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Make Extra Money Without Sacrificing Your Time with These 25 Passive Income Apps

Fact checked by John Rampton

John Rampton

John Rampton is an entrepreneur and connector. When he was 23 years old, while attending the University of Utah, he was hurt in a construction accident. His leg was snapped in half. He was told by 13 doctors he would never walk again. Over the next 12 months, he had several surgeries, stem cell injections and learned how to walk again. During this time, he studied and mastered how to make money work for you, not against you. He has since taught thousands through books, courses and written over 5000 articles online about finance, entrepreneurship and productivity. He has been recognized as the Top Online Influencers in the World by Entrepreneur Magazine and Finance Expert by Time. He is the Founder and CEO of Due.... Read More

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If you want to build wealth, you’ll need to earn money while you sleep. The only way to do this? Generate passive income.

Sadly, passive income can seem overwhelming, since it often takes a lot of hard work or money upfront. The good news is that you can create extra income while you’re not working with the help of passive income apps.

For those looking to make extra money without spending all of their time on side hustles, here are 25 passive income apps to download.

Best Passive Income Apps to Make Money

1. Fundrise

You can’t use Fundrise to earn cash back, receive loyalty rewards, save money on expenses, or play games. Rather, Fundrise is a crowdfunding platform you can use to invest in real estate.

With Fundrise, you can build wealth with real estate investment portfolios that are carefully selected and proactively managed. It’s one of the best apps to help you get financially independent.

Fundrise lets you invest in large real estate projects without owning the entire property. If you want to diversify your portfolio and not have all your money tied up in one investment, you can invest a little bit in several projects.

Throughout your portfolio, Fundrise keeps you updated about the progress of each project you invest in.

The iPhone app offers all the features available on the desktop platform, making the investment platform convenient to use. As a result of this accessibility, you can keep track of your real estate investments from anywhere you are.

It is necessary to be an accredited investor to invest in some real estate crowdfunding apps. Fundrise does, however, offer some products that are available to non-accredited investors.

As a Fundrise user, you can receive dividends from your real estate investing. And, you can start with as little as $10.

The company offers a “dividend reinvestment program” if you do not need the money and wish to leave the funds on the platform.

2. HappyNest

As an alternative to Fundrise, HappyNest also offers real estate investments. Investing in commercial real estate with HappyNest REITs costs only $10, so you don’t need to save up for a down payment.

The unique feature of this passive income app is that it allows you to passively invest your money without any effort on your part. Your HappyNest account will round up every purchase to the nearest dollar if you link a debit or credit card. As an example, the app will round up a $4.25 purchase to $5 and set aside $0.75 to purchase additional shares.


With Public, you can trade commission-free. Unlike other micro-investing apps, Public lets you connect with thought leaders within the app so you can learn about investing.

With themed-stock bundles and fractional shares, it is possible to invest in well-known companies. And, you don’t need a minimum account to get started.

Public lets you invest weekly, biweekly, or monthly, or buy lump sums periodically. There are also these asset classes you can invest in:

  • Stocks
  • ETFs
  • Crypto
  • Contemporary art
  • Music royalties
  • Luxury goods

4. Acorns

Not sure where to begin investing?

Using Acorns, you can earn passive income by having professional financial experts decide where your money should be invested for you.

Rather than one risk level, you can choose from five different ones. Generally, young investors who aren’t heavily in debt should consider an aggressive style of investing.

If you’re looking for a mobile app that does almost all of the investing for you, this is a viable option.

The spare change option is my favorite part of this app.

Your Acorns account will automatically round up any purchases made with your credit card if you link it.

In your account, you will receive the difference between the actual purchase price and the amount spent with your card.

And, it only costs you $3 per month to invest in funds vetted by experts.

5. M1 Finance

The goal of M1 Finance is to help you create passive income from your savings by helping you build your investment portfolio. The program enables you to find the best ways to generate passive income through automated investing tools. Plus, you’ll be able to choose stocks based on expert-curated portfolios, taking the guesswork out of the process.

