As a young kid, I always looked for ways to make some money anyway I could. It could have been anything like dusting the house, cleaning the cars, or doing dishes. I would make money here and there, and it seemed like a lot for a seven year old kid that had nothing to spend it on.
When I was in middle school, my dad taught me how to mow our lawn, using a push mower he bought for us. He taught me so I could start making some money. He started paying me 10 dollars to mow the lawn. Soon enough I picked up my neighbor’s lawn across the street. I was making forty dollars a week; at the time, I felt rich. The next year I picked up a third lawn and was making quite a bit of money.
I was not old enough to drive, so my dad drove me around to the different lawns so I could mow them each week. The summer before my junior year of high school, I went to work for my dad; to see what being an employee felt like. I learned a lot of valuable knowledge while I was there: being responsible, finishing the job, being efficient with my time, and working with others.
Starting A T-Shirt Business And Mowing Lawns
I quit working for my father at the end of the summer, because I did not like working for someone else, and I felt like I needed to venture and try my own thing. I preferred to work for myself and try to be an entrepreneur. Around my junior year in high school, a friend and I attempted to sell t-shirts. We got a couple sales, but that did not last long. My business partner was not too enthusiastic about the whole thing so the business dropped.
I continued mowing lawns, and picked up a few more along the way. During the summer before my senior year. I had four lawns, and was making 120 dollars a week. It wasn’t much but for only mowing once a week, it was pretty fair pay.
Starting A Clothing Line
Towards the end of that summer, a friend of mine approached me with a business idea. He wanted to start a lifting clothing line with me. Of course I said yes, because I was wanting to attempt another clothing business again. Our goal for the business was to expand it to make it our career jobs. We did not keep any of the money to ourselves, because we put it back into the business to progress it further. We were constantly profiting on our sales.
Some months it was only a few bucks, and others it was hundreds, but the point is that we were always progressing. We got pretty deep into the business too. We had a website, a printer machine, inventory, and a small following on social media platforms. We were making a few sales a month, but nothing crazy. Since I am about to go away to college, I had to pull out of the business. I would not be able to contribute to the business if I am away at college, so I decided to break ties with the business and relinquish my 50% ownership of the business.
Back To Mowing Lawns
Currently I am mowing even more lawns to help pay for college. Each week, I am putting a large portion of what I make towards college because I am going to be paying for most of it myself. I am attending Indiana University in the fall of 2017, and plan to continue my mowing business throughout the next four years to help pay for college. I plan to expand my mowing business, over time, to make more money so I can quickly pay off my college loans.
Love this story? Share it on social media to vote!
Check out the other finalists here: 2017 Side Hustlin’ Student Scholarship Results Page.
Robert Farrington is America’s Millennial Money Expert® and America’s Student Loan Debt Expert™, and the founder of The College Investor, a personal finance site dedicated to helping millennials escape student loan debt to start investing and building wealth for the future. You can learn more about him here and here.
He regularly writes about investing, student loan debt, and general personal finance topics geared towards anyone wanting to earn more, get out of debt, and start building wealth for the future.
He has been quoted in major publications including the New York Times, Washington Post, Fox, ABC, NBC, and more. He is also a regular contributor to Forbes.