More often than not, you will hear your friends or colleagues exclaim right after their holiday trips: “I have seriously overspent this time! How am I to earn it back?” While that is just a simple example, it seems that everyone is constantly trying to figure out new ways to earn extra income! Why is that so? Blame it on this phrase then – Money is never enough! Or the popular Singaporean version – “Money no enough”
Before I touch on 5 popular ways to earn extra income outside your full time employment, I would like to emphasise that none of these are quick fixes, they are some ways to generate additional cash. But you never know; maybe you’ll make it big through one of these avenues in time to come (the Apple computer was first conceived in a car garage too!)
#1 Sell your unwanted stuff
Find a day or two when you are free and try a minor spring cleaning in your house. There are always unwanted or old stuff hiding in some corners that are worth at least something. Dig out that old guitar you never play, those dusty books you don’t read, or your old clothes that don’t fit so well anymore.
Next, you have to decide on where to find the people who can buy all your stuff. In fact, there are several options. Go to the Cash Converters for a quick exchange for cash if you desperately want nothing more to do with your old stuff. Flea markets organised by community centres are a good selling place and one may gain early business experience like maintaining a pushcart.
Lastly, and the most popular method nowadays, is to consider selling your items online at Ebay or Amazon (Did you know that Ebay.com was founded coincidentally by listing a broken laser printer?!). With the help of technology, many people are striving in e-commerce stores selling everything from clothes to smart-phone accessories.
#2 Earn money from hobbies
Turn your passion into something rewarding! While hobbies are notorious for being money drains, they don’t have to be that way. More often than not, people have interests that can be monetised if they go about it in a different way.
For example, take a look at Famous Amos – it was all started from the passion of baking good and delicious cookies. For a local context, look at this article where the hobby earned the guy a million dollars selling Farmville guides! Remember, in this hugely connected world, there are many potential ways to turn your favourite past-time into a source of income; you may even get paid to play.
#3 Give Tuition
Are you particularly good in any school subject in your school days like maths or chemistry? Or do you have a specialised skill set like being gifted in musical instruments or knowing a foreign language?
In that case, you can become a tutor perhaps in the night time or weekends and transform your knowledge into a pay-check. Finding students should not be very tough. Just advertise where parents are likely to look – on tuition websites, at the library or in the newspapers – and you will soon build a list of clients.
A very popular site specifically designed to be the middleman between freelancers and business owners is elance.com. In today’s economy, globalisation has enabled companies to outsource some of their functions to independent contractors to cut overhead expenses like bonuses and setting up a physical office for each full-time employee they hire.
With the trend increasingly shifting in this direction, you can take advantage of it if you have a marketable skill like article writing, graphic design, web design, public relations and more. To get started, focus on the services you can provide (can you bundle them together for more marketability?). Determine the going rate for the type of work you’ll be doing by checking on your competitors’ rates. Continuously build on your portfolio and reputation so that more businesses will come knocking on your door!
#5 Stocks/Forex Trading
Stocks and Forex trading are one of the riskier ways to monetise your free time. Before you get excited with an advertisement’s claim of how you can earn truckloads of cash within a short period of time, you have to be fully aware of what you are doing and the risks you are taking.
While trading stocks for a secondary income is possible, truly learning and understanding how the whole thing works is very important to secure a steady stream of income. I would advise going for lessons and practicing on virtual accounts first in order to get the hang of it first. Starting small could be the way to go for this idea, any losses could just be chalked up to “tuition fee” paid for learning lessons – Fortune favours the patient (mostly) you only hear some stories of how the brave succeeds, that’s because they don’t make stories of the vast majority of the braves that failed.
Wrapping it up
I hope you have enjoyed this light-hearted article of 5 ways to make more money. While there are still many more ways to make some side income, these are the more popular ones to get you started. Please do let us know if you have more or novel ideas to make extra cash on the side lines.
Nevertheless, even though getting into many of these money-making ventures may seem exciting, one should do it in moderation. As the slogan goes, “Health is Wealth”. There is no point in having all the money in the world when your health does not permit you to enjoy them.
Royalty-free photo from Getty Images. Used with appreciation.
Listen to our podcast, where we have in-depth discussions on finance topics that matter to you.