In addition to investing in specific companies, M1 Finance also offers fractional shares in stocks and ETFs. Through its passive income investing app, you can access your account information and manage your investments under one platform.

As well as commission-free investing, M1 Finance offers small investments starting at $100.

6. Groundfloor

Groundfloor is a passive income platform that combines saving and investing, which they cleverly call “savesting.” Investors are promised an annual return of 10%, which you don’t often see these days. Using automated investing tools, you can fund real estate projects that match your expectations through renovation loans.

With Groundfloor’s Stairs savings account, you earn 4% interest without any minimum investment requirement. Many other real estate investing apps lock your money up for long periods of time. On the other hand, Groundfloor shows you returns every 4 to 12 months.

7. Robinhood

If you’ve been thinking about investing, take a look at Robinhood. Commission-free trading is available on stocks, ETFs, options, and even cryptocurrency. In addition, Robinhood often gives away free stocks when you sign up.

In comparison with some of its competitors, Robinhood does not have all of the analytical and research tools. However, you will have a hard time finding another platform that makes trading as simple as Robinhood. And, if you trade fractional shares, your favorite stock won’t be priced out by its popularity, and there is no minimum requirement.

You won’t be charged anything for the basic account, and there is no minimum balance requirement. Passive income can be generated by building your portfolio based on expert recommendations. With Robinhood Gold, its premium platform, you can also earn 3.75% on your money.

8. Mainvest

Take a moment to picture a small town in the middle of America. There are quaint shops and diners lining the streets, catering to both locals and tourists.

There is a sense of community in the air as you walk down this main street. It’s common for people to support each other’s businesses and help each other out. It’s like being in one big family.

Every store owner in this town has created their own niche business that brings joy and economic stability to the community as a whole. What if you were able to support such a community and watch it grow?

With Mainvest, a crowdfunding service for small businesses, you can now do just that.

To build a passive income portfolio, Mainvest curates vetted small business opportunities in your community and nationwide.

By way of revenue-sharing notes, which act as financial agreements to share revenue with investors until a certain return is reached, these businesses offer returns between 10-25% per year. Unlike traditional loans, these payments replace interest.

9. Yieldstreet

Yieldstreet is one of the best real estate investing apps, so I had to include it in this list of passive income apps. You can earn passive income from a wide range of alternative assets. It includes everything from commercial property to art.

What you can invest in on Yieldstreet depends on how much risk you’re willing to take. But, there is the option for ultra-wealthy investments if you can swing it. Also, your portfolio’s performance is updated regularly in the app.

Compared with most CDs, Yieldstreet offers over 40X higher rates than the national average of money market rates. Investing multiple times also allows you to build an optimal investment strategy by rolling over maturities. So, yeah. Compared to traditional banking, it offers a much better alternative.

Passive Income Apps For Banking

10. High Yield Savings Account

As you may not know, a high-yield savings account is simply a federally insured savings account. Because of their higher interest rates, these accounts are attractive. A typical APY for these accounts is between 0.40% and 0.50%. In case you were wondering, the national savings rate is 0.06% APY.

Despite being not all that exciting, high-yield savings accounts do offer a solid return. As an added benefit, your balance will grow automatically without you having to exert any extra effort. Additionally, you can open an account online with Chime, Marcus, Alliant, Discover, or Varo. And, it’s an extremely low-risk investment.

Suppose you can open a savings account with a 0.50% APY. With $10,000 in your account, you’d earn just over $50 per year. This won’t make you a billionaire. But it’s way better than five bucks with a 0.05% account.

11. Certificate of Deposit

Another way to earn passive income from your savings is through certificate of deposit apps.

CDs allow you to set aside money for a defined period of time, which is known as a “term.” There are a variety of terms available, ranging from a few months to a decade. A longer-term usually results in a higher interest rate.

