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40 Best Passive Income Apps to Make Money Effortlessly in 2020

40 best incomes apps

Do you dream of sitting on a tropical beach sipping beer or margaritas while money rolls into your bank account?

That’s an example of passive income.

Unfortunately, passive income apps might not be able to make that dream a reality, but they can help you:

  • Meet your mortgage payment each month.

  • Put extra money in your pocket for the weekend.

  • Pay off your credit cards or loan.

  • Buy treats for the kids.

What is a passive income app?

 
Basically, it’s a piece of software that automates the process, or part of the process, of earning you money. As it’s automated, it can be earning you money while you’re doing something else, hence the passive part.

There are Passive income apps for iPhone and Android phones as well as PCs, MACs and tablets.

How can I make passive income with a passive income app?


The amount of input in terms of time or money needed to make passive income with apps varies enormously, as do the rewards.

Some you simply download and forget. The downside is that these generally earn you less money than ones where you have to put some effort in yourself.

The good news is whatever time or expertise you’ve got available, there’s a passive income app for you.

Types of passive income app

 
Passive income apps can roughly be divided into 7 types:

  1. Money saving apps
  2. Data collection apps
  3. Ad/video based apps
  4. Cashback apps
  5. Rental apps
  6. Finance and investment apps
  7. Creative based apps

What are the highest paying passive income apps in 2020?

 
This is hard to say because results will vary from person to person. Like 2019, the best money making apps of 2020 are likely to be investment or rental apps.

However, the first involves the greatest risk, and the second, the greatest input of time.

How can a beginner make passive income?

 
It depends what your goal is.

If it is to earn some extra money to spend on little luxuries, for instance, then cashback or money saving apps are a good place to start. Most of these require no expertise and little input from you.

If it is to make money to increase your wealth, then there are investment apps that pay you despite very little initial outlay or expertise on your part.

Whatever your goal, you’ll find the best free passive income apps that pay out below. 

Money Saving Apps

How does it work?

Install the app and then use it to shop online.

How do I earn money?

When you buy something, you receive cashback. You can link your loyalty cards and submit receipts.

How much can I earn?

The average user saves around $20 a month.

How much do I have to do?

Once it’s installed, not too much except submit receipts.

 

PRO

  • Free to use.
  • Earn money back on stuff you buy, anyway.

CONS

  • Can be a bore to submit all your receipts.
  • Savings aren’t huge.

How does it work?

It searches for the best deal on an item you want to buy. It also tells you what the best deals fellow Wikibuy users are getting on items.

How do I earn money?

By getting the best deal available at the time.

How much can I earn?

Varies depending on what you are buying and the deals available. Wikibuy states they have saved users over $50 million so far.

How much do I have to do?

Simply install the app on your phone and computer.

PRO

  • Automatic voucher search.
  • Earn credits.

CONS

  • None, really

 

How does it work?

It analyzes your spending and calculates how to save you money by negotiating lower bills.

How do I earn money?

By saving on utility bills, etc.

How much can I earn?

The average yearly saving is $276, but Trim takes a percentage – in this case $82.80.

How much do I have to do?

Nothing – install and forget.

 

PRO

  • No input required on your part once set up.
  • Can reduce your monthly bills.

CONS

  • Trim takes a percentage of all savings.

Data Collection Apps

How does it work?

Install the app and then go for a walk! The app will record how many steps you take.

How do I earn money?

For every step you take, you’ll earn Sweatcoins that can be exchanged for cash, prizes or discounts.

How much can I earn?

It depends on how far you walk. 1,000 steps earns you .95 Sweatcoins.

How much do I have to do?

Once the app is installed, just go for a walk! 

PRO

  • Works in the background.
  • Get paid to get healthy.

CONS

  • Only forward motion is counted, so it’s no use if you use a treadmill, for instance.
  • Need a lot of steps to earn any decent amount of coins.
  • You need to upgrade to a paid subscription if you want to earn more than 5 Sweatcoins a day.

How does it work?

Install the app, answer a few questions and you’re done.

How do I earn money?

Leave the app running in the background and earn points that can be redeemed for cash.

How much can I earn?

Maximum of $1 a day.

How much do I have to do?

