There’s nothing more discouraging than scrimping and saving your money all month — to pay off debt or reach your savings goals — and coming up short.
In the past I’ve shared lots of different ways to make legitimate money from home and how to increase your income by using your skills and other assets. But now I’m sharing my top five favorite easy ways to make extra money without doing a lot of work.
1. Adjust Your Tax Withholding
Adjusting your tax withholding is by far the easiest way to get access to some extra money. It will only take about 5 minutes and you’ll have extra money in your paycheck, every month.
If you got a large tax refund this tax season, instead of giving your money over to the government as an interest free loan, adjust the withholding on your W-4. You’ll get access to that money throughout the year, to help you pay bills and reach your debt goals.
2. Turn Your Cooking Skills into Cash
One of the biggest things we often sacrifice in our busy schedule, is a healthy, home cooked meal. We tend to eat out a lot, snack too much or skip meals altogether. If you enjoy cooking — and find that people rave about your culinary skills — use them to make money.
I’m lucky to know an awesome cook, who works as a private chef and consultant for busy couples and families. Let’s just say, once the word gets out that you prepare the meals, labeled and ready to go every week, there will be no shortage of jobs.
Let your community know that you’re willing to make them dinner, or prepare a nice meal for a special occasion. And like my friend, you can even offer to do the menu and put together the meal plan! I mean, this is all stuff you’re striving to do anyway, so this is an easy way to make extra money from other families.
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3. Take Advantage of Summer Break
Pick up a swim teaching gig. When summer rolls around, my sister — who’s a certified lifeguard and swim teacher — puts on her sunblock, her bright swimwear and heads to the pool. She’s a private swim teacher at a local gym, where she gets paid a premium price to teach kids and adults to enjoy the water.
Likewise, If you’re a good swimmer and enjoy helping people learn to swim, you could make extra money by picking up a weekend teaching gig at a local rec center.
Become the neighborhood daycare. When summertime hits parents have a difficult time getting things done, since kids are out of school and stuck at home. To help kids overcome the summer blues, and to offer the parents time to themselves, offer to become the neighborhood care center for the kids during the day.
I know a mom who turns her completed basement into a summer FUNcare to entertain the kids around the neighborhood. She has kids of her own, and she doesn’t have to miss spending time with them, by leaving her house to make extra money.
Offer to house sit. Everybody looks forward to the summer because of vacations and weekend getaways, but they can’t always take off when they’d like. Mostly because they don’t have someone to watch the house and their pets. This is where you can jump in and offer to house sit to make a little extra money.
4. Do Small Tasks for a Few Bucks
In case you don’t have a lot of time to invest in working side jobs on weekends and weeknights, there are websites that will allow you to make extra money, by doing small, less time-consuming tasks.
One of my favorite places to get paid for simple tasks, is Fiverr. In fact, this is something I decided to try after a recommendation from my friend Cat. She used Fiverr to make extra money and paid down $6,000 of credit card debt. Not bad for only a few minutes of work!
5. Turn Your Hobby Into Cash
Thanks to easy access to online retailers like eBay, Craigslist and Amazon, there’s opportunity for you to turn any type of hobby into steady income every month.
Of course, not everything has to be directed online, and it’s smart — and even more beneficial — to experiment with different avenues of turning your hobby into cash. For instance, Joan and her family’s love of vintage books. She started selling them on Amazon, but recently opened an antique mall-stand.
Many of the things that weren’t big sellers online, have been flying off the shelves. And within just a few months, the small family bookstore is already running a profit. When turning your hobby into cash, don’t forget to utilize both an online and offline approach.
Making money doesn’t always have to take a lot of time or effort, and sometimes you can utilize the skills and talents you already have. Hopefully these tips on how to make extra money easily will help you accomplish your financial goals.
What methods do you use to make extra money? Let us know in the comments!
Image credit: kzenon / 123RF Stock Photo