If 2014 was a rough year for cash, make it your resolution to get a little bit richer in 2015. Here are some ways you can both make more and spend less!
- Take some freelance writing jobs. If you can write well, create a blog, or check out if there are projects available on Online Writing Jobs! (Not writing with us yet? Get started by signing up today!)
- Pick a low-stress part-time job. Coffee shops, bars, retail stores, and restaurants always need people. Ten to 15 hours per week is not too unreasonable for those who are really desperate.
- Start a small business on the side. If you know how to make things, why not try selling them on Etsy? Whether it’s a knitted scarf or hand-crafted mugs or hand-bound journals, you can often find someone who will buy your stuff.
- Sell your stuff. Those who are less crafty can sell gold, old furniture, or art pieces online, too. A garage sale is a great way to make some cash and free up some space.
- Make money… for science! Many medical universities hold scientific tests that you can volunteer for. They might involve completing a computer program or even being paid to sleep. Cash compensation is often offered for tests where the pool of willing volunteers is limited. Also, you might be able to sell your eggs, sperm, breast milk, or plasma.
- Use your assets. If you own a house, you could rent out a room. If you have a parking space in a popular location, you could rent that per day or week. If you have an IRA, life savings, or any retirement money, you can pull from that (but you’ll also be paying more taxes at the end of the year).
- Do what you love more. The best way to get work done is to not actually realize that you’re doing work. This might seem contradictory, but expertise is one of the most highly sought-after commodities in the Internet age. Gain expertise in whatever it is that you love, whether that’s a mastery in physics or the languages from Star Wars. When applicable, make an investment in education to enhance your expertise. Once you have that expertise, there are several different ways that you can sell it. (Did we mention freelance writing jobs?)
- Kill off your high-interest debt first. Credit card debt is the top way that many Americans throw away their money. Don’t make minimum payments. Pay the cards off first, and then handle your other kinds of debt.
- Make your own things. With Pinterest, blogs, and a ton of skilled and savvy stay-at-home workers out there, you can learn how to make many different things that you would normally spend a lot of money on. Normally expensive stuff like purses, fine soaps and scrubs, cute gifts, and toys can all be cheaply improvised.
- Eat at home. Put the kibosh on drinking coffee at expensive coffee houses, eating out at restaurants, getting lunch while at work, and ordering takeout. Planning meals and following through is a cheaper and often healthier option. Also, going out to drink can be super-pricey. Host some low-key parties at home instead!
- Use coupons and buy in bulk. Although you can sometimes spend more money while using these tactics, there are plenty of blogs and advice about how to do this and do it well.
- Cut entertainment expenses. If you have cable but don’t really watch TV, get a magazine you don’t read, or spend too much on going out to the movies, there are cheaper ways you can go about entertaining yourself. You could take advantage of the books and movies at your local library, for example.
- Get quotes. You could be paying more than necessary for your insurance, cable, cell phone, or mortgage. Refinancing, making some phone calls to different agencies, and getting a few new quotes might be profitable.
- Send some of your paycheck into a low-access savings account. Pretend that you have a bill that you don’t really have. Have a percentage of your paycheck taken out and put into a savings account that you don’t often use, with a high interest rate. Don’t touch it until 2016, and you’ll have a good pile of money.
- Only pay in cash. Use physical money whenever possible. Counting out physical bills will make you wake up to how much you’re actually spending. Physical money may inherently make you want to penny-pinch.