In my quest to help individuals get a strong grasp of their financial futures, I’ve learned that most of us want to learn how to earn more rather than getting creative with spending less.
It seems that few of the rich, truly become that way as a result of their steady paycheck – often it’s what they do beyond their day job that catapults them into the world of the financially free.
To explore how others are earning extra money, I set up a small Facebook Group called The Anti Coupon Collective. The group is intended to foster conversations around living larger shying away from living with less. Together, let’s revolt against the coupon!! I’m not suggesting that if there was a coupon, I wouldn’t use it. What I mean is that I think cutting back (a focus on coupons) creates a mindset of scarcity, where earning more opens the mind through abundance – which is just so much more powerful.
If you’re interested in participating in the dialogue at The Anti Coupon Collective, I encourage you to join through this link or message me and I can add you manually.
Although I thought I’d heard most cash generating strategies, I learned through our group there were some I hadn’t heard of. Our Facebook discussion garnered plenty of ideas and I wanted to wrap them up in a one comprehensive blog post.
Here’s the overarching theme of this post. While you are likely so incredibly busy with no time for adding more sh&t onto your already full plate, try and leverage idle moments (like those watching TV) to earn some extra cash. Here’s how.
1. Sell Your Excess Stuff
With a little effort, I earned $1,500 selling my used stuff this year, and in one day helped a relative to sell some appliances (otherwise prepped for donation) earning him $600 in one day.
Remember this. Your ‘junk’ is someone else’s treasure. If you’re hard up for cash – find a way to sell that which you don’t use.
To get started, take a walk through your home and take inventory of all the stuff you rarely or never use. I am constantly selling my used stuff. Living in a condo, I abide by the rule, if something new comes in, two or something else goes out. I purge on a regular basis to keep our home clutter-free and to earn money. Of all the cash earning strategies, I find this one SO FUN!
Here are items to consider.
- Kitchen appliances
- Household appliances
- Décor (throw cushions, bedding)
- Yard care items
- Gaming Consoles
- Bags / Purses
- Electronics of any Type (Cell phones, laptops, Printers, Scanners)
- Athletic Equipment
First of all, every city has it’s go-to selling site, so you need to learn yours. Some communities have local facebook groups or local selling sites. VarageSale is a new app meant for selling and is becoming increasingly popular in many cities. LetGo is another popular app. Consider Craigslist, eBay, Amazon, Facebook, or any other local site. Chat with friends to find out their go-to selling site.
Selling be this simple. Snap a photo of the item, add a brief description, choose a price, publish the ad, wait for a buyer. I’ve written a how-to guide for selling used-stuff – follow it and you’ll succeed, you can find it here.
I believe there are methods to sell for more, sell quickly and to negotiate effectively. In addition, it’s important to be safe when meeting any buyer. Read my prior post to dig into the best methods of selling your stuff.
Feeling way too busy and overwhelmed, arming yourself with a consignment store leaves the selling to someone else. Generally speaking, I would only consider consignment of clothes and shoes, as everything else is simple to sell AND leaves me with more money in my pocket.
I also choose to consign clothes as I can’t stand the thought of meeting someone (a stranger) who will have to try on the piece they’re considering – and then if that isn’t awkward enough, they might not buy it. What a total waste of my time.
I dodged consignment for way too long as I didn’t have a relationship with a local store and didn’t know the process. Might sound strange, right!? Just the thought of learning where to go, what they’d accept, etc. was enough to put me off.
Eventually, a friend introduced me to the owner of a nice consignment store. She gave me a quick run down in person, and that made me feel way more comfortable popping in moving forward.
My suggestions to you? Ask friends and family where they consign. Give the store a call to find out what they accept. Then collect items from your closet and dresser that you haven’t worn in a year. Not only will you closet be freed up – clean and spacious, but you’ll have extra cash too.
Motivated by gift cards!!?? Do simple work for Swagbucks and you’ll be paid in gift cards.
Here’s the deal. Sign up and start earning Swagbucks. To earn Swagbucks, you can: answer surveys, watch videos, explore content, and play games. Complete various surveys and earn Swagbucks.
As you earn Swagbucks, you eventually redeem your points for gift cards. Some of the gift cards choices include:
· PrePaid Mastercard
The only caution…Swagbucks also rewards you with Swagbucks for online purchases through their site. If your mission is to earn more, be cautious to avoid the assignments that require you to spend in order to earn.
