’d expect at a hotel — toilet paper, soap and towels.
  • Be personable. A lot of travelers turn to Airbnb for the personal touch they won’t find at commercial properties.

Here’s the link to sign up as an Airbnb host.

(Hosting laws vary from city to city. Please understand the rules and regulations applicable to your city and listing.)

13. Hang Out at Breweries

cheap beer
Sharon Steinmann/The Penny Hoarder

The craft beer industry is hoppin’, so take advantage of it by, well, getting paid to visit breweries.

When you sign up as a mystery shopper, it’s your job to go to a grocery store, gas station, restaurant or, in this case, a breweries, and provide anonymous feedback.

Now, you can get paid to mystery shop — and drink — at breweries in your area through Secret Hopper. (Clever, right?)

The company is looking for detail-oriented beer-drinkers to hop around to different breweries and objectively rate and review their experiences.

One Penny Hoarder gave the gig a try. He paid $16 on his visit to a local brewery. Secret Hopper paid him $20 via PayPal within a few days.

So, no, you’re not going to get rich, but you will get free beer, and that makes us hoppy.

14. Get $300 to Become a Lyft Driver

Cars drive past a sculpture of cars.
Chris Zuppa/The Penny Hoarder.

Need a fun, flexible way to earn money while also meeting lots of new people?

Try driving with Lyft!

To be eligible, you’ll need to be at least 21 years old with a year of driving experience, pass a background check and own a car made in 2007 or later.

Right now, Lyft is offering a $300 sign-on bonus to new drivers when you use code EXTRA300.

Here’s what you need to qualify:

  • You must be approved to drive within 30 days of your application start date.
  • Once you’re in, just complete 100 rides within your first 30 days of being a Lyft driver.

And just like that, the bonus cash is yours.

15. Find Your Unclaimed Money

State treasuries throughout the U.S. have more than $43 billion in unclaimed funds, according to The New York Times. Just sitting around! Waiting for you to come play lost and found.

In 2017, one South Carolina man hit the jackpot. He got a phone call from his state treasurer letting him know he was entitled to $763,000 in unclaimed money. That’s, like, 63 years of rent.

We advise you to be careful of calls like this; they could be scams. But you can take matters into your own hands and see if you have any unclaimed money floating around.

Check with the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators. Click your state on the map, and it’ll redirect you to your state’s appropriate search site. (Beware: There are several look-a-like sites out there. Be sure you’re searching legitimate ones.)