How I Made Nearly $1,000 In A Month Using Craigslist

I did Yard work on craigslist to earn money

Before you jump the gun and think I was doing something illegal, I assure you, everything was on the up and up. I did nothing illegal to earn this money. It was just a really good month and I used Craigslist to fuel that extra money. I’ve always been a fan of looking around to find ways to earn more money. You don’t always have to get another job in order to earn more cash. Being in over $75,000 of debt ($50,000 in just credit cards), you don’t feel too many jobs are beneath you. Nothing should be below you if you need to pay off debt. I hustled for years to earn extra income on the side from my day job. I didn’t want the debt to take over my life.

I wanted to share how I used a section in Craigslist to earn almost $1,000 in one month. Now, to be upfront, I didn’t earn this much every month, but a few hundred here and there wasn’t a bad way to go. This particular month was in the summer and Craigslist was humming with people looking for help.

The Craigslist Gig Section

I’ve talked about the gig section before, but people still ask me about it. It’s pretty easy to find, but have you looked there? There are can be some crazy gigs placed in there, so as with anything, weed out the crazy and keep moving.

The craigslist gig section

 

When you look at your local Craigslist site, you will see the ‘gigs’ section near the bottom. I believe every local site has the same gigs, which are:

  • computer
  • creative
  • crew
  • domestic
  • event
  • labor
  • talent
  • writing

These are just how the gigs are broken down. I stayed in just a few categories, such as computer, event, labor, writing, and crew. I found domestic to be a little strange and not something I would entertain. I found the other two looking for models and the like. I’m not a model, nor have I ever been.

What I Did to Earn Nearly $1,000

Craigslist Gig FiltersAlright, so you figured out I used the gigs section on Craigslist. Good for me, right? Well, they do offer a few ways to make sure you’re not going to be looking through a bunch of junk. You need to use the filters they provide on the actual gigs page. You can search for gigs, but why not use the filters to help you choose between paid and unpaid. Unpaid was automatically thrown out (obviously) and I wanted to keep the gigs within a certain driving distance. That was important as you don’t want to spend more in gas than what you’re paid.

You see, in the summer time, there are a lot of gigs available for those looking for people willing to help them with yard work, mowing lawns, moving, cleaning cars, and other things. You’d be surprised what people ask for on there. For myself, I knew I wanted to look for things I can do quickly or get paid well to do. I looked for helping people move, running errands, and doing some yard work here and there.

I even did gigs on my lunch break at work. It was easy to head out, go shopping for someone, then drop off their stuff at their location and get paid. Beyond picking the right gigs and actually getting them, I made sure I did a great job for everyone because that was the way to earn a little extra on top. People who you take care of and are nice to tend to tip very well. Remember, you just helped them when they needed it, so tips just would come. You don’t ask for them, but be grateful if they show up.

I can break down my earnings in a few different ways here:

  • Writing: $235
  • Yard Work: $185
  • Personal Shopper: $370
  • Moving: $195

Grand Total: $985

As you can see, the personal shopping was the most popular. This was before services like TaskRabbit came to town and before other people entire business models on personal shopping. The field was small and I was willing to help people out when I had free time. Why not get paid if you’re going to be in some location and you can pick something up? I mean, it’s all about adjusting your schedule and time to make these things work. If you can earn $985 in a month doing some extra work, would you? It did come from about 20+ different gigs, but they didn’t take up much of my time.

We talk about making money here all the time. We even have an entire category for it. I do this because I want you to know there are legitimate ways to find money making opportunities. I didn’t have to spend a time on advertising, business cards, or promotion. I used a popular and free website, Craigslist, to do the work for me. Once I found a gig, I contacted them through Craigslist or with their phone number and worked it out. While people like to haggle, they are the ones looking for help, so you have more bargaining chips.

Just Remember…Be Safe!

This is of the utmost importance to me. If you’re going to take some gigs off Craigslist, no matter what they are, make sure you are safe about it. There are some creepy people out there that use services such as Craigslist to lure people in. If you feel strange about it, then just leave. Making extra money doesn’t make it worthwhile if you’re putting yourself in danger. You only want to work with people you get good vibes from. Trust me, I’ve left a few jobs because it just didn’t feel right. Someone was off and my brain was telling me to leave. I typically don’t fight it when that feeling comes over me.

While it’s not as easy to protect yourself, like when you buy/sell a vehicle on Craigslist, you can still make sure you tell someone where you’re going. Tell them when you think you’ll be back and be aware of your surroundings. I don’t want anyone getting hurt just to make a few extra bucks.

OK, so there’s how I made nearly $1,000 using Craiglist. Yes, it was on the up and up and I do report all my income, even when in cash.

Have you tried using the gigs section in Craigslist to earn money? Would you consider it in your spare time?

How I Made Nearly $1,000 Using Craigslist

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About the Author Grayson Bell

I'm a business owner, blogger, father, and husband. I used credit cards too much and found myself in over $75,000 in debt ($50,000 in just credit cards). I paid it off, started this blog, and my financial life has changed. I now talk about fighting debt and growing wealth here. I run a WordPress support company, along with another blog, Eyes on the Dollar, which is another great personal finance blog.

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10 comments
Money Beagle says October 31

Doing this, along with Fivrr, is something that I keep telling myself that I”m going to do but never quite get around to. Seeing more posts will eventually get me motivated. Thanks for sharing!

Reply
Rachel @ The Latte Budget says October 31

Great post! I have used the gig section to find one time catering jobs during the holidays. It’s a great place to look!

Reply
    Grayson Bell
    Grayson Bell says October 31

    You are so right. There are a lot of little gigs that pop up right before the holidays. Some want to save their time and others want to make money, so Craigslist can be an answer.

    Reply
Financial Panther says October 31

This is just a great example of how the internet and technology has made it so much easier to make a bit of extra money on the side. Our household sells furniture that we find in the trash or on the side of the road. It’s not hard for us to make $100 selling furniture that we find. Indeed, we once lived in an apartment where we made over $1300 literally selling things we found in the recycling dumpster in our garage (big apartment building, lots of people moving in and out, too lazy to sell their furniture so they throw stuff away).

Reply
Jolene says October 31

I pick up free garage sale leftovers or free clothing. I find a few things for myself and bring the rest to thrift shops that buy items from me right away. I keep the bags in my trunk so I can bring the rest to shops in different areas when I’m already there for another reason. I sell as much as I can before doing a garage sale, or donating. Plus, there’s sometimes high end gems I can sell on Craigslist or eBay! I found your site searching for how to lower my $165/month Verizon bill. Love all the tips, thank you! 🙂

Reply
    Grayson Bell
    Grayson Bell says October 31

    Great tip there. Glad you found the site and are looking for ways to lower you Verizon bill. Just move to a different service. They overcharge!

    Reply
Millennial Money says November 1

Craigslist seems to be the quickest way to turn your financial life around. I’ve seen other articles talk about using Craigslist to pick up cheap furniture for weddings, not to mention the fact that it’s a good job search tool. This article just reconfirms the importance of craigslist in any financial whiz’s toolbox. Thanks for bringing up similar gig economy apps like Task Rabbit as well. Good post.

Reply
James says November 4

I have posted services on Craiglist, and I never thought I could get as many clients I could possibly get. I agree. Be wary of weird people on Craiglist.

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