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22 Creative Ways to Make Money (Simple and Effective)

22 Creative Ways to Make Money (Simple and Effective)

Money, you always wish you had a bit more — to buy that fancy dress or a new gadget, to save more for your vacation or a cool dinner date, to pay off your debt faster or just feel more laid back about your whole personal finance situation.

The follow list features some simple, yet effective and creative ways to make money on the side. You can earn a few extra hundreds each month without spending neither much time nor efforts!

1. Recycle your old phone(s)

Bet you got a few ancient Nokia’s or old phones hidden somewhere around the house. You’d be surprised to know that you can actually get some cash if you decide to sell them.

A lot of companies offer compensation for recycling old phones which are shipped somewhere to Asia and getting dismantled there. You can check the list of companies and possible earnings here. Ask your family and friends if they’d like to give away their old phones too for a bigger bucks.

2. Invite people for dinner

If you have relatively impressive cooking skills and some room to host guests, sign up for Eat With – a cool new service connecting travelers with hosts around the world, who invite them to a small dinner party for a fixed fee. As a host, you can set a rate per guest, choose the time and dates when you are available to throw a feast and indicate the max amount of people you are ready to invite (usually less than 6).

To become a host, fill in an application form where you tell about yourself, your cooking talents and your place. Currently, the service is available in Las Vegas, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and some major cities in Europe, Middle East and South America. The money you can earn for a small party are more than decent.

3. Become a part-time mover

This option is more suitable for guys, but girls are often accepted too to move around fragile stuff and do some minor cleaning. Moving jobs are typically per request and you can always choose a suitable time for you to do them.

A lot of moving companies allow you to create an account with them for a fee, list your services, rates, working hours etc. and get hired for temporary jobs. Check out this list of moving jobs to get a better idea of how things work and how much you can actually earn for lifting someone’s sofa.

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4. Review music for cash

All music lovers will love this job – all you need to do is listen to and review unsigned bands and artists online at Slicethepie. It may take a while to build up your reputation, but you can earn extra $50+ per month for spending 5-10 min a day listening to some aspiring music talents (or not so talents).

5. Get cash rebates for scanning your receipts

You do buy groceries, cosmetics and other staff monthly, do you? Why don’t you earn some extra bucks for that? Download a free Ibotta app, browse around and see what rebates there are offering if you scan and upload your receipts for a certain product they request.

For instance, they offer 50 cents if you upload a picture of a receipt where you bought milk and offer $10 for a picture of a Best Buy receipt. Of course, it makes no sense going out and purposefully buying products with the highest rebate, yet it won’t take much of your time taking and uploading pictures of things you typically buy and stash some extra cash by the end of the month.

6. Sell your wardrobe

This is a perfect option for women. How many dresses do you have that you wore like 3 times and now they’re hidden somewhere deep in your closet? Clothes you no longer wear shouldn’t pile up around the house when they can be turned into cash asserts.

You can either organize a yard sale yourself (which is kind of a hassle), or better sell the items through ThredUp, which will pay somewhere around $2-$25 for staff from Gap, Banana Republic, H&M, etc. You can browse around to see how much different items are worth. The best thing about ThredUp is that all you need to do is pack your clothes in a box and then just ship it to them (shipping costs are covered by the company).

7. Test websites for money

A lot of big companies look for feedback on the usability of their websites and you can get paid doing that. Expect to earn somewhere from 10 cents for an assignment taking less than a minute, to $10-$15 when it comes to larger questionnaires requesting more of your time.

Here’s a big list of sites where you can create an account and start earning cash. All the payments are typically made via PayPal either at the end of the month or when you have earned a certain sum.

8. Get paid for being someone’s friend

Rent a Friend is an absolutely legit US service where people offer their friendship (and nothing more!) starting from $10 and up to $50 per hour. As Scott Rosenbaum, the creator of the service says: “Just to hang out with, go to a movie or restaurant with or find someone to show you around an unfamiliar town”.

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As current users say you can get invited to be someone’s +1 on a VIP event, wine tasting tour, concert or some other cool activity that will cost you nothing to attend!

If you are easygoing and communicative, this might be the best job for you. Some users claim to do it full-time and earn over $50,000 per year! To become a friend, you’ll need to fill in an application form describing your personality and send it to the community manager.

9. Earn by tweeting

If you have a relatively large following on Twitter, you can get paid somewhere from $0.5 to $20 for tweeting sponsored tweets and content to your audience. The rate depends on the amount of followers you have and some other factors e.g. the age of your account.

