It was the first day of Summer. Ok, maybe not the first day of summer but the first day of “Summer vacation” after the last day of school. We hadn’t even made it 24 hours and my doorbell rang. Outside stood two hot, sweaty, little boys. One was on a bike, one was pushing a lawn mower. I answered the door holding back my dog, “What can I do for you, boys?” They went into their pitch. “Good afternoon, we are here to ask if we can mow your back yard this summer. The first time is free, and then each week when we come it will be $10.00.”


If only I didn’t have animals that required “pick up” maintenance I would have jumped at the chance to have them mow. Not only because I’d give my first born child to not have to mow – teasing, of course – but because I was so stinkin’ proud of them for already starting their summer money-making adventure. I made sure I told them that and wished them luck as they continued scouring the neighborhood for new clients.


I remember the summer after I turned 13 and my mom allowed me to take on babysitting jobs. We never had a lot of money so being able to make my own and not have to ask for it was very appealing to me. I could save up for something I wanted or just have the gratification of knowing I made some money myself. Back then and where we lived, there was not quite the demand nor the pay scale that there is today. Had I lived in a neighborhood like the one we do now when I was growing up, I would have been driving a much nicer first car.


Summer brings all sorts of unscheduled time. Why not have your kids earn a few bucks while they’re soaking it up? Here are six tried and true ideas for summer money makers.


1. Life Guard – Get paid while working on your tan at the beach or pool? Yes, please. Lifeguarding can be a great summer job if your child likes to swim and has taken the time to become certified through programs such as Red Cross.

2. Yard Maintenance Worker – Summer yards are very active thus creating a continuous need for extra help maintaining. This can be mowing, weeding, watering, or even removal of pet waste.

3. Parent’s Helper – Times are changing and many parents are working from their home offices. Where they typically didn’t have children afoot, they now do due to school being out. Your child can get in some playtime with younger children while helping their work-at-home parent focus on their tasks at hand. (This is also great for those new to babysitting as the parent is still in the home if emergency were to occur.)

4. Camp Counselor/Church Group Aide – There are typically local youth or church groups looking for assistance in running their summer camps. A very large benefit of this summer job is that it looks great on a resume. A camp counselor or aide gets to spend his/her time mentoring energetic and enthusiastic youngsters through team-building, resilience, and just plain fun summer activities.

5. House sitter – Your child will basically be looking after someone’s home/possessions, plants, and perhaps pets while they are away on summer vacation. This job is recommended for an older teen as they would be staying in the home overnight and spending a considerable amount of time alone.

6. Tutoring – If your child is particularly well- versed in a subject area this may be the perfect fit. Kids that are in summer school often need extra help or parents may just want their children to stay current or get ahead for the following school year.


A quick internet search will bring you many related organizations and suggestions on how to get started for each of these jobs. 


Did you have a summer job as a child? If so, what did you do?
Are your children old enough to take on any of these tasks?
Are you a parent who would benefit from having neighborhood youth offer such services?