Once installed, nothing. Bonus points can be earned by taking surveys, etc.

 

PRO

  • Free to use.
  • Easy to install.
  • Can install on multiple phones.

CONS

  • Maximum earning of $1 a day.

How does it work?

Install the browser extension and visit Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn or Amazon.

How do I earn money?

Every time you are shown ads you earn tokens which can be exchanged for gift cards.

How much can I earn?

Around $75 a year.

How much do I have to do?

Install the browser and visit the sites listed above.

 

PRO

  • Works in the background.
  • Sites it works on like Facebook, most people visit already.

CONS

  • Only available for your computer.
  • Have to disable any ad blockers you have installed.

How does it work?

The app runs in the background and records data on your wireless connectivity.

How do I earn money?

You automatically earn points that you can exchange for gift cards.

How much can I earn?

$0.10 to $0.30 a day.

How much do I have to do?

Once installed, nothing.

 

PRO

  • Easy to install.
  • Runs in the background.

CONS

  • Only pays out through Paypal.
  • Not a huge earner.

How does it work?

Unusually, you have to take a short questionnaire to make sure you are eligible. Then install the app and you’re done. It records details such as what apps you have installed.

How do I earn money?

The longer the app stays on your phone, the more you earn.

How much can I earn?

$110 a year, slightly more each year afterwards.

How much do I have to do?

Once installed, nothing.

 

PRO

  • Runs in background.
  • $5 bonus when you register.

CONS

  • Need to leave it installed for at least a year to make reasonable money.

How does it work?

Install the app and it runs in the background collecting data on what websites you visit, how often you use social media, etc.

How do I earn money?

You can take surveys that offer cash or gift cards as rewards. They also run occasional sweepstakes.

How much can I earn?

Nothing if you don’t take the surveys or enter the sweepstakes. Theoretically as much as $100,000, but they have 2+ million members, so the odds aren’t good.

How much do I have to do?

Nothing, unless you wish to earn money, then you have to take a survey or enter a sweepstake.

 

PRO

  • Can give you a nice feeling that you are helping improve the internet.

CONS

  • You are handing ALL your internet data over to them.
  • No guaranteed, regular way of earning income.

How does it work?

Install the app on your phone and leave it running in the background.

How do I earn money?

You get a $20 Amazon gift card for joining and leaving the app running for two weeks. Then you earn points for leaving it installed and running.

How much can I earn?

Don’t expect a lot more than $5 a month.

How much do I have to do?

Once installed, nothing.

 

PRO

  • Runs in the background.

CONS

  • Have to register your device to see if it is eligible first.
  • No clear indication on the website as to how much they pay out.

How does it work?

Simply install on your computer and mobile and leave running. Everytime you browse the internet, it records your activity.

How do I earn money?

It pays you points you can redeem for gift vouchers. You can also enter cash rewards and sweepstakes.

How much can I earn?

Around $50 a year.

How much do I have to do?

To earn the basic $50, just keep the app installed and running.

 

PRO

  • Free.
  • Easy to install.
  • No other input needed.

CONS

  • Not the highest payout.

How does it work?

Install on your phone or computer and leave running. It will collect data on your internet usage.

How do I earn money?

You get money for each device you install the app on. There is a maximum of three devices per household.

How much can I earn?

For each device you earn $5 a month. You can also earn around $1-5 a month from other incentives.

How much do I have to do?

To earn the basic $5 a month, just install the app and leave it running.

 

PRO

  • Easy to install.
  • Can install on three devices.

CONS

  • Not a large payout, even if installed on all three devices.

How does it work?

Sign up and ScreenLift will place an ad on your screen every time you unlock your phone.

How do I earn money?

By unlocking your phone and viewing the ad.

How much can I earn?

Around $5 a month.

How much do I have to do?

Nothing except unlock your phone as normal.

 

PRO

  • Easy to register.
  • Makes no difference if you respond to the ad or not.

CONS

  • Can’t increase your payout much.

How does it work?

Pretty much the same as ScreenLift. Register and they’ll place an ad on your screen when you unlock your phone.

How do I earn money?

Every time you unlock your phone and view the ad you’ll get paid.

How much can I earn?

Around $0.10 a day.

How much do I have to do?

Just unlock your phone as normal.

