Car-washing, gardening, odd jobs

How to start

Like babysitting and dog-walking, you will probably start by doing jobs for
friends’ parents, parents’ friends and neighbours. If you do a good job, are reliable, and don’t charge too much, they may recommend you to others. You might be able to ask them for a reference (a note telling other people how good you are, that should help you get other jobs).

You can also advertise your services by :

  • putting a notice in your local shop or business (either handwritten or computer-designed – whichever you think will attract more customers)
  • posting on Facebook (especially if you have a local village/town group or similar)
  • putting flyers through people’s doors (use your skill and judgement to target your advertising at the most likely possible customers. Don’t advertise gardening services to people living in a third floor flat, for example)

How much pay?

This is really in your own hands. This type of work is normally paid by the job rather than by the hour, and people have different expectations of what a job is worth. Reach an agreement with your customer before you do the job. If you’re particularly skilled, or can offer something specific, eg lawn-mowing and your own lawn-mower, you can generally charge more.

Things to remember

  • Be honest about your skills and experience. There is no point saying you can do something if you can’t and you will soon get an unhelpful reputation for being unreliable.
  • If you are planning to do a job for someone you don’t know, especially if it’s in their home, take someone else with you (preferably your parent or carer) the first time. Ask beforehand; your customer shouldn’t mind. If anything feels uncomfortable or wrong, even if you can’t put your finger on it, don’t work for that person again. If you feel under any threat while you’re there, leave immediately.

Have a look at our other ideas for part-time jobs:

Ideas for part-time jobs