Easy Ways for a 12 Year Old to Make Money

It’s never too early to think about your future, or even how to make money as a 12 year old. If you’re 12 years old (or the parent of a 12 year old), you may be wondering, ‘can you get a job at the early age of 12?’ The good news is that there are many ways for 12 year olds to make money, and most of them are pretty easy! All you have to do is think creatively and take opportunities as they come. In this article, we’ll be talking about the types of jobs 12 year olds could carry out, businesses that they can start themselves to make money, and all the other ways they can make money that you may not have thought of before.

Being 12 is a crucial and interesting age – you’re in the stage between middle school and high school, which means that you’re probably starting to think about your future. That’s a good thing! When it comes to your future, especially your financial future, it’s important to get started as early as possible. There’s no better way of doing that than by thinking about how you can earn money for yourself, and all the things you can do with the money you earn, whether that’s investing, saving, or spending it. So let’s dive into how to make money for 12 year olds and what jobs can 12 year olds get!

Types of jobs for 12 year olds

In answering the question ‘how can 12 year olds make money?’, first, it’s important to know the legal boundaries of what you can and can’t do, especially if you want jobs for 12 year olds that pay. When it comes to traditional jobs, like working as cashier at a supermarket or a retail job at your favorite clothing store, 12 year olds are not legally allowed to work due to job age requirements, which may vary depending on the state in which you live. However, there are still many creative solutions – some of which we’ve listed below.

If you’re a parent and you’re helping your child look for jobs, it might be beneficial to think about how seasonality plays a factor into which types of jobs are available. What jobs can 12 year olds get will also vary by your location. Ultimately, it’s up to you (and your child) to decide whether or not they are ready for certain jobs, which may require a certain maturity level. 

Baby Sitting

Baby sitting can be a great job for 12 year olds who are more mature and responsible, and especially if they have younger siblings. This is a huge responsibility, though, so it’s important to make sure your child is ready for everything they might have to deal with when it comes to taking care of another human being. 

Newspaper Rounds

Working the local newspaper route can be a great way for your child to get a breath of fresh air all while earning money! For a job like this, it’s important for you and your child to assess the safety of your neighborhood as well as their comfort level getting around on their own.

Working in the family business

If you have a family business, this can be the perfect way for your child to learn the ropes. Even smaller duties, like setting out tableware or making sure the space is tidy, can teach your child responsibility and management skills without overburdening them with the actual day-to-day technicalities of the job.

Yard work

Yard work is a great way for your child to earn some extra cash. This might include mowing the lawn, spreading mulch, pulling weeds, or helping plant flowers. If you live in a location that experiences autumn and winter, raking leaves and helping shovel snow (especially for elderly neighbors) can also be a wonderful way to help out while earning money.

As with any type of manual labor, it’s important to assess the physical condition of your child and whether or not they’re able to handle all the work that will be required of them. Some tasks, such as mowing the lawn, may require knowledge of machinery, so make sure your child is aware and protected before operating.

Dog Walking

For children who are especially good with animals, dog walking can be a fun way to make money while also enjoying the company of furry friends. For this job, make sure that your child is comfortable with the neighborhood route as well as being able to handle animals in all types of situations. 

Washing Cars

Not everyone prefers going to a professional car wash for dealing with their cars. This can be a unique way for your 12 year old to earn money while also learning the ins and outs of cars. As always, make sure your child is comfortable (and not allergic) with the various cleaning agents involved in the process. You may also be responsible for bringing supplies to clean with, which is another thing to consider.

House sitting

House sitting can be an easy and low-maintenance way for your 12 year old to earn money. This may involve staying at a neighbor’s house while they’re away for vacation, or simply stopping by every once in a while to check the house and water plants. It’s important to make sure you and your child are comfortable with the house as well as developing a schedule for the house sit. 

Pet sitting

Pet sitting is a little more intensive than simply house sitting or dog walking – it involves the active care of an animal. For low maintenance pets, this may involve stopping by the house periodically to check on the animal or feed it. For higher maintenance pets, it may mean taking the animal completely into their care. Make sure your child is mature enough (and comfortable with animals) for this job–and also make sure that your own house is ready for pet sitting, if that ends up being the route you, your child, and the pet owners decide to take.


If your child is particularly excellent at a subject (whether in school, music, test taking, or even physical sports), tutoring can be a smart way for them to earn extra money while also exercising their skills as a teacher. Make sure you check with your child about the schedule that’s best for them, as you don’t want their job to also interfere with their own studies.

Businesses 12 year olds can start to make money

If your 12 year old would like to start their own “business”, it’s great to encourage them to pursue their interests and passions while fostering that entrepreneurial spirit. This might require some more legwork and involvement from you as their parent, but there’s nothing better than seeing the sense of accomplishment that a self-started business can give your child. What’s more, they’ll get a sense for what it actually takes to start and run a business–invaluable knowledge that they can carry with them as they make their way through their teenage years and into adulthood. You never know what might end up being a point of interest on their resume years from now!