You can earn with SponsoredTweetsPaidPerTweet and some other services alike.

10. Try match betting

It’s an absolutely legit, risk free and tax free technique. The system works by taking advantage of free bets vastly offered by online betting sites through ‘matching’ them at a betting exchange. Matched betting eliminates the risk as you are betting both for and against a certain result at the same time!

Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you get started with this. Don’t forget you have to be over 21 (18) to bet!

11. Get paid $35/hour to drive people around

Yes, that’s exactly how much you can make with Lyft and Uber. Users can just login from their phone and request a drive in all major cities in US. It’s faster and at least twice cheaper than calling the typical cab.

You, as a driver, will get a notification and can take a lift request. You set your own working hours and earn money. Obviously, you’ll need your own car to earn with them and some initial money to pay for the gas.

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12. Do odd jobs at Fiverr

At Fiverr, you can offer any kind of service starting from $5. Register an account, browse around the gigs and offer something similar. Seriously, at this online marketplace you can sell and buy all sort of things from voiceovers to logo design to things like “I’ll pretend to be your girlfriend on Facebook for 2 days”.

Write an attractive gig description clearly outlining what you’ll do for 5 bucks e.g. translate 200 words from French to English; add extras e.g. translated 300 words more for $5; deliver the order in just one day etc; add a payment method – Paypal or Payoneer and start promoting your gig and earning money.

13. Sell your notes

If you are good at writing notes and attended all lectures, you can sell your asserts to less committed students via NoteSale. You can create a listing for free, but the site will take a per cent from each of your sales. Typed notes in PDF/Text format sell best, yet it’s worth trying with scanned handwritten notes too if you have nice clear writing.

14. Sell old books the smart way

Instead of just taking them to the thrift shop and receiving peanuts, try using BooksCounter app. Scan the book barcode, upload it to the app’s system and see which of 20+ different buyback companies offers the highest payout. Once you found the right company, all you have to do is fill in some basic information of how you’d like to get paid, download a free shipping label and pack up all the books to dispatch.

15. Do data entry jobs

This may include mere copy-pasting, minor text editing, data categorisation, translations and staff alike. You can work a few hours a day and earn some hundred bucks by the end of the month. Obviously, the total payout depends on how fast/good you are. Sign up to ClickWorker if you can tolerate handling some routine tasks in exchange for cash injections.

16. Become a mystery shopper

Go undercover to local stores, look around, take notes and sneaky pictures of stuff doing nothing, fill in the questionnaire afterwards and get your cash. You can get mystery shopping assignments via Mobee app (typically the payments are not that big, yet the tasks you need to do are simple too) or get an account with Marketforce – a more established website where you’ll need to carefully fill in an application form and pass a review process. The potential earning are much bigger.

17. Sell out your old CDs, movies and games

Again, you might be surprised to know that some companies pay cash for your old compact discs. Music Magpie will pay you somewhere between a few cents to over ten bucks for all your old staff. It’s a nice way to finally de-clutter your home too!

18. Distribute leaflets

It sounds like a bit of a lame job, but some companies can offer you good money for giving away promotional staff or doing door drops. For say working 4-5 hours on the weekends, you can expect to earn somewhere between $40-$60 per 1.000 distributed leaflets.

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19. Teach classes online

If you are particularly good at somethings, say map design, capable of creating a series of video lessons, you can become a tutor at SkillShare. You’ll be in good company with folks like Seth Godin and James Franco among others. SkillShare tutorials and 30 days teaching challenge will help you create a winning video tutorial. Your earnings will depend on the popularity of your course, but even low attendance will let you earn some decent money.

You don’t need to have prior teaching experience, just skills and passion about what you do.

20. Become a language tutor online

Did you know that English language practice is in high demand in Asia? Sites like Italki.com allows teachers to list their rates and services, schedule classes and provide you with tools to conduct them in real time. You can expect to make $15-20 per hour.

If English isn’t your first language, no worries, italiki also invites French, Italian, Chinese, Spanish, Russian and more native speakers to join. You’ll have to fill in a detailed application form, get it approved and afterwards create a professional looking profile, suitable schedule for you and different courses you offer. The service will handle the rest – scheduling, marketing payments and so on.

21. Sell handmade and vintage items on Etsy

Found some retro clothes in your grandma’s chest or made a few cool brooches your friends admire? Become an Etsy seller to earn money for your crafts.

