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Side cash

  1. #1
    Lifer Tekime's Avatar
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    Side cash


    I have a friend who's fed up with his job and probably going back to school soon. In the meantime he's determined to get some income going doing lawn work on the side. He's getting pretty good at fixing up mowers and is constantly buying/selling on CL. He's also just trying to think of odd jobs to get some of that side cash this spring/summer and saving for school. Maybe turn it into a business if things go well.

    Anyway, I'll probably be helping him set up a website he can use for flyers and whatnot.

    I'm sure some of you make zillions of dollars as illustrious engineers and whatnot, but has anyone been successful picking up some side cash doing "freelance" seasonal work/have friends/family that made it work? Are there just too many high schoolers charging $5/hour to make it worth the effort?

    If so, any ideas on where to advertise and get his name out? Craigslist is the obvious place, trying to think of some creative ways for him to expand his reach locally and get profitable.

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  2. #2
    Angry Gumball RandyO's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Quote Originally Posted by Tekime View Post
    Are there just too many high schoolers charging $5/hour to make it worth the effort?
    rofl........ high schoolers work ?

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  3. #3
    Lifer RyanNicholson's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    I have a friend that mows lawns and does basic landscaping/handyman work on the side. He just leaves fliers door to door and it keeps him plenty busy.

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    Lifer Chippertheripper's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Quote Originally Posted by RandyO View Post
    rofl........ high schoolers work ?
    seriously, get off your fucking high horse.

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    Lifer SteveM's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Quote Originally Posted by RandyO View Post
    rofl........ high schoolers work ?
    mine does, 15 hrs a week at a local Italian take out joint and we're pretty typical of there not being an economic need. The work, responsibility, routine, etc. is the point and it's more common than not.

    but the kids aren't doing it for $5/hr

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    Last edited by SteveM; 03-07-17 at 07:11 PM.

  6. #6
    Lifer
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    Re: Side cash

    I wish I can find kids to mow my lawn for $5/hr.. often times I'm quoted $40-$60 a mow.. and I don't have that much lawn. I think some of the things have gone out of hand price wise.

    But.. for me I used to do side work at small part time places like staples/best buy. Restaurant can be good... and I could make good cash working on cars etc, so if he's handy doing the small engine rebuilds etc at a good price I would stick with that, and the lawn thing. If he could price it reasonable enough then I personally would be all over it. Ie if it takes me 1-1.5 hr to mow my own lawn I wouldn't expect to pay more than $20-30 or so to pay someone else to do it.

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  7. #7
    Lifer Garandman's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Don't bother with a web page. Create a page on Facebook. If he's really industrious he could start a blog, but you have to stay with it.

    My 14yo son charges by the job for shoveling and mowing, but probably averages $10-12 per hour. Professional landscapers bring their own equipment and it probably works out to ten times that, but they can do it much faster.

    The key is to get lots of jobs near each other, so he spends more time being paid than driving to jobs.

    But it's not a great business to get into for an individual, because he can't inventory the work the way he can with repairs.

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    Last edited by Garandman; 03-07-17 at 06:06 PM.
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  8. #8
    Lifer Tekime's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Cool. Fliers & Cragislist are probably the place to start.

    Quote Originally Posted by Garandman View Post
    Don't bother with a web page. Create a page on Facebook. If he's really industrious he could start a blog, but you have to stay with it.

    My 14yo son charges by the job for shoveling and mowing, but probably averages $10-12 per hour. Professional landscapers bring their own equipment and it probably works out to ten times that, but they can do it much faster.

    The key is to get lots of jobs near each other, so he spends more time being paid than driving to jobs.

    But it's not a great business to get into for an individual, because he can't inventory the work the way he can with repairs.
    I think he wants to brand it a bit and possibly do some PPC ads in Google. I agree, Facebook is probably more than enough for this kind of thing. Although there are still some folks that won't go near it (especially older folks in wealthy towns which is a good niche for this kind of thing)

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    Lifer RyanNicholson's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Quote Originally Posted by Tekime View Post
    Cool. Fliers & Cragislist are probably the place to start.

