Reducing expenses often goes hand-in-hand with erasing credit card debt. However, for most people, there is a limit on how much one can reduce their monthly expenses. So, what’s to be done if merely reducing expenses isn’t enough to achieve your financial goals? Happily, there’s a bit of good news we can share: there is no limit to how much money you can earn.
It may seem daunting at first, especially if you are already working a full-time job on top of your daily responsibilities, but with a little momentum, you’ll be well on your way to improving your financial situation.
Below are seven ways to kick start an additional income. Take note of ideas that interest you – you may find it helps you generate money-making ideas of your own!
Chances are you’ve been to a thrift store, yard sale, estate sale, or even browsed through your own closet, and wondered how much an item would sell for online or through for-sale apps like LetGo or OfferUp.
Create an account with one of the numerous online sales portals and gauge interest in your for-sale items. While fees will likely claim a bite of your profit (for example, eBay takes about 10 percent of the final price, including shipping), it’s a quick way to find out if you’ve got stuff that others are willing to buy.
If you have the storage capacity at your home and can invest in cleaning materials and essential tools, consider refurbishing furniture. People love owning interesting furniture pieces, but hardly anyone is willing to put in the time and effort to do the refurbishing themselves.
You can start small here too: check your city’s Craigslist free stuff page, or visit yard and estate sales on weekends – with your negotiating skills in tow. Oftentimes, small pieces like coffee tables or nightstands just need a good cleaning-up or tightening of a screw or nail.
Generally, it’s best practice to use eBay to sell rare items and electronics, while Craigslist is handy for popular and hard to ship items. For things like clothing or specialty items, apps like LetGo or ThreadUp might be your best bet.
Of course, any time you interact with strangers online, use precaution. If you aren’t shipping an item to a buyer, arrange to meet up at public places like police stations to complete your transaction.
Tutoring is an excellent option for those who work a full-time job. Your clients, who are typically parents of students, not the students themselves, usually work similar hours to yours and are open to meeting in the evenings or on weekends.
There are many fields where tutors can be helpful. To determine which subject is best for you to teach, consider the following: If you went to college, what was your major? Does your day job make you an expert in subjects that you can tutor in, like math? Options are not limited to basic school subjects either. Many parents are willing to pay for tutors in other areas such as music or art.
Tutoring can be particularly rewarding financially. For example, if you have one client and charge $20 per hour, tutoring for five hours per week nets you an extra $400 per month.
Apply to be a freelance or contributing writer. The numerous amount of information on the internet means there is a constant need for new and refreshing content. Pitch your own ideas to the editor of your favorite blog or signup as a freelance writer at a content farm like StudioD.
Driving for Lyft or Uber is an increasingly popular option for those who want to set their own hours.
Before you apply, consider the condition of your car. Popular ride-share companies have rules regarding the age and health of cars they permit you to drive. Be sure to also understand whether driving an extra five to 10 hours per week will cost you more in gas and maintenance expenses than you would earn from driving.
Most freelance jobs allow you to set your hours, and there are as many types of freelance jobs available as there are freelancers. Places like Upwork list a wide variety of possible freelance jobs. If you are fluent in a foreign language, Gengo is a reputable place to get started as a freelance translator.
This one is unusual, but if you are creative, try listing and selling t-shirt ideas at Teespring.
Even small raises can make a significant difference over time. Before you have a conversation with your employer, create a plan. Determine a fair number for a raise by using a site like PayScale, take note of additional responsibilities you’ve taken on since your last pay increase, and study your previous review(s) to make sure you’ve exceeded expectations. It’s best to ask for a raise about three or four months before your next review.
Things to keep in mind
- Be patient! You won’t go from earning zero additional dollars per month to $100 per month overnight. Focus on earning your first dollar.
- Keep track of your ideas and results to see what’s working and what isn’t. Give each idea at least one month before making adjustments or trying something new.
- Once you’ve earned some experience as a freelancer or tutor, you can increase your rate.
Taking matters into your own hands and earning more money is incredibly empowering. Leave a comment below and tell us what money-making methods you’re considering!