5 creative ways for your tweens and teens to earn money

teen mowing

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate as of May for the U.S. as a whole was 9.7%.  For teenagers that number was 26.4%.  So what are your kids going to do to earn an extra buck or two this summer?  Our nation was built upon the entrepreneurial spirit.  Instead of seeing your kids fill out application after application in a highly competitive market, why not have them put that energy toward creating opportunities of their own?

Here are 5 creative ways your tweens and teens can earn some extra cash without leaving the neighborhood.

1.  Pet sitting - summer is the time for vacations, but Fido still needs love and attention.  Instead of having Fido put into the kennel, offer to feed, and take Fido for walks while your neighbors vacation.  Offer the service for $10 to $15 per day, which is far less expensive than a kennel and your neighbors and their dogs will be much happier.  At the same time offer to collect mail and newspapers for the vacationing family.

2.  Pet clean up - not the most desirable job in the world but someone has to do it.  Charge $10 to $20 per week, which includes two to three clean ups per week depending on the size and number of animals.

3.  Babysitting - parents need a break every now and then, but need someone reliable to take care of little Timmy for the evening.  Earning anywhere from $6 to $10 per hour, babysitting can be quite a lucrative part time job.  But the opportunity doesn't end there.  Think about offering moms with young children your service as a mother's helper so they can take care of things around the house or run a few errands.  Extra hands or eyes can be a very valuable commodity.

4.  Yard services - although many people hire professional services today to take care of lawn maintenance, there are still numerous opportunities to make a buck such as weeding, hedge trimming, tree pruning, raking, and other general gardening.  Offer up a one time service or a monthly maintenance plan.  Price is dependent on the amount of work you are going to provide, but figure around $10 to $15 per hour.

5.  Window cleaning - windows and screens can get awfully dirty and cleaning them is not a favorite chore of many.  Take advantage of this as a one time or monthly service.  Charge per window or per hour.

The possibilities are only limited by your tweens and teens imaginations'.  The key is to help them identify their interests, skills and strengths and look around to where they could be applied.  It's important to do some due diligence prior by researching the particular interest, walking the neighborhood to identify the opportunities and then help them get their name out there through fliers and knocking on doors.

Do your kids already have plans for making money this summer?  Share your ideas with other parents in the comments.