    I think he wants to brand it a bit and possibly do some PPC ads in Google. I agree, Facebook is probably more than enough for this kind of thing. Although there are still some folks that won't go near it (especially older folks in wealthy towns which is a good niche for this kind of thing)

    I kind of disagree with not having a website for the reason you stated (have both), and the fact that you make them for a living and thus can help him look MUCH more professional. Having a (well designed) website will make the difference between being a simple but legit service, and a homeless guy with a lawnmower. That makes a difference when people are considering hiring someone to be on their property IMHO. I helped out that buddy that does this as well, of all the marketing we played with the fliers worked out by far the best due to the same reasons Garandman stated, keeping jobs close to each other. Focusing on maximizing the amount of time he was being paid vs how many accounts he had reduced the gas/time he wasted in between. Planning routes for routine jobs worked out well. His commercial plowing was more successful with online marketing though.

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    Last edited by RyanNicholson; 03-07-17 at 08:00 PM. Reason: I don't always grammer good

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    Angry Gumball RandyO's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Quote Originally Posted by SteveM View Post
    mine does, 15 hrs a week at a local Italian take out joint and we're pretty typical of there not being an economic need. The work, responsibility, routine, etc. is the point and it's more common than not.

    but the kids aren't doing it for $5/hr
    my kids worked when they were in school, in summer of 2015, my daughter was let go from her job of 23 years as a veterinary tech, due to the 50 employee rule in Obamacare and she found herself looking for work, so she went to one of her old HS employers picking blueberries, instead of working with young high school age kids as she expected, she was working with Haitians picking blueberries, and making decent money too, $250-$300 a day, but the work was beneath local high schoolers, well, most of em, her youngest started picking blueberries last summer, and past few weeks, he's been working evenings, boiling sap, her oldest has been working summers on a christmas tree farm, pruning, he's away at college now

    almost everyone in my area that provides summer jobs for high schoolers is having a hard time getting reliable help now

    my eldest son's kids are lazy fucks, other than producing great grandchildren for me

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  11. #11
    Lifer Falko's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    We've been trying to build up the neighborhood clientele for my son to mow lawns. Trying to keep it close so he can just drive there on the ZT mow and move on. Flyers targeted in a specific neighborhood work well.

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  12. #12
    Lifer Tekime's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Good tips, thanks all. We're definitely doing a website and getting some fliers to distribute in specific neighborhoods. Along with word-of-mouth, Craigslist and maybe some PPC ads (if I can rustle up a free $150 code for AdWords) that should be a solid start.

    I didn't work much in high school - did an AutoCAD apprenticeship for a bit freshman year then life got crazy for a while. But boy my dad had me working as a kid. $1/day though and he kept me busy. Hated it then, but I'm damn glad for it. I credit any work ethic and sticktuitiveness I have to those summers staining the house, hauling/burning brush, mowing our gigantic lawn and everything else between. Still have fond memories of listening to House of Pain on the riding lawmower, well until he caught me trying to do jumps and I was back on the pusher... closest thing I had to an ATV

    My daughter is nine and has gotten away with being a slacker kid most of the time. But she mowed the lawn for the first time last year and we are "integrating" chores into her life. That's sure fun. But honestly I feel likeit's kind of cruel to raise a kid who can't work and just make the best of it.

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  13. #13
    suburban ghetto living... black's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    taskrabbit app. you post what you can do etc it's like Uber for handymen sort of

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    hmmmm......

  14. #14
    Lifer Tekime's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Nice

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    Re: Side cash

    Check Beermoney: Make money online

    Uber...Get hired with a security firm and just pick up shifts (my friend did supercross!)...Focus groups/research studies...Buy/sell stuff - I know someone that goes to college dorms at the end of semesters and just sells what students throw out. I bought/sold about 10 dirtbikes, but I was not efficient enough to be worthwhile

    Kids are getting smarter with their side cash nowadays besides painting and mowing lawns

    I say just invest in the future...Take a bad job that will stepping stone you in the future...I know a high school kid that shadows (maybe not this for your friend since unpaid) a house flipper and knows the process start to finish. Maybe find a side job for what he's going to school for. Experience, actually knowing your ish, networking and schmoozing is a powerful combination...Only learned being out there in the field

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    Last edited by breakdirt916; 03-09-17 at 11:17 PM.
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    Angry Gumball RandyO's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    good money in cleaning septic tanks

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  17. #17
    Lifer gumby's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Quote Originally Posted by RandyO View Post
    she was working with Haitians picking blueberries, and making decent money too, $250-$300 a day,
    Really??? Not bad dough for blueberry picking!

