Summer Jobs for Teenagers – 6 Ways for Your Teen to Start Their Own Business

Does your teen need a job for the summer? Even if he isn’t old enough to get a traditional summer job, there are many ways he can earn money working for himself. Here are six ideas for summer businesses your teen can run.

Is your teenager too young to get a job at Burger King but wants to earn some money doing something other than babysitting this summer?

Does your older teen yearn for a business of his or her own? Well, look no further.

Below are six great entrepreneurial enterprises for teens to choose from that can help them keep busy, content and – of course – earn some “dough-re-mi” during the dog days of summer.

With any of these endeavors, be sure to keep in mind:

  • Safety first.
  • Make sure anything you want to do is legal.
  • Do your homework – learn about the “business.”
  • Get the word out – Flyers are a great way to advertise, but be sure to put them in door handles and not in mailboxes; it’s against United States Postal Service regulations to put them in mailboxes.
  • Think in terms of serving your customer, giving “100%,” and doing it with a smile and pleasant demeanor.

Related: How a teenager turned his social media postings into a business

Social Media Trainer

Most small local businesses don’t have the time to post much to social media – and many don’t even have social media accounts.  Social media savvy teens can start a summer business using their skills to help businesses in town get social  media accounts set up and show owners how to use them. An ad on service for teens with the skills: doing short videos or taking and uploading product shots for businesses.  

Affixing Mailbox and House Numbers

This is a win-win business venture for both teen and community. A home without a visible number posted on either the house or mailbox can delay deliveries and visitors, cause automobile accidents or even worse – delay emergency responders when every second literally counts. Someone’s survival may depend on it.

Distribute flyers describing the merits of this service to homes that are missing their identifying numbers or those with numbers not clearly visible. Numbers can be purchased at your local hardware store and are relatively inexpensive – ranging from about $1 to $6 per number – depending upon size and make (i.e., vinyl, brass, satin nickel). A hammer and screw gun would help to secure metal number plates. Charge for the materials and set a reasonable fee for your labor.

[Note: Avoid curb painting; curbs generally do not belong to the homeowner and are usually prohibited from being defaced in any manner]

House Sitting / Pet Sitting

Summertime is vacation time for many families. This is a terrific opportunity to put them at ease about their home and pets while they’re away, and for you to earn some cash.

Advertise in your neighborhood. Services provided can include:

  • Pet care/sitting
  • Watering plants
  • Taking in mail and newspapers
  • Cutting the grass
  • Taking out the trash or recyclables
  • Checking outside perimeter, doors, rooms and windows

Prepare a fee schedule with charges listed for each service. First establish a reasonable hourly wage for yourself; i.e., $6 to$8, calculate how long each service would take, and then charge accordingly.

RELATED: Start a Pet Sitting Service

Storytime for Young Children

Instead of going to other people’s homes to babysit, why not start your own weekly storytime in your own home? Children love storytime. Moms love it too because their children get to discover that books are fun, learn to participate as a group member, and hopefully a lifetime pattern of reading enjoyment will develop.

Advertise by distributing flyers in your community. The optimal age for this enterprise is three to six-year-olds. If moms want to come along, they should be welcome, but of course only charge for the child. Keep storytime simple but entertaining. Use large books with bright and colorful illustrations. Recruit a younger sibling or friend to entertain along with the reading with puppets, flannel boards or finger plays. Attention spans are short at this age so limit your storytime to two hours or less. Charge $2 to $4 per child.

Car Wash Service

Why would anyone drive to a car wash when they could have someone come to them and do a great job for less money? That someone could be you. Be sure also to promote the fact that machine washes may be harsher than the manual cleaning you’ll be doing with mild detergent.

Check out some local car washes for prices and services provided. Charge a little less and you should be in business. When you do an exemplary job, repeat customers can keep you busy all summer.

Materials you may need include portable vacuum, bucket, sponges, chamois towels, mild detergent, and paper towels or clean soft towels. Go to to read and learn “How to really wash your car.”

Pooper Scooper Service

Homeowners have dogs. Dogs poop. Can you figure out where this is going?

OK, OK … this isn’t for everyone, but it can be a very lucrative business. These types of businesses are increasing rapidly; there’s now even an International Directory of Dog Waste Removal Services. This is because overloaded (excuse the pun) dog owners are thrilled to pay a small weekly fee for this type of maintenance.

For just a few minutes of your time per property, you can expect to earn between $8 and $15 weekly, depending on the number of dogs. For a first-time yard that has not been maintained, charge accordingly with a higher fee.

Supplies needed include a scoop or shovel, and plastic trash bags for waste removal. Many communities allow disposal in residents’ trash cans, but be sure to check the rules in your area before you get started. 

Tailor-Made Enterprises

Just about everyone has their own special skills and talents; something they love to do.

Convert and customize that gift into a business. If you excel at and love math, consider tutoring children in your community. If you adore kids and art, start a face-painting business or summer art program. With a little imagination, research and fortitude, success will surely follow.

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