Here are some businesses for how 12 year olds can start to make money:

  • Lemonade stand
  • Bake Sale
  • Start a YouTube Channel
  • Blogger
  • Magician
  • Seasonal Decorator
  • Gardener

Other ways 12 year olds can make money

If the jobs and businesses above don’t feel like quite the right fit for your child, there are still options! Here are some other ways 12 year olds can make money:

Investing your pocket money in the stock market 

When it comes to your child’s financial future, there’s no better way to help it grow than by investing. Invstr Jr is an investing app for minors that helps parents teach kids investing, money management, and smart saving. It’s the perfect way for you to work with your 12 year old as they get into the world of investing–and with complete parental control, you’ll always have oversight into what they’re doing in the app.

logo invstrjr

The bright start for big futures

A money and investment app for kids, teens, and everyone in between!
Invest in your child’s future with a stock trading account for minors.

Completing chores around the house

Whether it’s making the bed or tidying up around the house, chores can be a productive way for your 12 year old to learn responsibility as well as home management. This will also free up your time and allow you to take care of the more urgent things that you might forgo otherwise.

Sell unwanted items

Have they outgrown certain toys or clothes from childhood? Time for a yard or garage sale! Get your child involved by asking them to make signs, advertising the sale around the neighborhood, and managing the sale itself. This can be a super fun event for the whole family!

Helper to your parents

As a parent, there’s no doubt that you have a lot going on. Ask your child to help you with the small things and reward them for their assistance–this can be a fantastic way of building a relationship of respect and mutual understanding with your 12 year old.

Final Thoughts

There are tons of ways how 12 year olds can make money, whether it’s by starting their own business, helping out around the neighborhood, or finding more creative solutions like performing a magic show – there are plenty of jobs for 12 year olds that pay. Whatever the case may be, it’s important to support and communicate with your child to ensure that the experience is valuable and safe. 

Finally, remember that investing can be a smart and long-term way to earn money. We recommend Invstr Jr for parents and their 12 year olds who want to learn about investing, money management, and smart saving–it’s a fun and interactive way for families to connect over learning about the stock market as well as investing for the future. 

logo invstrjr

The bright start for big futures

A money and investment app for kids, teens, and everyone in between!
Invest in your child’s future with a stock trading account for minors.


More Posts

ESG and Ukraine’s War ⚔

The Russian invasion has raised questions about the balance between ethical investments and geopolitical realities.

Get your daily Invstr Crunch

Get the market news and updates you need, delivered to your inbox or available on our daily podcast.

Risk Disclosure:

Invstr is not a bank and banking services are provided by Vast Bank, N.A.

Brokerage and Banking services are currently only available to U.S. residents.

Invstr app and web services are provided by Invstr Ltd. Advisory services are provided by Invstr Financial LLC, an investment adviser registered with the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) details of which can be obtained here. Securities brokerage and custody services are provided by Apex Clearing, a broker dealer registered with the SEC and a member of FINRA and SIPC. There is no bank guarantee on securities and securities may lose value.

Investing involves risk and can lead to losses. Past performance does not guarantee future results.

Invstr app and web services are provided by Invstr Ltd. Invstr+ advisory services are provided by Invstr Financial LLC, an investment adviser registered with the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC). Securities brokerage and custody services are provided by Apex Clearing, a broker dealer registered with the SEC and a member of FINRA and SIPC. There is no bank guarantee on securities and securities may lose value. Vast Bank N.A. a nationally chartered bank and member of the FDIC, provides the banking products, including the products and services related to digital asset accounts. As with any asset, the value of Digital assets can go up or down and there can be a substantial risk that you lose money buying or holding digital assets. You should carefully consider whether trading or holding Digital assets is suitable for you in light of your financial condition. Your digital account does not support wallet to wallet transferring of your digital assets (i.e. cryptocurrencies) outside the platform. Any Digital Assets in your digital asset account are not insured by any government entities, including but not limited to FDIC or SIPC. The Invstr Visa® Debit Card is issued by Vast Bank, N.A. pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A Inc and may be used everywhere Visa debit cards are accepted. Invstr Ltd, Invstr Financial LLC and Invstr Securities Ltd are subsidiaries of Marketspringpad Holdings (collectively “Invstr”) and Invstr is solely responsible for the application services and website content.

Watchlists provided when users first access the service are not a recommendation to invest. Instead they are provided to help users better navigate the service. Users are free to edit and create their own watchlists. From time to time, Invstr will suggest instruments solely based on an individual’s interest and the interest levels of the Invstr community. The statistical and portfolio builder models generated by Invstr do not reflect actual investment results and are not guarantees of future results. Comments provided by Invstr leaders, influencers or members of the Invstr Community are not recommendations and should not be construed as such. Invstr does not endorse the content or the positions posted by them. Their investment approach, and that of the models provided by Invstr, may be different from yours and may not be appropriate for you.