Opening your shop, listing products and prices takes less than 30 minutes. It costs $0.20 to list one item in your shop for 4 month (or till it sales) and Etsy takes 3.5% commission from each sale you make. Mind that fact when setting up the prices. Shipping costs are either to be covered by you or by the buyer (you can set the rates depending on the buyer’s’ location e.g. free shipping around US; $10.99 shipping to Europe).

22. Become a field agent

Sign up for an account with Field Agent and get paid to do small tasks around town for different clients. Those usually involve scanning barcodes with your Phone, checking prices at your local drug store and conducting field surveys. Your earnings vary from assignment to assignment and depend on the area you are based in.

For example, one listing offers $9 for 4 pictures of any products in the toothbrush section of the local Target in Mission Viejo, CA; while taking one picture of $19.99 & under video game display taken in any Toys”R”Us in NYC will earn you $5.50.

This list of effective and creative ways to make money will help you get some extra money fast. Pick one or a few to start getting those extra bucks now!

Featured photo credit: pixabay via pixabay.com

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Published on May 7, 2019

How to Invest for Retirement (The Smart and Stress-Free Way)

How to Invest for Retirement (The Smart and Stress-Free Way)

When it comes to stocks, I bet you feel like you have no idea what you’re doing.

Everyone who’s not a financial expert has been there. I’ve been there. But, time is passing and you need to be crystal clear with how you’re investing for your retirement.

Otherwise, it’s back to work until you can afford not to. So, how can you invest for retirement when you’re not a financial expert?

You take the time to learn the fundamentals well. If you do, you can grow your wealth and retire happy. The best part is that you don’t need to be a financial expert to make smart investment decisions.

Here’s how to invest for retirement the smart and stress-free way:

1. Know Clearly Why You Invest

Odds are you already know why should invest for retirement.

But, maybe you know the wrong reasons. It’s time you get clear on why you’d like to retire. Here are some questions to help you get started:

  • Will you spend more time with your family?
  • What does retirement mean to you?
  • Are you looking to launch that business you’ve been holding off for years?

Everyone wants to retire but not for the same reasons. Once you’re clear for why retirement is important for you, you’ll focus on making it happen.

Investing in the stock market allows you to take advantage of compound interest.[1] All this means is that your money earns money on top of its interest. A reason why investment in the stock market is one of the best ways to plan for retirement.

2. Figure out When to Invest

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”– Chinese Proverb

It’s true if you’d had started investing when you were 10 years old, you’d have a lot more money than you do today.

The reality is that most people don’t start investing until it’s too late. So, if you’re currently waiting for the perfect time to start an investment, it would be today. Open your calendar and block out 2 to 3 hours to choose how you’ll invest for retirement.

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A quick way to get a snapshot of where you stand is to use Personal Capital. Input all your personal information and spend some time setting your retirement goals. Once completed, you’ll know where you stand with your retirement.

Having a savings account for retirement isn’t planning for retirement. Why? Your money loses value when you factor in US inflation.[2]

3. Evaluate Your Risk Tolerance to Create the Perfect Portfolio

Investing your money well depends on your emotions.

Why?

Because when the market drops most people panic and withdraw their money. On average, the US stock market yields an annual 6% to 7% ROI (return on your investment.) But, this won’t happen if you’re worried about short-term loses.

Before you invest your next dollar, know your risk tolerance.[3] Your risk tolerance determines the number of risky and safe investments you’d have.

Regardless of your investing style, you need to view investing for retirement as a long term game. Know that some years you’ll lose money but recoup this in the long-term.

Avoid watching market-related new. Also, create a double authentication to log in your investment account. This way you’re less likely to withdraw your money.

4. Open a Reliable Retirement Account

Depending on your circumstance, you may need to open a new brokerage account. This is the account is where you’ll invest your money.

If you’re currently working for a company, odds are that they offer a 410K investing account. If so, here’s where you’ll invest most of your money. The only problem with this is that you’re limited to the stock options that are available.

You do have the option to open a separate IRA (individual retirement account.) Here are some of the best brokers:

  1. Vanguard
  2. TD Ameritrade
  3. Charles Schwab

5. Challenge Yourself to Invest Consistently

Committing to invest for retirement is hard, but continuing to do so is harder.

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Once you’ve started investment for your retirement, you run at risk from stopping. Often you’ll want to contribute less, so you’d have more money in your pocket.

That’s why it’s important that you create a budget that allows you to invest each month. If you’re working for a company, you can set a percentage for the amount you’d like to contribute each month. Most people by default contribute 1% but aim to contribute 10% to 15%.

