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Money saving

6 ways to boost your income

Posted 01 April 2016 by Shelley Bowers

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If you have problem debts, you could ease your situation with these income boosting ideas

If your budget is stretched to breaking point by meeting your debt repayments and the day-to-day costs of living then you may be looking for ways to boost your income – even though you are already working flat out and couldn’t take on any more work. Here are six money-making ideas that will, hopefully, help ease your financial woes.

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Sell your stuff

You may be thinking we’re talking about eBay here, but that’s not the only place you can sell your stuff online. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t use it, but you should look into the fees you’ll have to pay. These are:

• insertion fees – the first 20 items are free, after that they are 35p each

• 10% percent of what you make for any sale (including postage) – you only pay this if your item sells and it’ll never be more than £250

• PayPal fees – if your buyer pays using PayPal, you’ll also have to pay its fees, which you can see on its website.

But, as we said, eBay is not the only place you can sell stuff, why not check out free Facebook groups too. This is usually only for local sales, but it’s still worth it. Make sure you stay safe though, no meeting people in dark alleys to exchange goods for cash!

You can also sell items on Gumtree free - unless you are a business of some kind. Make sure you get some great photos of the items - ads with photos sell much better - and off you go. The same warnings about being safe apply.

Remember, from April next year you will be able to earn up to £1,000 a year from online selling tax-free.

Do you have a story to sell?

Is there something unusual in your past, or present that you could sell a story about? If there is, you may want to try selling it to a magazine or newspaper. Many magazines will pay for your story, but you may have to be willing to have your name and picture splashed all over the article. If the story isn’t something too personal, that may be okay, but think carefully about stories that may mean other members of your family are embarrassed by what you reveal.  

Sell your old gold 

We bet you’ve got at least one broken old chain sitting in a jewellery box somewhere, if you have, and it’s not of sentimental value, why not sell it? The best bet is to go to your local gold merchants and ask if they buy scrap gold. Make sure you get more than one valuation for what you have and try not to use any sellers that ask you to send the items to them for a valuation. They will dismantle items such as bracelets, taking out all the parts that are not gold, before weighing what’s left and giving you the price, which is often less than you think it’s going to be. Then, if you’re not happy with the valuation they give you and you ask for the items to be returned to you, they’ll ask for a fee, because they’ve spent time working on the stuff. 

 

Rent out your spare room

If you have a spare room, you might want to consider renting it out on a platform like Airbnb, or the lesser known Wimdu. Or you could take a more long term lodger. The Government offers some great tax incentives to make it easier for you to make money from renting your room. You can find detailed advice on the scheme on the Rent a Room page

The usual cautions apply, you need to think carefully about how comfortable you’ll be having perfect strangers possibly sharing your loo and how you’ll cope if you have a guest staying for a week or longer. But, if you think you can cope with such things, this could be a real earner. 

Rent out other spare space

Another nifty way to make some cash from something you own, but don’t use, is to sell your spare space. This can be in the form of a parking space you don’t use or even space that you’ve got in your loft or garage. For parking spaces you could use a website like JustPark. This can be particularly lucrative if you live near a popular concert venue or major football or sports ground. 

If you want to rent out space in your home or garage, a great place to start is Storemates. This allows you to rent the space to people in your area, for less than they would pay for commercial storage. And, if you’re wondering what happens if something gets damaged or is lost while it’s in storage, don’t worry. Once the contract for storage has been agreed, you send a copy of the contract to the company and you’ll be covered on their Storemates Protection Guarantee, which will cover loss or damage up to £10,000 in value. 

Give your opinion and get paid for it

We all have an opinion about something or other, so why not get paid for it? There are a number of ways you can make money, the obvious one being filling in online surveys. But, you could also get paid just to watch television – how great does that sound? 

If you sign up for Theviewwers.co.uk, that’s exactly what you’ll be doing. They want your opinions on the programmes you watch now, new programmes that have not yet been aired or on ideas for new programmes. The feedback you give may be in the form of a group discussion, which you’ll have to attend, or via online surveys. And the website says you can earn between £40-£70 per group discussion, not bad for an hour or two of your time, with refreshments usually thrown in!

So, we hope this has provided you with some interesting ideas about how you can make a little extra cash. If, however, your situation is a little more serious than just needing a few extra pounds each month, maybe you should think about speaking to a trained debt advisor. We have specially trained debt advisors waiting to help you, just choose one of the ‘contact us’ links on the left of the page.

 

by Shelley Bowers

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To find out more about managing your money and getting free debt advice, visit Money Advice Service, an independent service set up to help people manage their money.