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12 Passive Income Ideas For 18-20 Year-Olds


We covered some passive income ideas for teens and college students, but this list of passive income ideas is specifically dedicated to young adults ages 18 to 20. There has never been a better time for young adults to make passive income, especially by starting an online side hustle. And you don’t have to quit your day job or miss a semester’s worth of classes to launch some of these ideas. 

There are many ways to make passive income as a young adult aged 18, 19, or 20. These include blogging, gaming, YouTubing, creating monetized chatbots, copywriting, creating niche sites, selling stock photos, participating in food delivery apps, renting your things, and charging scooters.

In this article, we highlight 12 ways you can make passive income as a young adult. Most ideas require immense dedication and patience at the beginning. However, with the right approaches and strategies, some of these ideas can earn you passive income for months or years! Also, beginners on a tight budget can still execute some of these ideas to earn passive income. Let’s dive in.

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Online passive income ideas for young adults include blogging, gaming, YouTubing, creating monetized chatbots, copywriting, creating niche sites, selling stock photos and dropshipping. 

1. Blogging 

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As a young adult, you may have tons of ideas or interests that you would not mind sharing with an audience. You can share your ideas and earn a passive income through a monetized blog. With the right niche and content, you can grow your audience, monetize your blog, and start earning passive income. Resourceful courses like Project 24 by Income School teach exactly how to create a successful niche blog with the goal of making a full-time income within 24 months. 

Here is a our detailed guide about blogging and how to make $1,000/month with a monetized blog. 

2. Gaming  

Although an almost nonexistent idea two decades ago, gaming has become a lucrative and popular way to earn passive income online today. As a young adult, you can earn passive income from gaming by transforming your pastime into a passive income stream.

Some ways to make passive income gaming include running a monetized blogging, selling your accounts (if allowed), and live streaming on Twitch. With a monetized YouTube channel or site, you can earn passive income through ads, affiliate marketing, donations, and more. For example, this gamer started making $1,000/month from gaming in 6 months

Learn more in our gaming for passive income guide. 

3. YouTube

One of the most popular ways to earn passive income as a young adult is through a monetized YouTube channel. Having the right balance of engaging, fun, yet informative content is key to a channel’s success. The content should also be something people are actually looking for. You can talk about things you are knowledgeable or passionate about and would like to share with others. If you would like to learn exactly how to make a profitable YouTube channel definitely consider Project 24 by Income School that has a 60-step course on the topic.

With the right content and a growing audience, you can monetize your channel by allowing YouTube to place ads if you pass monetization requirements. Other ways to increase YouTube passive income include affiliate marketing, selling digital and physical products, royalties, endorsements, super chats and donations. It is not an easy task, and you have to be willing to put in the work at the beginning. Eventually, with an active, subscribed audience and excellent content, YouTube can be a lucrative passive income source for you as a young adult. 

If you want to learn more about making passive income with a monetized YouTube channel, please read our guide

4. Chatbots

Chatbots are the future of customer service and have become very popular for businesses looking to enhance customer service and 24/7 availability. No need to be an advanced developer, tools like Tidio have made it very easy for anyone to create a bot on the technical side. The harder part is finding an industry that is right for you and creating the right interactions for that audience.

If you serve the right industry with the right bot, you can earn an excellent passive income,. Ways to make passive income from a bot include creating and selling it, using it for lead generation and reselling those leads, eCommerce, and affiliate marketing. Online platforms like Tidio can help you get started on chatbots.

To learn more, please read our passive income chatbot guide.

5. Copywriting

You can make quite a fair amount of passive income by offering copywriting services under your own agency. But you can start out freelancing, build up your skills, and then outsource the work to make it more passive once you know what is required of the job.

You can make money either by creating blogs for yourself and monetizing the traffic or by becoming a freelance copywriter and writing for others. The first option is more passive than the second but can be more rewarding in the short term since it can take up to 8 months for your first blog posts to really rank. We highly recommend Income School’s Project 24 to learn how to successfully copyright for the web.

For more details about copywriting as a passive income source check out our guide.

6. Creating Niche Sites 

Creating and running a niche site (a blog that addresses a specific topic and resonates with a particular audience) has proven to still be a lucrative passive income source. With a passive income niche site, your content targets an audience that shares specific interests and provides information on a particular topic. It can be something you are knowledgeable or passionate about and would like to share with others. 

With excellent content and a growing audience, you can monetize your site and earn a passive income. Income school’s Project 24 teaches how to make passive income with a niche site (according to their timeline up to $7,000 per month in 24 months). But you have to be willing to put in the hard work, especially at the beginning. 

For more details about niche sites and how you can make passive income from them as a young adult, please view our guide

7. Selling Stock Photos or Videos

As a young adult, you probably have tons of photo and video content stored on your devices, from your computer to your phone and hard drive. You can sell some of your content that is not private and earn passive income from it. Many clients on stock photo platforms, like Shutterstock, will gladly pay for high-quality photos in relevant niches.