 

PRO

  • Easy to register.
  • No need to respond to the ad to get paid.
  • You can exchange for Amazon gift cards when you reach only $1.

CONS

  • You’re not going to get rich!.

How does it work?

Create an account and then perform activities such as taking surveys or trying new products.

How do I earn money?

Everytime you perform an activity, you get paid points. 100 points equals one dollar. You can exchange these points for gift cards or cryptocurrency.

How much can I earn?

Surveys tend to pay 20 points, longer tasks up to 200.

How much do I have to do?

You have to perform activities to earn.

 

PRO

  • Grindabuck can pay out in as little as 1 hour.
  • Most activities are easy, or fun.

CONS

  • Unlikely to earn much more than $10 a month.

How does it work?

Install the app and leave running. While you are not using the phone, it will auto-surf the internet, clicking on banners, viewing ads, and installing programs.

How do I earn money?

You receive points for every 5 minutes the app is active.

How much can I earn?

Around $0.50 a day. You can have up to 4 phones.

How much do I have to do?

Nothing once installed.

 

PRO

  • Truly passive income.

CONS

  • Only on android.
  • Can take up to a month to get payment.

How does it work?

Join up and then complete surveys, watch videos and shop online as you would normally.

How do I earn money?

Each time you complete a task or buy something, you earn gift cards or Paypal cash.

How much can I earn?

$50-$100 a month if you use the program for a few hours each day.

How much do I have to do?

Apart from your normal online activities, not much.

 

PRO

  • Easy to join.
  • No fees.
  • Many activities you are already doing.

CONS

  • Unless you use it daily, it might only make a few dollars a month.

How does it work?

Install the app and then shop online through the app.

How do I earn money?

Every time you spend, you earn points you can redeem at outlets like Amazon, Netflix, and Starbucks.

How much can I earn?

It depends how much you spend. On average, you earn 1-2% back.

How much do I have to do?

Just shop normally once the app is installed.

 

PRO

  • Easy set up.
  • No fees.

CONS

  • Need to spend a fair amount to earn enough points.
  • No cash alternative.

Cashback Apps

How does it work?

Sign up using the email you use to shop online. They then monitor your email and check your purchases to see if there have been any price drops.

How do I earn money?

Whenever the app detects a price drop after you’ve bought an item, Paribus tries to get you your money back.

How much can I earn?

It depends on how much the price drop is. If it is a hotel booking or an expensive camera, it could be considerable.

How much do I have to do?

Once you’ve registered with your shopping email, nothing.

 

PRO

  • Also identifies late deliveries and refund deadlines.

CONS

  • Will have to share some credit card details in order to use service effectively.

How does it work?

Unusually, you shop at companies Bumped have partnered with and, instead of getting cash back, you get fractional stock in those companies.

How do I earn money?

You can earn around 1-5% in stock.

How much can I earn?

Up to $50 per purchase and $150 per brand per year.

How much do I have to do?

Choose which brands’ stock you want. They are organized into categories and you can choose one brand from each category.

 

PRO

  • If you spend enough, you could build a small, but lucrative portfolio.

CONS

  • Invitation only.

How does it work?

Connect your shopping card to PEI and shop at their partners’ stores.

How do I earn money?

Every time you spend, you earn cash back.

How much can I earn?

Depends on how much you spend – around 1% cashback.

How much do I have to do?

Once you’ve set up your account, just shop as normal.

 

PRO

  • You can receive extra rewards if you shop at the same store more than 5 times.
  • Receive payouts in cash or bitcoin.

CONS

  • Not as high cash back as some.

How does it work?

Like PEI simply install the app and link your shopping cards.

How do I earn money?

Every time you spend money with one of their partners, you’ll receive cash back.

How much can I earn?

Depends on how much you spend, but up to 10% cash back.

How much do I have to do?

Once installed, just shop as normal.

 

PRO

  • Puts the cash straight into your account.
  • Up to 10% cashback.

CONS

  • You need to accumulate $25 before you can cash out.

How does it work?

Much like Dosh. Install the app and link your cards.

How do I earn money?

Every time you spend money with one of their partners, you’ll receive points. These points can be exchanged at stores like Amazon.

How much can I earn?