In order to avoid early withdrawal penalties, you should use a CD when you don’t need the money immediately.

You can buy CDs through most banking apps, such as Fidelity.

Passive Income Apps For Market Research

12. Swagbucks

Besides earning points for surveys, you can also get points for shopping online, playing video games, and searching the web with Swagbucks. If you earn enough points, you can get Amazon gift cards or PayPal cash back.

In theory, paid survey sites don’t count as passive income. But you’re making money while doing things you’re already doing, like surfing or playing games.

13. Nielsen Computer And Mobile Panel

This is a super-easy passive income idea. Install the Nielsen Computer And Mobile Panel app and keep using your phone or computer as normal. It’s that simple. Just doing that can make you an extra $50 a year.

To sweeten the deal? If you live in the United States, you will be eligible to enter sweepstakes drawings. If you get selected for these sweepstakes, you’ll receive additional money. Approximately 400 winners receive $10,000 each month from the company.

14. Survey Junkie

A list of surveys will be sent to you as soon as you sign up with Survey Junkie. Using a computer or a phone, you can complete these surveys during your downtime. In general, the more detailed the survey, the more points you’ll earn.

You’ll receive between 10 and 100 points $0.10 to $1) for each completed survey, which takes between 5 and 25 minutes. Earnings can also be cashed out at 1,000 points, which comes to $10.

15. Branded Surveys

Branded Surveys offers you the opportunity to take part in market research surveys through an online platform or iPhone app. In addition to taking daily polls, you can also refer friends and family to earn points.

It’s a great and simple way to earn points while you’re streaming your favorite shows. You can then redeem them for gift cards or cash via PayPal or Branded Pay.

Passive Income Apps For Everyday Tasks

16. Trim

Trim analyzes your spending patterns to identify areas of savings and cost reductions. As a result, the app will negotiate your bills on your behalf with the support of its team of experts, ensuring a 30% reduction in your bills. The app doesn’t earn you passive income, but it saves you money and reduces your monthly expenditures.

Trim claims its app can help users save $620 a year. More than two million users and $70 million in savings have been delivered by Trim so far.

17. Capital One Shopping

In addition to earning passive income with Capital One Shopping, you don’t have to be a Capital One member to take advantage of them. This can be done in a number of ways.

The first step is to compare prices. By using the Capital One Shopping app, you can find what you are looking for. The app will let you know when you can get a lower price on items you want.

You can also earn rewards points by shopping at stores you already frequent. You can redeem these rewards for gift cards at major retailers.

The savings vary but usually amount to a few dollars per sale. You can access Capital One Shopping both online and via the app.

18. Drop

With Drop, you can earn passive income from the shopping you already do. It’s a simple process. With Drop, you just connect your credit card, debit card, or bank account and choose five stores to earn cash back from. Uber, Starbucks, Target, and Walmart are some of the top choices people make, but there are many others.

Cashback is typically in the form of Drop Points, worth 0.5 to 1.5%. You can redeem them for Amazon or Starbucks gift cards. In order to earn points more quickly, you can play their mini-games — of course, this is not passive.

19. Dosh

There are a lot of similarities between Dosh and Drop.

The Dosh app will ask you to link your credit or debit card when you open it. Select one of the retailers they’ve partnered with from there.

Using the link within the app, you can access the retailer’s website. Your Dosh account will be credited with the cashback as soon as your purchase is made using your linked card.

Upon reaching $15 in cash-back rewards, you can withdraw your earnings via PayPal, Venmo, or bank transfer, or donate them to charity.

20. Rakuten

Amazon, Sephora, Macy’s, and many more partner with Rakuten, the biggest online shopping marketplace. For those who spend a lot online, the app offers 10% cashback on their online purchases.

To start earning cashback on Rakuten, follow these steps:

  • Create an account with Rakuten first.
  • Second, choose a store on Rakuten that you would like to shop at.
  • Finally, simply shop as usual and your earnings will automatically be credited.