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  18. #18
    Super Moderator TheIglu's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Shit, I picked blueberries in HS/junior high and I was only taking in $5-$20 a day.

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  19. #19
    Lifer Tekime's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Quote Originally Posted by breakdirt916 View Post
    Check Beermoney: Make money online

    Uber...Get hired with a security firm and just pick up shifts (my friend did supercross!)...Focus groups/research studies...Buy/sell stuff - I know someone that goes to college dorms at the end of semesters and just sells what students throw out. I bought/sold about 10 dirtbikes, but I was not efficient enough to be worthwhile

    Kids are getting smarter with their side cash nowadays besides painting and mowing lawns

    I say just invest in the future...Take a bad job that will stepping stone you in the future...I know a high school kid that shadows (maybe not this for your friend since unpaid) a house flipper and knows the process start to finish. Maybe find a side job for what he's going to school for. Experience, actually knowing your ish, networking and schmoozing is a powerful combination...Only learned being out there in the field
    ^ Pretty much agree 100%. Degree or not, experience, skills and connections are 80%. That and seeing (and taking) opportunities when they happen. He does Uber now and is helping a friend who runs a local garage - excellent opportunity IMO to get some skills.

    When I started my first business I worked for peanuts... for way too long. But learned skills I still use to this day.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheIglu View Post
    Shit, I picked blueberries in HS/junior high and I was only taking in $5-$20 a day.
    Rough, that seems kind of low! I guess rates fluctuate with seasonal work. I raked for a little while and it was usually good money. (For a young 'un anyway)

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  20. #20
    Angry Gumball RandyO's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Quote Originally Posted by gumby View Post
    Really??? Not bad dough for blueberry picking!
    a lot depends on how good the harvest is in a particular year, if you can scoop up a pound i the rake every time you reach down and end up picking 1000lbs in a day that is the kind of money you can make, this past summer the harvest was nowhere near as good as the previous year. A lot of blossoms lost to frost early in the spring, some blueberry farmers are getting more scientific now, spraying the blossoms like they do orange blossoms down south with water to prevent frost kill

    picking is now getting more mechanized, not so much manual labor, when the fields are well graded, you can use mechanical harvesters, rough going terrain still requires manual picking


    Quote Originally Posted by TheIglu View Post
    Shit, I picked blueberries in HS/junior high and I was only taking in $5-$20 a day.
    sounds like you were eating more than you were putting in the pail seriously, years when the crop is bad, it hardly seems worth it and you have to break your back more for less

    getting back on topic, last fall, I paid a gal (young mother in her 20s) $15/hr to stack my firewood. Her husband makes enuf money to get by, she wanted extra money for christmas, she had her 5 year old daughter with her a couple of times when she was here stacking wood, helping out putting some of the smaller pieces in the wheel barrow, she came to my house a couple hours a day for five days to get the job done, I'm probably going to get her back here this spring to help me with some gardening (it really sucks to get old and not be able to do the work that I could even 5 years ago) I want to enlarge some of my flower beds and get more going for my bees, and reorganize the way I do my raised tire beds for some of my vegetables

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    Re: Side cash

    Quote Originally Posted by Tekime View Post
    Rough, that seems kind of low! I guess rates fluctuate with seasonal work. I raked for a little while and it was usually good money. (For a young 'un anyway)
    Wild berries on a 140 acre hill. All small delicious berries, not the huge gross flavorless berries they sell these days.

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    Lifer loudbeard's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Well I'll say the obvious thing: construction, although I'm a bit confused by he wants to start a business or he wants to make some cash this spring/summer. Even for an unskilled laborer it's pretty hard to beat the income, added bonus is you learn things you'll use throughout your life. So..if it's the latter...yeah...construction.

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  23. #23
    Angry Gumball RandyO's Avatar
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    Re: Side cash

    Quote Originally Posted by TheIglu View Post
    Wild berries on a 140 acre hill. All small delicious berries, not the huge gross flavorless berries they sell these days.
    lowbush blueberries are small and sweet whether they are wild or cultivated, the large berries you speak of are cultivated high bush blueberries, they are gross, although highbush swamp blueberries and huckleberries are sweet as well

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  24. #24
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    Re: Side cash

    Little different train of thought here but there is lots of per diem work in EMS. If your friend has a high school level education he can take an EMT b class and pass the test. Once you get certified there are always places hiring part time for over night shifts, dispatchers, drivers etc. And your only as busy as the calls dictate

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