Depends on how much you spend, but the average cash back is 1-2%. 1,000 points equals $1.

How much do I have to do?

Once installed, nothing except shop.

 

PRO

  • You only need to accumulate 5,000 points ($5) before you can exchange them for a gift card.

CONS

  • You cannot earn more than 5,000 points a week.
  • Lower cash back than Dosh.

How does it work?

Brands pay inboxDollars to recruit you to do things like take online surveys, watch videos, and shop.

How do I earn money?

Everytime you complete a task (taking a survey, watching a video), you receive cash.

How much can I earn?

Most tasks pay out between $0.02 to $5.00.

How much do I have to do?

It depends on the task, but most tasks like shopping you’ll be doing anyway, and others, like taking surveys, are quick and not very taxing.

 

PRO

  • Can be fun.
  • Do as many, or as few tasks, as you want.
  • Can cash out at $30.

CONS

  • Could take you a while to earn $30 minimum to cash out if you only do a few tasks a week.

Rental Apps

How does it work?

If you have a spare room or whole castle to rent, you list it on the Airbnb app and potential renters contact you.

How do I earn money?

People rent your property, pay through Airbnb and they send you the money minus fees.

How much can I earn?

It depends what you have to rent out and whether you get short, or long-term, bookings. Renters in the US make an average of $924 a month.

How much do I have to do?

Obviously, you have to do everything a traditional host would do. Airbnb only take care of the marketing and booking.

PRO

  • The potential to earn way more than with other passive income apps.
  • You can set your booking to auto, so renters don’t have to contact you to confirm a booking.

CONS

  • A lot more work to do than with most other apps. The only ‘passive’ element is the online part.
  • Airbnb fees can eat up as much as 14-20% of your profit.
  • You have to comply with Airbnb host guidelines, which some renters find irksome.

How does it work?

If you aren’t using your car, you can rent it out just like you would your spare room. Just list it online or via the app.

How do I earn money?

Turo pay you 75% of the rental fee via PayPal within 3 days of the rental ending.

How much can I earn?

On average, Turo users earn $720 a month.

How much do I have to do?

Hand over the keys and maybe give it a clean in between rentals.

 

PRO

  • High earning possibility.

CONS

  • Like Airbnb relies on renter treating your property with respect.
  • Only works if you live somewhere easy for renter to get to without a car.

How does it work?

Install the app and it uses your ‘spare’ bandwidth.

How do I earn money?

You are paid 1 credit per MB shared with HoneyGain. Each credit is worth $0.001, so $1 equals 10GBs shared. You also receive $5 on sign up.

How much can I earn?

They have an earnings calculator on the site. If you leave the app on permanently, you can earn up to $50 a month.

How much do I have to do?

Once it’s installed, nothing.

 

PRO

  • Reasonable earnings for doing nothing!
  • The app doesn’t seem to slow down the internet when you’re using it.
  • You can install it on 2 devices.

CONS

  • None

How does it work?

It’s a property management tool for landlords and landladies. List your property, screen prospective tenants and then sign a lease agreement all online.

How do I earn money?

When someone rents your property, you get paid into your account.

How much can I earn?

Depends if you are renting a single room or an entire house and rental prices where you live.

How much do I have to do?

You still have to deal directly with your client if there is a problem with them being anti-social or damaging your property.

 

PRO

  • First listing free. $9.99 a week for subsequent listing.
  • No charge for other services.
  • Online lease builder.
  • Built-in credit reports, background checks and eviction histories.

CONS

  • It doesn’t do everything a rental management company would do. If you have problems with your tenants being noisy or damaging stuff, you’ll still have to deal with them yourself.

How does it work?

Outdoorsy allows you to rent out your RV or trailer. The site feels like Airbnb with wheels. List your vehicle and wait for renters to contact you.

How do I earn money?

Within 24 hours of the rental period ending, Outdoorsy pays you minus their fees.

How much can I earn?

Depends on what you are renting. A pop up trailer rents for around $50-$100 a day, a class A motorhome $175-$275. You’ll keep around 75-80% after fees.

How much do I have to do?

List your vehicle, agree to the rental, hand over the keys and show them the basics if they’ve never driven an RV before. You’ll obviously also have to clean and maintain your RV in between rentals.