Of course, it’s important to be sure you can legally sell your photos and videos, especially if they contain people or copyrighted material (this is not legal advice so consult a qualified attorney in your jurisdiction for more personalized information on the topic). But making passive income from selling your stock photos and videos can be highly passive especially if you are good at photography. 

Check out our stock photo and video passive income guide for more information.

8. Dropshipping

Dropshipping has almost become a buzzword it is such a popular topic on YouTube, and it can be a great way to make passive income online! But, it takes time and effort to get started. There are some important steps that should not be neglected to make passive income dropshipping. 

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You can make passive income by dropshipping by selecting a niche target market you are interested in, carrying out adapted product selection and market research, finding a supplier and building an online store, building a value based niche site and marketing strategy to generate targeted traffic. However, it’s very important to be attentive to expenses which can actually be very high.

Learn more about dropshipping for passive income in our ultimate dropshipping guide.

Side hustle passive income ideas for young adults 18, 19 or 20 years old include food delivery services, pet or house sitting, renting your things, or charging scooter. These ideas are more side hustles (active) vs passive income sources but they can be turned into passive income ideas. Learn more in the guides on our site which are listed under each idea.

9. Food Delivery Apps

If you are a young adult with a bicycle and would not mind delivering people’s orders, you can earn a decent side hustle income through food delivery apps like UberEats, Deliveroo, or DoorDash. It is a highly flexible side hustle that you can do during your free time, in the evenings or over the weekend.

These apps have become more and more popular with restaurant closures and delivery only policies that are being applied in some parts of the world. It’s important to follow the rules set out by each platform, especially in today’s context. But with popularity on the rise and the flexibility the job offers, it can be a great way to get started making money.

Check out our guide for more about making food delivery apps a passive income source.

10. Pet or House Sitting 

If you are a pet lover or have free time on your hands, you can earn passive income by offering pet or house-sitting services. People are busy working or travelling, and most times, they need someone to watch their home and pets.

As a young adult, you can take up these gigs and make as much as $80 a day. There are many sites and companies that help you get started on these kinds of jobs so you can easily find clients looking for house or pet sitters. We listed them with more information on this passive income side hustle idea.

You can learn more about this passive income side hustle here.

11. Renting Your Things 

As a young adult, you probably have personal things that you do not use much. You can rent it out to people who need it and earn money from it. Nowadays, you can list items like bikes, parking spot, electronics (scooter, drone, camera), clothing, household goods, transportation (cars, RV, ATV), your parking spot, your apartment and more.

Sites like Fatlama can connect you with clients so you can rent your things. It is important to ensure that you rent out your belongings in good condition and at affordable prices. 

You can learn more about peer-to-peer rental ideas in our guide.

12. Charging Scooters

The electric micro-mobility vehicles industry is becoming more and more popular globally, and charging electric scooters and bikes can be an excellent way of getting started with a side hustle as a young adult.

You can make money charging scooters on sites like Lime and Bird and earn between $3 and $20 per scooter. The best part is that you can do this during your free time, after school or in the evenings. You just need to pick a couple of scooters, charge them, deliver them back in the morning before curfew, and get paid.

You can learn more about charging scooters to make money in our detailed guide.

Related Questions

What are passive income ideas for 18 year olds? Some passive income ideas 18 year olds can try include blogging, gaming, YouTubing, copywriting, creating niche sites, creating and selling chatbots, dropshipping, and selling digital products online. 

What are passive income ideas for 19 year olds? Some passive income ideas 19 year olds can try include copywriting, niche-site creation, blogging, gaming, YouTubing, podcasting, renting their bike, chatbots, 3D printing, flipping domain names, dropshipping, eCommerce, data entry and selling digital products online. 

What are passive income ideas for 20 year olds? Some passive income ideas 20 year olds can try include blogging, gaming, YouTubing, podcasting, copywriting, renting their things, creating niche sites, flipping domain names, creating and selling chatbots, dropshipping, and selling digital products online. 

How can I make $1,000 a month in passive income? According to Income School’s Project 24, a well monetized blog with 30k monthly pageviews can make $1,000 per month. Although it can take up to 8 months, can be very much worth exploring blogging as a passive income stream to earn $1,000 per month.

How can I earn more passive income as a young adult? With the right methods, dedication, skill and sustained effort you can earn passive income as a young adult. You can earn more passive income by combining two or more ideas. For example gaming on YouTube and affiliate marketing.

Do I need to invest money to earn passive income? All businesses require an initial investment of time and or money. Some online ideas require a smaller amount of financial investment contrary to physical brick and mortar businesses. Make sure to set aside some money and to get started with any passive income idea you choose.

Beginners Passive Income

It takes time, effort, perseverance, motivation and skill to build profitable, sustainable passive income streams. We hope to inspire you and provide you excellent passive income ideas along your journey to financial independence.

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