17 Realistic Ways to Make $10k a Month (Real-Life Examples)


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Making $10k a month is a meaningful income milestone. That equates to $120k a year — a comfortable 6-figure income.

When I started making $10,000 a month consistently, I felt a lot of pride — like I’d “made it” — and finally had some breathing room in my budget.

In this post, I’ll break down some realistic ways to make $10k a month, both as an employee and as an entrepreneur.

These are based on:

  • Interviews with over 500 entrepreneurs
  • Feedback from the 50,000+ members of the Side Hustle Nation community
  • 15+ years of side hustle experience

Ready? Let’s do it!

how to make 10k a month

1. Level Up Your Career

The most important thing to grasp is that your skills — and your income — don’t have to be set in stone.

For example, my brother-in-law went from waiting tables to a 6-figure tech salary after leveling up his skills.

In addition, several Side Hustle Nation members have piggybacked on the popularity of Salesforce. It’s a customer relationship management tool used by organizations from non-profits to Fortune 500 companies.

Brad Rice, a freelance Salesforce consultant, described the typical career progression like this:

  • Starting out – $65,000-80,000 a year
  • 3 years experience – $100,000-120,000 a year + bonuses
  • 5 years experience – $130,000-150,000 a year + bonuses

Check out this free challenge to see if a similar path is right for you:

free salesforce challenge

2. Build a Helpful Website

Google is the world’s leading answer engine. If you can answer the questions people are typing in, you can build a great side hustle from it.

Side Hustle Nation has tons of examples of creative website businesses, but a few worth mentioning are:

All of those started as side projects and all are now 6-figure businesses.

Naturally, there’s a learning curve to publishing content online, but it can be extremely lucrative and time-leveraged.

Here’s my free 6-part video course to getting your site online quickly and affordably.

Pros:

Low startup costs

Great long-term earning power

Can sell the business down the road

Cons:

Slow to see results

Lots of skills to learn

3. Find a Virtual Job

Side Hustle Nation Approved
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The best place to find legit work from home jobs. Established in 2007, FlexJobs has 1000s of listings including part-time, full-time, and freelance options in tons of industries.

FlexJobs is the leading work from home jobs site.

With over 50 career categories, FlexJobs has pre-vetted jobs ranging from entry-level to executive and freelance to full-time. Looking for remote work could open up higher earning opportunities than in your local market, or you could stack a flexible part-time position on top of your day job.

flexjobs homepage

There is a nominal monthly fee to access their listings, but you’ll earn that back (and then some!) with one job.

4. Sell Printables and Spreadsheet Templates

One of the most interesting side hustles I’ve come across is selling printables.

These are digital files you upload to a marketplace like Etsy. Think:

  • budget templates
  • chore charts
  • habit trackers
  • meal planners
  • intake forms
  • wall art
  • and more 

And the best part? When someone orders, the file delivery happens automatically.

etsy printables

On The Side Hustle Show, Rachel Jones explained how she earned $10,000 a month from her portfolio of printables.

If you have an eye for design and can be quick to act on trends, this can be a great side hustle without needing to leave your home.

Similarly, Emily McDermott built a cool remote side hustle selling spreadsheets on Etsy. She specializes in budgeting templates, and has sold over $250,000 worth of them!

5. Sleep Consulting

Sleep consultants like Jayne Havens help exhausted parents create a plan to get their babies and toddlers to sleep through the night. Since this is a major pain, rates are often $400-600 for a 2-week intervention.

And you can do it all remotely, supporting multiple clients at once. 

Jayne established credibility inside some parenting Facebook groups, and quickly scaled to $10k a month.

Check out the Center for Pediatric Sleep Management to learn more.

make money as a sleep consultant

6. Start a Productized Service

Where there’s pain, there might also be profit…

That was the case for Pete Mockaitis. Pete was seeing some traction with his podcast, but was struggling to keep up all the off-air tasks — the show notes, the editing, the social media.

But if he was struggling with it, he reasoned other podcasters must be feeling that pain as well. So Pete created Podcasting Pro, a niche drop-servicing company that now does $10k a month in recurring revenue.

The company sources talented audio editors and writers, and sells those services to other podcast hosts. This model is something that will work in just about any niche where you can outsource tasks remotely.