 

PRO

  • Rather than let your RV sit on the drive most of the year, make money from it.
  • Possibility of making almost as much as if renting a property.
  • $1 million insurance included.

CONS

  • Worry someone will wrap it around a tree, but at least your insured.

How does it work?

Similar to Zillow Rental Management, Cozy is a property management tool. You can list your property and screen tenants online.

How do I earn money?

Zillow collects the rent due and pays it directly into your bank account.

How much can I earn?

Depends on what you are renting, where.

How much do I have to do?

Like Zillow, you still have to deal directly with your client if there is a problem with them being anti-social or damaging your property.

 

PRO

  • No fees.
  • Tenant Background Checks.
  • Rent estimates.

CONS

  • It doesn’t have the ability like Zillow to create and sign leases within the app.
  • Like Zillow, it doesn’t fully replace a rental management company. You’ll still need to be hands on sometimes.

Investment Apps

How does it work?

Fundrise allows you to become a real estate investor. Their experts identify, acquire and manage the real estate projects on your behalf and you provide the capital.

How do I earn money?

They pay you in two ways:

  • Quarterly dividends
  • Appreciation in the value of the shares of your investment

How much can I earn?

Obviously, with any type of investment, you can lose money as well as earn money. However, the average annualized return for all Fundrise investments in 2018 was 9-11%, net of fees. This is no indication of future performance, but gives you an idea of the earning potential.

How much do I have to do?

Identifying, acquiring and managing the real estate is done for you. All you need to do is decide how much money you want to invest. Currently $500 is the minimum, with $1000 needed to upgrade to their core plan.

 

Pros

PRO

  • You don’t have to be an expert in real estate.
  • Get in on projects you’d never be able to access on your own.

CONS

  • Relatively high investment needed compared to some other investment opportunities.
  • You could lose money.

How does it work?

Automates the process of building your own portfolio of investment stocks and ETFs (Exchange- Traded Funds). You can also invest in fractional shares, allowing you to invest in normally prohibitively expensive shares.

How do I earn money?

When the value of your portfolio rises.

How much can I earn?

Depends on performance of your portfolio. M1 FInance now has over $1 Billion in assets, but that’s not necessarily an indication of how well your shares will perform.

How much do I have to do?

You can choose which shares to invest in, or automate a lot of the process.

 

PRO

  • No minimum investment.
  • No fees.
  • Can buy fractional shares.

CONS

  • Limited investment opportunities.

How does it work?

You can invest in stocks and follow other investors the same way you do on social media.

How do I earn money?

By the value of your stocks rising.

How much can I earn?

Depends on performance of your stocks. Will Smith, JJ Watt and Sophia Amoruso have apparently invested in the company, but that’s no guarantee your stocks will rise.

How much do I have to do?

Choose which shares to invest in and who to follow. There are themed bundles like women entrepreneurs or eco-friendly companies.

 

PRO

  • No minimum amount to start investing.
  • Learn from more experienced investors.

CONS

  • No guarantee your stocks will rise.

How does it work?

Rather like apps that let you buy fractional shares, with LendingClub you can buy ‘slices’ of loans. Each slice costs $25, so you can diversify for very little money.

How do I earn money?

The person you loan the money to pays back the original sum plus interest to LendingClub. LendingClub then passes the interest to you minus a 1% fee. Obviously, if the original amount borrowed was, say, $1000, and you invested $25 in a slice (called a ‘note’), you’ll get the interest on $25, not $1000.

How much can I earn?

Depends on how much you invest and the interest rate on the loan. It’s possible to earn around 5-9% on the original amount invested.

How much do I have to do?

Once you’ve joined, you’ll need to decide which loans you want to invest in and how much.

 

PRO

  • Reduced risk. If a debtor defaults, you’ll only lose a small amount of money if you’ve spread your $25 ‘notes’ around different loans.
  • Returns are above most other fixed-income investments.

CONS

  • Need to meet minimum income and net worth criteria in many states.
  • Scandal involving the director a few years ago, but they seem to have put this behind them now.

How does it work?

Allows you to make unlimited commission-free trades in stocks, ETFs, and options and buy and sell cryptocurrencies.

How do I earn money?

By the value of your investments rising.

