2019 End of Year Side Income Report

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This is my fourth year writing about my yearly “side hustle” income. That means I’ve been writing one of these income report posts since 2016.

If you want to check out the reports from the previous three years, here are the links:

Each one is formatted a bit differently as I have different ideas on how to present my thoughts each time.


I’ve backed off on surveys, not even crossing $100 for both systems I used. Keep in mind that in my 2016 report I made over $1,000 on Amazon Mechanical Turk alone.

I’ve also uninstalled the Surveys on the Go app; some of the surveys weren’t working, so it became much of a waste of time.

Cash Back & Receipt Apps

UPDATE Pei and Bumped are both dead.

I’ve cashed out on Receipt Hog four times since I started using it back in 2016 - twice in 2017 (January and December), once in 2018 (July), and once in April of this year. The first time I cashed out $20 because they were devaluing their coins - the other times I cashed out at the max value ($40) which has the best coin-to-money ratio.

In other words, it’s taken me 6 months, 12 months, and 9 months - for an average of 9 months - to earn a total of $120.

Honestly, I use Receipt Hog mostly to look up old receipts - it helps me with budgeting and sometimes when I have to return things.

The Bumped app has been hugely successful; I was somewhere around $14 in rewards last year. I’ve yet to start using Bumped’s main competitor Bits of Stock even though I’ve been accepted (I’m having a bit of problem with their iPhone app and need to email them for help).

Pei has been decent as well. I’ve earned 0.00851090 bitcoin - which would have been $74.73 had I decided to cash out instead. (To put it in context - that bitcoin is worth about $61.23 as I write this. It’s probably changed again significantly by the time you’re reading this.) I’ve “cashed out” four times, the first three times I chronicles in my post How Much Can You Make with the Pei Cashback App?.

I also have Dosh and Drop, but I haven’t made anything of substance with those two yet.

Credit Card Rewards

I only use no-annual-fee cash back credit cards. I’m not confident enough to ensure that an annual fee would be worth it; I also don’t want to worry about redeeming things such as airline miles.

Not all of my cards have referrals; I’ve included links in the above list to those referrals I do have.

Note that with my two Chase Cards I often use the “Chase Offers” features to get as high as 10% cash back at various merchants.

Interest-Bearing Accounts

  • Robinhood → $18.17
  • WeBull → 20.87
  • Worthy Bonds → $0.65
  • BlockFi → 0.0011812 BTC… about $10.68
  • Credit Union Interest → $91.36
  • Ally Interest → $203.08
  • Total → $344.81

By “interest-bearing” accounts I mean any account that earns based on how much is in that account. This includes regular savings accounts, as well as dividends and bonds.

Note that I’m not including any tax-advantaged accounts here - no 401ks or Roth IRAs.

It was a pleasant surprise in February when my local credit union raised their savings rates from 3% to 6%.

Sadly, however, Ally has been lowering their rates this year consistently. It’s not their fault per se; the Feds simply have been lowering the rates in general.

Now you might ask with Ally at less than 2%, and my credit union offering a staggering 6% - why don’t I just stick all my money into my credit union and earn that sweet, sweet 6%? The answer is simple - my credit union only offers that rate for the first $500 - after that it’s the sorry almost-nothing rate everyone else offers.

For my two stock trading accounts, the amount above includes the free stocks earned via referrals. For WeBull, that’s one share of Zynga ($8.77), Sprint ($7.69), and Ford ($4.26) each. For Robinhood, that’s just one share of Groupon ($2.39).

BlockFi earns a high interest on cryptocurrency. Currently, I only have about $130 in bitcoin in my BlockFi account. I have more bitcoin (and other crypto) elsewhere - but as the saying goes in cryptoland - not your keys, not your coins.

Merch by Amazon is the clear winner of everything on this page - even beating all of the credit card reward category by $200.


  • Amazon Associates → $41.95
  • ebay Partner Network → $1.81
  • Square Cash → $10.00
  • Miscellaneous → $300.00
  • Total → $353.76

I made a whopping $1.81 via eBay:

My Amazon Associates account is starting to perform better as well (mostly due to this DorcoUSA post):


  • CarMax → $700.0
  • Clinical Study → $275.00

After we bought a car this year, we sold my old one for $700. Which I promptly put towards debt.

My son also was in a vaccine study and earned himself $275. We put that money into his 529 College Savings Account.


  • Surveys → $75.24
  • Cash Back & Receipt Apps → $372.28
  • Credit Card Rewards → $1,593.95
  • Interest-Bearing Accounts → $344.81
  • Print-On-Demand Sites → $1,870.35
  • Blogging → $353.76
  • Miscellaneous → $975.00
  • Total → $5,585.39

To quickly compare the last two years: last year in 2018 I made $4,196.72, and in 2017 I made $5,575.35.

This year barely beat 2017; the biggest reason is that 2017 was the year of bank account bonuses for me.

All-in-all, over five grand extra for the year is pretty good.

4 comments for 2019 End of Year Side Income Report

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    • Print-on-demand is where I supply the content - such as book content or t-shirt designs - and the book or t-shirts doesn’t get printed until a customer orders it.

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