Get your hands on some extra spending money this month
Whether you’re building your emergency fund or need some extra cash for a night out, we’ve all been in situations where we need to make some extra spending money. Before you exert the effort to work for additional income, your first stop should be a budget. This more long-term approach will enable you to plan and monitor your spending over time, with a budgeting app making it easier than ever to get more in control of your spending.
If you’ve got the budget in place and want to top up your income this month, here’s 5 ways that you can source that extra spending money.
1. Sell what you don’t need
In an increasing consumer-focused culture, we have whole houses filled with items we’ve bought or held onto but which we don’t necessarily need or use. With clothing prices becoming cheaper compared to our average income over time, our wardrobes are teaming with clothes. Rather than getting frustrated at past spending decisions, instead see these clothes as potential income, particularly if your items still have the tags on. If you’ve been inspired by Marie Kondo, first look at how you can make money from your wardrobe and save the planet, for a more ethical way to make cash from the clothes you no longer use than carelessly dumping them in an overflowing charity bin.
If you’re looking at furniture, you can use local selling websites like Gumtree or Craigslist to snap a few good quality photos, a quick description and wait for the offers to roll in. I would also recommend that you stay safe when arranging to meet people through these websites – bring someone with you and have a look at their buying history through the site so that you’re aware of who you’ll be dealing with. I have used Gumtree whenever I’ve moved around the world and love how easy it is to shift furniture that I can’t take with me – particularly IKEA furniture which has a great resale value.
2. Use your free time
Whether you work full-time or study during the week, most people can find additional free time on weeknights or weekends. You can use your existing skills on websites like Fiverr, which is a great option for creatives, with a range of skills you can make money from using, including writing, editing and graphic design. If you’ve got some experience under your belt, you’re bound to find an audience for your creative skills on this website. Those with digital skills will love Upwork for freelance work covering everything from content creation to programming, so that you can focus on making money from the skills you already have.
If you want more physical work, websites like Airtasker or TaskRabbit can help you earn cash from helping people move house, mow the lawn, clean their house or assemble furniture. If you complement your full-time work with these freelance opportunities, it’s a great way to earn additional income when you need it – particularly if you’d otherwise just be watching Netflix (I’m so guilty of this and not at all ashamed of it).
3. Use the assets you have
Despite what the media says about Uber being a gig economy option, the majority of drivers that I’ve experienced rides with have had full-time jobs. If you’ve already invested in the car and can earn some additional income using it to drive people around in your spare time, I’d give it a go and see if being an Uber driver works for you. And if you aren’t an Uber fan, try one of the alternatives that are taking off in your city be including Ola, Lyft or Grab. If you’re concerned about safety, there are women-only ride share services too like Shebah which is taking off in Australia.
If you’re lucky enough to own your home, you could join the many people who have rented out their home on weekends via platforms like Airbnb, which can work well if you’re able to stay with family during the times that your house is available, at minimal cost. Before taking the plunge, check your local council or body corporate rules and be aware of any implications for your home insurance and your tax bill from this extra income.
4. Use your education
If you’re finished high school or tertiary education recently, you’ll have fresh essay writing or exam prep experience that can be the makings of a great tutor. Gone are the days of being reliant on the local tutoring market, with websites like Chegg Tutors or Skooli signing you up to serve as an online tutor to students around the world. This is also a great option for current teachers, with MindLaunch or the Pearson-run Smarthinking specialising in expert tutors, and serving as a great way to earn extra income in the evenings after school.
5. Grow your current money
This is a more long-term income generator but investing can be one of the best ways to grow your money over time. You might not consider investing as an immediate option but if you’re keen to learn more and start investing now, you can open an investment account with as little as $5.
Our digitally-connected world means that there are more opportunities than ever to make extra spending money by selling what you don’t need or using the skills and assets you already have.
While these 5 money making ideas are not an overnight fix for your entire financial situation, they do provide a great opportunity to top up your income and to get your hands on some extra spending money this month.