How much can I earn?

Depends on how much your investments rise

How much do I have to do?

Choose what to invest in.

 

PRO

  • $1 minimum investment.
  • Free account.
  • Can buy fractional shares.

CONS

  • No guarantee your shares will rise.

How does it work?

A mixture of micro-savings and a micro-investing app. Install the app and use it to buy anything. The app will then round up your spending and deposit the difference in your Acorn account. So if you spend $9.57, the app will round it up to $10 and deposit $0.43 into your Acorn account. Once your account reaches $5, it is automatically invested for you.

How do I earn money?

You earn money indirectly by saving without noticing and directly when the investments Acorn invests for you, yield a profit.

How much can I earn?

As this is a dual-purpose app, it’s not as straightforward.

How much do I have to do?

Once installed, nothing really.

 

PRO

  • Automatically invests your spare change.
  • Partner companies give you cash back when you spend with them and this is automatically added to your Acorn account.

CONS

  • Fees of $1-$5 a month can eat into earnings if you only have a small amount in your account.

Creative-based apps

How does it work?

Install the app and upload your photos or videos. Customers ranging from individuals to companies can then search and buy them.

How do I earn money?

Every time a photo is sold, Foap takes 50% and sends you the rest.

How much can I earn?

Photos sell for $10 each, so you’ll get 50% which is $5. You can also enter Foap ‘Missions’ which are rather like photo contests, the winning image getting $50 upwards.

How much do I have to do?

If you’ve already got a portfolio of photos, simply install the app and upload your photos. You’ll also have to tag them so they can be found.

 

PRO

  • Free to use.
  • Can upload photos in batches to save time.

CONS

  • With over 40 million photos on Foap, your images will need to be stellar to stand out and sell.
  • Foap take 50% of the sale price, which seems a lot.

How does it work?

Works much the same as Foap. Install the app and upload your photos.

How do I earn money?

Like Foap, every time a photo is sold, EyeEm takes 50% and sends you the rest.

How much can I earn?

Photos sell for more than on Foap on average, prices ranging from $29 upwards.

How much do I have to do?

Like Foap, install the app and upload your photos.

 

PRO

  • Free to use.
  • Bulk photo uploader to save time.
  • Can make more money per photo than Foap.

CONS

  • EyeEm still takes 50% of the sale, which, with higher-priced photos, seems a lot.

How does it work?

Like Foap and EyeEm, you install the app and upload your photos.

How do I earn money?

Shutterstock pays you each time a photo is downloaded.

How much can I earn?

Their earnings system is complicated – I’ll quote; “As a Shutterstock contributor, you will earn a percentage of the price Shutterstock receives for licensing your content. There are 6 separate earnings levels for images and for videos, ranging from 15% up to 40%. You can graduate through them independently based on your download count in each category.”

How much do I have to do?

Like Foap and EyeEm, download the app and upload your photos.

 

PRO

  • Handy auto-tagging to save time inputting keywords for each photo.

CONS

  • Complicated earnings system.
  • Initial amount paid per download is pretty low.

How does it work?

It’s like the music version of Foap or EyeEm. Download the app and upload your music. It is then distributed to Apple Music, Spotify, YouTube Music, Deezer and more.

How do I earn money?

When a streaming service like YouTube pays Amuse for playing your music, Amuse then transfers the royalties to your Amuse app wallet.

How much can I earn?

It really depends on which service streams your music as each one has a different

rate per streaming. They also use rather complicated systems to work out how often they may have played your track.

How much do I have to do?

So long as you’ve written the music, simply upload it. However the more you promote it, the more likely people will find it.

PRO

  • Free to use the app.
  • Free to have your music distributed.
  • You keep 100% of your royalties.

CONS

  • Like Foap, there are millions of artists, albums and tracks online. You’ll need a plan to make yours stand out.

What passive income apps are you going to earn money with in 2020?

Remember, the great thing about passive income apps that make money is that most require no commitment on your part. If you don’t like it, or it doesn’t work for you, simply uninstall it and try another.

Or try several at the same time!

Whatever, you do, try at least one app from the list above. All the passive income apps listed are putting money in someone’s pocket, someone just like you, right now.

Choose your first app, download it and start earning passive income now!