Side Hustle

Welcome to Your Side-Hustle: Finding a Niche in the New Gig Economy

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If there’s one thing about life that everyone could probably agree on, it’s that it’s become expensive. Yes, as of 2021, the price of goods, gas, and everything in between has risen dramatically within the last decade, and at much more of an inflated pace just during the last five years. 

We all saw prices of goods rise sharply during the COVID-19 pandemic, and that rise has continued across the United States in 2021. While other factors such as ransomware and hacking efforts have caused spikes in prices pertaining to certain industries, the pandemic caused a rise in cost due to the interruption of global and national transportation efforts. 

Costs will continue to rise as many economists contend. But, where does that leave the common middle-class citizen? Where does the single parent come up with the money for school supplies, medical expenses, and vehicle registration?

We live in a time where a middle-class American is on the brink of homelessness if simply one unforeseen expense hits their bank account hard enough. This is why the gig economy has risen, and why latching onto a lucrative side-hustle can mean putting food on the table in many households. 

Here, we’ll explore several side-hustles that you can do to earn more money to help pad your bank account, and rest easy when those unforeseen expenses arise. 

Cleaning Services 

Companies like Tidy TN of Nashville offers janitorial services for commercial and residential offices, and have an AHCA and COVID-19 certified staff, making them appealing to their local community. And as accredited as this company is, who’s to say that you can’t gain that same type of credibility in your local community? 

The good news is, if you have transportation and can afford to spend a little money on cleaning supplies, you can start your own cleaning service with little to no startup capital at all. In fact, many multi-million dollar cleaning service companies began in this exact fashion. It’s a basic startup business, and all it requires is a little effort, a willingness to work, and a bit of marketing finesse. 

It’s also good to note that the importance of having clean spaces in commercial businesses in a post-covid world definitely inflates the need for more reliable cleaning services around the country. 

In addition, at-home maids and cleaning services are actually quite popular among those who travel frequently for work, and for those who own vacation rental homes. This type of work can easily supplement income, as you can perform cleaning services when you’re off from work in the evenings or on the weekends.

Delivery Jobs

We live in an age where convenience is king. This means that many people are much more willing to have goods and services delivered than they are to go out and physically shop. The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the need for delivery services in nearly every sector as people stayed home to avoid spreading infection. 

This trend has increased tenfold just within the past few years as of 2021, with the pandemic leading the way toward more delivery companies offering even more services. 

So, what’s the best part about delivery service? Most of these don’t require you to fill out an application and wait to be hired. With companies like Doordash and Uber, you simply send in your information and download the app. Once your info is verified, then you’re on your own schedule and you can make as much extra money on your own time as you see fit. 

The only downside to a delivery job is that it puts undue wear and tear on your vehicle. Though you’ll be going at your own pace, this is a point to consider if your vehicle is in need of any work.

Freelance Writing 

Freelance writers such as bloggers, content creators, copywriters, and creative writers all work online in some form these days. And, many of these freelancers specialize in a specific niche market. 

For example, let’s say you know a lot about the medical or legal professions. Writers with this type of knowledge use their skills to craft content for healthcare and legal professionals and can earn up to 5 figures a month in some cases. Some work that freelance writers perform is as follows: 

  • Web Copy
  • White Papers
  • Long-form Content
  • Short-form Content
  • SEO Writing
  • E-books
  • How-To Guides
  • Blog Posts
  • Technical Manuals

Though the form of content will vary widely from business to business, the same is true across all industries. All businesses need engaging content to help attract potential customers.

If you have a knack for the written word, and can keep things logical while writing in a conversational tone, you’re probably perfect for the world of online writing


Though many bloggers do work as freelancers and hire out their services, many actually run their own blogs and monetize them through a specific strategy. If you’re a wordsmith and you love writing, find a niche that fits your skillset and start an informative blog.

The great thing about starting a blog is that you can do this for free on many platforms, and still earn money while using a free platform. Though blogging sometimes takes years to become a lucrative endeavor, some platforms such as Medium offer incentives to write through the use of a partnership program. Through this type of program, you’re paid monthly based on your readership, i.e., how many clicks your titles get, plus reading time for each visitor. 

Other blogging platforms such as WordPress, Blogger, and Tumblr are free to use, and you can upgrade your site to earn money largely through ad and product placement. Though the in’s and out’s of blogging and making money do take time to learn, the option for making money over time is a viable strategy.

Catering & Bartending 

Are you a foodie? Do you just love hearing about new cocktail recipes, wines, or spirits? If so, starting your own part-time catering or bartending service is a great side-hustle to explore. 

People love being catered to. That should go without saying. And, in this type of business, you can start out small. For most events, you’ll take a deposit for services before you show up at the event you’ll be catering. This knocks startup costs out of the way completely, as long as you have the means to cook or mix drinks, you’re basically all set. 

Many college students and others with full-time jobs can make a sizable side income by offering catering or bartending services on the weekends. And the bigger the event, the more you’re going to be paid. In fact, it’s not uncommon for a bartender to earn upwards of $1,000 per event in some locations. And, a caterer can potentially earn even more. 

Selling Art

The term “starving artist” is in our lexicon for a reason, and this is because it’s historically proven to be true in many cases. Selling art is a hard dime, but if you’re consistent at what you produce you will eventually find a fan base, and these individuals will ultimately become collectors of your work.

However, as a side-hustle, you’ll want to try and move your artwork quickly. In doing this, there are several options to explore. A few of these are as follows:

  • Festivals 
  • Local Art-Walks 
  • Tattoo Flash Art
  • Sell Directly to Businesses 
  • Pitching Ideas to Interior Designers 
  • Online Art Stores (Singulart, Saatchi, Redbubble, etc.)
  • Personal Website 
  • Web Design
  • Freelance Graphic Design 

The art world has many avenues for making money. Though this is an expensive hobby, to say the least, what you’re able to charge for one piece will easily compensate you for most of the materials you use to create your works of art. 


Perhaps working outside among the natural elements is right up your alley. If this is the case, and you have a good eye for design and aesthetics, starting your own part-time landscaping service might be a route you’d like to explore. 

This is another side-hustle that doesn’t generally require much startup capital. As long as you have tools and means to transport your equipment and materials, you’ll be in business on the weekends in no time at all.

If landscaping seems like the right fit for you, head out into the neighborhoods and offer your services to those who have properties that could use a little upkeep. Approach landlords, community leaders, and the like to see where your services might be needed the most, and then focus your efforts there. 

Beating the Grind

We all have to work for a living. Unless you plan on venturing off into the wilderness and leaving society behind forever, you’ll have to contribute to the good of society if you want to be a part of it. 

And, though the thought of being free from the constraints of society might sound attractive to some, you’ll probably have to work much harder to survive on your own in the wilderness than you would anywhere else. 

So, if you want to beat the grind of daily life and stay ahead of bills while keeping your savings account in check, picking a side-hustle as a companion through rough financial waters will probably be your best bet. 

In the end, maybe that side-hustle that you started just as a means of making ends meet will one day become a full-time enterprise. Like it’s always said, you’ll never know until you try.

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