One of the more frequent questions I get from readers of my blog is “how can I make extra cash”? It seems as though everyone is looking for ways to increase their income these days. The good news is that there are many ways to make extra cash, it just all depends on how much extra money you want to make. Below I list various ways to make extra cash and will be adding to this all of the time. I have broken the list down to online and offline activities so that it is easier to follow.
Ways To Make Extra Cash
Here are the various ways to make extra cash offline. Note that I am trying to only list things that will provide you a decent return on your time/money. What I mean by this is you shouldn’t just take a part-time job that pays you $7 when you could take a part-time job that pays you more. You want to earn the most cash from the least amount of work possible.
Get A Part-Time Job: But, like I just said, not just any part-time job. Look into being a bartender where you earn a small wage but can earn a lot more through tips. The same idea applies to caddying at private country clubs. Try to find a part-time job that either pays a high hourly wage or one where you can earn a lot in tips.
Return Items: If you recently bought something and it is still new, never used, and you are having second thoughts about it, return it. While you aren’t making more money, you are earning back money you already spent.
Scrap Metal: Selling scrap metal is a big business. You don’t need to scour Craigslist for old washers and dryers sitting curbside either, unless you want to. You can sell wiring very easily. What do I mean about wiring? You know how every time you buy a new electronic they include extra cables? This is the wiring I am talking about. I must have 50 RCA cables lying around. These cables are made from copper and can be sold to scrap metal dealers. You don’t even have to strip the rubber off either. I just collect all of my extra wires and cables and when I have a box full, take them to the scrap yard. I end up with around $100.
Wrap Your Car: You can make money by selling advertising on your car. Firms will pay you a few hundred dollars to wrap your car in their advertising and all you have to do is drive around. Before you run out and do this, know that there are many scams out there regarding this option to make extra cash. Avoid any company that is asking you to pay to wrap your car. Never pay to get a job. That is the #1 red flag to watch out for. Lastly, how much you make depends on how populated an area you live in and how much you drive.
Alterations: If you know how to sew, performing alterations is a huge business. You can alter all types of clothing, curtains, and other things. When my wife needed to get her wedding dress altered, they wanted over $400 for a few alterations. She found a woman that many people referred her to that charged $75 for the alterations. If you are good at doing alterations, you can easily undercut the bigger names and make extra cash.
Cut Expenses: An easy way to make extra cash is to cut out unnecessary expenses. While it won’t truly be additional income, it will feel like it when you have an extra $100-$200 at the end of every month. There are many expenses to cut from cable to electric and insurance. Check out this post for how to cut big expenses and check out my eBook, Spare Change, for ways to save on the little things.
Sell Photos: Almost everyone has a smartphone now and the phones take excellent pictures. Did you know you can sell the photos you take? Many companies pay for stock photos and there are many websites out there that let you upload and sell your photos. There is no fee for this, but the website will take a commission from your sale. Do a little research and find the site that best fits your needs.
As with the offline ways to make extra cash, the online ideas follow the same principle – make the most with the least amount of effort. For this reason, I leave off writing an eBook or starting your own website or blog. While starting a blog isn’t hard, making money from it isn’t going to happen overnight.
Sell Online: Go through your house and clean it. Find everything that you no longer want or need and then decide on whether or not it makes sense to sell it. If it does make sense, look into eBay and Craigslist to sell. I do this all of the time tomake extra cash. Since I’m a nerd, I track how much I make doing this each year on a spreadsheet (it’s true, ask my wife). I average around $500 per year. It’s not enough to change my life and allow me to quit working, but an extra $500 every year is a nice bonus.
Rent Your House: Not in the sense of buying another house and renting it, but actually renting out the house you live in. Maybe you have an extra room or are going away for a few weeks. There are websites where people list their homes and rooms for rent that are cheaper than hotels. While this isn’t for everyone, you can make extra cash doing this. Of course, the more popular of an area you live in, the more potential renters you will have. Read how one person made $1,500 renting her house out to travelers!
Sell A Service Online: If you have a service you can provide, you can sell it online for cheap. Over at Fiverr, there are thousands of services that people offer. If you don’t think you have anything to offer, think again. There are people that will sing you happy birthday for $5. I bet you can sing happy birthday, can’t you?
Sell A Product: Maybe you have a product that you make. Thanks to the internet, you can sell that online as well. There are many websites that allow people to sell their products online for a small fee. Just find a site that caters to your product and start selling
Open Bank Accounts: Many banks now offer new customers a cash bonus when they open a new account. Depending on the bank, the cash bonus can be fairly significant. I did this two years ago and received a bonus of $200. Then they offered me another $50 if I signed up for online bill pay. Just make sure you understand the rules before jumping in. Many times with checking accounts, you need to make a direct deposit. For me, it’s more hassle than it is worth. Instead, I focus on savings accounts. They are much easier to do. In fact, Capital One 360 is offering $25 when you open a new savings account with a $250 opening deposit. That’s a 10% return on your money right there!
Open Credit Cards: Now, this idea shouldn’t be used by everyone as you can easily get yourself into credit card debt quickly by opening multiple accounts and spending a few thousand to hit the requirement for cash back and/or miles. But if you have your finances down strong, this is a great way to earn cash back or airline or hotel points for a reduced trip. Read this post about the various credit card deals and the bonuses that go along with them.
Take Surveys: You can make extra cash by taking surveys. There are many online sites that offer survey taking for cash rewards. I use 2 survey sites currently and earn a few hundred dollars each year (yes, this is also tracked in my spreadsheet that I mentioned above). Note that there are times when you will start a survey and will be disqualified because you don’t meet the requirements. It happens to me as well. Just be smart about what surveys you choose to take part in and stay positive.
Enter Giveaways: Many bloggers offer cash and/or prize giveaways on their sites all of the time. Entry is free, you usually just have to follow the blog on Twitter or comment on a post. The great thing about the giveaways is that you can enter multiple times, which increases your odds. How good are your odds? Read this post for all the juicy details.
This is just a small list of ways to make extra cash. As I said at the start, I will be adding to this all of the time, so be sure to check back often for more items listed. There are many ways to make extra cash – and you can head over to the Penny Hoarder to see a great list. I am trying to focus more on ones that provide a good return for the time you spend actually making the extra cash. In the end, if you really want to make extra cash for the long-term and not just over a short time period, figure out what you love to do and then find a way to earn money doing that. It will never feel like work and you will love doing it.
Readers, what other ways do you have to make extra cash that I can add to the list?