Be the judge for how much you can afford to contribute after covering important expenses. To stay motivated, use Personal Capital to view your net worth.

A benefit to contributing money to your retirement account is not taxed. For example, if you earn $100 and invest 10%, you’d contribute $10, then get taxed on the remaining $90. As of 2019, the most you’re able to contribute towards your 401K is 19K but this can change.

6. Consider Where to Invest Your Money

The most common way to invest your money is in stocks, but it’s not the only way. Here are other ways to invest:

Robo Advisors

Robo-advisors[4] are fancy algorithms that’ll choose the best investments for you. Sites like Wealthfront make it easy for first-time investors to invest their money. You’d input information about yourself and set your risk tolerance.

Then, set your monthly contribution amount and your robo-advisor would do the rest. Robo-advisors charge a fee to manage your money, but less than regular advisors.

Bonds

Think of bonds as “IOUs” to whomever you buy them from.

Essentially, you’re lending money and charging interest. Like stocks, not all bonds are equal. Some will be riskier than others depending on their rating.

Here are the different types of bond categories:[5]

  1. Treasury bonds
  2. Government bonds
  3. Corporate bonds
  4. Foreign bonds
  5. Mortgage-backed bonds
  6. Municipal bonds

Mutual Funds

Picture a group of people dumping all their money in a jar that’s managed by a professional. This is how mutual funds work. The fund manager manages the money looking to earn capital gains (interest.)

One of the best types of mutual funds is index funds. Since these funds don’t try to beat the market and instead follow it, they need less research. Because of this they often charge the lowest fees and yield the best long-term results.

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Real Estate

Yes, buying a home is an investment when done correctly.

Imagine buying a home and using it as a rental property. After repairing it, you receive a monthly surplus check of $100 to $200.

This may not sound like a lot, but repeat this process enough times and you’d earn a large amount of passive income. That’s why real estate is one of the best investments to not only retire but become wealthy.

But, it requires a lot of money to start and you should expect losing money along the way as you learn the process.

Savings Accounts

Your money can still grow in a savings account. Nowadays most online banks offer a 2% annual return. Although the average inflation is higher your money will be available when you need it.

7. Master Disincline to Dodge Short Success

Investing for retirement is a long-term strategy. That’s why you need to master delayed gratification. All this means is delaying short-term pleasure for something bigger in the future. Research shows that those who have delayed gratification are more successful.[6]

So how can you master delayed gratification?

By building your discipline.

Think back to what retirement means to you. A clear purpose will help you avoid withdrawing your money during a market downturn. It’ll help you contribute more towards retirement when you’d want to waste it instead.

Your journey towards retirement will be long, so reward yourself along the way. Choose a reward that’s relevant and meaningful, so that you reinforce positive behavior. For example, after contributing more towards retirement, treat yourself to dinner.

8. Aggressively Invest on This One Investment

I’ve mentioned several types of investments but haven’t covered the most important one.

It sounds cliche but here’s why you’re your best investment towards retirement. The more you know, the more money you’ll be able to make. The more good habits you adopt, the more secure your retirement will be.

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More importantly, investing in yourself is an investment that no one can take away. There’s no market downturn nor tragic circumstance that’ll wipe your knowledge and experience.

But, how can you invest yourself?

Reading books, blogs, and anything that’ll help you learn new topics daily. Listen to podcasts and audiobooks on your commute to/from work.

Save money to buy courses and hire coaches. I used to believe hiring coaches was a waste of money when I could learn the subject alone.

But, coaches see your blind spots and hold you accountable. Hiring the right coach will help you achieve your goals faster than you would’ve alone.

Retire Happy with Excess Money

The key to a secure financial future doesn’t only belong to financial experts.

It’s possible for you and I. What if you were able to retire earlier than most people and weren’t a financial planner? What if you were able to focus on what you enjoy doing the most while your money was working hard for you?

I know this sounds impossible now, but the truth is you’re capable of taking charge of your retirement. I’m not a financial expert but I’ve learned how to invest my money by reading books and learning from others.

Investing your money is scary. So start small and invest a small amount of your money with a robo-advisor. Feel your money drop and rise for a month or two. Then, invest more and keep this up until you’re aggressively saving for retirement.

One day, you’ll wake up with a net worth you’re proud of – confident about your retirement. You now know a few strategies you can use to invest in your retirement. Will you take action to retire happy?

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Featured photo credit: Matthew Bennett via unsplash.com

Reference

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