It's never too early to start making money and becoming self-sufficient, even if you're still a high school student. Whether you're saving up for a new accessory or for your future college tuition, knowing how to generate cash fast can help you build a healthy financial foundation for your future.
Offer landscaping services. High school students of all ages can charge family, friends and neighbors — solicit them directly, or post flyers on neighborhood bulletin boards — for basic services such as mowing the lawn, trimming hedges and weeding gardens. Required equipment may vary depending on your specific tasks, but the basics, such as a lawn mower, may be available from your parents or for rent from a local nursery. The homeowner may even own his own lawn mower that you can simply use.
Apply for a temporary job during the summer, a season when many employers are willing to hire high school students. Options include serving in a restaurant or working in a coffee shop. To beat the traditional summer rush, CNN Money recommends applying for such jobs before May or June — that's when many high school students are competing for the same positions. Instead, apply in the late spring and offer to immediately start working on weekends and at night.
Sell your old stuff. High school students can amass a mind-boggling quantity of accessories, gadgets and clothing, some of which other people may find valuable. Options include posting the items in an online auction, or placing an ad in the classifieds. For example, even old game cartridges from vintage video game systems can fetch a few dollars today.
Market your talents, such as your skill for writing or design. Many high school students can turn their interests and hobbies into paying freelance gigs, while simultaneously gaining experience that can look great on a resume. For example, a teen with a love for the English language can offer her editing skills to local businesses, restaurants and other institutions.