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Make Extra Cash This Summer

Summer is finally here, and it's time to get horizontal in the sun, right? Maybe it is. Summer might be a great season to have some fun with friends and family, but fun costs money. It's also a good season to make some cash, rather than spend it all. Summer offers a surge of seasonal employment opportunities. If you're a student looking for some vacation work or an unemployed person looking for temporary jobs to fill your time and your wallet until you find something more permanent, those seasonal opportunities can be just what you need.

Most of these opportunities don't require special skills or experience, just some imagination and effort. Don't expect to get rich, but you can make some extra cash and gain valuable experience. If you're unemployed and looking for something more specialized, don't look down on the possibilities of seasonal work. Aside from the money you earn, getting out and working at anything fills up a blank space on your resume and puts you in contact with people. Never underestimate the value of networking or the impression you make by being willing and eager to work.

How to Find Summer Jobs
Before listing jobs, let's talk about how to find them. The traditional way to find seasonal jobs is to check out ads in the local newspaper. That still works just fine, but this is the age of the internet, and that's where your search is likely to start. Websites like Craigslist are good places to start, but people might also post opportunities on Facebook or other social media platforms. Just remember that the internet works both ways, and potential employers are likely to look at your social media pages. If your online life makes you look like Stifler from American Pie, you might want to consider a profile audit!

Traditional Summer Jobs
Car Washing is as straightforward as it gets and is probably one of the oldest summer jobs out there. We live in a world of convenience, and that reality opens opportunities. Having your car cleaned right in your driveway by somebody else is a darn fine example of convenience, and many car owners are willing to pay for it. Most luxury car owners aren't too keen on putting their car through a machine wash, and folks with pickup trucks and high-top cars often can't even use machine washes. If you have some skill and some practice, you could also put yourself out there for "Car Detailing" services. There are plenty of good tutorials online, and if you're attentive to detail and have some opportunity to practice, you can add value to your services with a detailing offer.

Lawn Care and Landscaping embraces a range of work from freelance lawn mowing up to full-time specialized jobs for lawn maintenance and landscaping companies. Lawn work is highly seasonal, and many companies hire new workers every year. Some will also be looking for office help to handle the clerical demands of peak working season. If you have or are willing to learn lawn maintenance skills, it's worth making the rounds of local companies as early as possible in the season to see who's hiring. If you already have some skill or even just some will, you can consider freelance lawn mowing, or lawn and garden maintenance services. The more you can do the more you can earn, and as an individual, you can charge a more competitive price than a contractor can. If you're good with plants, this is a way to put that green thumb to work.

Child Care is a recurring crisis for many families. Kids are on vacation, parents often aren't, and even when they are, they are likely to be looking for some time away from their kids! That opens up a whole range of opportunities, from informal babysitting to regular jobs in summer camp, day care, and other childcare facilities. Most neighborhoods have a variety of organized childcare options, and all of them need seasonal workers. Camp counselors and staff at all levels, from custodial to kitchen, are also in demand!

Tutoring is a close relative of childcare that pays well if you have the skills for it. In summer, some kids go outside and play ball while other kids go inside and play... the piano for 5 hours. Joking aside, whether it is playing catch-up, music lessons, or looking for an academic edge, a lot of parents hire tutors during the summer. If you're a teacher, this gig could be an awesome one for you. The local community colleges often hire tutors during the summer months, too.

Dog Walking & Pet Sitting is another golden oldie that has taken on new dimensions as Americans become ever more focused on their 4-legged friends. Again, this has both formal and informal aspects. Kennels and pet service businesses are hiring as demand from vacationers ramps up, but if you feel like working on your own, you can try offering your services directly to people in your neighborhood. Arrangements can be anything from visiting a house once a day to feed, water, and walk pets to staying at home full-time or hosting pets in your home.

Home Maintenance and Repair work surge in the summer, as homeowners use the good weather to perform tasks from painting to roofing and everywhere in between. Contractors always need extra help to keep up during the peak season, so if you have some skill or you're just willing to work and learn, make the rounds and see who needs help. If you have skills and some tools, you may also be able to score repair work doing simple jobs for families who don't have the time or the inclination to do it themselves.

Driving for Uber or Lyft is an option if you have time during the summer. With a lot of people taking time off work for recreational activities, some of which involve boozing it up with friends, there could be a lot of work out there for drivers. It does depend on your area, though. If you're in an urban area, have at it. If you're in a small town that doesn't attract tourist traffic, it might not be the best choice.

Lifeguarding is an option if you're a strong swimmer. Have you always dreamed of running in slow-motion across the beach to your theme music? Here's your chance. You will need some training, but if you live in an area where pools and beaches are popular summer attractions, the time invested in training can be well worth it. The American Red Cross is one of the organizations tasked with certifying people. You must be at least 15 years of age.

Outdoor Recreation is a booming business in the summer, with parks at municipal, state, and federal levels all hiring seasonal staff, and many private businesses in the recreation field are looking for workers as well. If you like the outdoors and have some basic skills, this could be your option. If you are an outdoor sports fan with specific skills, you could find yourself in real demand!

Final Word
Keep in mind: this list is just a small example of what's out there. It's all about thinking outside the box and going after niche opportunities. Think--what do people need? What seasonal opportunities open up in your particular area? That's the key to success. Find a need and offer services to meet that need. Since most folks are thinking about fun, you have less competition on your hunt to monetize opportunities. It's a very good time to make that desired extra cash.

Just don't forget to take at least one day per week to enjoy the sun, too. Good luck!