7. Custom Offers on Fiverr

Fiverr is one of the most popular freelance marketplaces in the world. It’s free to create an account and set up your first “gig.”

Browse around the categories for inspiration as to what kind of service you could offer.

The real magic on Fiverr is in creating custom offers and building long-term customer relationships. Long-time Fiverr seller “AnarchoFighter” put it this way: “It’s easier to take a customer from $5 to five-figures than it is to take someone from $0 to $1.”

He was the first freelancer to close a $10,000 job on the platform.

8. Teach an Online Class

On The Side Hustle Show, Jade Weatherington shared how she was earning $10,000 a month teaching group classes on Outschool.

Her primary focus? Middle school English writing classes and the 5-paragraph essay.

Remember those? Apparently still a thing :)

teach on outschool

Outschool is a peer-to-peer education marketplace that focuses on students ages 3-18. The platform has courses on nearly every topic imaginable — even video games!

9. Weight Loss Coaching

Nagina Abdullah turned her weight loss blog, MasalaBody.com, into a side business that consistently posted $10k months.

By day, she worked for a large consulting company. With a busy work schedule, a young family, and limited time to work on her side hustle, Nagina had to be very smart about her marketing and pricing.

After struggling with her weight for all of her adult life, she finally hit on something that worked and dropped 40 pounds!

She started her blog to share recipes and tips, and began offering one-on-one and group coaching programs.

10. Real Estate Investing

Being a landlord is a very common side hustle, and one that can generate cash flow and long-term wealth.

For example, my friend Dustin Heiner was able to retire in his 30s, thanks to his portfolio of rental properties. When we spoke, his collection of houses was generating around $15,000 a month in cash flow. 

The drawback is that real estate isn’t always as “passive” as proponents make it out to be. As any homeowner will attest, houses and properties don’t exactly maintain themselves.

That’s why personally, I prefer more hands-off real estate investments. For example, with Fundrise, you can invest into a diversified portfolio of commercial properties, starting at just $10.

Disclosure: I’m a long-time Fundrise investor and affiliate partner. When you join through my referral link, I earn a commission. Opinions are my own.

Best for Passive Income
Fundrise
4.0

Fundrise is one of the best and largest crowdfunded real estate investment platforms, with $7B under management. The company makes institutional quality investments available to everyone, starting at just $10.

Pros:
  • Start with just $10
  • Quarterly cash flow
  • Instant diversification
  • Healthy historical performance
  • Lower volatility
Cons:
  • Liquidity
  • Not as diversified as public REITs
  • Limited operational track record
  • Weaker upside
I've been a Fundrise investor since 2015. When you join through my referral link, I earn a commission. Opinions are my own.

fundrise review

11. Vacant Land Flipping

Almost every seasoned landlord will have a horror story about tenants, toilets, or termites. One real estate side hustle that avoids all those problems is raw land flipping.

How this one works is you:

  • Find distressed land owners, often through country records and direct mail.
  • Make them a cash offer for their property.
  • Re-sell the land for a quick cash flip or low monthly installments.

land investing side hustle

Following that process, Roberto Chavez built his land flipping business to $10k a month in his first year.

To learn more, check out the free land investing launch kit.

12. Mobile Home Investing

Mobile homes make a compelling real estate niche because initial investments are much lower than traditional single family homes.

My friend Rachel Hernandez made her first mobile home purchase for $3,600 and re-sold it for $10,000 on a lease-to-own contract. These days, she earns around $10,000 a month from her mobile home investments

13. Sales Copywriting

Daniel Throssell was an electrical engineer working 12-hour shifts on a remote island off the coast of Australia.

He stumbled upon copywriting as a side hustle, and landed his first jobs on Upwork. “Because I had no experience, I just resolved to out-prepare my competition, and overdeliver on all my jobs,” Daniel explained.

Within a year, he was charging $200 an hour for his work — and left the engineering job behind.

Here’s a great free resource to get started: Your 9-Step Blueprint to Making Money as a Writer

AWAI - blueprint to make money as a writer

14. Video or Audio Tutorials

By day, Bryan Orr helps run an air conditioning company in Central Florida, and by night he’s a father of 10. Yet somehow he’s found the time to create the super-popular HVAC School podcast in his spare time.

Tasked with training technicians at his day job, he had the idea to put the material into an on-demand audio format. On a whim, he decided to publish the content online and make it available to a wider audience.