4. Checkout 51
EVERY person should leverage Checkout 51. Buy groceries, get cash back – that’s it. Checkout 51 will post featured items (that you probably need anyway) through their app and website. When you’re finished grocery shopping, you snap a photo of your receipt and they’ll send you money. It’s unreal.
Tip: You need to earn $20 in cash back before a cheque is issued.
Below is a snapshot of the cashback due on certain products. Get cash back for buying cucumbers, peppers, carrots, dish soap, dishwasher detergent, and Tylenol.
Again, when sitting on the sofa after a long hard day, snap a photo of your grocery receipt and wait for the cheque to arrive.
5. Secret Shopping
I honestly can’t tell you how I ended up doing this, but somehow I became a Secret Shopper for a large chain restaurant. The first time I completed a shop, I was convinced I’d never be paid a dime, but I gave it a shot anyway. And, low and behold, I actually got paid.
Now, mystery shopping for restaurants essentially covered the cost of a meal for two and a very small bonus, so it’s not necessarily a money making venture, but a great way to have a night out on someone else.
My job after signing up for a ‘shop’ was to read the assignment guidelines, then head to the restaurant. The guidelines usually dictate what should be ordered (like you must have an appetizer, you must have a main course, you must have a dessert) and then they clarify what you need to observe during your dining experience. I needed to take note of how I was greeted upon arriving, how the hostess interacted with me while walking me to the table, and how long it took to receive each course. A trip to the bathroom was required to rate the cleanliness, music level, etc. And a full report on the presentation and taste of each course.
I learned a lot about restaurants (franchises specifically) as a result of mystery shopping. The reporting told me so much about how much thought it put into every single aspect of my experience at any well-branded restaurant.
There are plenty of mystery shopping opportunities aside from
Give it a shot: http://www.a-closer-look.com/
Heard of Freelancing? There are a number of sites where freelancers can post their skills and those needing skills will seek them out. Upwork, formerly known at eLance, is a site where freelancers can offer their skills globally. Additionally, Fiverr, originally crafted to cater to quick jobs which cost only $5 dollars (hence the name), has now evolved into a large freelancing platform was varying pay rates. Fiver and eLance are meant to connect your skills to individuals who need (and will pay for) your services.
While you may not call yourself a freelancer, you may have skills that someone else will pay for – meaning, you’re a freelancer and just don’t know it yet.
Anyhow, perhaps you are an amazing writer, photographer, excel wiz, Microsoft office genius, a digital editor, etc.
As I got my Personal finance blog up and running I read about other bloggers and the way they earn money. Most diversify their earnings through coaching, affiliate marketing, freelance writing and product sales. As I write for my own blog I thought, best I get paid writing for others.
As a partial experiment, I applied to a writing company and got hired. To get started I was paid a pitiful rate, but as I became more proficient at completing assignments, they would increase my pay. And, I began writing for friends and colleagues too. What started as something ‘for fun’ has turned into something that generates real revenue.
Personal plug. If you have something you want written, hit me up. I can help with blog articles, web or marketing copy, or personal correspondence that you can verbalize, but need help articulating through written work.
If you’re considering freelancing, the first thing you have to do is to shake the notion that you’re not good enough. The best piece of advice I’ve ever received was, just get started!!!
WARNING: I can tell you that even $10 earned through your own skillset due to your own efforts might be more rewarding than $100,000 salary paid through your employer.
7. Fulfilled by Amazon
Perhaps a little more complicated than posting your used stuff online and waiting for a local buyer, Amazon’s platform provides two methods of selling. First, you can post your stuff (new or used) on Amazon, wait for a buyer, then ship your item to the buyer, and deal with the customer service on your own, OR, you can ship your stuff to Amazon, and they will handle EVERYTHING else.
Introducing Fulfilled by Amazon, or FBA. This relatively new Amazon offering allows you to ship your goods to an amazon warehouse, where they remain until a buyer purchases them, at which point, amazon employees, package, ship, and collect payment on your behalf. Sounds pretty good right!? There are a few things to be aware of.
Amazon isn’t just so kind they’re willing to do this because you’re a nice person. No, they charge a fee. Depending on the account you select, there may be a monthly fee. Additionally, there is an FBA fee, a referral fee, and depending on how long your inventory hangs around, a storage fee too.
Fulfilled by Amazon is a great method for generating cash, but it requires consistency and commitment to earn beyond the fees. To learn more, visit YouTube and nerd out on what to sell, and best methods.
The methods of earning more are truly endless. These just scrape the surface of the possibilities. The keys is to choose something you’re likely to stick with and go-for-it. Other than the methods listed above, have you found a great way of earning more? If so, will you share it here?