If you earn $25 in cashback within 90 days of joining, the platform will give you a $10 sign-up bonus.

21. Upside

Upside allows you to earn cashback at more than 50,000 gas stations nationwide through passive income. Select locations offer up to $0.25 per gallon of gas purchased. You don’t have to collect points or gift cards to join Upside, and you are paid in cash. Plus, it’s free to join.

As gas prices increase, it makes sense to earn cash back on purchases you’ve already made.

22. OnMyWay

With OnMyWay, you can earn passive income while you drive regularly or every day. By discouraging texting while driving, OnMyWay aims to improve road safety. By doing this, the app will pay you $0.05 for each mile you drive safely.

Getting started is as easy as downloading the OnMyWay app (available on Android and iOS) and creating an account. When you exceed 10 mph, OnMyWay will automatically activate

Passive Income Apps For Rental Income

23. AirBnb

With Airbnb, travelers can book accommodations more easily. As a passive income idea, it is also one of the best. You can list a short-term rental property on Airbnb if you have an extra bedroom or additional space in your home.

You can start earning passive income with Airbnb once you get it up and running, especially if you hire out tasks like cleaning. To streamline the process, you can also implement digital check-ins and automated messages.

Depending on the size and location of your Airbnb unit, you can earn a lot of money. You can estimate your potential earnings on Airbnb’s website.

24. Neighbor

Your extra storage space can be rented out to your neighbors who need it. Using the peer-to-peer rental app Neighbor, you can earn extra income by renting out your basement, closet, garage, or driveway.

You and your renters are protected by $1,000,000 in insurance, and you have a guaranteed payment plan. If you wish to list your space for free, you’ll only be required to pay a small fee of 4.9% plus $0.30 for processing every month.

25. Turo

You can think of Turo as the Airbnb of cars. With Turo, you can make passive income from your idle vehicles.

Users can rent out your car at their convenience after you create a profile and add your car to the app. Without accounting for maintenance, cleaning, insurance, or deductibles, Turo estimates that the average car can earn $10,516 a year in rentals. Even though these will certainly eat into your profits, it is certainly better than letting it sit around under a tarp when you’re not using it.

Also, Turo offers contactless check-in to save you time and liability insurance, so you can rest assured that your car is safe.

Renting out a fleet of cars and turning it into a business is an option for those looking to boost their passive income.


How do passive income and active income differ?

I often get asked what’s the difference passive and active income. Passive income apps are designed to help you earn a new income without spending much time on it. With your nine-to-five income or side hustle, you’d like to create passive income sources that make money continuously for you.

Exactly how do passive income apps work?

Creating passive income is like setting up a side gig once and forgetting about it. As you earn passive income, the app uses a variety of technologies, including Robo-investors and algorithms that work for you.

Depending on what app you use, they’ll take a cut. Others might offer the chance to make even more money. Depending on the app, this will vary.

How safe are passive income apps?

There are many factors that influence the answer to this question. In most cases, however, apps will take the necessary precautions to protect their users’ data, privacy, and money. It’s important to be selective when choosing a passive income app, which is why I’ve compiled this list.

There are some that are very safe and even score high points with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Some apps promise things that they simply cannot deliver.

Also, check out reviews before downloading an app and understand it thoroughly. It will not only keep you safe but will also enable you to plan better and avoid disappointments in the future.

What are the highest and lowest-paying apps?

You need to consider your situation and how committed you are to earning money before you can decide which app is the most profitable. You can make thousands of dollars renting out a prime space or property on Airbnb, for example. Over the long run, a robo-advisor like M1 Finance or a REIT app like Fundrise can be very profitable if you have a lot of money to invest.

In contrast, the lowest-paying apps will almost certainly be those that offer paid surveys and get paid to participate in contests. On each app, you can earn a few bucks a week, enough to cover a few streaming subscriptions or Starbucks coffee. The barrier to entry for these apps is the lowest, but they won’t make you wealthy.

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