“It just exploded. I never thought there would be an audience like the audience that I found,” Bryan said.

As his audience grew he started negotiating sponsorship deals with large companies in the HVAC niche.

In under a year, he’d built an email list of over 7500 subscribers, generated more than 500,000 podcast downloads, and was earning $11k a month in sponsorship revenue.

15. Social Media Management

Another side hustle idea — especially for writers — is to manage Twitter and LinkedIn accounts.

These are still primarily “writing first” platforms, meaning if you can craft compelling hooks and threads, you can help other business owners grow their following.

For example, Pete Macleod (@petecodes) turned this into a $10k/month business. Creating Twitter and LinkedIn content was something he enjoyed doing anyway, and began offering it as a service to other content creators.

twitter writing service

You may even be able to enlist Chat GPT for help!

16. Parties and Corporate Event Entertainment

Brian McGovern is a party entertainer — he’s been practicing magic and performing since he was in high school. On The Side Hustle Show, he reported earning up to $10,000 a month doing something he loves.

Maybe you’re a photographer, comedian, DJ, celebrity lookalike, or musician. 

Take a look at a site like GigSalad to get an idea of who’s getting hired and to connect with nearby gigs. 

17. Niche Newsletter and Directory

Could you build a directory of suppliers or vendors in your niche? I did this in the virtual assistant industry, and Brett Lindenberg did it for food truck suppliers.

Similarly, Andrew Allemann started an online directory that helps connect podcasters with guests. He was having a hard time finding guests for his own podcast, so he wanted to create a solution that would not only help himself, but the greater podcasting community as well.

In just 3 years, he took this low-overhead side hustle from zero to $10,000 a month.

The Best Way to Make $10k a Month: Your Turn

This post shared real life examples of people earning $10k a month or more — sometimes on the side from their day job.

Which path seems most exciting and doable to you?

There are no right or wrong answers.

The most important thing is to take action toward your goals and commit to getting better and learning more every day.

Serious About Getting to $10k a Month?

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Nick Loper

About the Author

Nick Loper is a side hustle expert who loves helping people earn more money and start businesses they care about. He hosts the award-winning Side Hustle Show, where he's interviewed over 500 successful entrepreneurs, and is the bestselling author of Buy Buttons, The Side Hustle, and $1,000 100 Ways.

His work has been featured in The New York Times, Entrepreneur, Forbes, TIME, Newsweek, Business Insider, MSN, Yahoo Finance, The Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Financial Times, Bankrate, Hubspot, Ahrefs, Shopify, Investopedia, VICE, Vox, Mashable, ChooseFI, Bigger Pockets, The Penny Hoarder, GoBankingRates, and more.

9 thoughts on “17 Realistic Ways to Make $10k a Month (Real-Life Examples)”

  1. Mark is obviously killing it with fiverr. I do wonder though, it seems that the search system can be abused as I’ve noticed a number of users who make two and three gigs of the same type without much variation in order to get ranked higher. I wonder if Fiverr is going to crack down on this type of behaviour or if this is going to be used as a marketing strategy?

    Reply
    • I’ve seen that as well. I guess I should use it to my advantage, create several similar sounding gigs to show up in more searches, have a better chance of being discovered. The downside may be you spread your review/feedback base over too many offerings so none of them really gains that much oomph.

      But yeah, not taking advantage of all 20 gig slots is a weakness on my end right now.

      Reply
  2. Thanks for this show Nick! The amount of worthwhile knowledge that Marc gives in the interview is incredible – a bunch of it not even being Fiverr related. I don’t think I’ve ever felt that level of overwhelming generosity from a free podcast before.

    Great job!

    Reply
  3. This is a great interview. I listened to it a couple of months ago when I first started on Fiverr (I think August). I’m already meeting my sales goals and just got promoted to Level 2 yesterday.

    I’m back listening to this again, to make sure I didn’t miss anything. :-D

    Reply
  4. Great podcast Nick, thank you! I’ve been a user of Fiverr for awhile, but until I heard these episodes with Anarcho, I had never considered selling my services on the platform.

    Do you know if you can have more than one seller id? I have a few different side hustles in very different fields. Not sure that it would make sense to offer them as separate gigs under the same seller id.

    Reply

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